Thursday, February 17, 2011

New Website

I can't believe how long it's been since my last post. WOW time does fly by. I was redoing my website and got so caught up in it I hadn't had the chance to post anything here. Well here it is. A post to let you know that I will be back on a regular basis in a week or so. New website, same domain name, different content.......Enjoy.....

Thursday, January 27, 2011

It's been a week.....

Lunch Time in Canada

I took this photo during a visit to Niagara Falls in 2008. I ventured out and found the Niagara Parks Butterfly Conservatory.  It was so beautiful.  Only one thing got in the way of me continuing, my 18 month old :)  Glad I was able to get this shot. Any comments would be welcomed.

I can't believe it's been over a week since my last post.  That can only mean good things are happening in my life. Phones are ringing steadily with inquiries and bookings. I will be out most of this upcoming weekend shooting regardless of the weather. My brain is telling me GO OUT AND SHOOT.....
I expect to go into the Metro Parks to see if I can capture some pretty scenes.  Not much fresh snow.  What's on the ground has been there for a while now.  I am going to look specifically for abandoned buildings, barns and lighthouses. 

The photo below was taken by a friend of mine. It really is a beautiful photo.  Look at how the Dragonfly is actually turning his head to see what's going on. Great shot Tom.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Sad Day in Miami

I would like to offer my condolences to the families of the two fallen Miami Police Officers who lost their lives today January 20, 2011 And to the Miami Dade Police Department.
May God have mercy on your souls.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Great Videos, Magazines, and Books !!

I would like to share my thoughts on the many books and magazines I have purchased and read about Photography, Photoshop and Lighting. One of my very first wasn't a book or magazine at all,  it was  a video my wife bought me called "Through the Eyes of a Pro" Vol 2 Advanced Techniques for Canon DSLR Photographers featuring Tim Mantoani (amazing photographer) put out by Blue Crane Digital. It was AWESOME.....Unbelievable information for the photographer who wants to learn. Chapter by chapter is filled with so much information you'll want to watch it over and over again (which I have). The following link to Blue Crane Digital is a great source of information for the serious photographer.

Another video I watched was "Quality of Light" Indoor Lighting Techniques by James Schmelzer. I was able to learn some things I had not known or had not tried up to that point.
   Some of the many magazines I have read mostly pertain to Photoshop. I am infatuated with that program. Camera RAW is awesome.
By far my favorite author (and photographer) is Scott Kelby's 3 series softcover books entitled The Digital Photography Book Volumes 1, 2 and 3. It is step by step (Kelby secrets) on how to make your photos look like the pros. Scott Kelby's sense of humor is out of this world funny. You feel as though you know him personally as you read, learn and laugh. I strongly recommend these books.  $24.99 at Barnes & Nobel 

This link is to his Photoshop Insider Blog

One more thing I'd like to add. Every photographer must own the B&H Catalog. It's like the holy grail of photography equipment books.

Wishing you all a wonderful day.
Photo by Joe Grimando

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Looking to the Future !!!

It's 40º out this morning. That's a big jump from the 11º and 12º days we've been waking up to. Nice to catch a break every now and then.  
    I'm happy to say that I have some big jobs coming up.  I am shooting a series of products for a company in Brook Park, Ohio in the coming weeks. It should be a 12 hour day and I can't wait.   I am then shooting ( waiting for the signed contract to arrive in the mail ) a corporate awards dinner in Elyria, Ohio for a major corporation.  In March I may be heading to NYC for a weekend shoot in and around town. Will probably spend most of that time in Manhattan.  I may sneak away to the mountains of Upstate NY. I have several weddings schedule in the coming months as well.  One of them may be in Long Island, NY..Have to figure out some details and see if it will happen.  In the meantime I am sitting on pins and needles for the April trip to Hocking Hills, Ohio for a shoot called 
"Shoot The Hills".  
   I have met some very nice people from the Photography Club I have joined.  I'm glad I took the time to answer an email that was sent my way.   It's with some of these people I am attending the weekend shoot in April.  
Thanks guys..

