A Photographer in Phoenix Shoots Erik Wahl

Recently I got to photograph the six graduation ceremonies at Grand Canyon University for Moses Advertising. As a photographer in Phoenix I get to photograph and meet a lot of entrepreneurs and interesting people. Erik Wahl was the inspirational motivational speaker at all of the graduations and custom tailored his speeches and paintings for each of the different graduating colleges. It is the best part of my job. Photographing, meeting, hanging out with and working for super creative people like Erik Wahl and all the people at Moses Advertising and Grand Canyon University. Erik makes his creations both upside down and in the length of a single song cranking loudly through the stadium filled to the brim with people.

Through his study of graffiti artists, Erik has been blown away by graffiti art’s freedom to break all the rules. Art no longer needs canvases, libraries, concert halls, museums or art critics. Art isn’t about requiring opening and closing times or paying money to experience it. Just as nature surrounds us with its beauty, graffiti art can also exist and spread the messages of its creator. Graffiti art breaks all the rules of creating and viewing art, allowing for the public to encounter it in the strangest places at the oddest moments.

In an effort to continually challenge his own artistic abilities, Erik’s vision has moved past the canvas to new mediums, such as public walls, sidewalks, empty factories, barren deserts and the middle of a forest. He incorporates new artistic tools like driftwood, dirt, rocks, seashells or even shoelaces.

In the past 10 years, he has shared his incredible message with the largest and most influential companies in the world, leaving behind his prized artwork as a reminder of his passion for breakthrough thinking. He’s the Warhol of Wall Street, the Renoir ofROI, the Picasso of Productivity, the Jobs of… well, having a Job.

Erik has a new book coming out on June 14th which I am really excited to get. It is called UNthink (a word he has trademarked) It is about re-discovering the keys to unlock your fullest potential. UNthink is a book that pushes us beyond our traditional thought patterns. UNthink is a book to inspire everyone to rediscover that we are capable of so much more than we have pre-conditioned for. Creativity is everywhere and in everyone who has the courage to unleash their creative genius.

UNthink will help you reframe your thinking so that new creative actions become possible. You’ll step outside convention to discover unexpected solutions to business challenges. You’ll inject your daily grind with passionate new solutions. You’ll rethink your assumptions about your role at your workplace. And you’ll begin the process of rethinking your life as a blank canvas of limitless opportunities by which to create your masterpiece.

And, no now that you are at the bottom of the story Erik Wahl did not get shot “shot” he was just photographed by me which I call shooting.

A Photographer in Phoenix Shoots Erik Wahl2023-01-16T13:50:58-07:00

Random Karma by Phoenix Event Photographer

I was lucky enough to spend Thanksgiving eve hanging out and photographing Random Karma at Martini Ranch. As a Phoenix event photographer I get to shoot a lot of events and have tried photographing these guys before but they are not the easiest band to catch. They are each individually successful outside of the band so they don’t play in public where you can see them near enough. The live show these guys put on is great. They give the feeling that they want the crowd to just have a great time and that is exactly what happens, a good time. Each musician knows the ins and outs of their instrument and when they set Louie Moses loose on the drums he shows off the kind of drum talent that Arizona has and experience leads to.

The band is made up of brothers Erik Ramnath and Al Ramnath handling guitars and vocals, Greg White on bass and vocals and Louie Moses on drums and percussions. Just a lot of talent and a lot of fun when they play both awesomely entertaining covers and creative tight originals. They are real rock and roll.

I really recommend checking these guys out if you get a chance. They can often be found opening up for Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers and usually play in Rocky Point at Circus Mexico.

