The Hangar Party. It is genuinely one of my favorite nights of the year, second maybe only to the month-long celebration that is the Christmas season.
Super cars, delicious food, enthusiastic car nuts and wonderful people, money raised for charity, virtual reality games, and great music entertainment; that is how I would list some of the fun had every year. As a photographer, I am in a wonderland of things to photograph. (I even took my gimbal so I could do a video this year, as I am beginning to dabble more in video.)
I am completely honored that Cars N’ Coffee officially asked me to join the party as the photographer this year. I was wandering around for a half hour before I realized that the window stickers for the featured cars had my images on it from the 2015 party! It was the best surprise ever!!!
I’ll quit mumbling on and let you enjoy the images yourself. If you have the opportunity, you should definitely try to attend next year. (You can visit Cars N Coffee Pittsburgh on their Facebook page or website.) It’s a Saturday in late September. It sells out quickly so mark your calendars now! Plus, your money goes to a great cause. Win, win all around!
I call this the WarholedBenz, lol. It is 4 different pictures though, each a unique color based on the laser color during that frame.
Speaking of Christmas, this picture just screams the most wonderful time of the year...
This was one of the silent auctions going on to raise more money for this year's charity: Crisis Center North
If you didn't get enough, you can find all the images from this year's party here: https://savvyshotsphotography.shootproof.com/hangerparty2017
Clickbait titles, they’re the worst, but they work. Now that I have your attention, I promise it’ll be worth it...
I look forward to Rock the Palace more and more every year; the bands get better, the audience has more fun, and the show is friggin’ amazing, all for $10! (Plus, I should add that you are supporting the awesome cause that is Westmoreland Cultural Trust and all they do to help and entertain our community.)
There were 10 bands that competed, and a closing performance while the audience votes were tallied. Kaelber took a well-deserved 1st place. Andy Gregg band came in second, and the Victoria Morgan Band took 3rd overall, but this was the audience vote, so she was first in the audience’s heart. As cheesy as it sounds, the audience definitely won out with an amazing concert for $10!
Here are my favorite images from the night. I hope you enjoy! Feel free to peruse all 500+ images from the night here: https://savvyshotsphotography.shootproof.com/rockthepalace2017
The audience is taking their seats in the beautiful Palace Theater in downtown Greensburg, Pennsylvania. Kelli Brisbane, the brains behind this awesome fundraiser and MC of the night, Keith.
The first band up was Thieves & Lovers.
Kaelber was up next. They weren't even originally suppose to play that evening, but the original second act had broken up and Kaelber was called in as a replacement. I knew as soon as their set was over that they should be the winners of the night. They put on an incredible show. If you have the chance to see them live (which you will since they won a headline show at TGIS this coming August), I highly recommend you go!
A Little Less Human:
Leah K: (The emotion on her face and passion in her voice totally reminded me of footage I've seen of Janis Joplin play.)
Some intermission fun: we had raffle winners, the judges spoke, and the audience got to stretch their legs for a long 15 minutes.
The 2nd place winner, Andy Gregg Band:
The audience-voted favorite: Victoria Morgan Band. (This was their first performance as a band; Pretty amazing!)
I love watching Brahctopus play. They just announced some exciting news: they are playing at the 3 Rivers Art festival on June 3rd from 12-1 pm. I'd check them out if you have the chance.
JWP. They are celebrating their 10-year anniversary this year. There were so may incredible stories from the bands that played that night. JWP rocked out as always.
Last year's winners, Mark and the Wild Things, rounded out the shows competing for this year.
Rachel Leigh played while the votes were tallied.
I love that I was able to sneak way behind-the-scenes and watch the magic happen!
The bands waiting on-stage, and then the winners are announced.
Where do I even begin with the magic that is the Steel City Blues Fest? It a whirlwind of epic, late-night dancing and music, paired with wonderful instructors teaching workshops during daylight hours. These people know how to party, and dance!
I had photographed a dance festive prior to this, and to completely give away my ignorance in the dance community, I thought that the Lindy Hop was the same thing as the Steel City Blues Fest. I was sorely mistaken. At several points on the first evening, I exclaimed to anyone that would listen that, “it was hot in here, and I’m not just talking about the temperature.” That is one way I’ll pretty much remember the weekend; Passionate people enjoying themselves, doing things they love with like-minded people in their community.
