Author: MarkKelly

Holiday family photography

A collection of images from a holiday family photography session. This is a case where the family asked me to come to them. The other option being the family come to me in the studio or we go to a location not the house. It was right near the holidays and the entire family was home for a week or so. I had photographed the youngest daughter a few years ago and the Mom asked me to come to the home. I had a lot of fun with this session. They are a really nice family and a joy to work with.

We started indoors and carved out a corner of the living room and removed any holiday decorations, making a simple background and setting. After that we went to the backyard where we got a bit lucky with the lighting. The day had been fairly overcast and as we started shooting the clouds thinned giving us a slightly contrasty backlit scene. The temperature was right about freezing, so not so comfortable. The family were troopers and did not let the chill show for the photographs.

We then went to the front porch, de-holidayed the setting and photographed a bunch of different family groups. The family loosened up a bit and we had a bit of fun.

Mom recently got back to me with the print order. We had a conversation about images and sizes. I went back to the original file and reprocessed the images with more care. For holiday family photography I don’t alway need to retouch individual faces and did not need to do so for this set. I did have to remove a few unwanted indoor items. The print order came back to me in about a week and I delivered the images. Happy family.

FIRST Robotics week 1 Kettering competition

Team RUSH 27 of Clarkston MI competed in week 1 of the FIRST Robotics (FRC) District at Kettering University in Flint MI. There were 40 teams competing in a co-opetition format. Each team plays 12 games during qualifications on either the Red or Blue Alliance. For one quali a team might have a certain team on the alliance and in a later quali the team may be on the opposing alliance. After the quali games the top 8 teams with the most points choose teams for their championship and play best of three to crown a champion.

We, Team RUSH27 won! They were joined by 3542 S.P.E.E.D. and 5150 Hybrid, Congratulations! The video is a view of the pits, the stands, some of the students and mentors and some of the competitions during the 2 day event.

Team RUSH is off to Hunstville AL in a little over a week to compete in the Rocket City Regional. You can view the complete schedule here.

See more MPKphoto videos

Goodrich MI Barber Shop

Goodrich Barber MI Shop, this is my first take at photographing a series of Barbershops.  It is an extension and addition of my series photographing post offices around the country.  When ever I travel I like to get off the freeways and visit small town America.  The idea came from reading Blue Highways by William Least Heat Moon years ago.  It is a travelogue on Americana.  I chose to add barber shops when I was driving around Clarkston and Waterford a few weeks ago an noticed there were at least three old fashioned, independent structured barber shops within a few miles.

When I shoot post offices I try not to have people in the shot and make the image more about the building and the surroundings.  For barber shops I plan to focus more on the interior of the building, the barber and the patrons.  We will see where this goes.

Scotts Barber Shop
10233 Hegel Rd
Goodrich, MI 48438

I was introduced to Scott a week ago by my pal Don Rush and got a haircut that day.  I went  back and spent an hour or so photographing the shop with Scott in it.  The shop was converted from a bank in 1919 and Scott is the 4th owner.  He has been there 10 years and his son Brandon cuts there also.  The interior is covered with trinkets, sports memorabilia, photos, calendars, a dead deer, historic barber stuff and tools of the trade.  Very eclectic and interesting.

After a bit  a customer came in and agreed to have shots taken.  Chuck Lippincott first came to this shop when he lived on a chicken farm outside of town a few miles, back in 1941 when he was a young boy.  Chuck told stories of delivering chickens to families in Flint and trading the chickens for various rationing stamps.  He also talked about how he would drive to Davisburg for feed and see very few cars on the trip.  Different times. It was a very nice conversation and I’m lucky to have talked with him.

Check out Scott’s shop.  You will get a great haircut and might hear some good stories.

Street Photography, Clarkston photographer, Taste of Clarkston 2018

I had my Photo Booth again for more street photography, Clarkston photographer again at the Taste of Clarkston 2018.  This is the 6th or 7th consecutive year I have been in the parking lot of the Clarkston News with my “tribute to Irving Penn” photo booth and background.  For each subject I ask that they make a donation to a local charity.  The local charity was DRAW Bucket this year.  We raised $63.  A bit lower than most years, but every little bit helps.

The background is a couple of sheets of 4 x 8 luan that I painted years ago.  With a couple of moves and in and out of storage, the backgrounds are getting a little beat up.  I don’t really see many of the markings in the final images and I really like the consistency of having the same background year to year.

The Taste of Clarkston is an annual event host by the Clarkston Chamber of Commerce and is held on Main Street right downtown.  There are dozens of local food tents with a wide variety of reasonably priced food and drink.  There is a beer and wine tent at each end of downtown.  The Lions even have a mobile TV with the Lions game showing, I share the parking lot with them.

I have a handful off people that return every year.  Some tell me they use the images for greeting cards.  Whenever I see someone I know I ask them to come in for a quick shot.  I write down their file number, they email me that number and I send them their images.  Towards the end of the day the crowd gets a little thinner, so this year I tried to get as many dogs and owners as I could.  I also try and cover as many volunteers and other helping out.