Thursday, December 15, 2011

Friday, December 9, 2011

Kicking It In Hopkins - Wayzata Wins Dance Event, Eden Prairie Takes Second Place

It's always fun to see my alma mater, Wayzata do so well in sports.  The dance squad did a great job at Hopkins last night, finishing first in Varsity and Junior Varsity Kick.  Pictured here, Eden  Prairie dance team took second.  More photos available at:
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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Grace Brought Her Pups To The Studio Yesterday

Every once in a while we photograph pets.  Our friend, Grace brought her two buddies with her to the studio yesterday.  This is one of them.

We still miss our little dog, Rustee and are thankful to have a good photo to remember him by.  Pet photography is certainly not our specialty, but we are happy to accomodate our regular clients and friends. 

PS  Kathy says, "No Snakes"!  

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Friday, November 18, 2011

Plymouth Mayor In The Studio

This week J&K Creative! was honored to be selected to create the official portraits for the City of Plymouth's mayor, Kelli Slavik.  She has been mayor of Plymouth (Minnesota's fourth largest City) for five years.
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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Weather Is Cooling, The Studio Is Heating Up

Those beautiful fall colors will soon be turning to white.  The temperatures are starting to drop below freezing.  What does this all mean?  It means that it's time for J&K Creative to move our show indoors and rev things up in our nice warm photo studio out on beautiful Casco Point in the heart of the Lake Minnetonka area.  Call Kathy today for that Holiday card photo session that you've been putting off  for months.  952-473-0201

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Friday, October 28, 2011

Anoka Kids Halloween Parade - Friday

For the second year in a row we took a run up to Anoka for the annual children's parade. Our granddaughter, Cindy marched in the parade with her middle school band.  She is a clarinet player.

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

I'm Not Ready To Pull Out The Parka

Highs in the 50's, lows in the 30's and Halloween just around the proverbial corner.  It seems like only yesterday that we were complaining about the deer, as they munched their way through the flowers and bushes in our yard.  It seems the older we get the faster the seasons seem to pass.  I keep telling myself that we need to move to a warmer climate, yet no boxes are being packed up and no trucks are being rented.  It may happen, but not this year.  I've made no secret that a move is in the plan and yet I keep making commitments that involve staying put.  It's like that old sports phrase which bemoans, "Wait until next year".

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Saturday, October 15, 2011

A Halftime Lead, An Injury And Season's First Loss For Valkyrie

Brittany Austin takes down Ashley Salerno of the Temptation

The Minnesota Valkyrie gave the LA Temptation all they could handle in the first half of their home opener at Target Center on Friday.  A wrist injury to starting quarterback Jana Skrtic seemed to be the turning point of the game as the momentum swung in favor of LA.  For more information and a gallery of photos by Joe Petro, Jon Wright and BJ Fleming visit
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Saturday, October 8, 2011

Kathy, Michelle and I covered the Valkyrie practice in Long Lake today.

The clock is ticking for the Minnesota Valkyrie as they prepare to face the two-time LFL champion Los Angeles Temptation.  Coach Tony has his team ready.  After a great warm up in Green Bay against the Chill it's definately time to show the home crowd at Target Center just how good the Valks really are.  Thursday is media day at Target Center, followed by Friday's game.  If you can't make it downtown to see all the action in person you can watch them on MTV2 at 9pm central.
Jon Wright - Official Photographer Of The Minnesota Valkyrie
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Modern DSLRs Are Sports Shooters Game-Changer

It has been a really fun high school fall sports season.  I've had the chance to cover football, soccer and volleyball for the various sites.  One reason it's been so cool is that the newer DSLR cameras have such great high ISO functionality compared to back in the Nikon D1 (2.8 megapixel at  $5,000.00) era.  This shot was taken at 2,500 ISO, F 2.8 at 1/800th of a second with stadium lighting at Minnetonka on Thursday.  High sensitivity combined with good high ISO noise reduction has been a game-changer for sports photographers that often work in terrible lighting situations.

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Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Watermelon That Went "Bump In The Night"

Generally speaking, I am known in some parts as a premiere watermelon thumper.  Produce department personel have always marvelled at my amazing thumping skills.  The very specific hollow sound produced at just the moment of pink and green perfection was like music to my ears. Well, all of that changed in the middle of the night. 
Around 2:30AM A loud crash somewhere in the house had me dashing to jump into my bluejeans.  If I was going to go at it with an unwelcome intruder or an overzealous racoon I at least wanted to have my pants on.  I dashed through the house,a half-dressed man on a mission only to find nothing out of place.  I checked all the usual rooms except one, the laundry room.  There it was.  The cause of  our rude awaking - an overripe watermelon.  It had been stacked on cases of pop.  The melon had apparently morphed from it's usual oval shape to become the leaning tower of melon.  It took a header off the stack and smashed to the floor only to became a warm and very smelly smoothie.  My first thought was, "How the hell am I going to pick this up?"!
I settled for a large spoon and collected up the pink mass in little wavy motions.  A stainless steel bowl provided the recepticle.  Wet rugs, boxes, bottles and clothes were dispatched to various piles based on degree of damage.  