Random Karma by Phoenix Event Photographer2023-01-16T13:51:57-07:00

Phoenix Az Event Photography of Roger Clyne & Ph Naffah

Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers along with The Gin Bossoms are two of the best and two of my favorite bands out of Arizona. I have been following Roger Clyne and have watched him at countless concerts since he started his previous band The Refreshments. I have been doing Phoenix AZ event photography of the bands more recently as I have had more access to do so via my friends who make up another band called Random Karma. I also was grade school and high school friends with Scotty Johnson of The Gin Bossoms who now also has a band called Elvis Before Noon that played that night as well. On the eve of Thanksgiving this year all three bands played in one night on one stage to a very intimate crowd at Martini Ranch and it was a really good time. The night started out as a meet and greet with Roger sharing his Mexican Moonshine tequila with the guests and amongst friends and fellow other band mates. The sound was great and the crowd was casual with plenty of elbow room which was is certainly nice when watching musicians on occasion. They all still jammed and it certainly had the signature feel of a full on RCPM concert with plenty of sing alongs and tequila shot toasts.

Martini Ranch has been host to many a bands since 1994 when it opened its doors. Being in this intimate setting with plenty of room to get around made it nice to photograph the three bands through out the night and have a great time along the way. Heres to life!

Phoenix Az Event Photography of Roger Clyne & Ph Naffah2023-01-16T13:53:01-07:00

Phoenix Arizona Photographer Goes to Burning Man

As a Phoenix Arizona photographer both loving art and specializing in events going to Burning Man is like going to Mecca. This is of course if you also like hanging out with hippies and don’t mind dust. I happend to be fine with both and have a underwater case case to protect my expensive camera for the week. It is about a 1500 mile round trip trek and almost a two week commitment to do it right and not have to rush in or rush out. You also have to bring all the supplies you need for the week and bring home every single piece of trash you create because nothing is for sale there and it is a no trace event.

Imagine a city where you get get hugs throughout the day from brief acquaintances, a place where there is no such thing as reaching in your pocket for tender, where bars and coffee houses have free drinks just in exchange for a roll of the dice and an act of chance on your part to entertain the barkeeper, where the very best farmers markets offer beautiful fruit for free, where a single temple at the quietest part of the city that encompasses all beliefs, a place where yoga classes and massages are free and common, where constant passing music playing cabs are everywhere that you can board for free, a place where art, kindness, and entertainment is abundant and almost everywhere you look.

There is such a place for one week of the year.

This year I had been at Burning Man four days and still not made it out to spend some time at The Man. I had seen him of course from the various trips around the city because he is pretty much visible from everywhere.

A few of us were out bar hopping when the biggest storm of the week set in and we were about a mile and a half away from our camp out by the sound camps and huge music domes at the far end of the city. At this point I was by myself and decided to take shelter from the 30-40 mph winds with zero visibility in some large extra pieces of truss that were used to build the domes that I stumbled on to hoping the white out would pass.

After about 30 minutes I decided to slowly try to head back to camp after putting on my goggles, face mask, and covering myself with flashing light lights front and back so nobody would run over me. I walked and pedaled for a good long while and thought I was getting close to where I wanted to be when I came across The Man right in front of me appearing out of the dust 3 or 4 stories high.

I was over a mile from where I thought I was. But, I was finally there, by accident, as the sky started to clear. It was awesome beyond words. This place is somehow more beautiful, dirty, harsh, magic, and full of lessons more than any place I have ever been. I fully understand why hundreds of thousands of people over the years have gone there and forever referred to it as )'(ome.

Phoenix Arizona Photographer Goes to Burning Man2023-01-16T13:54:19-07:00

Darrell Gwynn Foundation – Day Museum Gala Event Photography Arizona

Generous people all gathered around a awesome car museum to help the Darrell Gwynn Foundation raise money for kids in wheel chairs who’s families either can not afford them or who have been turned down by insurance. Doing event photography Arizona is not the only place my job takes me. This month it got me out of the heat and took me to Corona, California where the Day family was kind enough to host a fund raising Gala for the Darrell Gwynn Foundation. It was a gather of many people who are in the motor sports industries in all sorts of ways with a dinner, silent auction, a live auction with the popular and always entertaining young guestauctioneer Cole Ashley, followed with live music on the rooftop of the Day Family Museum. I am lucky enough to be able to call Darrell Gwynn a friend of mine and he is one of the nicest and most inspirational people I have ever met.

