Thursday, December 23, 2010

Business Portraits

Business portraits have always been one of our favorite types of photography.  We produce work for such a wide variety of clients.  Often times the subjects are members of a sales team, such as realtors.  Clients are free to stop by our comfortable and conveniently located studio or we will come to them.  Most of these sessions will include anywhere from 3 to 30 subjects.  J&K Creative! is available to travel throughout the Twin Cities metro area.  If your company is ready to make that New Year's resolution to have a fresh new image in 2011 call J&K Creative! at 952-473-0201 for a consultation. 

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Wednesday, December 22, 2010

360 degree view of Cheese Quacker

I seems some of our customers are having a tough time finding our Wisconsin rubber duck, Cheese Quacker.  Here is a link to a fun animation of the little guy.  You can also find the direct link for ordering information.  To see him visit:

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Diesel Art

Worked a little "digital painting magic" on one of Diesel's portraits this morning.

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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Matt And His Buddy, Diesel

Tonight we photographed Matt, and his rapidly growing puppy, Diesel.  It was fun to photograph a dog that was not part of the K-9 unit!
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Saturday, December 4, 2010

Photographing Siblings

Photographing teenage siblings (boy and girl) offers some unique posing challenges.  If the photographer isn't a little careful they can appear to be more like boyfriend/girlfriend relationships.  In this example, showing wardrobe that reflects each ones own unique interests and style helps define the relationship.  Also, the pose is close, but disconnected enough to show that they are friends or part of the same family.

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Monday, November 29, 2010

Wedding Album Layout

This weekend I worked on our latest wedding album design.  We do not use templates in our designs, like many photographers.  Each page is carefully and thoughtfully created one image at a time for a completely original, "one of a kind" album.  We believe that the project only starts with the day of the event and it is not complete until the album is in the hands of the bride and groom.
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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Annie And Ben's Wedding

Yesterday we photographed Annie and Ben's wedding in downtown Minneapolis.  It was so exciting to work in an urban environment.  We enjoyed all aspects of the day!

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Shoot From The Hip

Seriously, don't be afraid to shoot from the hip or over the shoulder or upside down.  Sometimes we don't have the angle we'd like when covering events or shooting location portraits.  During my years as a newspaper photographer I often had to "get the shot" from behind a crowd of other press photographers and a handful of videographers.  Being 5-8" didn't help.  After awhile I began to realize that I didn't always have to have my face jammed up against the camera to get the job done.  Suddenly I was 6'4"!  Does that system work all the time - no, but it very often will get you great results.
When the situation arises where you are photographing short, rather than tall subjects the same idea works.  Pets and little kids can be photographed effectively this same way.  When those spontaneous moments happen and you can't take the time to sit down or lay on the floor just hang on tight and put the camera where you would like to be.

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Sunday, November 7, 2010

Kelli, Kelli, Kelli!

Yesterday my friend, Kelli brought her gang over for family portraits.  Every so often a photo shoot takes on a "life of it's own" and this was definately one of them.  Kathy and I photographed almost every combo possible, including two dogs.  Our "squeaky" sound maker wasn't too effective as these were older dogs and it seems they couldn't hear it! 
We look forward to helping Kelli make her selections from this "super fun" portrait session.

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Friday, November 5, 2010

Scouting Our Next Wedding Location

Today J&K Creative! worked with our November 17th wedding couple, Ben and Ann.  We worked on some portraits and checked out locations at the Crowne Plaza, The Greenway and Peavey Plaza in Minneapolis.  We found many options for wedding portrait locations and had a super fun time doing it.

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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Maternity Session Family Portrait

 Maternity sessions are very personal and challenging. We recently photographed a young family in our studio. Here is a black and white sample from that session.
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Friday, October 29, 2010

Anoka Halloween Kiddie Parade

Today we had so much fun photographing the "Kiddie Parade" in downtown Anoka. The parade is part of the annual Anoka Halloween festival. The city is known as the "Halloween Capital Of The World". The event featured area school children.

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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Social Media Event Date Change

The very cool folks at Denmark and CBeyond have moved their social media event to November 17th. I'll pass along more details as I get them. Definately stay tuned as you really don't want to miss this presentation.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Amari In The Studio

Amari came by the studio yesterday for an impromptu portfolio session. We tried a variety of looks and this is one of my spontaneous favorites.

