Monday, December 3, 2007

ISSA at Blue Rock

I'm a little late in posting but a couple of weeks ago I had another shoot at Blue Rock studios here in Wimberley, TX. This time the artist was ISSA (formerly Jane Sieberry) and it was another great show. The following is the write up on ISSA by Billy Crockett. To see the video of the performance visit

Issa (say “eeee-sah”), the artist formerly known as Jane Siberry, is internationally renowned for her angelic, filmic, and wonderfully compelling music. From her thirteen recordings, Issa has garnered five Juno nominations, gold sales status, and several People’s Choice Awards in her native Canada. Her performances across Europe, Japan, and Australia have been called “heart stopping” and “spellbinding” by the press.

Issa has recorded with Bryan Ferry, K.D. Lang, Indigo Girls, and Peter Gabriel. Her Brian Eno collaboration, When I Was A Boy, brought to life the song, “Calling All Angels,” which appeared in Wim Wender’s film, Until The End Of The World. This song also appeared in the soundtrack for the film, Pay It Forward, and an episode of the series, Six Feet Under.

An ever-changing iconoclast, Issa recently gave up her birth name, her Toronto home, her car, her electric guitar, and just about all of her possessions, including the masters of her recordings as Jane Siberry. (She’s keeping the Manolo shoes and her collection of Miles Davis records, however.) The music she makes is given away for free or a listener-determined fair price.

Issa offers absorbing concerts with music that comes from deep personal spaces. This rare Blue Rock performance will include pianist Tim Ray, bassist Rich Brown, and special guest artist Adrienne Pierce.

For more information on this artist, visit

The next show is with Terri Hendrix and Lloyd Maines

Friday, September 14, 2007

Willy Porter at Blue Rock Studios

If you live in the Austin area you owe it to yourself to make your way to Wimberley TX and visit the Blue Rock Studio. Last night I had the honor of photographing the amazing Willy Porter. The studio is probably Wimberley's best kept secret and is only 5 minutes from my house. I heard of Blue Rock through a friend of mine so I contacted the owners Billy and Dodee Crocket to see if I could photograph the concerts they have at their studio once a month. They gladly accepted my offer but I had no idea what I was about to experience. I arrived fully prepared but not expecting to shoot what I ended up shooting. I was planning on shooting just the show itself but ended up getting to do a private shoot back stage with Willy with my complete lighting rig while getting my own private concert. What an amazing night and an even more amazing guitar player. But things only got better from there. Of course I gave the photos to Willy and his manager contacted me the next week to see about using the photos for his tour poster and advertising campaigns which will be running soon in numerous guitar magazines for Fishman amplifiers. If you haven't heard Willy's music you have to check it out and if you ever have the opportunity to see him live don't miss it. He will blow you away. For more information on Blue Rock Studio and a calendar of events visit their website at Come on by, you won't be disappointed.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

A day with JD Souther

A couple of weeks ago I had the opportunity to hang out with one of the greatest song writers of all time. Cowboys and Indians magazine called to see if I would be interested in shooting the story on JD Souther. I think I said yes before they even finished asking the question. It was a long drive from Austin but I drove up to Amarillo and spent the day hanging out at Palo Duro canyon, JD's old stomping grounds. We met about 6:30 in the morning to take advantage of the morning light but without a cloud in the sky it was a difficult shoot. I got some nice shots but I didn't have "The" shot.
After our morning shoot JD had some things to take care of so I spent the day driving around Amarillo looking for another location but it just wasn't presenting itself. After several hours of scouting I got lost and ended up in an unfamiliar part of town but it was meant to be because there it was, The old 47 Knucklehead. This was going to be the shot. I went in and asked the owners if I could borrow the bike he was of course a little hesitant but when he found out what it was for he was more than happy to let us use it. I called JD and told him what I found but I think he was hoping for something else but when he saw the bike he was hooked on the idea. When he saw the final picture he said it was one of his favorite pictures ever taken of him. Those are the words a photographer likes to hear.
JD is responsible for many of The Eagles top hits and his music has been recorded by numerous other artists including The Dixie Chicks, George Strait, Linda Ronstadt and many others.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Kayaking the Blanco

Cypress tree that washed onto River Rd. during the last big flood

We finally got a break in the rain but I am not complaining. You can see how much rain we have had by the picture above. It takes a lot of water to move a tree that size. It has been a crazy summer. I've never seen July highs in the 80's in Texas.
Me, Jake and Fred. If there is water we'll find it.

After a 3 year drought we finally got some relief. The lakes are back to normal and the Blanco river is full so we can kayak again. I bought my kayak about 2 years ago and have hardly been able to use it but have been making up for lost time lately. I was introduced to a run on the Blanco by a friend of mine and I can get out right at my parents house (makes it easy). We went last week, about a five hour trip and was completely different run than the week before. It's amazing how much the river changes. Makes it difficult to learn the rapids but you never get bored with the run.

If this ain't livin' then count me out.

