Teterboro Airport: Private Jet Interior/Exterior

I've had lots of interesting opportunities in the time I've been a photographer.  This, however, is by far the most interesting (and expensive) product shoot I've ever done.  When the first question you're asked upon arriving is, "Where would you like the plane?", you know its going to be a fun shoot.

Unfortunately, it was a rainy day which required us to shoot inside the hangar vs. outside. The ground crew at Teterboro Airport accommodated us by moving this plane to allow for mostly unobstructed views.  We started with the outside, then moved in. 

The owner of this beautiful Falcon 900EX is making it available to charter.  This generated a request from the charter company, Landmark Aviation, to have images featured on their aircraft data sheet to show prospective clients.  They connected us with the pilot, Bruno, for a tour of the plane and help with any requests we had during the shoot.   

Bruno told us about the updated interior and, as you can see from the images, everything is immaculate.  Looking back, I laugh that I brought windex and paper towels as a "just in case" - NOT needed!

For a shoot like this, it's always better to have another highly competent person with you to cover the job properly.  Theresa Keil of Keil Studios Photography has worked with me on many jobs and helped create some great images on this shoot as well.  To add some color, I worked with a local florist, New Providence Florist for the short-stemmed yellow roses.

Family Photos at the Great Swamp

Late fall in NJ can be a great time to shoot outdoor.  On this day we had some nice cloudy weather that most photographers love.

NJ Family Portraits - Great Swamp

With some research, I found a location within the Great Swamp that worked great for Nick & Nirali's family shoot.  We had this cute family walk a bit and huddle in for a few poses.

NJ Family Portraits - Great Swamp

A few images I liked from a little more walking around the grounds.

NJ Family Portraits - Great Swamp

Some individual shots of the kids.  The older children were a little more willing to step out on their own.  For the youngest, mama had to tag along for that shot.

NJ Family Portraits - Great Swamp

Family Photos in Berkeley Heights with the Kale's

Rupa has become a good friend and valuable business contact over the past couple years.  She owns Bottle & Bottega in Berkeley Heights, NJ and she recently asked me to snap some photos of her young family.  

Darrin Estep Photography | family

I was fortunate enough to have this great location picked out by her.  It has all the qualities that I look for as a photographer: great light (open shade), nice scenery that's not distracting, limited number of people around.  This had all those things.

Darrin Estep Photography | family

Given that it was a little chilly outside and we're working with small children, we moved quick and tried to keep things interesting to keep the energy high and positive to get some great smiles like  I got here.

Darrin Estep Photography | family

Cute family.  Lots of fun.

Catalog Shoot

Once in a while I come across something new and different.  This was one of those times.  I was commissioned to shoot approximately 150 pieces of clothing for the upcoming summer season (dreaming of summer right about now in January) by using 4 models which gave us a few minutes per outfit based on the time we had to shoot.  Yikes!


What you see above is about 1/3 of the line we shot that day.  Its a little hard to make out but you'll notice there's a small object in the lower left of all the photos.  This is an iPad with a product number on it so when Dave (the manufacturer) needs to take orders from his clients, they know what product they're talking about.  We had so many pieces of clothing to photograph that the MUA (Jennifer) ended up modeling for us as well.  Great shoot!

MUA: Jennifer Haines
Models: Melanie, Alina, Kiki, Sarah
Clothing Manufacturer: Satguru Enterprises
Photographer: me :-)

Michele & John's Wedding

I received a call from Michele a couple weeks back and she knew of me from an event I shot at Bottle & Bottega in the summer.  She and her fiancé were planning a civil ceremony in a town close to where I live.  I was happy accommodate them and be one of the 5 select people at this event.


I stopped by the courthouse the day before and was initially a little concerned.  The parking lot and the courthouse weren’t going to make for very interesting images.  I started to wander around the neighborhood a bit and pretty quickly discovered this really nice park right next door.  Yay!  It had plenty for me to work with and I mapped out a path of things we could walk through in a short period of time.


After our quick shoot in the park, we walked over to the courthouse.  There were two other couples waiting to be married but Michele & John were first.  The judge was pretty funny.  His name was Mr. Fullylove - and he joked about how appropriate his name was for his purpose in the days events.


Ten minutes later, Michele and John were married!  Congratulations to you both! 

Video: Aspen Landscaping Advertisement

Aspen is leader in full-solution commercial landscaping in the NJ/NY area.  They have just added an irrigation division to their business and I was hired to shot an advertisement announcing this new venture.  

