CJ Wilkes

About CJ Wilkes Photography

Capturing Your Dance In The Rain is such a thrill and joy to me. Being able to look back on those special times through beautiful artistic imagery makes it a worthwhile challenge.
Learning to Dance in the Rain has been very easy for me. I am drawn to Water & Life! The exciting part for me is to teach you to enjoy your moment in the dance as I capture it from behind my camera.
Looking forward to Capturing Your Dance In The Rain
CJ Wilkes

Tag: ‘Model’



Sometimes We Create the Mood Feb. 2013

Saturday, March 29th, 2014

I find it interesting with mood shoots that not everyone comprehends the artistry behind it. I often get comments like – Why are they angry? Why are they not smiling? It makes me laugh a bit actually. Until more recently in time – smiling and laughing for the camera was just not done. Look at all the past images from centuries before. Smiles are not often portrayed. Laughter, hardly ever. Fast forward to today and people wonder what were they thinking? However, some of the images are so profound because of the non smiling faces. In my opinion it is because – without the smile you are drawn to the EYES, the overall look. It does come down to preference of coarse – but this is one of my favorite types of shoots (especially in studio).

This particular shoot was done in my dear friend’s studio, Stacey Hamilton of Times 3 Photography.  This was her family. We discussed the look we were going for – then we raided all the closets to find what we would use for clothing. I find that you can make a shoot from most whatever can be found in ones own closet. Here we wanted white – plain – simple, using texture to give variety. One child I took a shirt and turned it upside down, allowing the fringe from the bottom to create that texture. Another child, we had her squeeze through the neck of the eyelet dress then pinned the sleeves behind her. The other child we had squeeze through the neck of a Tshirt also pinning it behind her. We intended for this session to be all Black and White. All of them had exposed shoulders to accentuate the soft flow from the top of the head, down the neck, then down the soft curve of the shoulder. All this was pre thought. Because of this, when we looked for clothing for Mom and Dad, we wanted to keep the same feel. Mom, we had her in a simple tank top while dad had a button down shirt opened in the front. For the family image though, we simply had him shirtless. His white shirt was a bit too disruptive to the feel. However, when I did their couple shots it went very well with the whole set.

Love of a Mother

This was a highlight from my visit in Wisconsin. The opportunity to do this session of Stacey’s family – the best! Being a fellow photographer – I have to admit I was nervous. I always get nervous around other photographers.  Each of us do things differently from the other. It was so much fun though and her children were so stinking adorable. Super fabulous to work with!

Our first goal was to get the images of mom with her girls.

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Every photographer needs a spouse like Stacey’s. He was up for anything. One moment he has his shirt on, the next he is asked to take it off and he did with no complaints. He understood that we had a vision we were trying to put into reality and just went with our (my) crazy schemes. Looking at these – I think his willingness to not be difficult is what made this shoot all the better. Thank you Peter!

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I have found that an ever slight change or movement can change the entire feel of an image. Both great images and very similar but so different.

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This little mini me of her mom – well, she just was a natural! She understood small movements. Had the perfect eyes – followed direction. You could tell her mom had worked with her before!

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This little girl is so full of life! She is smart! Beautiful! And I could spend an entire day just taking her picture. Miss her tons :) She made me smile all the time.

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Little Miss P is the baby of the family, born the same time as my baby. Who does not love the little one of the family? Adorable, Funny, and boy can she make one laugh! She was good at this modeling thing too!

If I could go back and do any session again I would love to do this one! It was so creative, fun, experimental, and just the best people to work with! Love these girls and family! Can’t wait to get back to Wisconsin again!

 

 

New Spiral Bound Photo Books!

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Introducing our newest product. The new Spiral Bound Photo Books!

Why ~ I am not a fan of preview books for a couple of reason, one mainly being that they don’t look great to me. I like polished finished looks to all my products. This is a new product that can serve several purposes. It looks great, it presents beautifully, it showcases images perfectly, it can be used as an affordable alternative, and did I mention how beautiful these are?

The new books come packaged in a black box with tissue wrapped around it for protection.

As you can see the book has a custom designed hard cover with image on the front. The texture is linen. Angled just right you can see it. Gives it a wonderful polished feel. If you prefer no texture that is an option as well.

Both the front and back covers are made of hard material. This book is a 5×7 size. I chose that option because it shows off your images so nicely. Not too small and not to large.

I love how the book lies flat because of the spiral binding. This book takes up very little room, yet has big appeal.

The pages turn on the spiral binding quite smoothly. The picture quality is gorgeous. I would not choose a product that does not show well or that I would not want in my own home. This is definitely a product I enjoy in my home. This is a great gift item for parents or grandparents – family members.

The standard book comes with 10 pages (20 images). Up to 10 extra pages (2 images per page) can be purchased so  you can potentially have a total of 40 images. The Spiral Bound Photo Book I have here has the standard 10 pages.