I am heading to Amarillo on Thursday to photograph JD Souther for Cowboys and Indians magazine but will be back in time for another run on Sunday.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Joe Vitale's Zero Limits book release

Dr. Joe Vitale and Dr. Hew Len

A few months ago Joe Vitale called me to see if I would photograph his Ho'oponopono workshop with Dr. Hew Len in Austin, TX, not knowing that one of my photos would end up being the author photo for his newest book Zero Limits. After the event I made a print and had it framed as a gift for Joe. He was so impressed by the photo that he immediately said this has to be in the book. Well, the day has finally come. Saturday afternoon here in Wimberley, TX Joe had a book signing and by the size of the crowd it looks like Joe has another #1 bestseller on his hands and I am proud to be a part of it.

Me and Joe

The day also had a few hidden gems. This is eight year old Landon, one of Joe's fans. He has set his sights on earning a million dollars though his web site, kind of a bet with his mom that he could make a million selling farts. So far he has earned $500 but I have a feeling that number will start rising really fast. This kid is a true inspiration. Does anyone remember what they were doing when they were 8. It sure wasn't trying to build a business on the internet to make my first million. I was happy with $20 mowing lawns. To see Pat Obryan's interview with Landon go to

Friday, July 27, 2007

Fallen Angels

My latest shoot for Marrika was a huge success. I worked with Samantha again who is always awesome and she introduced me to Bobbie who was equally amazing to work with. I couldn't be happier with the shots we got. All of my work for Marrika has always been on location mainly because I don't have a studio but when you spend a small fortune on studio lights you kind of want to use them. The idea for this shot required a lot of space in order to set up the lights the way I wanted so I borrowed a friend of mines living room that was about 20X30 with 16' ceilings. It worked out perfect I was able to set up my profoto 2400 pack with my new 5' octabank softbox, 2 1x4 strip softbox and my new grids. We had a 6 hour shoot with about 12 wardrobe changes and the day just flew by.

I am heading out Sunday to Amarillo to do a shoot with JD Souther for Cowboys and Indians magazine then making my way west for several shoots and of course catch a few waves. More on that later.

Pura Vida!

Friday, July 6, 2007

Pura Vida!

I just returned from the greatest trip of my life, or maybe the second greatest. It doesn't really matter because both times were in Costa Rica. It was such an amazing time that I am heading back in Oct. to look into buying something. There is no better place to get away. Amazing people, amazing food and amazing waves. We were 40 miles from the nearest paved road, no phone, no tv. Internet if you needed it. It doesn't get any better than that. I have never been more relaxed. Our typical day usually started around 5:30 when the howler monkeys decided we had slept long enough. After our morning session we would head to town for Gallo Pinto, scrambled eggs and fried plantains then head to the house and relax in the pool with and ice cold Imperial before we would head to the beach for another round of waves. Surf, eat, drink beer, sleep, repeat. My main intention while I was there was my photography but on arrival my plans quickly changed. I was too relaxed and having too much fun surfing I just didn't feel like lugging the camera around. In fact, I think I shot more with my small point and shoot. I bought a underwater housing for it so I was able to take it out surfing and get some great video footage. I'm working on a movie right now using imovie (my latest fascination) which will be available on Youtube real soon.
Pictured are Norman Talbot, Steve Brown, Jake Bradley, Me, Fred Ballard, Cornelius Morley, Dan Carmody, Scott Grusky and Ron Alcalay. Thanks guys! Can't wait to do it again. We have to keep the legend of Jake alive.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Finally seeing the light.

OK, I know it's been a while since I last checked in. It's been rediculously busy with everything going on. I had my first shoot with Cowboys and Indians magazine since my last update. I also had a fashion shoot at Brocante here in Wimberley, took a vacation from the country and headed to Big D for the weekend, designed a new ad campaign for Marriak Nakk designs from our last photo shoot and helped my bud Pat Obryan shoot one of his new instructional videos on internet marketing but more on all that later. First I have to tell you about my new toy.

As a photographer you can never have enough glass in your bag. I'm constantly hanging out at Precision camera looking for my next purchase. Of course I've never walked out of there without something in my hand. It's been a while since I bought a new lens, I don't care for flash photography and it's not always convenient to set up my lights so I went with the 50mm 1.4. What an awesome lens! You can practically see in the dark with it. And of course it's Nikon as if you couldn't tell from the pic. I will be posting some new pics with it soon. Lots more to talk about but I will tell more later. "Keep in Focus!"

