Not only do pictures help guide a reader through a story, but each one tells a story of its own. Whether it comes from on or off campus, each image should allow the reader to imagine what exist beyond its borders. I hope to capture that every time I press the shutter button.

Now, my Sony Alpha SLT a57 is a staple of my wardrobe. Whether it’s the 18-55mm or 55-300mm lens clicked in place, I’m always prepared to look at the world through the unbiased lens of my camera, adjusting the aperture, shutter speed and ISO on the fly.


SnowBall Express

Each year, American Airlines presents thousands of family members of servicemen and women who were killed in action with the opportunity to travel home for the holidays. Living only a few minutes away from Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, I took my camera to the airport to welcome a few of those flights and listen to remarks by American Airlines CEO Doug Parker, Medal of Honor recipient Gary Littrell and others.

“When I got the opportunity to be here today, there was no way I could say no,” Littrell said at the event, “because, while all give some, some give all. And I’m here with the children of those that gave all.”

Below are some of the families who received the SnowBall Express experience that weekend as they disembarked at DFW and enjoyed the Christmas-themed festivities at the airport’s Terminal A before heading off to wherever their final destination was.

Read the article I wrote about the event in which my photos were published.


A New Era: The Winn Science Center

In January, my school opened a state-of-the-art science center, what many have called our next step toward re-achieving our goal of providing the ideal STEM education. In order to provide students an idea of what to expect when the new facility opened its’ doors, I took a number of photos of the still-under-construction interior and at the building’s opening ceremony for an eight-page special section in the newspaper we used to tell the stories behind the Winn Science Center and the people who conceived it.

Looking up at the still unfinished dome, Headmaster David Dini points out features of the new planetarium. The planetarium features a new projector and redone seating in order to provide a more viewer-friendly environment when the room is full.

Chuckling as he tells a story of a quirky science teacher, Steve Winn ’64 speaks at the opening ceremony of the Winn Science Center Jan. 9. The Winn Family Foundation was the principal donor behind the new building.

(From left) Steve and Melinda Winn, Headmaster David Dini, Student Council President Landon Wood, President of the Board of Trustees Clark Hunt and Science Department Chair Fletcher Carron cut the ribbon to officially open the Winn Science Center to students and teachers.

(From left) Steve and Melinda Winn, Headmaster David Dini, Student Council President Landon Wood, President of the Board of Trustees Clark Hunt and Science Department Chair Fletcher Carron cut the ribbon to officially open the Winn Science Center to students and teachers.

The new science lecture hall in the final phases of construction. This room would serve as a focal point for the building’s academic facilities, increasing the capacity of campus’s second largest room from 135 students to 240.

The new science lecture hall in the final phases of construction. This room would serve as a focal point for the building’s academic facilities, increasing the capacity of campus’s second largest room from 135 students to 240.

Cluttered with construction materials, the still unfinished foyer of the Winn Science Center sits vacant during workers’ lunch break during a busy weekday December 2018. Despite two weeks of rain delays that hampered progress, the building was officially opened on the previously scheduled Jan. 9.


Rivalry Night: Lions vs. Eagles

Generally, when it comes to St. Mark’s sports, I’m either in two places: on the court or in the stands. But when the biggest night of the year for St. Mark’s athletics came around this winter, I got behind the camera to capture the most important rivalry of the year, as the St. Mark’s basketball and soccer teams traveled to the Episcopal School of Dallas for a double-header.

Surveying the court, senior guard Austin Nadalini looks past the Eagles defense, searching for an open man to inbound the ball to as the clock begins to tick toward the end of the third quarter.

After a turnover bringing the ball up the court, the Lions forwards turn to sprint back down the court to provide help on defense.

Junior midfielder Miles Hartley fights off and ESD defender as he prepares to head the ball back across the 50-yard line.

After defeating the Eagles 4-0, the Lions walk up to the screaming student section before singing the Alma Mater to cap off an undefeated night for St. Mark’s athletics. By winning the game, the soccer team clinched the first seed heading into the conference tournament Feb. 15-16.

The crowd gasps as a layup by freshman Noah Shelby drops into the hoop. Shelby, beat two ESD defenders in the paint to get to the rim, was fouled on the play, allowing him to grab three points on the play.

Sophomore forward Harrison Ingram holds the ball as he looks for an open man in front of the basket. Ingram ended the game with a double-double.