I worked with Mark (the project manager) and Angelo (spokesperson) to produce the video.  This was the first time they had ever put together a video like this and it was fun working through the requirements and messaging with them to arrive at this final product.  From what I understand from them, this is also pretty unusual in the landscape business to have a video like this so this should be a nice differentiator for Aspen Landscaping.

Erin + Brian

Recently, I photographed the wedding of Erin + Brian with a good friend of mine, Erin.  No, that wasn't a typo. Two Erin's.

I started with the groom and his family.  We grabbed of shots of the family and I also had the pleasure of coming up with some shots of the rings.  Although I've received mixed reviews (you know who you are), I happen to like this one and when I showed it to the groom he seemed to like it too. 


These images were from two different times in the day, but both of the grooms side.  I wanted to do something a little different with the groom at the table.  They had a suite at the hotel so it provided me with the decoration for the rings and this great table for the groom.   


Finally, some images of the church, the newly married bride and groom and some refreshments from the cocktail hour.   


I'm feeling like its time for a drink, you? 

Shefali + Neil Engagement

Shefali and Neil were introduced to me through a former co-worker and friend.  I was asked to capture their proposal.  It's hard to believe that was almost six months ago. 

Shortly after, we scheduled a date to shoot the engagement.  We set a date - then had to move it. We set another date and got to the venue only to realize that none of us had read the "Hours of Operation" very well - it was closed when we arrived. Rescheduled again.  Then, rain.  Yikes!  It really shows the character of this couple as they remained determined and flexible.  As you can likely guess, our determination paid off.  Yea!

We met last Friday at a place called the Grounds For Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ.  It's about an hour's drive for each of us and we arrived around 7:00pm, after work, ready to shoot.  We strolled into the park to find our first setting.

We were off to a good start.  There were so many great places to shoot here, it made it easy to grab a couple of Shefali looking stunning and a nice image of Neil in his formal attire.



Here's one that had such a great setting with trees on either side...

Neil was looking for some camera time here...

Some playfulness...

And one more of Shefali..

Congratulations guys!  I wish you all the best on your wedding day which is fast approaching!  August 11th.

Nicole + Ryan

I met Nicole and Ryan on their wedding day when I was asked by Dan (a fellow photographer) to help cover the event. Dan and I joined Nicole, her mother, and the bridesmaids in the bridal suite to capture some details (shoes, dress, hair & make-up, etc.).  Nicole seemed so at ease as she sat for the finishing touches on her hair. Being surrounded by such close friends and family helped, I'm sure.  One of the favorites from the morning was this one of her making sure all was good through her compact mirror. 


I only stayed for a few minutes with the girls then drove to get some time with the groom for his preparations. Once I rounded the corner to the grooms parents' house, I knew I was in trouble because I noticed the party bus had already arrived.  My first thought is that I had very limited time to get what I needed.  As I entered the house, I said hello to Ryan and asked how much time we had.  He said, "About 10 minutes.  Is that enough?'"  Sure :-)  We can make that happen.  We set up a couple scenarios. Snap, snap, snap and they were on their way.

When I got to the church, I had a quick look around and saw great opportunities to get some interesting perspectives during the ceremony.  They had a balcony in the back and on either side of the church.  I was able to roam about to get images from unexpected vantage points. 


Next, we're off to Jersey City for the reception at The Liberty House.  I quickly moved around to capture the setup of the food and decor.  Here are a couple of my favorites... 


This day was one of the hottest of the summer, so we were fortunate that most of our shooting was indoors; however, we did get outside for some of the formals.  With such a nice backdrop of the NYC skyline, we took the opportunity to work it into the shot. The girls were particularly silly which I loved.  

The rest of the night was focused on capturing people having fun.  No problem at this wedding!  They had a great band called Night Moves which were fantastic, especially when the bride joined in toward the end of the evening to lead a Billy Joel cover.


Will You...

A couple weeks ago, I learned about an exciting opportunity to shoot a proposal (thanks Tejal). Yes, capture someone planning to propose to his girlfriend and not get noticed.  Sure!  Sign me up.  Sounds like fun and a great challenge.  After a few texts exchanged with the groom to be, Neil, and we're set.  Pictures were exchanged so we knew what each other looked like and I landed in Hoboken at the Esplanade at 3PM ready to capture the magic.  I waited for a few minutes and sent a text to confirm I was in the right spot.  I was.