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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Tomorrow we are finishing an album design

This week Tina and I are wrapping up our preliminary album design for Allyson and Chris. We are creating a White Glove 10x10 presentation. It is really looking good and I'm happy that we are closer to the bride and groom having this beautiful album in their hands
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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Social Media Resources

First of all, I'd like to thank all of you who attended the TCPPA Social Media Mini-Workshop on Monday. It is so exciting for me to share some of the concepts and ideas that Kathy and I have dug up over the last few months. Indeed, the social media scene continues to evolve on an almost daily basis. As promised here is a menu of great internet resources for you. We have a super busy week, but I will continue to add related content as quickly as I can. I will also be posting the latest Animoto show in the next couple of days at:

The November 17th event (DON'T EVEN THINK OF MISSING THIS ONE!) is sponsored by our good friends at CBeyond -

Let's start with the basics:
Tweet Deck -
Please Retweet Me -
Monitter -
Klout -
User Voice -

Informational Blogs:

Build you blog with:
Blogger -
Promote you blog and connect with Facebook at:

I hope these resources will help you carve out a strong presence on the internet. Just remember, it's not about the technology - it's about creating "conversations"!

Please consider signing up for our email updates, like button or follow options.

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Friday, October 8, 2010

New Feedback Tab

You will now find a red "Feedback" tab on the lefthand margin of the ArtByJonNow blog site. Please let us know how we can make our posts more relevent to you. We want our visitors to experience entertaining and informative content. Your input is important to us.


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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Wonderful Seminar Today

Kathy and I just got back from a great information-packed social media seminar conducted by Sam Fiorella, with Tri-Media, Integrated Marketing Technologies . The seminar was sponsored by Cbeyond , Cisco and RIM Blackberry. J&K Creative! wants to thank them for this awesome educational opportunity! Cbeyond will be having another social media seminar in Minneapolis on November 3rd. Don't miss it!

Sam Fiorella is an expert at developing social media strategies for small businesses. With more than 20 years of marketing experience, he has built a successful track record in the online and e-business arena. A globally recognized leader in online marketing and emerging digital trends, including social media. Sam has developed integrated marketing programs for many Fortune 500 companies, including Microsoft, Snyder's Pretzels, Hyatt, AXA Equitable, First Choice Power, Hitachi Power Tools and many others. Find out more about Sam here.

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Sunday, October 3, 2010

Saturday's Wedding

Kathy and I had a great time photographing Stephanie and Cezar's wedding at Noerenberg Park on Lake Minnetonka yesterday. Even though the light offered some challenges we incorporated a variety of modifiers and fill light to make everyone look their best. Here is one of the ring images from the Lafayette Club reception.
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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Little Jack, The Pirate

Recently we photographed a corporate picnic that featured a pirate theme. This is one of my favorite images from the day.
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Monday, September 27, 2010

Portrait Party

This past weekend a customer of ours hosted a portrait party at our studio. Eight of her friends from out of town spent the morning enjoying posing both indoors and out. We are looking at creating a special package for this concept as people seem to enjoy making an "event" out of group portrait sessions.
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Saturday, September 18, 2010

Kevin Kubota at TCPPA

On Monday Wedding photography superstar, Kevin Kubota presented a mini bootcamp for the Twin Cities Professional Photographer's Association. Jon and Tina had a chance to talk to Kevin and pose for a quick 'grab and grin".
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Monday, August 30, 2010

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Painted Twig

2010 Minnesota Renaissance Festival feature character and performer, Twig.

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Saturday, August 28, 2010

Renaissance Festival

Hannah and her friend, Eva joined Kathy and I for a fun day at the Renaissance Festival today. We did all the usual fun things, including the turkey drumstick lunch.
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Thursday, August 26, 2010

Moon Over Swan Lake

I just got back from a quick trip up north. This was the view from the hot tub at my sister's lake home just outside of Pengilly, MN. Deb and Bugs and I had a great time!
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Friday, August 20, 2010

Just Finishing Order For Taija

Today I'm just wrapping up senior portrait images to post to our lab. This time of year is so fun because we have family portraits, senior portraits and wedding images to work on.

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Saturday, August 14, 2010

Allyson, Our Bride From Last Saturday

Last Saturday Tina, of Damselfly Photography and I photographed the wedding of Allyson and Chris. A few weeks before the wedding we photographed our bride in the studio. This is one of my favorites.
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Sunday, August 8, 2010

Pirate Photo - "Michelle" by Liz

"Super Saturday" would not have been such a great success without the incredible help of daughter, Michelle (pictured) or Liz Etzel (portrait photography). They braved the rain, heat and humidity to make sure everyone had a fantastic time! Arghhhhhhhh, turned to Awwwwwww!
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Saturday, July 31, 2010

Taija Senior Portrait Session

Today we had a terrific senior photo session with Taija!

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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

PacMan Turns 30!

