Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Organic Climber goes to Shelf Road

Still been posting stuff on The you guys should check it out. I was recently out at Shelf Road in Colorado and took some pretty sick photos. You can check them out on my latest post, but here are a couple to wet your whistle.

Although I haven't been shooting many assignments lately, I am considering getting back into some sports photography this fall, and possibly shoot some weddings in the spring. That is still TBD, but I will be sure to start posting stuff here again if I begin shooting. But for now I just shoot at my own leisure.

Monday, June 01, 2009

The Organic Climber

Well, since I haven't really been posting here I figured I would point you to my new blog. The Organic Climber. I am giving it a go at creating sort of a catch all blog. I will be blogging about three of my passions: Climbing, RAW Foods, healthy living and sharing my photography within those posts at times. The new blog will be updated far more frequently than this one. I hope you enjoy the new blog.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Super Food Salad

I will start off by saying I have some awesome images that I will eventually be posting here from the Wichita Mountains that I took a couple weekends ago. I can’t post them yet, but sometime in the near future they will see the light of day here on the Web site.

This however is not a photo related post at all. It’s food related! I have never done this before, but I have been considering starting a food related blog lately. Heck, I even want to start a climbing only blog, but alas, I don’t have that kind of time.

Anyway, back to food. Last night I was making my daily salad that I bring with me to work for lunch and ended up creating what I think is an amazing dressing. My mouth is watering as I type this, and I can’t wait to go eat it here in about 40 minutes.

The salad is simple: mixed baby greens, shredded carrots, red onions, tomatoes, green olives and raw candied almonds (another recent creation of mine). But the ingredients in the salad are not what’s important, in fact I think granny smith apples and raisins or craisins would go great in this salad. The dressing is actually what I think is so amazing.

The dressing is sort of mild and somewhat earthy tasting with a bit of sweetness to it, and yet it has a kick to it as well. Now, I know most people won’t have the ingredients for this dressing, so don’t go breaking the bank to get them. You may end up hating me later. But without further or do, here is the recipe.

The Dressing
Now, I don’t have any specific measurements, but the base ingredient is raw tahini, so you want to use a lot of this. Other than that, add ingredients to your liking based off the size of the salad; then stir until you get a nice thick paste like consistency.

- Raw Tahini
- Pumpkin Seed Oil (small amount)
- Olive Oil
- Apple cider vinegar (a very small amount)
- Fresh Lemmon Juice
- Agave Nectar
- Coconut Butter (small amount, and optional)

Since dressing will be a thick consistency you will have to stir/toss it well into the salad.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

David Bazan

Last weekend I saw David Bazan (formerly Pedro the Lion) play a house show at a friend of mine's house here in Denton. David played to a packed house of about 50+ people. The house tour is to promote his new album while remaining "low key" at the request of his record label.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Paddle, Pound and Pedal

On a cold and windy Saturday morning I awoke at 5 a.m. to go photograph the Denton Parks & Recreation, Paddle Pound and Pedal Challenge. Being awake that early allowed me to be one of the few to witness snow furies for a couple hours. The furies pretty much stopped right as the race started. Anyway, here are some of my favorite shots of the race.

This racer lost a crank shaft and finished the race on foot.

The rules of the race are fairly simple. Teams of two race together in three stages, 3.5 mile canoe 2.5 mile run and 12 mile off road bike. The team that finishes in the least amount of time wins. There were many categories to enter and the top thee contestants from each category received an award.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Robbers Cave Oklahoma

I spent last weekend in Oklahoma climbing the sandstone and ironite cliffs of Robbers Cave. These beautiful cliffs are composed of hard sandstone with ironite plates covering random sections of rock. It's some of the strangest rock I have seen, but it's gorgeous. Despite this being mostly a top rope crag I love going here. There is excellent bouldering and a hand full of routes you can lead that take good gear. Despite getting rained on most of Saturday the sun came out on Sunday and provided us with a gorgeous day!

The climb pictured here is The Vein (5.9). This route is one of my favorite climbs of all-time.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Portfolio progress

Lately I have been working on my portfolio during whatever free time I can get, which honestly is not very much these days. It has been a slow process, but things are coming along. The updated portfolio will show case my photos at 800px wide, as opposed to 600px wide in my current portfolio. With a majority of the internet now on high speed connections there is no reason not to display my photos large format.