I was slightly shocked to find out that people traveled from all over the country to attend this event. Boston, Chicago, and New Jersey were states I can remember being thrown out that weekend, and the number of people that had flights to catch after the after-party was even greater. It was a melting pot of amazing individuals that welcomed me with open arms. I even let down my guard on the last night and accepted a dance by a wonderfully kind gentleman by the name of Luke. Although I tried to explain to him that I had no rhythm, and my two worst fears are singing or dancing in public, he encouraged me to just try it (and I didn’t make a complete fool of myself, so bonus!)
I have to say, I went to this festival as the photographer, knowing less than nothing about Blues dancing, and I came out, jokingly, with zero knowledge, and a boatload of amazing new friends.
If you'd like to see all of the amazing images from that weekend, head here: https://savvyshotsphotography.shootproof.com/steelcitybluesfestsocialmedia
I have been a fan of Sun Dawg for a good, long time. I feel like I should get legit street cred for being a “counter-queen” (That’s a State Radio reference for you not in the know) well before they moved to their new, above-ground home. I’m a pretty decent regular when I’m at home to enjoy it, so I always try to jump at the opportunity to partake in their wonderful 5-course dinners whenever they occur.
The latest was an Irish-inspired meal in honor of St. Patrick’s day. As a very recent imbiber, I have to say that even I particularly enjoyed the Four Season’s Brewery beer pairings at the March 18th dinner.
Below are some of my favorite images from the evening. I created as many images as I could in-between trying to relax and savor the dinner itself.
To see all the images from the evening, head here: https://savvyshotsphotography.shootproof.com/irishsundawgdinner .
To see all the images from the evening, head here: https://savvyshotsphotography.shootproof.com/irishsundawgdinner .
Where do I even begin? Last weekend was a whirlwind of crazy, tiring, fun! I had the honor and pleasure of photographing a number of events: The Steel City Blues Fest, Citizens Fiber and Flat Tire Co.’s Beer Mile, and Sun Dawg Cafe’s 5-course Irish dinner at Four Season’s Brewery. (Each of which deserves it’s own post, and will get it in the very near future.)
Let’s dive into the Beer Mile first. If you remember, the weather the Friday before was an on/off mix of rain and snow all night, leaving the Westmoreland Fairgrounds a variable mud pit of slop, mulch, and huge puddles. People were really making a splash as they ran their laps, and I mean that literally.
Here are a sampling of my favorite images. If you'd like to view all the pictures from that morning, please head over here to check them out: https://savvyshotsphotography.shootproof.com/beermile2017
I got pretty muddy capturing all the fun. My light stands and shoes needed a shower just as much as I did when I left!
It’s been a solid year since I’ve started getting seriously involved in community events. I really want to make Greensburg as fun and cool as I think it has the potential to be. To help me with my personal quest, I’ve teamed up with the best people around: the Westmoreland Cultural Trust and Downtown Greensburg Project. Kelli and Jess care as much as I do about the happenings around 15601 so I was pretty stoked when our powers combined to cover this year’s Party at the Palace annual fundraiser. I may be a bit biased, but I think this year’s party was the best yet!
I want to give Kelli from the Westmoreland Cultural Trust a special thank-you for opening the doors early for me to get a sneak peek inside the amazing spaces they put together to get 5 parties in one night, and especially to Jess from the Downtown Greensburg for hanging with me for a majority of the night and assisting me with lighting. She made the amazing event images I captured all that much easier. Thank you both very much!
Oh, and I have to add that if you need event coverage, I’d love to talk to you! I love the variety that presents itself with events and solving any challenges that may arise during the process. As always, I hope you enjoy and sincerely consider joining us next year! :)
My favorite room: The whiskey and Cigar lounge!
This is a general view you'd get while you smoked your complimentary cigar from Nelson Loguasto.
Or you could hang out at the bar and get yourself a Whiskey. All the barrels used as tables were lent to us from the West Overton Village Museum and Distillery.
The Pints and Pies Room, my second favorite party space!
You gotta love all the food and sweets available:
Some of our favorite caterers from the evening:
Alan from J. Corks
The fine folks from Juniper Grill in Murrysville.
We had a blast with all the entertainment provided:
Josh Barett sang in the Pints and Pies Pub all evening.
John Noble performing with Stage Right.
Part of the ensemble from Stage Right.
