Photography and Beach Portraits on the Emerald Coast

As a professional photographer in Destin, I know how wonderful it is to live along the NW Florida coast, a place so rich with natural treasures. I can't get enough of the nature, the wildlife, and all the activities associated with the beach lifestyle. I spend a lot of time photographing beach portraits from Ft Walton Beach to Panama City Beach. Each photo, each family picture is special to me.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Unconditional Love

It continues to amaze me when I read stories in the media about the services humans receive from animals, usually dogs. Our local paper had a story just today about a veteran that has a German shepherd that helps him in his struggle with PTSD. The dog wakes him before his nightmares become too intense and stands between him and other people if he is out and has an anxiety attack. A month ago I encountered a young woman in Petsmart with her service dog. The dog helps her with a medical condition. Anyone who has had a pet understands the special bond between an animal and its caretaker. The pet needs no special training to give unconditional love to those who care for and love him or her. I urge you to consider supporting the various shelters and animal care groups in your area at this year end, and if at all possible pay a visit to a shelter. There may be a very special animal waiting for you. You won't be sorry and you may be the difference in their living or dying.

Friday, September 16, 2011

What a great summer we've had on the Emerald Coast of Florida. Tourists came in record numbers, no hurricanes (knock on wood), and the water and beaches were beautiful. I photographed lots of new families and thoroughly enjoyed meeting and working with them.

The weather has begun to cool off a little and the pace is a bit slower. Next month the Destin Fishing Rodeo will get underway as well as the Destin Seafood Festival. If you've never participated in them, you have missed a treat. Consider a fall trip. It's the best time of the year and I would love to see you again.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Nesting time in the Gulf Islands National Seachore

Between Navarre and Pensacola Beach is an area that is part of the Gulf Islands National Seashore, a National Parks Area that shelters and protects migratory and residential birds and animals. During the nesting time of the year the speed limit drops to 20 mph, strictly enforced. and certain areas are roped off and restricted. These areas contain hundreds of nesting shore birds. Their nests are out in the open located on the sand and beach debris. The babies run everywhere as babies will do. Hence 20 mph, because they run on the roadway also. Last year with the oil spill, the nesting season was disturbed by all the big machinery and activity on the beach. I was anxious to see how this season is progressing and decided to detour through the area on my way to Pensacola Saturday. The birds seem be out in force and I was delighted to see many babies. I took pictures but the ones that showed up the best were the skimmers because of their coloring. The little sandpipers were barely visible in the sand.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Nothing brings the child in a person out like sand castles. There have been a number of sand structures along the Emerald Coast from Panama City Beach to Pensacola marking the anniversary of the Gulf oil spill and celebrating the beautiful beaches and the beginning of the tourist season. Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort in Destin commissioned such a structure on the beach in front of Finz Restaurant. I couldn't resist a trip to view it and photograph it. Hope you enjoy the photographs and maybe it will inspire you to come on down and try your hand. We have beautiful sand to work with and beautiful weather to enjoy it.

Monday, April 11, 2011

One thing about living along the Emerald Coast of Florida is that there is always somewhere interesting within a short distance. As a photographer, I never run out of sights that intrigue and amaze me.

Sunday, I drove to the Weeks Bay Pitcher Plant Bog outside of Foley. Gulf Coast pitcher plant bogs are among the most diverse habitats for flowering plants in North America. Bogs bring together an unusual combination of water, soil, and environmental conditions. Bogs contain very little organic material. Coastal bogs are highly acidic and very poor in nutrients. The carnivorous pitcher plants obtain their nutrients by capturing and eating insects and other small creatures. Many of the plants found in the bog are found nowhere else on the Earth. More than 90% of bog acreage along the Gulf Coast have already been destroyed or damaged. They have been drained or filled to make the land available for agriculture, roads, and construction.

The bog is located on County Road 17, one quarter mile north of U.S. Highway 98.

Monday, March 28, 2011

I am watching the osprey nest in Marler Park on Okaloosa Island with much anticipation. It is obvious they are feeding the babies but the babies can't be seen. The nest has to be deep to keep the little ones from blowing out on a windy day. Mom and Dad take turns fishing and watching the nest. There is always one of them close by. The nest has drawn lots of interest from photographers and birders along the Emerald Coast.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

When introduced to Grayton Beach Affair, I was first intrigued by the physical and historical setting.
Author James Harvey is a Seaside resident. In his debut offering he focuses on the Florida Gulf Coast in the 1940s weaving a tale of history and romance in the shadow of World War II.
The heroine, Maggie Neal, retreats to Grayton Beach to recover from the loss of her fiance, who was killed in the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Christian Wolfe, American educated and German born had returned to Germany disenchanted with his American experience. Back in Germany he is forced into a mission that takes him back to America and the Florida Gulf Coast. During the mission, Christian meets Maggie, and a passionate and unlikely love story is born. Those feelings haunt them both as they go their separate ways and attempt to make their way in a world at war.
After the war, Christian is determined to find Maggie. Grayton Beach Affair is a great combination of love story and intrigue. The historical setting adds drama and urgency to the story. Check this book out. I think you will be glad you did.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

A beautiful evening sky and a beautiful couple at the start of a new beginning. The Destin and Emerald Coast areas are major destinations for beach weddings. Couples are attracted from all over the country to the sugar white sand and amenities of the Emerald Coast.

Ceremonies range from very intimate (less that 6 attending) to large groups of several hundred. If you can picture yourself in this setting, I would love to work with you on your special occasion.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I have been watching an osprey nest for weeks hoping to catch one of them on the nest. Saturday morning I was lucky enough to catch both on the nest. Ospreys are very impressive birds. You can see their nests of sticks easily, since they build in open spaces on docks, telephone poles, dead trees, etc. I was once told they do this because they are a little clumsy and need a clear space for taking off and landing. That's hard to believe after watching them fish.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Picture the beautiful Gulf of Mexico, the incredible beaches of Destin and South Walton. Picture yourself or your family enjoying the Emerald Green water and the white sugar sands. Now, go one step further and picture a beautiful digital painting of that experience. Coastal Reflections specializes in such renderings. Contact me to learn more or to schedule a beach portrait for you or your family.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

I am pleased to offer a different type of beach portrait. These portraits are enhanced using Corel Painter. A hand painted portrait will cost thousands of dollars, but these can be done at a very reasonable cost. There is no better setting than the Emerald Coast of Florida. If you have been wanting something really special I urge you to consider this.