Portland Studio Lighting Portrait

I’ll be teaching my annual Studio Lighting course at Pacific NW College of Art, beginning Monday, Oct 5.  This course is a lot of fun.  Here’s the lowdown:

When existing light is not sufficient for proper exposure or desired effect, we turn to artificial lighting. We will cover artificial lighting for portraiture, lifestyle, still life, fill flash, on-location lighting, 2D and 3D copy work. Participants will use professional lighting equipment, professional models and have access to the studio when they are outside of class, to gain confidence in creating powerful images using studio lighting. The techniques learned provide students with the confidence to use an artificial light source in low light or to add emotion and interest to images to further express vision with both digital and traditional equipment.

There’s still time to register, and just a few slots left in the class.  You can sign up here at PNCA’s CE website!

FritzPhoto-Portland Child Model Photographer

FritzPhoto-Location Portrait Editorial Photographer Portland

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FritzPhoto-Resort at the Mountain Wedding Photographer

The Resort at the Mountain, in Welches, Oregon, on Mt Hood, is a beautiful place.  Its 27-hole golf course wends its way through fir trees and around lakes; they have a new spa; tons of beautiful condos and rooms; banquet halls; and much, much more.

This didn’t start out as an advertisement for The Resort, but it’s starting to sound like one.  My point is: it’s a beautiful place for a wedding.  Allison and Jared chose well.  And they did a fabulous job in arranging and decorating their spaces, from the ceremony on the bluff, to the reception in the ballroom.  Beautiful.  Allison’s excellent design sensibilities covered everything, from handmade gift bag tags, to the candy table; from the invitation, to the ceremony program (also a hand fan, and crossword puzzle, complete with attached pencil).

The weather decided to be moody, and we weren’t sure if it would continue to rain or clear up.  It didn’t exactly clear up, but it did stop raining, and I used the moody sky to add some oomph to their portraits.

FritzPhoto-Wedding Photographer Portland Oregon FritzPhoto-Shellaway-329 FritzPhoto-Resort at the Mountain Wedding Photography FritzPhoto-Shellaway-Wedding Photographer Portland Oregon

FritzPhoto-Shellaway-Wedding Dancing Photography FritzPhoto-Shellaway-481

This last little piece of humor is related to their PhotoBooth.  Read about it and see more of the fun at our PhotoBooth post from Allison and Jared’s wedding.

Then contact us when it’s time for your Resort at the Mountain wedding photography!


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When you hear the word “Photobooth,” I’m sure you think of the old vertical box that you squeeze into, draw the curtain, and ham it up for 4 pictures.  You step out, and wait for the strip of 4 little images to roll out of the printer.  And that’s that.

We’ve taken the PhotoBooth to a new level.  Instead of a box, we bring along a little studio setup, 8 feet wide, with a fashion lighting kit.  When we set it up at a wedding or event, and start shooting, it becomes one of the main attractions.  People gather around to watch their friends and family goof around, while we take photo after photo of them.

This past week, Allison and Jared added another level of fun to the PhotoBooth: they brought along a couple of whiteboards, and let their friends and family sketch out notes and drawings on them.  We had more than half the wedding guests crowded around the PhotoBooth area for almost two hours, as they took picture after picture, the next one more creative than the last.  What a hoot.

Allison’s idea of the whiteboards was great.  We’re brainstorming other ideas for even more fun: what if we had a box of costumes for people to dress up in?  Or other props to play with?  Really, the possibilities are as endless as your party-planning imagination.  Give us a call, and we’ll bring the PhotoBooth to your wedding or event!

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  • September 29, 2009 - 12:07 pm

    Linda Shapiro - Fritz — This is such a clever idea! Looks like everyone was having a great time, and no wonder. I could see this idea in many venues besides wedding parties. Your never-ending creativity amazes me!


  • September 29, 2009 - 1:59 pm

    Allison and Jared at The Resort at the Mountain » Fritz Photography - […] piece of humor is related to their PhotoBooth.  Read about it and see more of the fun at our PhotoBooth post from Allison and Jared’s […]


When Danielle came in for a consultation about her wedding photography, and told me she was going to hold her wedding at dusk lit only by candles, I just about leapt out of my seat and begged her to let me photograph it.  It turns out I didn’t have to beg her, because she was already sold on working with me.  But having received negative reactions from other photographers about the candle-lit ceremony idea, she was pretty happy about my enthusiasm.