We slept in this morning.

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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Orchard Slideshow

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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Field Trip

Today I took the Gillespie Center Photo Group on a field trip to Minnetonka Orchard.  Our best images will be presented to the orchard for use on their website.  We had a wonderful experience. 

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Thursday, September 8, 2011


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Saturday, September 3, 2011

High School Sports Are Back

This week it has been pretty much all sports.  I've photographed volleyball, soccer and football for various west metro area AOL Patch news organizations.

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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Victory At Green Bay - Minnesota Valkyrie

Video Courtesy of the STOB crew!
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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Photographed The Minnesota Twins Game Tonight

Jason Kubel gets a hit and scores the Twins only run of the night against Baltimore.  Final 6-1

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Solar Plunge For Special Olympics At Lord Fletcher's

This past Sunday I had a great time photographing the Solar Plunge event on Lake Minnetonka.  My friends from the Minnesota Valkyrie LFL football team were there to help make the event a great success.  Through their sponsor, Full Contact Athletics they raised over $1,400 for the cause.

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Tuesday, August 23, 2011


I've been working with a new software called, Portrait Professional.  It does a very interesting job of semi-automatic retouching.  In this sample very little was needed.

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Monday, August 1, 2011

Kathy And I Give Plasma Energy Drink A Very Enthusiastic Thumbs Up

While we were out covering the viewing party for the LFL Fantasy Game at Sneaky Pete's in downtown Minneapolis Kathy and I had a chance to try the new Plasma Energy Drink.  Besides being loaded with beneficial ingredients, it tastes incredible.  They have been very supportive of the Minnesota Valkyrie LFL team.

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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Sneaky Pete's Hosts LFL Fantasy Bowl Party

Joceyln and Roxy show off new team tops during the viewing party for the LFL Fantasy Bowl on MTV last night.  Ticket sales were brisk as more fans are finding out about the new game in town.  Their first challenge will be to take on the Green Bay Chill in Green Bay on August 26th.  The home opener is in October.  Check out the LFL website for more details.

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Saturday, July 23, 2011

Patrick Reusse of ESPN radio interviews Minnesota Valkyrie players friday

Laura and Kendra of the Minnesota Valkyrie LFL team take a break next to the Minnehaha after being interviewed during the 1500 ESPN remote radio program originating from the Bayview Event Center on the shores of Lake Minnetonka on Friday afternoon.
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Friday, July 15, 2011

Minnesota Valkyrie Practice - 7/14/11

Last night I photographed another amazing Valkyrie practice.  Now that the season opener, August 26th, is on the horizon the action is heating up.  Players are gearing up for their first big challenge, which will be at Resch Arena in Green Bay, Wisconsin.

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Saturday, July 9, 2011

J&K Creative Named Official Photographers For Minnesota Valkyrie Football Team

This past Thursday I covered my first practice for the new LFL team.  Coach Tony Nguyen, the assistant coaches and all the players welcomed me warmly and I look forward to working with them.  They are serious about putting a great team on the field, starting August 26th in Green Bay and I am serious about creating some terrific photography for them during this inaugural season..

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Saturday, July 2, 2011

Surf City Fishing Pier Action

My trip to Wilmington, North Carolina is winding to a conclusion.  It's Saturday morning and I am already starting to collect up all of my "junk" that is scattered throughout my aunt and uncle's house.  As most of you  know, I am not the most organized person. 

It has been a wonderful trip and I have enjoyed it very much.  It seems every beach town we visited has it's own character and special charm.  Regardless of whether we ultimately choose to move here or not I have been enrichened by all the people I have met and the places I have gotten to see and photograph.  My aunt,Nancy and uncle, Ken have worked very hard to show me all the special sites of this area and I can't thank them enough.

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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Image from Kay Eskridge Seminar

This image was made from behind the backdrop during the demonstration part of the seminar.  My friend, Anita's daughter, Lindsey was the model. 

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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Orono Graduation For Lake Minnetonka Patch

We are now reserving select appointments for personalized senior portrait sessions.  Call Kathy to reserve one while special rates apply.

