4th of July, 2016 in VSCO

This past 4th of July we decided to visit Bayside in Miami, Florida. We arrived a bit later than we had hoped, 5pm, but we were able to find parking under the American Airlines Arena, which is just across the street. 

We started our visit with a trip to the Mojito Bar which is my favorite place in Miami to get Mojitos.

I've been coming here since I was a young child and I thought it would be the perfect place to visit with my girlfriend and each of our kids. We walked around as the sun set, took the kids to get their face paints, and even gave them ice cream so they could drip it all over themselves! 

We finished the night off watching Eclipse Band Live in the Amphitheater area. It was an amazing performance by the band and lead singer Kevin Alfinez. We were also fortunate to catch an amazing young musician, AJ Gayton, from Homestead, Florida who graduated high school this past month. He's easily identified by his large curls. 

The firework show and festival at Bayside was completely free. The fireworks start promptly at 9pm. Bayside was fun 20 years ago during 4th of July when I was a child, and it still is in 2016. I recommend anyone in South Florida who is looking for a family friendly event for 4th of July to visit Bayside Marketplace.

Source: https://www.baysidemarketplace.com/en.html

Jacksonville - Midday Engagement Session

This weeks featured engagement session was photographed in the middle of the day during the brightest time of the day. The sky was clear and the sun was directly overhead. We didn't have much of a choice because Giselle was visiting from New York and this was the only opportunity we had to photograph and celebrate their engagement session. Their wedding is being celebrated this September in New York. 

Jose and Giselle met in Miami, Florida during Memorial Day weekend when we both served in the United States Marine Corps. I had the honor of photographing their engagement session just before Valentine's Day this year. Because of the impeccable timing, we were able to create a custom folio box for Giselle to receive in time for Valentines Day. 

A new take on the old portfolio box. This envelope style box holds 10-12 or 15-18 matted images for one convenient price (prints & mats sold separately). One of our best products yet for boudoir & portrait sessions. The Marilyn is available in an array of silks & non-leathers to suit all of your portrait needs.

A new take on the old portfolio box. This envelope style box holds 10-12 or 15-18 matted images for one convenient price (prints & mats sold separately). One of our best products yet for boudoir & portrait sessions. The Marilyn is available in an array of silks & non-leathers to suit all of your portrait needs.

These boxes are the perfect contemporary solution to albums for family, glamour, boudoir, portrait, and engagement sessions. They allow you to archive the images elegantly while allowing you to display them on your walls and switch them out as you see fit throughout the years. They are also a great way to store them and share them for viewing with family and friends. 

Here is a behind the scenes showing how great photos can be captured anywhere, despite the time of day, with the right imagination, lighting, and idea. 


Source: https://www.finao.com/products/marilyn

Miami, Florida - Vizcaya Gardens Engagement Session

Naureen & Ramon chose Viscaya for their engagement session because of the beautiful green gardens and historic structures. This location also contrasts their wedding venue in Sunny Isles that I'm lucky to be photographing this September. They were only in town for two days and only had the opportunity to start photographing shortly before high noon. Naureen started in a beautiful Pakistani dress while Ramon started very handsomely in dark jeans, button up and a sports coat. As the day got hotter, they switched out of the heavy layers and Naureen threw on a pretty summer dress as Ramon went a bit more casual in jeans and a long sleeve. 

Viscaya was created by James Deering's subtropical winter home in the 1910's and is a National Historic Landmark and accredited museum today. This picture perfect setting makes for an ideal setting for a portrait shoot. Photography is not permitted inside the museum but the fountain-filled gardens and grounds are absolutely gorgeous. There is a fee that applies. The fee is 160.50 during the week and 267.50 on the weekends. Fees are collected at the ticket booth and as long as it's not Tuesday (their closed Tuesdays) does not require a reservation to have a professional portrait session. The fee allows up to 5 people, including the photographer, clients, and assistants. 

The park is only open from 9:30am - 4:30pm which can be some of the harshest conditions of the day. Make sure to bring plenty of water and perhaps extra clothing to change into if you start sweating through an outfit. Because the grounds are very large and lighting conditions can be difficult, make sure to schedule at least two hours to complete a portrait session. I'd also suggest shooting during the week when the grounds are less crowded and there are less photographers and other portrait clients photographing around the gardens.

Make up by: Emilio Uribe 



U.S. Marine to Photographer

10 years ago, at the age of 18, I joined the Marine Corps. I served my first four years as a data networking specialist before attending selection, graduating, and becoming a special operations team member in MARSOC (Marine Special Operations Command). In 2014, during our final mission in Afghanistan, our country lost a true American hero, Sgt Charles C. Strong with whom I had the honor to have served with. He is survived by his beautiful wife Taylor Strong and his daughter Sophie Strong. 

When he passed away I became very aware that I had very few photos of my daughter and I and I spent the next six months documenting our time together with my camera phone before I decided to invest in a serious camera system. Before I knew it, I fell in love with photographing Taylor, Sophie, and my daughter Leilani. Fast forward to a year later and I have since left active service in the Marine Corps and relocated to Miami to pursue my passion as a portrait and wedding photographer. 

I owe everything to my friend Charles. I've learned to grow much closer to my daughter because of the way Charles lived his life and his relationship with Taylor. I strongly believe that these events have had a strong influence on my work because I've developed a profound appreciation for the relationships between parents and their children as well as the bond between husband and wife. 

I miss you dearly Chuck and love you, your wife, and your beautiful daughter.