After drawing a foul in the paint, junior forward Andrew Laczkowski pumps up the crowd as the game nears its close. The Lions won the game 77-58 to solidify their first place finish in the SPC North Zone after an undefeated run in counter play during which they outscored their opponents by a combined score of 507-354.


American Airlines Boeing 787-9

In September 2017, American Airlines took delivery of a new aircraft type, the Boeing 787-9. A day after it had touched down at DFW to begin preliminary maintenance checks, the airline invited me to tour the new plane. Of course, as one of the first photographers ever to see the aircraft up close, I took my camera along, coming home with hundreds of shots for AirlineGeeks and social media.

To read more about the package in which these photos were used, see the Web page.

Door propped open to let the cool air in, the new aircraft sits on a pad outside American’s maintenance hangars. It had flown in from the factory in Charleston, S.C., the night before by two of the airline’s best pilots, tasked with bringing fresh aircraft in from the manufacturers.

Door propped open to let the cool air in, the new aircraft sits on a pad outside American’s maintenance hangars. It had flown in from the factory in Charleston, S.C., the night before by two of the airline’s best pilots, tasked with bringing fresh aircraft in from the manufacturers.

Basking in the evening sun, the Dreamliner rests in front of the blast fence outside the American Airlines hangars.

The cockpit aboard American Airlines’s first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner.

The business class cabin of the Boeing 787-9 as the safety video plays.

The much-loved “AA Party” mood lighting decorates the cabin. Though the flight attendants almost never flip that switch during regularly scheduled flights, lucky passengers might get the chance if “the flight feels right.”


From the Air

Aviation photography has long been a part of my time with the camera. So when I had the opportunity to go up in a aircraft for a film shoot over San Francisco and got a bird's eye view of Kansas City, I jumped at the opportunity to climb to a new perspective.

The Golden Gate Bridge, seen from an aircraft over San Francisco Bay, shines in the early morning light. As the sun continues to rise, fog is burning off but can still be seen in the background.

One of the photos I took during one of my first flights with the drone. Attempting to gain experience, I worked on framing houses in the neighborhood with the lines of streets, fences, alleys and other features, sticking to some of the key elements of photography, even as I took my camera to the air in the form of a drone.

In another one of my ventures into photography from an aerial perspective, I climbed far up above Eagle County Regional Airport in Colorado and took this photo looking past the runway toward the town and mountains that sit behind it.

In this image taken overlooking Kansas City’s Country Club Plaza, I looked to capture the overall quietness of the nighttime scene, but the intermittent busyness is clear when looking at the light trails and even human silhouettes captured by the long exposure.


AAviationDay

For the past three years, AirlineGeeks.com has played host to the largest gathering of aviation lovers (avgeeks, for short) across the world. Partnering with American Airlines, the website runs tours of AA hubs from London to Los Angeles. In 2017, I served as representative for the DFW Airport tour, and I spent that afternoon shadowing the group taking pictures and interviewing subjects for the follow-up story.

Decked out in a neon high-visibility vest, one of the attendees of the rainy tour snaps a picture of the tail of an American Airlines Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner.

An American MD80 as seen from the company’s ramp tower. MD80s are slowly being phased into retirement, being replaced by newer, more fuel efficient Airbus and Boeing aircraft like the 737 and A320 families.

Another aviation photographer takes a picture of economy class on an American Boeing 777-300ER. The ten-abreast seating is becoming the new norm on airlines everywhere.

American Airlines Boeing 777 First Officer Brad Kelly stands in front of the landing gear of an American 777-200 in DFW’s west hangars. Kelly had flown that particular airframe, fleet number 7BS, multiple times during his multi-year tenure at American.

Rarely is there ever an opportunity to get as close as we were to such large aircraft, so I took advantage, in this case snapping a photo of Qantas’s Airbus A380.


Instagram Aviation Photography

Three years ago, hoping to combine my rudimentary camera knowledge with my passion for journalism and aviation, I created an Instagram account dedicated entirely to aviation photography, now known by the handle @DallasFortWorthSpotter. I’ve spent a countless number of hours creating, editing and posting photographs for that account, which has grown to well over 17,000 followers since 2015.

That Instagram account and the people I met through aviation photography led to AirlineGeeks.com, the website for which I currently serve as a senior writer and photographer. And as I became more involved in the aviation community in the Dallas area — not only as a representative for AirlineGeeks.com, but also for my personal Instagram — I was invited to work with Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and local airlines to attend, photograph and report on events across the metroplex, including many of the events seen above.

To read more about my personal Instagram account, see the Web page. Or visit my account on Instagram.


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