FritzPhoto-Halbert-Outdoor Oregon Wedding Photographer

I was enthusiastic not only because it sounded beautiful and exotic, but because I knew I could photograph it well.  Having the Canon 5DMkII allows me to shoot in very dim light, handheld if necessary, at ISO6400.  (For those of you who have no idea what that means, you can simply drop your jaw and say, “Wow,” and drool a little bit.)  And that’s just what happened!  It turned out the ceremony was lit by Christmas tree lights strung up in the trees–not candles.  But the challenge was that the bride and groom were stationed off-center from the aisle.  This meant that for me to get a clear shot of them, I had to get down front somehow.  I waited until the cover of prayer–when all eyes were closed–to sneak up front, sitting on the ground with my head one inch from the groom’s mother’s knee.  And there I stayed.  No tripod, just my camera and me, on the ground.

FritzPhoto-Halbert-Portland Oregon Wedding Photographer

I’m not complaining; it turned out great.

FritzPhoto-Halbert-Oregon Bride Photography

Not only was the ceremony beautiful, but Danielle–the graphic designer–put plenty of thought into everything.  Including the choice of her grandparents’ Damascus farm as the site, replete with old trucks and tractors that made excellent portrait props. Very thoughtful of her; it was like a photographer’s playground.

FritzPhoto-Halbert-Portland Bride and Groom

Her thoughtfulness even extended to the wedding date.  What would make someone marry on a Wednesday evening in September?  The date.  It was 09/09/09.  If you think about it, there are only 12 such symmetrical dates per century.  (01/01/01 through 12/12/12.)  Talk about a date that’s easy to remember.  Dan, you’re in the doghouse if you forget!



FritzPhoto-Halbert-Portland Oregon Wedding Photography

You can always view more at our wedding photography website.  At FritzPhoto, we love to tell love elegant stories.

This wedding was featured on WedLoft, in their Featured Photographer section.   Thanks for the writeup, Michelle!

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  • September 21, 2009 - 5:23 pm

    Danielle - Fritz!
    The photographs are more beautiful than I could have ever imagined! I didn’t have internet access the whole time I was in Hawaii and I’ve been dying to see them. Thank you so much and I plan to refer you to everyone I know! The memories you’ve captured are irreplaceable. Thank you so much!
    Can’t wait to see the book!

  • September 21, 2009 - 8:16 pm

    Vicki Hall - You are so talented! I always enjoy your albums you post and the comments are great too! I have 2 daughters, I guess I should start savin’!

  • December 13, 2009 - 11:55 am

    Danielle and Daniel at Dusk | My Portland Photographer - […] more of their unique story on our wedding photography blog, where you can also see a slideshow of their evening […]

FritzPhoto-Gabby-Portland Oregon Senior Portrait Photographer

Gabby is a volleyball player from Vancouver, and you can tell: she’s tall.  And beautiful. (I don’t think either of those things have to do with the fact that she’s from Vancouver.)

With a little attention from our hair and makeup stylist, she was ready for an evening on the Columbia River with me.

After photographing for a couple hours in the magic light before sunset, I remembered a portrait I’d been looking at earlier in the week.  Leonardo DaVinci painted a portrait of a woman with an ermine, with her hair pulled in below her chin.  Not at all trying to replicate the DaVinci painting (although I’d love to…), nonetheless I liked the idea, and had Gabby pull her hair below her chin, and we took a few more portraits in the dying evening light.   It turned out to be my favorite portrait of the evening.


FritzPhoto-Gabby-Portrait Photographer Portland Oregon

As one of the most experienced Portland portrait photographers, I absolutely love senior portraits, and you can see why on my website.

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FritzPhoto-Helena-Portland Senior Portrait Photographer

While working with high school seniors on their senior portraits, I always enjoy talking with them about their lives: how their senior year is going, what hobbies and sports they are into, what they plan to do after graduating. Working with youth is something I’ve always enjoyed (check out my series Welcome to Wonderland if you don’t believe me), and I find building a rapport comes naturally.

I’ve known Helena for several years, from church, and have always enjoyed chatting with her about soccer and travel.  But I was surprised when I got the call to schedule her senior portraits.  “She’s a senior already?” I asked.  Indeed she is, so we scheduled a date to photograph at Cathedral Park.