My boys at a recent outing.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Shoot The Hills Photo Contest

Hello.  I would like to say a few things about the upcoming "Shoot The Hills" weekend in Hocking Hills, Ohio. It is a 24 hour event of all sorts of competitions where hundreds of photographers from all over converge on this beautiful little town to get the best photo imaginable. This year marks the 10th year this event is taking place. It will be my first time shooting in a 24 hour competition. The categories are Abstract, Flora, Human Interest, Landscape and Wildlife.  The contest is spread out over four Counties in and around Hocking Hills. They are Hocking, Athens, Fairfield, and Vinton. This event is in April and I can't wait. Please check back to see the results and to see all the beautiful photos. Thank you and remember, don't go out without your camera. The following link is last years winners in each category.

"The Devil's Punchbowl" Courtesy of Joe Braun Photography

Thursday, January 13, 2011

What "DAYZ" is it?

Been kind of a crazy day. Between the snow, the cold and the local drivers I'm about to scream.  My sons school does not plow their parking lot, sidewalk or entrance to his classroom. Try going from car to building with 2 little ones without either of them getting their pants and shoes soaking wet. The school has to be located in the windiest part of town. Granted, it's literally on Lake Erie. That wind is crazy.  

Lake Erie. Avon Lake, Ohio
 On top of that the drivers here in NE Ohio (and I've said this before a thousand times) are worse than New Jersey drivers (remember I'm a New Yorker). Bottom line? They don't  signal any lane changes, turns or otherwise.  They will however come to a full stop at a 4 way stop when there is no one else in the intersection.  Don't you know I am always the person behind the solo car that makes the complete stop, the 3 second stop. 

Been kind of frustrated today because I am waiting for answers to three questions I asked three different people.  None of them have gotten back to me. That too drives me crazy. "I'll call you right back Joe"  Two days later I hear from them.  Must be something in the air today that's affecting me.  I know exactly what will help my mood. 
Photoshop. ;)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Adobe Photoshop & Elements

Good morning. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow...Another beautiful wintry day here in NE Ohio. 
Erie Shores Photography Club 

Photography Club I Belong To.
This morning I'd like to share some of my thoughts about Photoshop in CS4 and Elements. I LOVE THEM. OK those are my thoughts. No seriously though, these two programs are ingenious but learning them is another story. Elements is by far the easier of the two.  I'll refer to Photoshop as PS.  PS is so intriguing, so much to learn. I am certain in my lifetime I will not master PS.  I am not a beginner and know a lot more than just the basics.   In the past 8 months I have surpassed 20 books and magazines about PS.  I am simply amazed by the number of things one can do in PS.  On this computer  I have over 90,000 photos, most of which are of my children and family.  I am always opening up a photo to see what corrections or tricks I can apply to it.  Learning photo editing is not as easy as one thinks when it comes to tack sharp photography.  I can sit for hours trying to make my photos 100% perfect.  Take this photo for example.  It's simple.  It's sharp and it's large. So why am I not happy with it?  Why do I always feel an edit is required?  I suppose that's just me. I thrive for perfection for each of my clients.
 Elements on the other hand is simplified in such a way you actually feel like you've accomplished something at the end of the day.  
The DO IT FOR ME  section of Elements I especially like.  The moment I hit that apply button a huge smile appears on my face. Do I leave well enough alone? Of course not. I keep at it.  
The examples below are edited using Elements. No tripod was used. 

# 1 Original
# 2 Touched Up Using Levels
# 3 Cropped & Sharpened

 As you will see there really isn't anything terrible with # 1 it's just flat and lacks contrast and there's not much composition to it. In photo # 2 I added some color correction and sharpness but left it uncropped.
Photo 3 is the finished product. The emphasis is on the mountains and not so much the lake. 
Keep in mind I have only been using PS & Elements for about a year. 
Have a great day everyone.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Breathtaking Scenery !!

Yellowstone National Park Waterfall
Having spent 8 glorious days in the park with family I was able to get out and shoot these photos. It's tough being on a trip with lots of kids because your attention is on them more so than the photography. Hope you like.

A Highly Recommended Book For Parents !!

Friends of mine from my Church recently published  a book 

"Parenting From "The Heights"
Take the High Road...Get Results

Anne Wiggins & Linda Williams

I highly recommend this book if..
A) You have young children
B) Have children that disobey you
C) You have children
D) Have children that disobey you

Get the drift? 

The book is written in 3 sections.

Section One: The Foundation

Section Two: The Tools

Section Three: The Heart

Here is the link tho their web site

Linda & Anne were kind enough to quote me on the back cover of the book.
"As a 50 yr-old man having young children, I thought I knew it all. I didn't. This book gave me hope and direction"
Joe Grimando, Cleveland, Ohio

My boys as I have mentioned in previous posts are 2 1/2 & 4 1/2 years old. 
Life is good these days.
Thanks guys.

