The future of photography in the East Texas area is changing and I am proud to say that we are a part of it. Never before have people been able to walk away from any event with their portraits or action shots in their hands until now! How do we do it?
We have three (3) core values at Expression in Motion:
1. Honor God in what we do and give back to our community
2. Produce a better product than our competition
3. Produce that better product faster than any of our competition
By far the hardest of the three of these is to honor God! Why? Aren’t we Christians and believers? Well of course we are. The hard part is when temptations present themselves and you have to ignore them or when a customer is completely wrong or being unreasonable and we have to react ABSENT of any emotion. This is especially difficult for me as I am an emotional guy. I have been known to speak first and think later and the outcomes are often not good. Really one of those moments when you look back and say, “Man, I shouldn’t have reacted like that.” This is not only in true in business but in life. Sometimes we react to a situation with our kids that is completely based on emotion…and we regret it.
So, how do we overcome that? I believe it takes a rededication every single day. I try to wake up every day and say, “Today is going to be a better day than yesterday because I know I have the Lord, my God, is on my side and He is in control.” It is this rededication that, I believe, continues to provide blessings in not only our business lives but personal ones as well. Where I often fail is that once I rededicate myself in the morning I don’t think about it again until the next morning. Periodically, I look back on a situation and think of how I should have stopped and prayed for patience and then made a decision. I guess that’s why we’re human and far from god-like. But, if we continue to really listen to God’s direction – not just hear Him but really listen – then we will not be misled. One very clear direction that God has led us is to give a portion of our profit back to various associations / organizations and people. It’s a simple way for us to thank the people that have had us out for their events. 90% of the organizations we work with are non-profit and all of the money goes back in to the organization. Maybe an organization can take the money we give back and buy the league trophies with it or maybe the money is spent to help finance a new restroom for the facility. Whatever the case, we try very hard to pay the same blessings we have received forward to those who need it!
#2 & #3 above go together like peas & carrots! True regardless of your faith, if you don’t produce a better product or produce your product faster than your competition then you won’t be around long. When we started producing portraits onsite in the mobile photo lab, I was told, “You can’t do that!” – “No way will that work in the time you want to do it in!” My response was very simple “Why not?” After hours upon hours of dedication and frustration, we have proven that you can produce a quality product in an extremely fast manner. We have proven we can do it because we had to FAITH to ask, “Why can’t it be done.” Do we still fail…EVERY SINGLE DAY! Every day we fail at something or something doesn’t work out like we planned. But it goes back to the rededication of our lives that keeps us going. We learn from those failures and try our best to “hear” what God has in store for us and follow His direction. After all, we are disciples first and photographers/designers second.
Please feel free to email me or contact me at any of the methods below. I’d love to hear your story!
There are so many avenues one can take when it comes to our personalization options/inclusions and photography opportunities, you just can’t stick with one! From individualized personalities and interests, to preferred web-based or face-to-face sales, we work to find the best fit for you and meeting your needs. While we’ve been focused mainly on softball and baseball lately, this past weekend we were invited out to be a part of the KYKX Big Bass Bonanza 2014 to provide them with this year’s t-shirts and promotional items. You couldn’t have asked for better weather at this year’s event! With clear blue skies and full sunshine from dawn to dusk, many families, anglers, and spectators came out to share in the fun. The only cloud on the weekend was not being able to watch the boys play at our Diana Baseball Tournament, relying on others for those play-by-play updates throughout the games. But that’s how it goes sometimes and I’m very thankful for the individuals that were able to help out! As the saying goes, “It takes a village to raise a child.”
It wasn’t a surprise that the biggest hit at our tent was our customized cell phone cases! Many enjoyed our new display boards, having many design choices at their fingertips for ideas, to mix and match with, or include photos with, to make it unique to them! Some of the other items that were available for onsite processing were a variety of sizes of wooden plaques and photo easels, mugs, neoprene koozies and eyewear keepers, a fun new addition of trailer hitch covers, and of course this year’s official event t-shirt.
Some of the fun photo shots of the weekend were the bass of course! We got photos from start to finish: anglers drawing them out of their live wells to proudly show them off, weighing them in, the contenders displayed in the massive bass tank directly out in front of us, and miscellaneous shots throughout the weekend of vendors, events, and the gorgeous sunsets over the lake.
Memories are made at every turn in life from simple afternoons at home with your family, to extravagant planned events. And while you can’t catch them all, especially if you can’t be two places at once, be sure to try to capture yours when you get a chance!
As Always – Capturing Memories while you watch the Moments!