I arrived at Cathedral Park early, to scout locations.  Walking around in the sunshine, under the graceful St Johns Bridge, amongst the beautiful trees, I thought to myself, “Welcome to my office, my studio.  I am so privileged….”

It was a beautiful day for portraits, and we did beautiful work.  But what I almost enjoyed most was Helena’s enthusiasm.  When I asked her about what she was going to do after graduating, she said, “Oh, I can’t wait!  I’m going to South Africa to work in an orphanage for 6-8 months!  I’m so excited.”

Her enthusiasm is contagious, and I’m excited for her.  We talked about Africa, and orphanages.  I documented the opening of an orphanage in Kenya several years ago, and have numerous friends who have left their lives in America and England to work at the Open Arms Village in Eldoret, Kenya.  So I know about both the hard work and the rewards of serving in such a situation.

Hats off to Helena, and to a bright and rewarding future!


FritzPhoto-Helena-Senior Portraits Portland

FritzPhoto-Helena-Senior Portrait Photographers Portland Oregon

FritzPhoto-Helena-Portrait Photographer Near Portland Oregon

FritzPhoto-Helena-Senior Portraits Portland Oregon

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  • September 18, 2009 - 9:48 am

    Linda Shapiro - Fritz– Lovely work with this young woman and kudos to her for her big heart and commitment to service. I’ve never been to Cathedral Park to shoot, but think I’ll give it a try. Your light is gorgeous in these!

  • September 18, 2009 - 10:45 am

    Helena - Thank you SO much for taking my senior pics! I LOVE them! and everybody who has seen them is AMAZED! They are absolutely amazing!!! and I can’t wait to be able to give them out! I’m trying to get one of my best friends to do a Trash The Dress photo shoot with me! Hopefully it will work out! Once again THANK YOU! 🙂

  • September 19, 2009 - 10:44 am

    Johnpaul - Fritz, Once again the pictures are amazing. I love the stars… You are an inspiration.

  • September 19, 2009 - 1:58 pm

    fritzphoto - Thanks, JohnPaul. If I’m an inspiration, you were the perspiration. I’m glad you could join me for this shoot!


I learned something new on Sunday: The Dalles is the only city in the nation whose name begins with “The”.

I can think of some other things from Sunday that begin with “The”:

FritzPhoto-Novell-Portland Oregon Wedding Photographer

The weather was crazy, and beautiful.  Driving from Portland to The Dalles, we were in pounding rain.  From the wedding site, we could see rain clouds in the distance.  But it didn’t really rain there until everyone was under tents eating dinner.  And about 3 minutes into the wedding ceremony, the sun came out.  It was the most dramatic lighting I have ever photographed at a wedding.

FritzPhoto-Novell-Oregon Wedding Photographer

The bride was beautiful.  Carrie Clark is a musician (you can hear her work at her website), and an awful lot of fun to work with and photograph.  Plus, she had a beautiful dress and hairdo.  And she likes to dance.

FritzPhoto-The Dalles Wedding Photographer

The groom is creative.  Damon took scrap cherry wood from the farm and crafted the arbor, and a long piece of wood with holes in it, into which all the guests placed a flower.  He also directed the setup of the venue right up until things were about to start, and he kept a great sense of humor about him as he did so.

FritzPhoto-Novell-Wedding Photographer Portland Oregon

The wedding venue was large and wonderful.  The family cherry orchard has been in the family for several generations.  Carrie’s great grandfather built the original house there, and it is still a working farm, replete with barns, old tools, tractors, and lots of cherries, and an amazing view of the Columbia River Gorge.



The sisters of the bride and groom were all beautiful, and a lot of fun.


The guests were also a lot of fun at this wedding.  One of them, Alex Perez, is the creator of Spanish Coffee, and delighted guests with his dazzling show creating this famous flaming Portland drink.

FritzPhoto-Novell-Photographer Portland Oregon

The dancing was a hoot.  Not only were Carrie and Damon a lot of fun to watch, but so were their friends.

The fun never stops.  You can view more destination wedding and portrait photography, from The Dalles and beyond, on our website!

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  • September 11, 2009 - 5:21 pm

    Linda Shapiro - Great batch of photos Fritz! You captured not only the dramatic setting and sky but the joy of the wedding/celebration. Lovely work!