A River Runs Through It !!

Yellowstone River

One of many breathtaking views Yellowstone has to offer.  Every time you think you've seen something awesome, another something awesome comes along. I can't wait to go back.
My 2011 trip is taking me to The Grand Canyon. I wonder what awaits me.
Statue of Liberty

Being raised in NYC and living there for 43 years has it's perks. So why did it take a visit to see my family from Ohio to finally get a picture of her? Notice how dwarfed the people are in comparison to her. 
She's beautiful.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Fall Photo's

These photos are taken in the Cleveland Metroparks. There are thousands and thousands of acres of beautiful rivers, lakes, rocks, waterfalls, streams, horse trails, boats, bikers, runners and simply put, people. I enjoy spending the day just walking and shooting. 

This photo on the right was taken in the Rocky River Reservation Southern Section of the 
Cleveland  Metroparks in Olmsted Falls, Ohio

This photo to the left was also taken in the Rocky River Reservation. Many wedding parties are photographed here. 

This photo to the right is one of my favorites. Choosing the right composition is tricky for this type of shot.

The photo on the left is part of the R.R.R.S.S also. It's a bit of a hike off the main path but worth the time to get these shots.

This shot on the right is by far my favorite that day.
The path goes underneath a beautiful covered bridge. 
It just puts you in another dimension when you're walking this path.  

Some simple B&W of a very old outhouse. Walked in and WOW!!!

Same outhouse different view. WOW !!!!

No more diapers, YEAH!!!!!

My 2 1/2 year old is just about out of diapers. Though my wife did most of the running and cleaning I am finding that he was much easier to potty train than his brother was. Guess it's nice having a big brother. He is so good in fact he wakes up in the middle of the night crying for mommy or daddy that he has to go potty. Aww....
Congratulations Christopher on a job well done. 
You're a big boy now.

A Day In The Park !!

I took this shot in a local Metro Park last Fall. The Cleveland Metroparks System is a great way of getting those special Spring and Fall shots. I haven't been out in the Winter yet but I'm told with a fresh snow fall it is surreal. I welcome any comment you may have. Have a nice day.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

A Sad Day in Arizon

What happened in Arizona yesterday is a travesty. How one person can inflict so much pain on so many people in a matter of seconds is beyond me. I'd like to offer my deepest condolences to the families and friends of the six innocent people who lost their lives and to the 23 others who were injured (some critically) and to their families and friends.  Arizona's Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (Democrat) lies in critical condition having done so much for her community and State. May the good Lord have mercy on your soul(s)..

I Love My Camera

I remember using my point and shoot. I thought I was all that. I found it fascinating how you could do so many different things with a camera. My beautiful wife knew how much I loved photography and for my 50 birthday surprised me with a Canon Rebel XTi which I still shoot with. I love the results, I love the memories it creates and most of all I love the fact that I am now a professional photographer.  Thank you honey for all you do for me honey.
My Wife Kelly
I have 4 lenses. The kit lens that came with the camera. Canon EF-S 18-55mm F-5 I like it. Use it a lot in the house. The Canon Zoom 75-300 mm F 5.6.  I used to love it for outdoor work. Don't take it out of my bag much. I have since invested in the Canon  L series (Red Stripe) EF 70-200mm F 4 USM  Zoom Lens which has become my dream maker. I also invested in the Canon Lens EF 50mm 1.8 prime lens which is superb in low light situations. Business is better than I would have ever imagined it would be at this stage of the game. I have worked very hard at getting it to where it is today and I will continue to work as hard as I can and do whatever it takes to make this dream become real. Thanks and have a nice day everyone.  
The Mississippi River

Saturday, January 8, 2011

I just want to........

Remember when you were a kid and that big Little League game was a week away? During breakfast,  all you could do was think of  how you were going to make that spectacular play. Perhaps strike out the last batter with the tying run on 3rd base, or hit the game winning home run.  Maybe it was that special toy you wished Santa would bring and you waited and waited for it. Those were special days for kids. The anticipation of wanting to do something or wanting something.