And last but not least, all of the wonderful people that came out and partied into the night!
(Note, I wasn't working as a Stringer tonight so I didn't get everyone's names. If you want to message me your info for these pictures, I'd be happy to update them!)
Jess from Downtown Greensburg Project and Alan from J. Corks slipped away for a super quick portrait outside.
The brains behind this operation, (fron left to right) Peg Colosimo, event volunteer committee Chair, Mike Langer, Westmoreland Cultural Trust President, and Kelli Brisbane, Mike Langer's assistant and the person that gets everything done! ;) Kelli's committment to Greensburg is wonderful so if you see her, please Thank her for all of her hard work!
We ended up having a little bit of a photo booth / photo session situation. Everyone loved this couch with the uplighting behind it! (Normally I have to beg people to let me take their picture, so I welcomed the change of pace.)
Kevin, the owner of Lapels, A Fine Mens' Clothier, with Melinda Sherid.
Peg grabbed me by the arm to take this picture with piano player Eric Barchiesi. It's an annual tradition for them. :)
Senator Kim Ward with Republican red behind her. (I absolutely waited for the light to cycle through to get this picture. I pointed this out to her and she was happy with it. Win Win.)
Seriously, people loved this couch for pictures!
May I be so bold to say this was the coolest cat at the party: Little Bear!
I realize that I may appear like the least interesting person in the world. Radio silence for about 3 months… What gives?
Well, I’ve been traveling the world for the past 3.5 months. For 2017, I’ve actually been on the road more than I’ve been home. It’s been a lovely, intense experience.
I’ve found I’m a bit atypical when it comes to social media, especially when I’m traveling. I would rather fully experience the moment I’m in than thinking about how I should portray the experience to whatever social media platform I’m fancying at the moment. It’s been a freeing and refreshing experience. (Maybe this sounds completely crazy to some of you. The world may revolve around likes, hearts, retweets, and shares, and while I’m privy to the knowledge that there is definitely something to social media currency in today’s world, I promise there’s something very cool about disconnecting every now and then.)
So what have I been up to?
Late last year, in October, I went to Mexico for a photography workshop of sorts. In December, I spent 2 weeks in New Zealand, starting with an incredible 3-day intensive workshop with my favorite wedding photographers, Lanny and Erika of Two Mann Studios, and a 10 day road trip around the South island. (I took so many pictures. So many!)
So far this year I’ve been to: San Antonio and Austin, Texas; Las Vegas, Nevada; Covington, Kentucky; Orlando, and Tampa, Florida. It’s been a whirlwind, and I’m back on the road this Tuesday, Feb. 28th!
I’ve sat down and made an actual schedule for myself to catch up and post daily for a while at least. I promise there are exciting things coming your way soon. I mean, Hello New Zealand landscapes! Am I right?!
Until next time, Cheers, and Happy Travels!
About this picture: I took this with my new-to-me, used Fuji X100S. Since it was a red-eye flight, and we were above a sea of clouds to block the light pollution below, you could see all the stars out of the airplane window. It was a beautiful sight, and I tried to capture it as best I could. It's moments like this that you push the limits of your gear, and very clearly remember that your eyes can see way more than a camera sensor.
It all goes down in one month!
I'll be in the center of magic, the happiest place on earth; Disneyland, with one of the most awesome, cutest, down-to-Earth couples I have had the pleasure of photographing.
Eek! I may be as excited as they are! :)
Here are some of my favorites from their two engagement sessions. I mean, when you can't fit all this awesomeness into one session, who can blame them? They wanted to incorporate as much Pittsburgh as they could and since they are getting married in Orlando and celebrating at Disneyland, Kennywood was a natural choice. I also wanted to incorporate their engagement story so their wedding album would be filled with great memories. Corey proposed on top of Mt. Washington after an incline ride. He couldn’t even wait until after dinner, popping the question before dinner, so we followed the same plan for their engagement photos, round 2. I hope you enjoy their story as much as I had fun capturing it for them. Here’s to one more month!!!
And from Mt. Washington! First up, the incline:
And then, at the top of Mt. Washington:
These two look like they belong in Vogue. (This is the exact joke I make that night when I showed them the back of my camera. It's like you were there, now, lol.)
Even though the fountain was off for maintenance, we lucked out with some fireworks later!
Here's to lifelong memories and happiness you two! I'll see you in Florida in a month! :)