  • September 18, 2009 - 11:10 am

    Carrie - Fritz!
    Wow!! What wonderful photos you and Gretchen captured! I’m excited and (happily) overwhelmed at the 600+ images we’ve been slowly going through. It’s amazing and I can’t thank you enough!

  • December 17, 2009 - 7:47 pm

    Carrie - Fritz!
    Our book and cd made it and WOW! It turned out beautifully! My initally looksee brought tears to my eyes. We had such a fabulous day and you photographed it beautifully! Thank you so so so much.

    Wishing you and yours a lovely holiday and a spectacular 2010!


  • May 6, 2010 - 2:08 pm

    My Portland Photographer · A collaborative blog by Portland's finest wedding photographers - […] Damon and Carrie’s wedding story and see for yourself how they lived happily ever […]


One thing I especially enjoy about the digital revolution is the ongoing improvement of products for professional photographers.

I recently took the time to research current offerings for web galleries, and was impressed with some new things.  Each of our wedding and portrait customers is given an exclusive web gallery, protected by a password.   From the gallery, they and their friends and family can view all of their photographs, and can order professional prints and products easily and swiftly.  Their order is produced by our professional lab, and is shipped right to the customer’s door.  Not only is a web photo gallery great for ordering, it also makes it easy to share their wedding or portrait photography with people all over the world.

This past month, I switched our photo hosting service to Zenfolio.  Zenfolio has been around a while, and is nicely refined.  It’s easy for my portrait and wedding photography customers to navigate, it looks good, and it allows me to offer far more products to my customers than my previous host.  Not only can customers order traditional professional prints and canvas prints, but they can also order wall clings, cutouts, novelty products, calendars, T-shirts, and much more, from the convenience of their home computer.  And, they can have their prints custom framed!  Plus, Zenfolio charges less for shipping of small prints, and their turnaround time is excellent.

If you’re a photographer looking for a great photo hosting web gallery service, with professional product fulfillment, check out Zenfolio.  And if you decide to sign up, you can receive a discount using this Zenfolio promo code: RZT-183-HHQ.  This referral code will save you money on their low annual fee.


ProPhoto WordPress Theme Discount Code

Speaking of discount codes and promo codes and coupons, I’ll share another one here.  This past year, I switched my blog from Blogger to WordPress.  After much research, I came upon the ProPhoto Theme for WordPress–it is more than just a theme. It’s really an extensive control panel for creating a customized blog, or a whole website, built on the WordPress foundation. I built this blog on it, and also built a whole new site for my Skeleton in the Closet documentary on eating disorders on it.

If you’re in the market for a ProPhoto photography website/blog theme, they do offer a discount, if you have the promo code.  And the ProPhoto WordPress Theme discount code is FRILIE238.  Use it and save a few dollars!

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FritzPhoto-Carey-First Congregational Church Wedding Photo

Last year I had the privilege of photographing the Johnston family at their daughter Stephanie’s wedding, at Youngberg Hill Vineyard and Inn.  Stephanie has 2 sisters, Kenzie and Megan.  So this summer I was able to photograph the wedding of Kenzie, and next summer, it’ll be Megan’s turn!  Good thing I like their family so much; they’re a lot of fun to work with.  And they have good taste.

Kenzie and Kyle were married at the historic First Congregational Church in downtown Portland on August 22.  Beautiful old sanctuary with lots of stained glass and colorful light.  After the ceremony and portraits, we were led to the downtown Hilton by a bagpiper, for the reception.  The live music for the 3 block walk was a festive touch, and it got passers-by in the mood, as well, as they called out their congratulations.

The Hilton‘s Pavilion Room was turned into a Carnavale, replete with colorful flowers and vodka snow cones.  And a dance floor, which the Johnstons love to put to good use.  Here are a few favorite photographs….

FritzPhoto-Portland Park Blocks Photographer


Kyle’s a really nice guy.  I found it humorous, though, that any time someone kissed him–sometimes even his bride–he grimaced!  Kind of sweet, really.

Portland Wedding Party Photograph FritzPhoto-Carey


This is the bagpiper that played at the wedding.  He walked the bride and father in to the ceremony, played the bride and groom out of the ceremony, played for the guests as they walked from the church to the Hilton, and then played for the family and wedding party as we all walked from the Park Blocks to the Hilton.  Pretty cool.

FritzPhoto-Carey Portland Wedding Humor Photography


Like I said, these people like to dance and have a good time.  And I love to capture these spontaneous moments.  This is a favorite.


