Brian Black

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I am an international lifestyle other words, I love traveling, meeting people, and capturing personality and emotion in my work.

Weddings, portraits, commercial and fashion photography.

I strive for excellence and I believe you deserve it!

Monday, December 29, 2008

So long 2008!

Although 2008 was one of the most difficult years of my life personally, it was an exciting year for Brian Black Photography!

I wanted to take the opportunity to thank the following for making this year possible for Brian Black Photography:

Blue Ember Creations
Brienne Michelle
James & Cindy
JLC Productions
The Young Americans
Harmony & Ryan
Jada & Jelani
Rebecca & Joel
Megan & Jarod
Mike & Dalisa
Brian & Valerie
Neil Chapman
Laurie Hartman
Dennis & Sharon
David & Nancy
Kim, David, & Abby

A special note of appreciation for my lovely wife Loriann, without whom I could not have made it through this year.

I know 2009 has a lot of potential (both known and unknown) and I’m excited to welcome it. Blessing to all of you in the new year!


Sunday, December 28, 2008

Pre-Move Visit to Colorado

In June of 2009, my wife and I are planning on moving to Colorado. I'm going to continue Brian Black Photography there and she is going to attend University of Colorado, Boulder for her Masters in Speech and Language Pathology.

In November we took a trip to Colorado to visit the campus. The first few days we were there, we were in south Denver staying with family and much to my disappointment, there were no more fall colored leaves on the trees. We had missed it by just a couple weeks. Shucks!

Fortunately when we drove up to Boulder to tour the campus we found that some of the trees there still had some leaves on them! Here are a couple images of them:

The Campus is really a beautiful place. The "Old Main" building was built in 1876 and housed the entire University for 8 years. It was renovated in 1982 and is now the CU Heritage Center. I liked the old spiral staircases on the east side of the building:

We learned about Ralphie, the school's mascot and how he runs around the football field before each home game. In fact, the 5 "Ralphie Runners" are varsity student-athletes. I caught a sweet moment of a student sitting with Ralphie:

We had a great time on our visit and look forward to our first out of state move together. While we love California, it will be nice to have clean air, four seasons, lower cost on pretty much everything, and the Rockies (mountains, not the team).

2009 will definitely be a year filled with new experiences. It's an exciting time!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Christmas wish list - A Photographer's Perspective

With Christmas coming next week, I though it would be good to give a few last minute gift ideas with a photographic theme. I've decided to divide these ideas into 3 categories: "Tight Budget" (under $50), "Moderate" (under $200), and "I've got money to blow!" (sky is the limit).

*If ordering online always be sure to check that the website you are using is reputable. In the photography realm, there can be some sketchy companies so just make sure you are careful.

Tight Budget:

-Micro fiber cloths - these are really inexpensive (around $3) and great stocking stuffers. Not just for pros and their pro lenses, you can use these on your point and shoot lenses as well! They also work great on that new flat panel TV you got on Black Friday!

-Flash accessories - Diffusers. These are great for making a more natural, less harsh look from your flash. You can find them for point and shoots and if you have an SLR, they have them for your pop up flash. Gary Fong makes a couple different ones and they are all less than $20.

-Photography books - Whether it is an instructional book, or a book featuring a photographers work, books are always a great gift! A couple on my list this year are Performance: Richard Avedon and Seen Behind the Scene - Mary Ellen Mark.


-Canvas Print - This is a great gift for anyone. The gallery wrap versions are especially nice as the picture wraps around the edges of the frame. There are many places to get these done (like Mpix & Shutterfly) and they range from $80 - $170 depending on size. Here is one I had done as a Christmas gift last year for my wife.

-Photo Printer - Let's face it, digital photography is now the norm, and while it has many advantages over the film days, we tend to keep our pictures either in the camera or on our computer. You will enjoy your images much more if you make an effort to print them out. If you are just interested in making 4x6 prints, check out the HP Photosmart A636. If you want a printer that can print up to 8.5 x 24, look at the HP Photosmart D7460.

-Trip to Catalina - Ok, if you're not in Southern California, this might not work in this price range, but this is always a great idea (If you live other places, you can always substitute with a local destination) Round trip tickets on Catalina Express run about $70 a person and the island has a lot to offer, both photographically and not. Other great outing options in Southern California are the Huntington Library and Descanso Gardens and many many more.

I've Got Money to Blow!

-The latest Digital SLR complete with a set of pro lenses - for me this would be a Nikon D3 ($4,100) and the 14-24mm f/2.8 ($1500), 24-70mm f/2.8 ($1500), 70-200mm f/2.8 ($1600), and the 200-400mm f/4 ($5000). Well, I did say this was the sky is the limit section, so what's 14k right? At least I didn't say the new D3x ($8,000 just for the body). B&H Photo is always a great place to buy a variety of photography and electronics gear!

-Photo Safari - How about a 15 day photo safari to Kenya? It's $8700 a person + flight to Nairobi. This would be a once in a lifetime experience I'm sure and I have always wanted to do this. My wife has had the opportunity to go to Africa 3 times (Madagascar, South Africa, and the DRC), so I am way behind!

Whatever you do this Christmas season, remember to capture the memories with photographs and enjoy the moments with family and friends.

Monday, December 15, 2008

BBP presents - Ken

Last May I had the opportunity to be in the show Music Man. Ken was also in the cast and I was thrilled to hear of his interest in getting some images taken. We had a great time taking these pictures around downtown Glendale. Please enjoy some of my favorites:

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Photoshoot with Megan

The following are from today's shoot with my good friend Megan. She is a natural in front of the camera and we really had a great time. Thanks to Rod for helping out with the reflector and wardrobe carrying!