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Friday, June 3, 2011

Tonight It Was St. Louis Park Graduation

No matter how many times I cover a high school graduation I can't help but remember when I was in their shoes.  The band performing Pomp And Circumstance still gets me a bit.  I am thankful though, that it is not me facing the challenges the class of 2011 will be dealing with.  The world used to be much more simple.

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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Today It Was A Case Of "Business Going To The Dogs"!

Taking a bite out of crime! 
Today was our annual visit to the St. Paul K-9 training facility for it's graduation and demonstration.  It is always amazing to see how these dogs work with their officers.

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Saturday, May 21, 2011

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

A busy week for sports

It's been a busy week for high school sports for me.  I've covered softball, baseball and tonight it's LaCrosse at Breck.  It is great to get out and meet potential senior portrait clients and to add some new images to my sports portfolio, especially for .  Things will get a little quieter for me once all the high school sports wind up until they start up again in the fall.  Although the Patch Network is a relatively new company (within AOL) it has already taken a strong foothold in covering communities across America.  It has been a good partnership so far.

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Sunday, May 15, 2011

Dance Class Portraits Yesterday

J&K teamed up to help Tina, of Damselfly Photography with her dance class portraits in Bloomington on Saturday.  We had a great time with all these "Dancing With The Stars" hopefuls.  This is the second time we've been able to photograph Mrs. Campbell's students. 

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Sunday, May 8, 2011

"Minnesota N'ice" - Silver Skates Event At Minnetonka Ice Arena

It was my good fortune to get a last-minute call to cover the 37th annual Silver Skates event at the Minnetonka Ice Arena on Saturday afternoon.  The talent level of these skaters is just unbelievable.  If you get the chance to go next year don't miss it.  You will see some truly beautiful performances, I'm sure!  For more photos from my coverage visit:
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Wednesday, May 4, 2011

It's Time To Think About Senior Portraits

Spring has finally shown up and senior portrait time has come.  Give Jon or Kathy a call at 952-473-0201 to schedule early for the best sitting times and price advantages.

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Sunday, May 1, 2011

Ch Ch Ch Changes - The Social Media Bus Wheels Go Round

The rules of engagement in the social media world seem to be changing at lightening speed these days.  Just about the time one thinks they have a grip on "the tools", they change, and then they change some more. Some of them become obsolete as fast as last years digital camera or Smartphone.  Many start-up apps companies get bought up by the big players.  How we approach the common tasks of building a social media presence change almost daily.  That's why I have a hard time believing that during this pioneer phase of electrornic, internet-based social media that anyone is truly an "expert". 

Some developers have built a following by offering free apps for which they now charge a subscription fee. Many offer  various fee-based levels of service.  Of course, this is not a crime - everyone should be paid for their efforts.  The problem for the users of these apps however, is to keep track of what's available and what's not.

I believe that small business owners can reap huge benefits by utilizing social media techniques as part of a broader marketing plan.  By it's very nature social media evens the playing field and creates a pathway to creating consumer awareness for products and services.  The problem for the small business owner is they do not have time to work a program and they have no clue as to the best tools and techniques for doing so.  Add the rapid evolution of these tools and it becomes apparent that small business owners get lost before they ever get a chance to measure any return on their investment.

Here are some examples of methods that have gone the way of the buggy whip:

Facebook no longer supports FBML for landing pages.  Rather, it now uses IFrames by Wildfire (free for a limited time), which has a relationship with FB.

Facebook no longer offers a way to invite friends to a fan page, as they believe users will opt to buy ads to promote their new page.

Linkedin, no longer offers a free Typepad route to auto-post Blogger and Wordpress blogs.
As some of the older methods change or disappear completely, new tools like QR barcodes, which can now be found on cereal boxes, bus stops and every flat surface one can imagine have changed the game again.
The constants in all this chaos are not of the technological variety, but rather the message they carry.  Prinicples of sales and marketing that have been around for decades still apply today and they will still be valid in the future.  If you pin your plan around those fundamentals you will always be one step ahead of the game.  

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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Super Kids Having Fun In The Studio

Rainy weather has us pinned down in the studio these days and we are trying to make the best of it.  Today we had three really great kids to work with.  They were here at the "suggestion" of their grandparents.  After a little warming up time they really started to relax and have a fun experience.

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Saturday, April 23, 2011

New Raising Cane's Ad Released

The photoshoot we did a couple of months ago as part of the Louisiana-based national restaurant chain, Raising Cane's was recently released.  J&K Creative! was selected to photgraph Cody, the Stadium Village store manager.