I will continue using SlideShowPro to display my photos, especially since there is a plugin for Light Room 2.0. For any photographer out there looking for a way to show off their photos SlideShowPro is an excellent and inexpensive way to display your work. Though there is a bit of a learning curve involved it is well worth the effort.

Featured in this post are a few of my favorites so far. Although the Sammy Sosa photo isn't brilliant, it was a historic moment as he hit his 600th career home run against the Chicago Cubs at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. The photo of Mike Hankins climbing The Baptism at Quartz Mountain in Oklahoma is one of my favorite photos. I just happened to be in the parking lot with a long lens when he began to solo the route.

While I really enjoy wedding and action sports photography my passion is for outdoor/adventure photography, specifically rock climbing. This has been the case ever sense I started rock climbing and opened up issues or Climbing Magazine and Rock & Ice. It may be a pipe dream, but it is something I will continue to shoot until the day I turn in my lenses, which will likely be never.

All of the images in this post are large format. Click the image in enlarge.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Ole Baldy

This past weekend I spent the day climbing at Baldy Point, known to climbers as Quartz Mountain. Despite being overcast and windy up high on the rock it was a beautiful day of climbing. Our team of thee had the entire mound of granite to ourselves for the entire day. It was the first time I had experienced that. It was just an amazing experience to be able to sit at a belay and hear the wind howling and feeling it whip you around as my partner came up behind me. This was by far one of the best days of climbing I have ever had.

As my trend of posting climbing photos continues I may end up starting an Adventure Blog of sorts and discontinue this one. As of now I still plan on shooting sports and weddings. I am currently in the process of updating my portfolio and plan on posting some of those photos here as I progress. I also plan on updating the website. So be looking for a change there.

My long term goal is also to primarily focus on shooting climbing. This may even involve moving to Colorado, as has been my long time dream. It's hard to pursue such a narrowly focused form of photography in a predominantly flat state. Although opportunities do exist, they are just fewer, especially when another Texas photographer has the niche on climbing photography and an in with editors at major climbing rags.

So, for now I will just continue doing what I am doing and press forward. I also recently discovered a new website with a focus on extreme sports. Check out Wheels & Wax. Oh, and just a note on the panoramic shot. It would have worked out better, I found out latter, if I kept my lens in one place and rotated around that point rather than just shifting the camera across a plane. Next time I am out there I plan on getting another shot like this.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Afternoon Delight

This afternoon I walked into my kitchen with camera in hand to photograph the progress of a RAW Food recipe I was working on. As I entered the kitchen, I noticed light beaming in through the doorway from the living room onto my bulk food jars, so instinct took over and I snapped a few frames. These are a couple of my favorites.

If there is one thing I like about the new house is it gets A LOT of sunlight through the windows, both in the morning and late afternoon. I think from here on out I will always live in a place with lots of natural light. There is just something about it that makes you feel good, it's soothing; plus, as a photographer I just love the way light creates shadows and illuminates subjects.

Monday, February 23, 2009


Gary Ballard climbs Solo (5.8) at Enchanted Rock State Park.

Well, I must be honest, lately there has not been much content on my blog because I have not been shooting much these days. Part of it has been lack of inspiration, another part of it has been that it seems doors keep getting shut on me when it comes to pursuing my photography passion full time. I have shot many professional assignments and been published an many magazines and newspapers, (including ESPN the Magazine, Sports Illustrated, The Denton Record-Chronicle and numerous college sports annuals) but the pieces have yet to fall into place to turn this into a full time career.

At the ripe old age of 30 I am left trying to decide how much time do I want to invest in pursuing this? Should I continue pursuing it as a source of income or just purely for the art and enjoyment of it, which is what drew me to photography to begin with. The work that goes into running your own photography business is very taxing and performing those tasks on top of a full time job and being active in the lives of people around you takes even a higher toll.

I am sure I will remain involved in photography to some degree, but the question is, "how much, and how often." I am currently working on updating my portfolio and revamping my website I hope to have that up and running within the next few months. My first priority is to update my wedding portfolio for a contract client so I can start pulling in more jobs through them. Following that will be my sports, climbing and photojournalism portfolios. It will be a long process, but hopefully with the help of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom I will be able to finish quicker than with my old work flow process.