Jeff told me that at his wedding, there is a photo of his father like this, turning out his pockets after paying for the wedding.  So we recreated the photo for the Johnstons.  A funny end to a fun day.

These are the wedding stories that make our lives as Portland wedding photographers so much fun!

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FritzPhoto-Family Portraits West Linn

When looking for locations for portraits, I usually look for interesting but well lit spots to work in.  So when I arrived at Mary S Young Park in West Linn, that’s just what we did: my assistant and I scouted the park for beautiful spots that had good lighting.  Unfortunately for us, there were none.  The one big open meadow was full of frolicking dogs, and the other glad was filled with booths for that evenings Art Fair.

So when I met with the Parker family, I was somewhat stumped.  But they suggested we take a walk on one of their favorite paths through the park, and so we did.  It’s a real forest: dim and green.  Not exactly perfect family portrait material.  But within a few hundred feet, I found a great spot for a portrait: a weathered old tree.  I had the girls climb up in the tree (after I searched for spiders and assured them it was all clear), placed the parents below, and it was beautiful.  A few steps down the path, another tree.  And later, a small clearing.  Add in a little light from my assistant’s flash (hidden off in the bushes to the right), and it was golden.  In the same session we photographed family portraits, senior portraits, children’s portraits,  and some professional headshots for Robin.

In the end, I couldn’t have been happier with the location and the light.  The plethora of gnarled trees and green vines made for quite a nice set of portraits, and we were all very pleased.  And that’s what I love about location portrait photography: every outing is a new challenge, and challenges produce interesting results.  Furthermore, it’s a pleasure to create beautiful portraits of people in places that are meaning to them.

FritzPhoto-Senior Portrait Photographer West Linn Oregon

FritzPhoto-Parker-Childrens Portrait Photographer West Linn

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  • September 11, 2009 - 4:06 pm

    Amy - I absolutely love the light in these portraits. Its enchanting, like a fairy tale:)

FritzPhoto-Barranger-Portland Wedding Fashion Photographer

Morning Dove.  Isn’t that a beautiful name?  It’s the name of the bride I photographed this past Monday.  Her sister’s name is Raven.  And her husband’s is Kellen.  An absolutely beautiful summer day at McMenamin’s Edgefield with a fun bunch of people with cool names.

Morning Dove works at the exclusive Multnomah Athletic Club’s Salon.  She and her beautiful coworkers did a gorgeous job of creating one of the most stunning hair and makeup arrangements I’ve seen on a bride.  A 1940’s retro look, complete with short veil, woven vines, and exotic flowers.  Add a lovely off-white dress, and you have quite the fashion.  I was only disappointed that I didn’t have even more time to photograph her and Kellen….

And of course, you can also view other wedding photography, from McMenamins and elsewhere, on our website!

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  • September 11, 2009 - 4:11 pm

    Amy - These shots remind me of old film stills. Very cinematic, and the feeling seems perfect for the bride and groom, quirky but elegant.

  • December 13, 2009 - 12:15 pm

    Morning Dove and Kellen | My Portland Photographer - […] can read and see more about their unique story on our wedding photography blog, and see more of our work on our wedding photography […]

  • December 13, 2009 - 1:30 pm

    Young Ladies at the Wedding | My Portland Photographer - […] can read and see more about their unique story on our wedding photography blog, and see more of our work on our wedding and portrait photography […]

  • April 1, 2010 - 1:33 pm

    Getting Ready | My Portland Photographer - […] the rest of this bride’s wedding story on our wedding photography blog, and see more of our work on our wedding and portrait photography […]

FritzPhoto-Arial-Portland Oregon Senior Portrait Photographer

Ariel enjoyed the senior portraits she viewed on my website so much, that she ditched all the photographers in McMinnville and drove in to Portland to work with me.  I love that.

When we met up at the historic Amtrak Station in Portland, she was with her mom.  I honestly thought they were sisters; Rebecca does not look old enough to be Ariel’s mom.  So we also had some fun photographing portraits of the two of them together.

FritzPhoto-Arial-Senior Portrait Photographer Portland

FritzPhoto-Portland Oregon Senior Portraits Ariel

FritzPhoto-Arial-Headshot Photographer Portland Oregon

FritzPhoto-Arial-Portland Portrait Photographer

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