I usually spend the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day cleaning up in the office, putting away the piles of paperwork and magazines that have accumulated throughout the busy fall season.
As I collect tearsheets and clips throughout the year, they all get pitched onto a heaping pile of paper in the closet. I sort the clips, throwing a few extras away so I don’t end up with too much stuff to add to the storage shelves.
Every year when I do this sorting, I wonder…why do I keep all of these? I don’t use them to garner attention for more assignments, I don’t enter contests any longer, and someday my kids will have to decide what to do with all of dad’s crap….they will likely keep a handful and throw the rest away.
I guess it’s just a habit…it’s hard to throw things away with your name on them. I have to admit, the most fun I get from keeping tearsheets is looking through the very oldest ones and noting the changes in lighting technique, lens use and the locations that have evolved over the years.
Above is a random collection of cover shots I pulled from the 2016 pile.
It’s fun to work on shoots where the client turns me loose to document anything that looks good through my viewfinder. Tractor Supply Company does a fine job of allowing me to shoot freely, and they do a great job putting me in position to succeed.
As a result, you can see my work displayed on a set of massive canvas banners in each of their 1,400 stores nationwide, along with images on their annual blue book and throughout their annual report, both of which are shown here. Their new corporate headquarters in Brentwood, Tennessee is also plastered with fine art from our shoots. A great client!
I spoke to a group of 7th and 8th graders in Baltic, SD recently; I was there to talk about our book Blue Stars.
They were a good group, but the funniest part was when I pulled out some slide sheets to show them; most of them had no idea what they were, or even what film looked like!
Oh man, I feel old…
I have a long-standing relationship with South Dakota State University.
I attended FFA events there throughout high school in the 1980s, got my degree there in 1993 and now I have a daughter pursuing a pre-optometry degree there and a son about to embark on his own journey decked out in blue and gold. I even met my wife Jodi in Brookings while we were both students there.
As a result, photographing assignments for SDSU is a natural pairing. I’ve been working on their Admissions Department materials for many years, and have shot countless sporting events, graduations, Hobo Day parades and everything else that promotes this fine school.
An environmental portrait (right) of incoming SDSU President Barry Dunn, photographed for his induction ceremony program.
I always love working with the fine folks at South Dakota Magazine; they do an awesome job and have been great promotors of my work for years.
They recently published a cover story about our cabin’s first year; it’s a photo essay of my personal photos documenting our adventures on Lake Poinsett. We’ve been getting lots of great feedback about it, especially from others around the lake who like the exposure given to our great lake.
The opening spread above shows our kids and some of their friends enjoying one of the incredible sunsets we constantly get to view from our place.
More sunset scenery, plus wildlife (both inside and outside the cabin)…
This is the cover photo used inside, plus a shot of Jack and his buddy Kellen exploring the shoreline.
Last but not least, a Fourth of July shot of nearby fireworks and Old Glory. Thanks again, South Dakota Magazine!
Drovers has been a fun publication to work with; it’s a great outlet for some of my ranch stock photography. I love to shoot anything having to do with the range, and getting it utilized as cover stock comes with great satisfaction.
Well, I finally got a photo in Outdoor Life, one of my longtime favorite magazines.
It wasn’t exactly how I’d planned it…I was hoping to follow some elk hunters on horseback into some remote Colorado wilderness and document their weeklong hunt.
Instead, I have a photo in one of the magazine’s advertisements. That’s my friend Mark Smither and his dog photographed on a shoot for Kubota, via Paulsen.
I’ve had several of these Kubota ads in both Outdoor Life and Field and Stream, so I guess this will have to suffice until the call for that elk hunt comes in…
Doug Hansen is an interesting character. He’s from my hometown of Letcher, South Dakota, and makes wagons and stagecoaches for clients around the world. He makes them by hand, the “old way,” and employs a crew of craftsmen that he’s taught in the same old ways his grandfather taught him when he was a boy.
I’ve worked with Doug many times over the years; sometimes people hire me to cover his shop for a story, and sometimes Doug hires me to come out and do some work on his behalf. Recently, I drove over to create some craftsmen photos for him, mostly made with warm, soft light, and used in their annual calendar.
Recently, one of Doug’s stagecoaches played a major role in the movie Hateful Eight. Very cool!
Here, Quentin works with steel in the blacksmith shop.
Wheelwright Tim works on making wheel hubs from scratch.
Antique tools and pencil-drawn sketches are the norm around the shop.
A portrait of Doug toward the end of the shoot.
I was honored to photograph an assignment for Smithsonian Magazine recently; I’ve been a big fan of the magazine for years, and it was fun to finally get a byline in there. The portrait is of scientist Gabriel Senay, who is working with satellite data at nearby EROS Data Center to combat hunger in third world countries.