Kathy and I had a great time with our new friends at Namco during their spectacular PacMan 30th birthday extravaganza at the Mall Of America. We couldn't have asked for more wonderful people to work with. If you get a chance visit their super-fun Arcade at MOA!
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Friday, July 16, 2010

Amari On Location

Today we worked on some new portrait concepts and lighting ideas. It's always important to try new ideas even if results can run the gamut. Here is an idea I had wanted to try for awhile and I felt that it worked pretty much the way I wanted it to.
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Monday, July 12, 2010

TCPPA Picnic Portrait

I may very well be driving my friend, Tina crazy. Yesterday I borrowed her kids again for a quick portrait at the TCPPA picnic and barn dance at Jenny Phillips home studio in Hamel. The kids are so used to posing, since their mother is a photographer! It's sort of like cheating when you have experienced little models to work with. The barn has such beautiful big openings to create stunning lighting situations.

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Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy Fourth Of July

J&K Creative! wishes all our Blog, Facebook and Twitter friends a happy and safe fourth of July.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Catalog Photography

Sometimes our subjects don't bark, meow or talk. They just sit there! We are always available for product photography. If you know any small companies in the metro area that publish catalogs of their inventory please let them know that J&K Creative! can help them out. We work in our studio or on location.
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Monday, June 28, 2010

Working With Our "Sphere" Partners

J&K Creative! is a member of the Westonka BNI group (Business Networking International). For three years we have participated by helping our fellow members build their customer base through a referral system. One great way we can do that is to focus on the businesses in our group that share common customers. For us, that means the florist, the salon and others.

Recently we collaborated on a photoshoot for one of our upcoming brides. Bayside, Just Because provided a bouquet for our photo session and Seidou Salon helped us with hair and makeup. To repay them for their generosity we are providing mounted 8x10 prints for each of them to use in their facilities. We see this as a win win opportunity for all of us to grow.

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Sunday, June 27, 2010

Networking With Your Fellow Photographers

It seems more common these days that we are teaming up with fellow photographers. Today our good friend, Anita Jader and I photographed a 50th wedding anniversary at the Lafayette Club on Lake Minnetonka. The largest portrait featured 20 family members that came in from around the US for this occassion. Not only did we photograph the large group, we also made portraits of all the various family combinations.
It is always a learning experience to see how other photographers apply their unique styles and approaches to projects like this. Anita is an excellent photographer and it was a pleasure to work with her as her assistant.

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Monday, June 21, 2010

Food For The Soul

Despite the predictable case of sunburn and the sore muscles from hauling overflowing coolers in and out of the car, yesterday was just about the best Father's Day I can remember. The only exception would be the many years of celebrating with my own father.

This one was all about family and great friends. From butterflies to boating we soaked in all the sites, sounds and smells of a beautiful weekend day. All the kids checked in to wish me the best, and for the boys I could recipricate as they are fathers, as well. Our great friend, Gigi, hosted our gathering at her home on Lake Minnetonka and she could not have been more gracious and welcoming. This Father's Day provided large portions of food for the soul.
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Sunday, June 13, 2010

Take the "Studio Thinking" Outdoors

Yesterday we worked on some interesting lighting techniques for outdoor portraiture. To some degree we tried to duplicate lighting that is normally associated with studio work. One of the ways that professional photographers can consistently have images rise above the prosumer level is to use "off camera flash". By using pocket wizards and portable flash units it is possible to create a studio look in outdoor sessions. Photographers, such as Hanson Fong and Doug Box are masters at creating these controlled environments to make images "pop" with an almost 3-D quality. If you are working outdoors on a dreary, grey day and need to bring "life" to your images consider taking your studio lighting style outdoors.

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Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Relevent Posting On Facebook

Every once in a while I see a Facebook entry that launches a “posting relevance” rant. For reasons unknown some Facebook members occasionally decide to issue a decree that all postings should be of a certain level of relevance. Apparently a review panel should be assembled to search out the “yum” and “hubby” comments and dispatch them to Facebook purgatory, where they shall remain until the end of time.

Facebook is fun. It’s a way for friends and family to check in now and then. It provides a place for people to let folks know what is new in their world. It also provides a way to share opinions on current events. For people separated by generations it opens communication lanes. For people separated by oceans it creates a wonderful way to stay in touch. My advice to those ranters is to open their hearts just a bit and understand that not everyone’s life is as exciting or intellectually lofty as their own. If you have a Facebook friend that irritates you hide them or dump them. If the “peanut butter and jelly for lunch” postings are too much for you just relegate your free membership to Facebook purgatory.

By the way, I just mowed the lawn.

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Saturday, June 5, 2010

Children's Photography

Every once in a while we photograph little people!

