Rollins Family Portraits

John Rollins has the pleasure of having both his son and daughter for a summer time visit and asked if I could grab some photos of everyone together. I took these photos at the beautiful High Bridge home.

Late summer and fall are GREAT times for family portraits! Contact me today to setup a session!

Additional photos are available here

Visit to Metropolitan Museum of Art

Members of Church of the Holy Spirit in Lebanon, NJ travel to NYC for a guided tour of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Our personal guide was Fr. Ed Murphy. This field trip was the second event in our church’s special event "Renewal of Beauty"

More photos of the museum are available here.

Rest In Peace Matt

Matthew Klouser, LietenantI’ve know Matt for as long as I’ve been the fire photographer for the Stewartsville Volunteer Fire Company.

I remember how Matt always enjoyed sharing and helping others out. He spent time helping the newer members. He would even explain things to me when I ask questions.

I’m glad to have a nice photo of Matt in his Class A uniform to the left. Sadly I realized the need for these when another former member of 98 Fire passed away earlier this year. The call went out for a photo of Ken in his class A uniform. Since this was several years ago when Ken was active, I could only find a group photo taken on Memorial Day 2008. I had the hard task of enlarging Ken’s portion to an 11×14 portrait. It wasn’t easy but I managed to do it.


Matt also never “ran away from the camera” as some other do either in jest or just because they don’t like to have their picture taken.

Below are some of my favorites of Matt. I also created an album online containing all of the photos I’ve found of Matt that I’ve taken over the years.

His passing has been difficult for many members of the Fire Company which is certainly understandable. For them and to Matt’s friends and relatives, my condolences. He’s gone but not forgotten.




How To Take Good Fireworks Photos

Its not really as hard as you think once you get into it and think about it. The hard part is practicing it and managing the “stress” that occurs during the “shoot” since they only last a few minutes (5-10 minutes generally unless you’re fortunate).

Camera Settings – DSLR

ISO – fireworks are brighter than you think – even though it’s nighttime, set your ISO to the lowest setting. I go with 100.

Aperture – generally f8-f16 works well. f11 might be a good starting spot

Shutter Speed – (manual) Bulb and experiment with anything from 4 seconds to 30 seconds.

Tripod – a must for fireworks. If you don’t have one, get or borrow one. Otherwise try putting your camera on something sturdy like the roof of your car or a fence. But remember than you probably need to tilt your camera up somewhat unless you are going for a panoramic shot.

Shutter Release – highly recommended – either a cable type or a more fancy wireless remote control. The less shake on the camera (even though its on a tripod) the better. If you forgot it or don’t have one, then make sure your tripod is rock solid set and try and gently squeeze the shutter instead of pressing it.

Camera Settings – Point & Shoot

Many of these have function settings. If yours does try and find a fireworks setting. If you don’t have one see if you can go manual and go with the settings above.

Focus – since fireworks only last a few seconds auto focus is generally not recommended. Instead try and get the camera to get a good focus on the first few firework displays. Check it carefully in the LCD display. If it looks good then set your focus to manual and LEAVE it where it just was. Generally focusing on infinity is not ideal. If you don’t have a choice, go to infinity then back it out just a “wee” bit (wee is a technical photographic term meaning not too much but just enough Smile)

Bug spray – if you live in a part of the country where your tiny insect friends also enjoy fireworks then make sure you bring some bug spray. Also a blanket or chair to sit on while waiting for the fun to begin may not be a bad idea

Last Thoughts – enjoy it! This only happens a few times a year if you’re luck so enjoy it.