Photography by Steve O'Donnell » Clermont and Orlando award winning professional wedding, portrait, senior and family photographer serving central FL

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Category Archives: High School Seniors

When mother and friend Melissa asked me to shoot a family session featuring her and her youngest son Jayden I was excited.  When she requested that her session be in an urban location because it fit more their style and personalities I was beyond psyched.  Don’t get me wrong….I love the look of golden hour sunsets in landscape of weeds and glowing trees…but you get dirty, you get eaten alive by insects…and then you contend with snakes, fire ants, tics, etc.  What I also loved is their sense of style and careful thought they put into their session and wardrobe.  This is one session you won’t want to miss, trust me! View full post »

Every once in a while you just need to go out and shoot for the fun of it, for practice, for the love of it.  The following was one of those days.  A friend of mine asked me if I’d like to plainly just “get out and shoot for the fun of it”, and that is exactly what we did.  He had some new flash gear he wanted to try out, and I wanted to experiment with some flash photography.  So, with the help of my step daughter and one of her friends as our subjects we set out in a local field that I’ve been dying to shoot in to have some fun.  Below are a few of my shots from that session.








If the lovely young lady in the following images looks familiar it’s because I shot her high school senior pictures earlier this year.  Brooke contacted me for another photo session.  Why?  Just because!  She plainly “just wanted to have another photo shoot and have some new pictures”.  Not a bad idea if you ask me!  Aside from the fact I like working with Brooke, after all she’s a natural in-front of the camera, I also just received my new camera and lens (Canon 6D with the 24-105 f/4L)and was eager to run it through the paces of a real shoot to see how it would perform.  As you can tell, I like to have fun while shooting and we had a great time with a few good laughs.  Though we could probably chalk this session up as another Clermont high school senior photo session,  sometimes it’s just fun to go out and get some great images……”just because”!  Below are some of my favorite shots from Brooks session.  Enjoy.

Megan is my first High School Senior for the 2012-2013 school year.  Once again, I suggested a very early 7:30am start time for our session.  I know….I know……seems like I always make the seniors get out of bed early for their photo sessions, but as much as I love shooting natural light in the golden hour when the sun is starting to set, I equally love shooting early when the sun begins to rise.  Our location was Disney’s boardwalk hotel which can get fairly busy with the hustle and bustle of hotel guests during the evening hours.  Megan’s session went so well that we pretty much had nailed a fair number of great images in just a little over the first hour of her session, so it afforded us the opportunity to experiment and take our time walking around looking for the not so obvious locations for shooting.  For the very last image I decided to try a “Brenizer method” shot of Megan.  I had only tried this type of shot once before and it came out “OK”, just OK.  I had a hunch that this was the perfect setting and location to try it again.  Her last shot consisted of 37 images stitched together to form a large panorama image with Megan smack dab in the middle of a unique environment.  The computer just doesnt’ do the image justice.  I actually had the image printed as a metallic print in 12″X36″ format and let me tell you, it’s just stunning when you’re standing in front of it.  Here are a few of my favorites from her session.

P.S.  Mega thanks to Megan for her quick reflexes and saving my speedlite from smashing into pieces by catching it as it was falling to the ground.  You go gurl!

I was asked to shoot Brittany’s Senior Portraits last weekend and I opted for another early AM start time, this time it was 7:00 am.  Yeah, I know it was asking a bit much to be on location at 7:00 am, but it was soooo worth it.  The temperature was a bit chilly at that time, and the clients were running a few minutes behind ( hey, I asked a teen to be up early on a Saturday ya know ) but through a series of text messages Brittany wanted to know if there was a coffee shop near our shoot location where she could get a hot chocolate.  I informed her that I was 2 minutes from hitting the local Starbucks drive-thru on my way and to give me the order.  Well, despite the chilly temps, that hot chocolate quickly changed to a Frappuccino…..hugh?  So, once on location we took our time, chatted about some expectations surrounding the shoot, and sipped on our cafe mocha and frappaccino.  Frappaccino on a chilly morning….she was freezing so I offered up my fleece zip up jacket.  The holiday season sort of messed up my shoot location….where there was a nice town square water fountain now lived a big ol decked out Christmas tree and everywhere you looked there was red bows and wreaths hanging from every street lamp.  There was a band performance stage set up on my favorite corner and a big old ugly white power generator against my favorite brick wall.   Tried a different location about a mile down the road that was perfect.  Plenty of open space, well manicured lawns, and dog pooh!

Yep, that’s right… pooh!  Ninja dog pooh!  The kind that somehow blended in quite well.  At one point, Brittany is laying down on the ground perfectly posed and I’m also laying down on the ground about 5 feet away when I smell it, and it smelled so bad that instead of taking the shot I lowered the camera and started scanning the surrounding grass.  “All right….where is it?”  Then I hear Brittany’s mom say “it’s on your shoe”….awesome!!!  Talk about making your client genuinely giggle at your expense.  Well, thank goodness the shaded grass was still full of morning dew…easy enough to clean off the sole of my shoe.  After that shot I ask Brittany to lay down on her back and at this point we’re really being cautious about our steps.  Somehow….she ended up sitting in a tiny bit….but now we both smelled pretty special.

Enter the life saver.  Baby wipes!  I don’t know what is in those things but they will save your life in so many ways.  Any parent will tell you.  They will take the toughest stains out of upholstery and clothing, take the stickiness off your hands from the sweetest treat, and dog pooh off your jeans and sneakers, yet they are 100% safe on a baby’s bottom!  There is a box of them in my car….always….and once again they save the day!

The rest of the shoot was awesome.  Brittany rocked the shoot and was so much fun to work with and willing to try any pose….and at the very end of it all we took a few celebratory playful shots of her kicking in the somewhat cold waters of a local lake.