Darrell was in a tragic top fuel dragster accident just over twenty years ago which left him in a wheel chair. Since that day once he recovered he dedicated his life to helping others in wheel chairs have a better quality of life through better mobility. Darrell and his foundation raise money non stop all year long all over the country getting involved with events from fishing tournaments to the Barrett Jackson Collector Car Auctions.

The gala had such celebrities attending as Craig Jackson, Bill Goldberg, Don Prudhomme, and Ryan Friedlinghaus of West Coast Customs. It was a great evening at a great place with plenty of awesome cars to check out. And, for those who stayed late the party ended up around the Day’s bar with Cole’s father schooling the Day family, Ryan of West Coast Customs, and a lucky few other of us with some top shelf premium moonshine.

Darrell Gwynn Foundation – Day Museum Gala Event Photography Arizona2023-01-16T13:56:02-07:00

Event Photographer Arizona Was the Beginning for Barrett Jackson

I went to the very first Barrett Jackson Collector Car Auction in Scottsdale in 1971 when I was just a little kid. Now, as an event photographer Arizona is home to both my business and still theirs. And, a life long love and appreciation of cars has come of it. That weekend was and is probably the reason I have spent my life as a fairly avid car loving guy. I rode my bike up to the hotel parking lot where the auction was held and walked around asking people for work until one guy handed me some wax and a towel. He told me to to start at nose end of his Corvette and wax my way to the rear bumper. And, then when I asked him what I could do next he said now wax from the rear to the front. And, that is what I did all day long and I think I waxed that car probably five times that day. When the day was coming to an end and the car was getting ready to get rolled on to the auction block he handed me a $20 bill which I excitedly pocketed.

I have been going back to Barrett Jackson auctions on and off for pretty much my whole life. Eight years ago back in 2005 I got to photograph my first auction for Barrett Jackson directly as one of my clients. We both have grown a lot since then. Now Barrett Jackson event are filled with a range of nice clean affordable clean cars to ultra high end one of a kind rare gems. They are also populated with celebrities like Bret Michaels and Jay Leno and filled with charity cars that raise millions of dollars from each and every auction.

It has been great to watch them grow and to be able to be a part of that. Darrell Gwynn is a hero to many for raising money for wheel chairs for kids and families who can not afford them. He is also one of the many people I have been lucky enough to become friends with through my doing photography at Barrett Jackson Collector Car Auctions. There are many of us and you know what they say… Once a car guy always a car guy.

Event Photographer Arizona Was the Beginning for Barrett Jackson2023-01-16T13:57:07-07:00

Photographers in Phoenix Arizona Honor Those Who Served and Sacrificed

I got up at 5am today grabbed my camera bag and walked to the end of my street to St Francis Cemetery. There are over 50,000 people buried or in the mausoleums there. It is one of the original cemeteries in Phoenix and has many men and woman there that served in World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and the handful of Middle East Wars we have been in since. There were tens of thousands of flags individually put on each grave site for each person who has served this country in war. While I was wandering around the 60 acre site all of the staff was raising all of the flags to half mass and putting extra flags around certain areas specific to groups of men that were buried together. It is quite awesome to see all those flags at sunrise blowing in the wind and to see all those names individually and continually row after row after row.

And then if you start to think about the fact that there are probably hundred and hundred of places just like this all around our country it just leaves you speechless and in awe. It took me almost three hours to walk a giant lap around all the grounds while taking some pictures and I ended up at my childhood neighbors grave who died way too young at the age of 30 in a helicopter crash.

Walking back to my house I stopped by and sat in the outdoor mass they have every year that had at least a thousand people. I could not be more proud to be one of the photographers in Phoenix Arizona who has the freedoms to be able to make a living taking photographs of those who served and sacrificed in this country. It would be so great if they could just leave it the way it looks this weekend all year long. But it is quite cool when the look changes in the fall for the holidays and a handful of other times during the year. But, Memorial Day Weekend is always the best and my favorite to see right at the end of my street.