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Friday, May 28, 2010

2010 St. Paul K-9 Graduation

First of all, let me explain that this image is not being posted to provide a forum for the relative safety or value of police dogs. This is one of the events I shoot annually for one of my clients.
Regardless of the subject - if it's legal, I'll shoot it. I don't make judgements much farther than whether or not I'm the right photographer for the job.

Pictured: St. Paul Canine Officer, Amanda Heu holds back her police dog, "Bosco".

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Keeping Studio Sessions Brief

First, let me say that I am on the watch list of photographers who take way too much time with clients in the studio. One idea tends to lead to another and another and I fear I sometimes simply wear out my subjects. Although I am aware of this "overdo everything" style of shooting I can't seem to choreograph a simple 15-20 shot, two outfit session without trying to pump it up a notch. This is a good news/bad news deal. Yes, sometimes the best shot is the one I make deep into the studio session, but more often than not I begin to see the spirit and personality of my subject begin to wither after 30-45 minutes. Even though New Year's Eve is a long way off I'm already thinking about making a resolution to improve my sense of time.

Photo: Recent "quick" photo session with the lovely, Christine.

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Friday, May 21, 2010

Destination Event Coverage

It is always exciting to get a chance to do "destination" photo projects. This week I had the opportunity to fly on a private jet with a client to photograph a special family celebration in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Although everything went very well, assignments like this never unfold as imagined. Like a slalom skier, I try to imagine the course in front of me, with all it's twists and turns. I prepare by assembling all the lenses, accessories and backups that I think I might need.

The moment of truth - it's time to make "the magic" your client expects. That's when the reality of time allotments and logistics comes in to play and you realize you have over thought and over prepared, not to mention over packed. Ultimately, that 80-200 mm lens never comes out of the bag. The reflector you crammed into the outer pocket of your rolling camera case never sees the light of day and you realize it may have been better to have packed one more shirt.

Don't get me wrong, I was glad to have all the security and piece of mind by knowing the tools were in the toolbox. It is better to have too much equipment than not enough. It's just that when you "hit the ground, running" the basics may be all you need to get the job done well.

Photo: A tree on the campus of Louisiana State University
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Thursday, May 13, 2010

Raina Hein from America's Next Top Model

Last night I had a great time photographing Raina at the "Drink" in Uptown. It was so much fun to see all the excitement when she made Cycle 14 top two. Everyone cheered and we all hoped she would be America's Next Top Model. She came as close as one could by being the runner-up. She was so gracious as she signed autographs and posed for grin and grabs. I really hope I can get a chance to photograph her before she leaves town to pursue her modelling career.

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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Editorial Product Photography

Sometimes I forget to mention that J&K Creative! also occassionally produces product photography for magazines and catalogs. We have everything neccessary to create the settings and lighting arrangements to show off your products. Even if your project involves selling Ebay items we can help. Recently, we photographed hydraulic manifolds for a local manufacturer.

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Saturday, May 8, 2010

Devon Worley At Medina

Last night I had fun helping Jenny Phillips with a photo shoot at Medina. She and I put together a location studio to make portraits as part of the Shriner's Children's Hospital of the Twin Cities fundraiser. Jenny has a great ability to create environments full of fun western props and accessories. Everyone had a great time and the proceeds from her portraits raised a considerable amount for this great cause.
Devon Worley and the band, Jug put on a great show. I don't think you will ever see an eleven year old with more stage presence. Her voice is powerful and her musical skills are amazing.

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Friday, May 7, 2010

Facebook "Like" Button - Opt In/Opt Out?

Lately there has been lots of conversation about the privacy issues involved with allowing Facebook to integrate across the broad internet through the use of "user profiles" and the use of the "like" button. I happen to be pretty much of an open book when it comes to my info, in fact I want to be found because I get many of my client referrals by being highly visible. This is not true for everyone. The FTC is currently taking a very close look at these Facebook issues and I wouldn't be suprised to see some changes in the near future. One bone of contention is whether users have the option to opt in, rather than opt out and further how easily one can opt out. If you would like to change your "like" privacy settings visit your account tab and follow the drop-down to privacy settings. I've included a screen shot for further information.

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Oh, and please press the "like" button! ; )

Thursday, May 6, 2010

A PSA For Copyright Protection

Here is an interesting You Tube clip concerning illegal image and music useage.

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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Senior Portraits

If the weather brightens up a little bit we are planning to finish senior portraits for grandson, Forrest today. Our target location is the sculpture garden near the Walker Art Center.
Update: Although very grey and cold we were able to finish up Forrest's senior portrait location session at the sculpture garden.

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