We shot at the Cal State Fullerton Arboretum. A beautiful place for sure. We had to be a bit creative with locations due to the bright sun during mid-day, but I am really happy with the results! Below are some of my favorites.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Scene & Heard 2008

This was an evening of art and music coming together with good people, good drinks, and most of all, good times.

The Band

Artist 1


#3 - My good friend Sam Eames

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Trip to Huntington Library

I have a few things that need to be blogged! Maybe this is called blog backup? I haven't necessarily meant to stockpile these things, it's just that life has been busy with many things, which is never a good excuse, but I shall use it nonetheless.

In August, I had the pleasure of accompanying a professor of mine (he is the head of photography at Mount San Antonio College), Neil Chapman, to the Huntington Library in San Marino. We had a great time despite the poor light (direct sun in the middle of the day is not the greatest for flora/fauna shooting). Here is one of the many beautiful bonzai trees they had displayed in an area of the grounds.

There was a photography exhibit that we had both wanted to check out as well. It was called "This Side of Paradise: Body and Landscape in L.A. Photographs". I appreciated his thoughts and critiques on many of the images as well as his insight about the various photographers represented which he personally knew. We did manage to get a few good images in the buildings where they have sculptures and art displayed. I call this one "Take aim".

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

My friend the carpet

Today I got a chance to see my friend play the magic carpet in the Aladdin show at Disney's California Adventure. I have a couple friends in the show, but this is the first time seeing Megan play carpet. So, as I have in the past, I took pictures of the show, mainly of Megan. Here are some of my favorites:

Monday, July 28, 2008

Summer at the Center 2008

These are images from this year's Summer at the Center show, held every year at the Orange County Performing Arts Center. It's an amazing show with kids who have had it rough in life. The Young American's Director and Choreographer, Bill & Robyn Brawley, teach these kids confidence, performance, compassion, peace, teamwork, discipline, and above all, love. It is an incredible show to take in!

Saturday, July 5, 2008


I hope everyone had a great 4th of July! I certainly did. It started off with the La Verne 4th of July parade, then off to my father-in-law's birthday party, then back for the La Verne Fireworks show, then friends came over. Quite a day! Here is an image of the fireworks we watched.

Things have been really busy for me lately. I have many blogs to post on recent photography activities so stay tuned!


Thursday, July 3, 2008

Mike & Dalisa

What a beautiful wedding and couple! They are great friends and we had a great time that day! Here is a slideshow of some of the images from that special day.


Friday, June 13, 2008

A new day

After a pretty tough week and a half (personally), I decided I wanted to go out and watch and photograph the sunrise. Using beauty that God created to inspire me and put things in perspective.

Some people would go to a local park or trail for a nice view, but I decided I needed to see it from a really spectacular place. So, last night I decided I would wake up at 2:45 and make the 2+ hour drive to Joshua Tree National Park to watch the sunrise. Might as well go all out, right?

So it took a little longer than I anticipated and I ended up in a different spot than I had originally thought. I hadn't been to the park for maybe 14 years, so I did not know where a good spot might be. Maybe I should just call this a scouting trip for next time.

By the time I got up to a decent spot, the sun was just about to come over the top of the rock formations on the horizon. I was able to get a few shots that I am currently working on in photoshop.

I then drove on to another part of the park and got some other early sunlight shots.

Here are a few of the images I captured. Joshua Tree National Park is truly a spectacular landscape. If you haven't ever been, I encourage you to go there. I think a camping trip is in the future. Then I can have another go at the sunrise.

It sure was beautiful.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Recent Shoot

Here are some photos from a recent shoot I did with a friend of mine who was in town from New York city. She and I used to sing together in the Young Americans. You can check out her music at her myspace music page here: Marnie Buckner.

We had a great time shooting these in downtown Orange around the circle (a great place to shoot).

Some of these will definitely be making it onto the Brian Black Photography website.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Sometimes when life throws so many things at you, it is nice when God gives you a sunset to remind you of the beauty He can create. This was Sunday night's beauty. I was out shooting a large format assignment (more on this later) and the sky just kept getting more and more spectacular.

It was an important reminder to me that when life is rough you need to keep your eyes open. There is beauty all around you.

Saturday, March 8, 2008


Brian Black Photography has it's website up and I have to say, I like it quite a bit. I hope you do too. I have to give a big thanks to Steffan Snodgrass for designing the logo and site. You should check out his company Blue Ember Creations.

My birthday is March 9 (tomorrow) and having the website up with some of my pictures is kind of like a birthday present. It is really nice to see it all come together. It is just the beginning!

You might be wondering (or maybe not) what I asked for for my birthday. Well, many photography related things. Mostly money towards a good tripod. Right now I think my choice is a Feisol 3442 for the legs and a Markins M10 ballhead. There are quite a few good comments on this combination on the Nikonians forums.

Feisol is a Taiwan company that makes carbon fiber tripods for less than the Gitzo's. I'm sure the quality is not quite as good, but the price difference for equivalent features is pretty substantial. If I decide to get this, I will post a review here.

Another request was one of Steve McCurry's books. I love his work.

That is it for today. Let me know what you think of it!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Patience is a Virtue

The website is coming...

The logo and look of the website has been completed. We are getting the content together and should be up and running soon. Here is the logo look!