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Monday, April 18, 2011

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Social Media Too - Monday, April 24th

Join Jon Wright and Bill Clark as they demonstrate how to build a practical "social media" presence for your small business.  This workshop is open to anyone wanting to find creative ways to maximize their blogging, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube efforts.

Call Bill Clark directly to reserve your spot today at 612-382-2837

Please bring a laptop, if possible, since WiFi is available. If you don't have access to a laptop you will still gain amazing new marketing strategies. The goal is to help you build your business! The class will begin promptly at 9:30 AM. We will break for lunch, then wrap by 2:30 pm or so.
Location: Bill Clark Studio, 5179 Domick Drive, Minnetonka, MN 5534
Workshop fee: $25.00 to TCPPA Charities

Call Bill for more information. 612-382-2837

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Friday, April 8, 2011

Froze N, my interpretation of "Nice"

Here's an image that I made in the studio recently.  I was very excited to win the April monthly challenge at TCPPA with this one.  It was a little crazy to set up.  First I had to purchase a carton of orange juice, which was trasferred to a pitcher so I had a form for the ice.  Kathy happened to have purchased dafodills that day and I incorporated one.  I also had to find the "N", which we ultimately bought at Michaels.  It all went into the freezer for a couple of days.

Next, I had to cut a 3 1/2" hole into black mat board, which I placed across two TV trays.  Underneath I used my boom arm with couterweight in the air and strobe with small softbox to aim up into the square.  Plexiglass completed the "table".  I used a black fleece background cloth with 4 foot rim softbox above to light the N and the water droplets.  45 degrees over and tight to the set I used a little strobe with snoot to further light just the "N".  Because the light from under could only be set to 1/4 power the exposure ultimately ended up around F28.

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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Awesome Presentation By Kevin Jairaj

Anastasiya and Kathy and I really enjoyed our monthly TCPPA seminar yesterday.  Noted wedding photographer, Kevin Jairaj put on a fantastic presentation that included an outdoor snow-seeking walkabout.  We learned about the equipment and techniques he uses to produce truly exciting bright day portraits, even when the sun is high in the sky.  Dan Davis was able to line up a terrific model, Lexi for Kevin's demonstration. Above is one of my on-camera flash efforts.

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Saturday, April 2, 2011

We really do photograph children sometimes.

This morning we had one of our Living Social sessions.  This little girl is the baby of the family - just don't tell her that!
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Friday, April 1, 2011

Photoshop CS5 Refine Selection By Suzette Allen

Kathy and I were fortunate enough to attend Suzette Allen's presentation at WPPI this year.  One of the most amazing techniques she showed was on refining edges.  Here is a clip on the subject.

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Atlantic Recording Artists, "New Medicine" Lead Guitar, Dan Garland

Minneapolis actor, model and musician extraordinaire, Dan Garland came by the studio for a promotional photo session today.  Dan and I have collaborated on a high-energy session in the past and today was even more intense.  We had a blast working on some new concepts.  Dan is currently on a short break from his band's (New Medicine) national tour.  Here is a link to the band's latest video on YouTube.

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Social Networking For Photographers Workshop

March 28th - 9:30AM

Workshop fee: $25.00 to TCPPA Charities
Call  Bill Clark directly to reserve your spot.

Join Jon and Bill for a workshop on how to utilize the internet to get noticed in this cluttered noisy medium called the internet. Topics will include how to gain exposure with your web site. How to use social network sites to help your business. Please bring a laptop as we will help you set up Facebook, Twitter, working with Google and others.

WiFi is available. Most of the topics covered will not cost you a cent. Options will be presented that have minimal cost but that choice will be up to you. This will help you build your business! The class will begin promptly at 9:30 AM.  We will break for lunch, then wrap up by 2:30 pm so you won't compete with rush hour traffic.
Location: Bill Clark Photography, 5179 Domick Drive, Minnetonka, MN 55343
Call Bill for more information. 612-382-2837

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Thursday, March 3, 2011

J&K Website Has It's Own Barcode!

We are so excited to announce that J&K now has it's very own barcode.  By taking a photo of our barcode with your cell phone camera you can be instantly linked to the ever popular J&K Creative! website!  If you don't have such a device you can just click the following link:

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Friday, February 25, 2011

Sony Fashion Show At WPPI

Las Vegas:  Kathy and I were able to attend the Nigel Barker (ANTM) hosted Sony event at WPPI on Sunday night.  The show featured Nigel's presentation on his work, a demonstration and fashion show.  Here, Nigel Barker (right) looks on as a model walks the runway.

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