This is the start of my blogs that’ll be weekly at this point. I’m not in the habit of putting my thoughts out in full view, but sometimes life takes you in turns you didn’t think you’d go. Action photography has been one of those turns for me that I’ve fallen in love with. I haven’t always been geared towards photography professionally, but loved to shoot and see the treasured results since my first camera as a child. I am a mother of two boys and we’re involved in sports year round. It’s always nice to have a picture of your child in their uniform for the sport they’re involved in to mark that year…..it’s always been done that way. Like most, I have a picture from each year of them. I asked my oldest son one day what one of those pictures reminded him of and his response? Waiting for his turn…..being told when to smile….oh wait, football players aren’t supposed to smile in pictures. It reminded him of that day, someone else manufacturing the memory. Show a picture to your child that was taken DURING a game, ask that question and be prepared for their answer. Details of the game and experience the way you’d wished they’d remember their schoolwork! The only problem though is that the pictures usually aren’t very good. Let’s face it; the majority of us rely on cell phones for pictures, because it’s handy and affordable.
My business, Expression in Motion, has made various shifts over this past year as we’ve grown and continue to grow, but none as favored as the addition of action photography. Being able to offer associations and families reliable quality photography is an experience like no other. I’m able to capture the athlete’s memories as THEY make them - genuine smiles that are produced by their efforts and successes are priceless! That to me, especially as a mom, is exciting! In addition to providing the photography, we produce on site personalized items that you can include those pictures on for no additional fees such as cell phone cases, plaques, photo easels, and more which you take home with you – no ordering needed! Okay, so now I sound like this has become an advertisement. I’m just proud of what we have and what we’re able to offer. Now…..back to the blog.
When the hustle and bustle of life weighs you down, a good place to regroup is out at the ball fields. There’s nothing better than looking at life from your children’s viewpoint as they head out with eager anticipation and excitement. Will today be the day they hit their first home run or even the ball for the first time? Will they be at the top of their game and throw the runner out at first to end the inning for their team or catch that fly ball? In the cool of the morning, with the sun on their backs, the softball fields were filled with eager girls from ages 9 - 14 for the start of the first day of the USFA Wild West Weekend Softball Tournament out at Lear Park in Longview, TX. I’ve always loved to watch ballgames being here in the south with teams in prayer, heads bowed and knees bent. These are some of my favorite pictures to include in the galleries adding to the story of event. The coming together of opponents for the purpose of putting God first is a reminder to us all of how we should start each day.
Thirty-eight teams took the fields throughout this tournament, playing eight games at a time, working to stay alive throughout the double elimination rounds. No one wanted to be the ones to head home but all should have held their heads high for the amount of talent that was seen throughout the day. The sun shone brightly throughout the day, with the word “rain” remaining a safe distance from the forecaster’s lips, leaving only the nemesis of the wind to contend with. By the end of the day, there were sunburns, and weary legs and backs from the endless hours of crouching, but it all dissipates when reviewing back through your work from the day with pride that it was all worth it. And that gets you right back up the next morning to start it all over again! Rain however was in the forecast for day two and it would only be a matter of time before it arrived. Thankfully the day was well under way before the first wave of rain came through and it wasn’t continual, so even though there were some delays, the games played on! Two days with two photographers, each team has at least one game in our thirty-seven game galleries for this tournament. There are over 4900 memories captured that teams and individuals are able to acquire. It’s always a wonderful feeling to hear the feedback from the athletes themselves, as well as their families, and know that the weariness of the weekends end was all worthwhile!
It was an absolute pleasure to view the games thru the lens of a camera, capturing memories that otherwise might have been forgotten. We always think “I’ll remember that forever”, but in reality as most fades in time, especially when we’re young. Memories are easily relived through moments frozen in time in treasured photographs of that smashing hit that scored the winning homerun, slide into home, a glove that was outstretched further than thought possible for the catch that made the crowd wow and cheer in excitement! That’s what my hope is when I take the field with my camera - to capture “that shot” to help these athlete’s tell their stories for years to come. I’m often told how brave I am by parents being on the “other side” of the fence with nothing but my camera in front of me. Have I been hit? Oh yes, more than once, but thankfully nothing that has held a lasting effect too long. The umps sometimes look at me with a wary eye, and occasionally ask to have me move closer to the fence to what is deemed “out of harm’s way”. Others offer their vest while I crouch behind the catcher for the great viewpoint of the pitcher in action during warm ups. Sometimes it takes getting out of your comfort zone to reach your potential! This thought sure pertains more to life than just getting great shots on the ball field! I know there will be plenty more hurdles to cross as we continue grow and expand, and I’m surely excited to see what God has planned for us!
As Always – Capturing Memories while you watch the Moments!
© Expression in Motion Photography