Monday, December 20, 2010

Winter Wonderland!

A beautiful winter snow coating, a bright morning and a little touch-up in Lightroom and you get some pretty striking images.  I am normally not a big advocate of extreme color changes to pictures, but I really like how these pictures turned out.  Let me know what you think about them.

This is the original:

And this is after processing:

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Countryside Christmas!

I took a few pictures at the grand opening of Countryside Christmas, a great Christmas experience that was created by good friends of mine NW of Chicago.  

Check out their website if you are in the area, it makes for a great family activity!

The Belgian horses are not only very beautiful animals, they also are extremely strong!

"O, what fun it is to ride in a two-horse open sleigh, Hey!"

I was glad when I saw that they had piping hot cappuccino for sale in the treat shop. It hits the spot on a cold winter day!

Kaity and Emmy, warming up in the treat shop next to a crackling fire.

Even the snowmen are happy to serve up holiday goodies there! :o)

Josh does a great job taking care of the horses.

These "gingerbread boys" that the girls were making are really tasty once they finish baking and decorating them with all sorts of colorful frosting!

Monday, December 6, 2010

A few family pictures

This evening I brought a backdrop and a couple of lights home so that we could shoot a few family pictures for my sister and her family.  For being a quick thrown together shoot in our living room, I was pretty pleased with the way the pictures turned out.

I love my adorable niece!

It was also this little guy's birthday tonight, so we got a shot of him for the family blog.

Friday, December 3, 2010

We have a WINNER!

We have an official winner of the SLR lens coffee mug!

I pondered about how to fairly and randomly pick one person out of the many who entered, and I came across this website while searching for a good way to do that.  I entered everyone's names (my followers twice) and the name that was selected by the computer was....drum roll please!

Anna Flora!

So congratulations, and please email me at: in order to choose your mug and give me your mailing address.

Thank you all for your participation and great thoughts on what there is to love about photography!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Only 3 days left!

The first giveaway prize came in the mail this week and let me assure you that it is really awesome! 

Leave a comment at this post to enter! 

Feel free to leave a comment even if you are not a photographer...this would make a great Christmas gift for one of your photographer friends!

Only three days left before the winner is chosen! 

Watch the blog this Friday for the announcement.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

New Photographer!

AJ came along to help me with some work today, and afterwards, we had some fun, shooting pictures together.  I have to admit, I was stunned at the quality of pictures that Aiden shot!

Every picture of me was taken by him and vice versa.

Check out his skills with my camera!  Do I sense a future photographer?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I love where I live!

I love where I live, the middle of nowhere, out in a cornfield. 

One of the many reasons that I love where I live can be described in the picture below. 

And for all you photographers out there, I did something that I never do with a picture this once.  I did nothing!  I mean it, no bump up of contrast, clarity, color....nothing!  This is exactly as I shot it this morning, three images stitched together, no other editing. 

I love it when God gives me such a great gift to start out my day with!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Hayloft Photos

Eli and Luke are great volunteers when it comes to letting me try out some wacky lighting or posing with them.  A few nights ago, we messed around with some studio strobes to see what we could come up with in our dimly lit hayloft.  The results, below:

Thanks for your help guys, I couldn't have done it without you!

Thursday, November 18, 2010


-- UPDATE --

Due to several requests that I got from photography friends who shoot Nikon, I will now be offering a Nikon coffee mug in the event that a Nikon shooter wins the contest.

Thank you to all of you who have already entered, I love reading your thoughts on photography!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

First Giveaway!

Hello there my blog following friends, I have big news. 

I am posting the first giveaway from Photography by Jack!

I hope to do many more fun giveaways in the future as I am able to, but this one is just plain awesome.

The winner will be chosen on December 3rd so I hope you will all participate and have some fun.

Okay, first off, here is the totally amazing thing that I am giving away. 

No, these are not real lenses that I am giving away. You can close your mouth now.

These are some super cool coffee mugs, made for the photographer in you!

I will give away one of these lenses, your choice if you win and I will ship it for free to anywhere in the United States or Canada.  (And just for the record, whichever lens is not chosen, I am going to keep for personal use! :o)

You don't have to own a SLR camera to enter this contest, you don't even have to own a camera!  And my apologies to all you Nikon shooters, but both the lenses are Canon.  Feel free to participate though, they would make a great Christmas gift for one of your Canon friends!

 I can't give away these totally amazing "photographerish" items without you doing something, so here is what you have to do to enter the giveaway.

Leave a comment on this post or my Photography by Jack Facebook page with a short line on what you love about photography.

You may comment as many times as you would like to, but only one entry will be recorded per person.

BUT!  Here is a sneaky way for me to get more people following my pages and a good way to reward those of you who already do.  If you leave a comment and you are following the blog or the Facebook page, you will be entered TWICE in the giveaway!  See...who says I don't reward the people who support me? :o)

Also, please feel free to send this page to any of your photography friends who would like to have one of these coffee mugs, the more people participating, the better!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Historic Commercial Shoot

I had the privilege recently of being asked to do a historic landmark shoot for a few grocery stores that are working on renovating and upgrading their stores.  They will be using the pictures I took to build signs similiar to this one, that I shot earlier this year.

I saw a lot of old buildings, and I thoroughly enjoyed the beautiful weather, walking around, taking pictures all day.

Here are a few of the pictures that I liked especially.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Nymeyer Family

Talk about energy, talk about lots of smiles, talk about blonde hair everywhere! :o)

This family shoot was a ton of fun, and even though the sun wasn't helping much, we got some great pictures of all 10 of them!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Luke's 14th

I have been playing around with my new 50mm f/1.4 lens, and although I haven't mastered it yet, I am loving the focus I can achieve with it!

Luke turned 14 yesterday, so I got a few pictures of him with my new lens.

The only things I touched on these pictures was some minor color adjustments and the B&W conversion.  No clarity or blur filters were used.

Yes, I am in love!

Monday, November 1, 2010

A couple of pictures from Chicago...

Here are a few of my favorite pictures from a couple of days ago, when we met with some friends in downtown Chicago.  At least they put up with my happy camera trigger finger! :o)

I love this churchyard.  It almost feels like you are in a different era!

My wonderful sister and brother-in-law are so perfect for each other!

P.S. Stay tuned for a post once I get my new 50mm 1.4 prime lens.  I can't wait to get some awesome pictures with it!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

As I promised in an earlier post, I am now posting some more pictures from the Newport Hill Climb.

I was raining on and off all day, so it was a little bit difficult to get all the shots that I wanted, but I was pretty pleased in the end with a few of the pictures that I got.

To see more pictures from the day, check out my Facebook Page: Newport Hill Climb

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Ripstik Fun

Eli and Levi pulled out the Ripstiks, and I pulled out my off-camera flashes for some experimenting.

I think we all had a good time messing around with the flashes.

Now this is a genuine "Eli charm" smile! 

Matt joined us a little bit later and got his Canon going as well!
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