One thing that I enjoy doing each year is making photo albums or books of my children. I would love to have one for each child. Having an affordable option is something that definitely appeals to me as a mom of 5 with many extended family members. This is also a wonderful option for all types of shoots: Model portfolio building, Children, High school Seniors, Couples, Parent books, Boudoir shoot, Trash the Dress shoots.  I am squealing at how cool these are!

The options are currently:

Spiral Bound Photo Books

Hinged Albums

Senior Session Albums

Layflat Albums

Ice Layflat Albums

Would love to have your feed back on any of these options. If you need information like sizing and pricing feel free to contact me.  Now off to work on editing some more sessions to bring to you! :)

Water Tower Bridal Shoot (Modeling)

Monday, July 23rd, 2012

Brides are very much what I truly enjoy shooting. I love that there are so many different personalities, dresses, likes, and overall combinations. All of it makes my mind work hard to create the PERFECT shoot for each individual. I love dramatic when it comes to brides and the look we are trying to achieve. This session worked out perfectly for it!  Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

 

Tell me what you think of the Water Tower Bridal shoot!

Jessica Lemmons ~ Trash the Dress

Sunday, January 15th, 2012

One of my all time favorite types of photography is the Trash the Dress shoots!  For me as the photographer it lets me be ultra creative.  The thing that makes it even more fun is other fellow photographers on board with the fun.  I had the pleasure of having my fellow photographer and friend, Jessica Lemmons of  Jessica Lemmons Photography,  have the desire to do a trash the dress session since she is going through a divorce.  We have come to find that Trash the Dress sessions are very therapeutic for those going through such a stressful time, such as divorce, in their lives.  What topped it all off was that I was not shooting this alone!  My dear friend Stacey Hamilton of  Time’s 3 Photography in Racine, Wisconsin was here with me too.  Keep checking her blog out for the images she captured from our amazing day!!!

I can not tell you of the FUN we had!  We had crowds stopping and asking questions right there in downtown Seattle as we worked our camera’s.  We had one man stop and say he wanted to be in the movies and that we should take shots of him because he had blue and green eyes!  :)  We had others just stop in the middle of the road to have a chance to speak with Jessica – our amazingly gorgeous model!  Then we went into an interesting alley way to get a new feel.  After those adventures we took it to the beach – docks – and yes! You all know me – we were in the WATER!!!!  Here it is for you all to enjoy:

That is a Wrap!  Well, at least as far as you know ;).  We are definitely going to have to have future updates or shoots.  If you are interested in a fun Trash the dress session just email any of us ~ And do not forget to visit both Jessica and Stacey’s blogs.

 

 

 

Rebekah = Happy with a spark of pizazz!

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

Again, loving the school pictures this year.  Rebekah was a perfect little model.  She got to the spot and started striking a pose and giving it her best grins without any encouragement needed from me.  It was AWESOME.  If only every child were so easy.  It is so fun as a photographer to see such a bright fun loving individual who knows their own mind :)  I am looking forward to doing another session with her for sure!!!  After all – look at her SMILE: SO CUTE!

Just looking at these it brings me back to the session.  She would shift this way and strike her pose, then ever so slightly shift and strike her pose – then of coarse another subtle but well thought out rearranging and she was ready again!  I loved it!  Mom was smiling as big as can be too because this was Rebekah having her own moment and it was priceless!

Rebekah, next time we will spend much longer with a full session rather than a mini session, K hun!?  Thanks for being so awesome!

 

Model and SPA

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

At the SPA Studio they would have a Wednesday Feature model night.  This is where a model would come.  We would choose the location in our studio we wanted to work in, set up our set and our lights (as a photographer) – then we would take turns working with the model.  She or he would cycle through each of the 2-5 different photographers.  The great thing about this program is that the model would get some fun images for their portfolio, practice working with different photographers, and experience working the camera – the photographer would get to work on their lighting, posing, techniques, communication.   Here are some images from a model that the camera absolutely loved.  For me she was a model that made my job as a photographer a breeze!  (Again – thank you to When for this opportunity to work in your studio and for finding amazing models to work with as well.)

Before I show her images I have a couple images of fellow photographers.  It is great because we work as a team while setting up in that we will stand in and let the photographers shoot us to test their lighting and tweak it as necessary.  These guys John Clark and Ted Leung both were kind enough to stand in and let me test my set up before shooting my model.  Thank you guys!!!

John Clark has a great understanding of studio lighting.  He is quiet and sweet as can be.  Photography is not his day job – he calls it his hobby, but he sure knows how to rock that camera!

Ted Leung is a husband, father, hard worker – and adds photography to his other jobs.  He is creative in his shooting.  It was fun shooting along side him because he is innovative and does not settle for less!

Ok back to our model for that night:

If you are a photographer and you have the chance to work with Kristen Rey do so.  She will make your job that much more enjoyable and very easy to accomplish.  Thanks again to SPA – When, John, Ted, and Kristen.

 

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