A text came back and he said they were just entering the park.  I spotted them and tried to make myself invisible.  Unfortunately, that was hard because for whatever reason, there weren't many people in the park at this time.  I'm kind of standing out in the open and stalking this couple like a paparazzi.  Not to worry, there were only a couple people that looked at me kind of cross because I have this rather large camera with a big lens shooting people that appear to not know I'm pointing the camera at them.  Its for a good cause.


They rounded the park toward the water and then came up the center in the grass and this is where the proposal began.  I captured a few images and gave them a few moments together.  Neil then introduced me to his now fiance Shefali.  I congratulated them and we headed over to a bench to snap a few images.  I can't wait to get an appointment with them to shoot their engagement - with Shefali knowing its about to happen :-)

Congratulations Neil and Shefali.

Marian & Antwan's Wedding

As a follow-up to my previous post for the wedding of Marian & Antwan I wanted to put together an album layout from the images captured as a second shooter.  It doesn't give you the entire flow since my role is to help the primary shooter get what he needs.  There were however, a few opportunities for me to capture images and what I'm posting here is a result of those moments.  I picked out a few of my favorites to give you a sense of how I experienced the event from start to end.
I arrived in the morning with the task of shooting the groom getting ready.  Uh, didn't work out exactly because they were already ready!  Hmm...go with it, right?  So, we shot a variety of shots with the guys in the house where they were getting ready.  There was a really cute little boy that I wanted to feature.  The image below is the result.  I also shot some reflection off the party bus as the guys were waiting to jump in.  Kind of different.

Guys prep

This was a Egyptian couple and the church had some interesting detail.  By the way, I was really thrown when people were chanting in the ceremony.  Everyone has their traditions and it's interesting to be an outside observer.  Just wish I had some audio to share with you to give you a sense of how it sounded.

Church Detail

Bride & Bridal Party

Since the priest was running a few minutes late, I was lucky enough to get a few minutes with the bride to shoot a couple images.  She was beaming on her special day and is as nice in person as she appears to be in pictures.

Bridal PartyCeremony

A couple shots of the bridal party and a quick capture of the bride and groom during the ceremony.

Just Married

This shot of Marian & Antwan just after they exited the church is one of my favorites.

Reception Details

First Dance

Finally, a few of the first dance as bride and groom and the dance with their parents.  Congrats guys!  This was the first time I worked with Mike and his crew, and they were such a nice bunch of guys.  Two were shooting video and we all had fun working this event.  I'd love to work with them again.

Help Portrait: Take 2

This past weekend I took some time away. Time away from friends, from family and from anything else I could potentially do on a Saturday to volunteer for a great cause called Help Portrait.  This the second year I've participated and this year was just as rewarding as the last.  Here's how it works: 

First, you find someone in need.  Take their picture.  Print it and give it to them. That's pretty much it.  Oh, and you do all of these things in the same day, for free.

This year, we were at a small church called Humanity Baptist Church in Newark.  As I rolled up, I sat in the parking lot for a few minutes since I was the first one there.  It was 11:00.  Shortly after, Jarvis (the organizer for this event) along with several others arrived.  I got out to introduce myself and help bring some things in.  Once we got setup, people began to arrive and it was already noon.  I was on the edit/print station again this year which is a tough spot, especially at the end of the day.

For the participants, they would enter and immediatlely be paired with a greeter which would explain how things work, have them fill out a permission form for using their photos, take them over to a hair/make-up person if they so desired, escort them over to have their pictures taken and then make sure they knew where to go to get their final product (that's where I come in).  I would grab the files from the shooter, import them, speak with the family for them to pick one they want to have printed.  Once the selection is made, I clean up the image and print it.  If the family chose to, we would print a second image for them on matt paper for them to write a message. This is one example shown to the left.

Of course, I'm leaving a few things out.  The patience of the families, the good spirits of all that were there and the great feeling of accomplishment at the end of the day.  One story that stuck out was a family that asked to have their picture taken but couldn't make it to the church where we were setup.  So, a few of us went to them. The picture was of a little girl (about 10) that had breathing tube and wasn't expected to live much longer.  She gathered with her mother and father for a special family portrait.  Very sad but a great example of the power of photography capturing that moment for that family.

When Opportunity Knocks...

...you answer!

A few weeks back I saw a posting on a forum for a second shoot opportunity...and it was local...well, kind of.  I very quickly put together an email and ended it with the hope that I'd hear back.  As I'm sure you've already guessed it, since I'm writing this post, I did hear back in a favorable way.  A few days later, I met Mike (the primary shooter) at lunch in the city and we discussed the couple and the details of the day.

I'm still making my way through the images but this is one that I really like from that day.  More to come soon...