      That's how I feel as a photographer who is a full time stay at home dad.  All I want to do is go shoot pictures. My mind is always thinking of what to shoot. Always reading books on how to learn more about photography.  The pictures I have been posting are pictures I have taken some time ago (with the exception perhaps of my boys).  My family and I are driving cross country this Spring.  One of our stops in The Grand Canyon. I am like that little boy who can't wait.

Besides being a stay at home dad,  I also live in NE Ohio. Our winters are long, gray and cold. Not much to shoot during those cold months in NE Ohio.  Come April it's outside everyday. My boys are at that age that doesn't allow for nice strolls through the parks anymore. Those were great times having both of them in their stroller and walking for hours in our Metro Parks.  My sons frequently ask me, "daddy, can you take my pictures?" (I have a studio set up in the house).  They are good models but they love to move while I hit that shutter button.

   I received a phone call from a friend just before the Holiday's asking if I could take product shots for him.  He is putting together a new web site and needs all his products posted on it.  I went to meet him this week to see what is involved and it's a big job.  I am looking forward to getting that done for him. That will expand my portfolio and give me the exposure and experience needed to further my career (especially with regard to product photography).  See you guys soon. Thanks for visiting my blog.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Yellowstone River 2007

If  I recall correctly I believe this shot of the Yellowstone River was shot while viewing the Upper Falls. I remember it being a cloudy overcast day. We were several hundred feet above this river.

Montana Mountains

While visiting Yellowstone National Park we stayed in Big Sky, Montana. This is the road that took us to our cabin. It was quite the view. I highly recommend a trip out west to anyone who has never gone.

Yellowstone National Park 2007 !!

This shot was at Yellowstone National Park's West Gate Entrance. Just as the "Loop" started we came upon this while viewing a water fall just on the other side. We didn't know where to look first. I'll be going back one day to get spectacular pictures.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Wet Summers Day !

This shot was taken in the Pocono Mountains in PA on a rainy day in June 2009. If you look close enough you'll see the rain drops falling just to the left of the light post. It's such a peaceful picture. Would you agree?

18th Hole !!

While golfing in a neighboring town I came across this beautiful scene. That's correct, I don't go anywhere without my camera. Was overcast but worth every minute of it.

Yellowstone National Park 2007 !!

1st Place Photo ESPC Competition Nature January 2011
This was the very first animal I came across while in Yellowstone. I was so excited to see him. There were all sorts of vehicles just pulled off to the side of the road and everyone was out of them taking pictures. Little did I know what a beautiful week I was in for. If I remember correctly this was a long horned Elk.

He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother !!!!!

My boys enjoying a nice day in their backyard. .

My Son !!

This shot was taken in my backyard this past fall 2010. This is my older son. He loves being photographed. Plenty more where this came from.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Smokey Mountains 2009

This is a simple shot of a waterfall.  While driving through the Smokey Mountains with my family we stopped so that I could take some scenic photos and liked what I saw. This is the result.
Thank for viewing my photo.

Yellowstone River 2007

I took this photo while at Yellowstone National Park in 2007.  I was a good 200 to 300 feet above this shot. I softened it up a bit. It's a nice warm shot of the landscape and of the rushing water. I wouldn't mind some feedback.

Koala Sweetheart !!

I came across this beautiful Koala Bear while visiting the Cleveland Zoo. It was late in the day as the sun was setting. I especially enjoy photographing animals. They are innocent, smart and most of all, beautiful. Would you agree?

Grass Critter !!

This photo was taken one day during the summer of 2007 as I was mowing my lawn. I noticed this little critter at the very last possible second before his life was ended by the blade of the mower. I ran into my house to get my camera. When I returned and got close up to take the picture he started getting into the fighting position. This was the result. What do you think?

Monday, January 3, 2011

About this Blog!

Hello, and welcome to my new blog!

My name is Joe Grimando. I am currently a photographer from Avon, Ohio. I was raised in Forest Hills in Queens, NY. In 2005 I moved to Ohio to raise a family in a small Midwest town.  My dream for many years has been to open up a portrait studio. That dream has started to come to fruition. 

The images that I post on this blog, are ones which I have taken while out with my children, shooting a wedding, shooting a landscape, etc. My passion for quite some time has been photography, and still remains true to this very day.  Please check out the images which I have posted on this blog.  I would love to hear any of your thoughts, feelings, or feedback regarding the photos.  If you want to learn more about me and my current photography business, please visit me on the web  at

Thank you again, and I look forward to reading your comments throughout this blog.  -Joe Grimando-