Photographers in Phoenix Arizona Honor Those Who Served and Sacrificed2023-01-16T13:58:10-07:00

Sam Donaldson Photographed by Event Photographer Phoenix

As an event photographer Phoenix is my home base but I often find myself doing projects all over the metro area usually with some project and clients taking my around the state, country, and even out of the country at times. First Western Trust has been a client of mine since they started their business. Ironically and with much success they opened their bank and first branch in Scottsdale, Arizona the month the US economy crashed in the fall of 2008. As a testament of what kind of a bank and what kind of people run it they are a continually growing success today with now a second branch office opened in the Biltmore area of Phoenix, Arizona and nine other branches out of state. Each year they have a speaker come and speak to their bank members for an evening gathering with a great dinner and drinks on the edge of Tempe Town Lake. The speaker is usually a presidential advisor or someone who has a vast knowledge and understanding at forecasting the financial future of the year to come. I have been lucky enough to be able to both photograph and sit in to listen to these people speak.

This year it was Sam Donaldson who was a very down to earth and almost over the top friendly and personable. I liked how he always simply introduced himself to people by saying hello I am Sam. He is a 44 year ABC news veteran, served two appointments as chief White House Correspondent for ABC covering Presidents Carter, Reagan, and Clinton. He has covered many major news stories such as the Vietnam War, Watergate, the House Judiciary Committee impeachment investigation, and the Gulf War. He currently lives on and runs a cattle ranch in New Mexico.

As First Western Trust continues to grow the continually are making a bigger impact supporting more charity foundations. This year they awarded donation checks to representatives of Boys and Girls Clubs of greater Scottsdale, Child’s Play, The Arizona Hemophilia Association, and Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center. I really enjoy all my shoots with all the people of First Western Trust as they are some of the best people I have ever met.

Sam Donaldson Photographed by Event Photographer Phoenix2023-01-16T14:01:07-07:00

Phoenix Event Photographers at Barrett Jackson Las Vegas 2011

As one of the leading Phoenix event photographers I was out in Las Vegas shooting the Barrett Jackson Collector Car Auction in the fall. We do a lot of work in Las Vegas where there are more events than anywhere in the world. This event was at Mandalay Bay Resort which was really nice being able to stay, work, and play all in the same destination without ever having to leave. Whether shooting myself or with a team we always use only the ultimate and most up to date top of the line Nikon and Cannon equipment. Though photography is all I have ever done my entire life it never gets old because of the ever changing technology whether it be at my end being the user of the cameras and software or because of the clients ever changing technologies. It all supports a unique ever changing ever evolving challenge and ability to continually re invent and create new and different for my clients.

The Las Vegas auction is always packed with celebrities and this time I photographed Criss Angel, The Old Man from Pawn Stars, Rick from American Restoration, Josh Duhamel, and many others. Of all the Barrett Jackson Car Auctions the Las Vegas show has the most super cars and the most rest mods which are my two favorite types of cars. And, in addition to all these good things it is a nice relaxing half days drive across the desert so no planes, no security, no rental cars, and we just travel at our own pace and stop along the way to collect odds and ends out of the middle of nowhere desert.

It’s almost impossible to be a Phoenix event photographer and not be also regularly shooting high end events in beautiful close by Las Vegas, Nevada.

Phoenix Event Photographers at Barrett Jackson Las Vegas 20112023-01-16T14:03:23-07:00

Arizona Event Photographer at Barrett Jackson Orange County 2011

As an Arizona event photographer I travel anywhere for my clients and went to Orange County, California for the Barrett Jackson 2011 auction. It was literally cool and Costa Mesa, California cool. They had $14m in sales, $850k was raised for charities, and 60,000 people walked through the gates. 60{04376f0484412bd48343ece1a3e3868b55ebaad017cd0762f25929f2022e4fa0} of the bidders where new to Barrett Jackson and they purchased half of the cars. I got to photograph all the cars, the people, the auctioneers, the charities, the celebrities, and the action. It was a great event and very, very cool.

Arizona Event Photographer at Barrett Jackson Orange County 20112023-01-16T14:05:59-07:00
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