Friday, April 27, 2007

Only in Austin

After living in an area for so long you really start to take it for granted. Even living on a beautiful island you would eventually lose the appreciation you had when you first visited. Well that is what this photo did for me in Austin. Driving down South Lamar the other day I noticed a flock of pink flamingos that had taken roost on this beautiful art guitar. It reminded me of what a cool town Austin is and made me see this place with fresh eyes. So, my new photo assignments is to start roaming the city and photographing the things I would have noticed when I first moved here, starting with this one. Of course I will still be traveling to get the great shots too. Starting with Costa Rica in June. I've also got my first shoot with Cowboys and Indians magazine tomorrow. It is for their new architectural spread. I am shooting a home on Lake Travis. I haven't seen the place yet but apparently it is an amazing home. I can't wait.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Learning my lesson the hard (expensive) way

I was contacted recently by a lady here in town to shoot a portrait of her daughter which I gladly accepted. I had a new sofa (actually an old crappy one) that I bought at a junk sale and had been wanting to use. The color of her dress was perfect with the sofa. So......I arrived early to set up my lights and turned on my car radio to keep me company. Obviously when Ally arrived I left it on because it's always good to have a little music on set. Not realizing we had been shooting for 2 hours (time flys when your having fun) I killed my battery. Of course we jumped it and it started but it was dead again the next morning. Time for a new battery. Our last shot Ally wanted to do with her car. She probably would have been happy with just a simple natural light set up but I wanted her to be happy so I did an elaborate light set up in the garage to get the perfect shot. While setting up I had the cable stretched a little to far on my cheap crappy light stands and you know what happened next. Yes it fell and it didn't come back on. Time to hit Precision camera to replace the bulb and of course buy a better stand like I should have done in the first place in stead of trying to cut corners. After it was all said and done.

New car battery $132
New stobe $369
New modeling light $ 39
New light stand $189
Old crappy sofa $150

Happy client with great photos: PRICELESS

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Amazing compliments

Another incredible week. As I mentioned in my last blog I had a photo shoot with author and star of "The Secret" Joe Vitale. Joe has not only fallen in love with the photos I did for him but he has posted them in his blog 3 times this past week. Not only that but he gave an incredible compliment, " Rodney is a genius at turning an ordinary moment everyone else takes for granted into a masterpiece of symbol and power". Talk about making someone proud of what they are doing. Check it out at I also got more great news today. I will be shooting for Cowboys and Indians magazine. My first shoot will be an interior shoot of a home on Lake Travis in Austin. We are also talking about doing a fashion shoot with Patricia Vonne in the near future. I can't wait. I have shot with Patricia before and she is amazing to work with. Very professional and lots of fun. I will keep you posted on developments. Thanks for reading!

Monday, April 2, 2007

Photo shoot with Joe Vitale

Another great photo shoot. I had the honor of photographing #1 best selling author and good friend Dr. Joe Vitale. I have been wanting to do a shoot with Joe for some time now but the opportunity never presented itself because of Joe's busy schedule, until today. Of course I had been racking my brain for days trying to come up with something and it just wasn't coming to me. So, I finally just quit worrying about it and decided to let it come to me when I got there. I arrived at Joe's today about 3:00. He showed me around the house and we talked for awhile just catching up and of course the conversation led to his beautiful car Francine. I thought about shooting him with Francine but it had been done before and I wanted to do something different. But of course when I mentioned it to Joe his eyes lit up and decided it must be done. And am I ever glad that we did. I am so excited about how this photo came out as is Joe. Check out Joe's blog at to see the kind words he wrote about the shoot. Be sure to also check out his new book Zero Limits due out this June. I shot the author photo for it.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Vegas Baby!

I have actually been back in Texas for about a week now but it took me that long to recover from my 2 week road trip to Phoenix, LA and Vegas. Vegas was my final stop. Loaded with a car full of Marrika Nakk's clothes, I headed for the desert where I met up with Emily and headed out to Red Rock Nat. Park. What a great location for shooting. There is a narrow window for shooting there though. Too early and your fighting mid day sun and too late you lose your light pretty fast behind the mountains. We got some great shots. It wasn't all shooting though, I was in Vegas afterall. One of my best friends, Fred Ballard and his wife Terry were there too so we met up at the MGM and hung out for the evening. Nothing like $7 beers and $15 Frech toast for breakfast. Now it's time to start editing pictures so I can update my website. I'll keep you posted

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Last day in LA

I had another great shoot with Lauren today at Marrika's house. We had a short day because Lauren had several auditions this afternoon. I seem to do better when I 'm under pressure with time. I think I got some of my best shots today. All these new photos are going to be used on her new website and for her ad in Cowboys and Indians magazine that I will be designing also. Tomorrow I am heading out to Vegas to shoot with my good friend Emily. I probably chose the worst weekend to go though. Spring Break and MArch Madness is going to make it a nightmare getting there from LA. I'll let you know

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Another day in paradise!

I am hanging out today enjoying my day off in Pasadena, CA. This trip has far exceeded my expectations. Upon my arrival I met with Marrika and her assistant Corrina over dinner at the Roosevelt Hotel. Corrina is from El Salvador, where I just returned from a surfing trip so we had a lot to talk about since she hasn't been home in 15 years. Her story was amazing. Marriaka has been a joy to work with. Our first shoot was in her Hollywood home with the lovely Lauren Elaine. Lauren was amazing to work with. She made my job very easy. Things went so well that we are shooting again on Thur. and I am so looking forward to it. I am heading to Marrika's house this afternoon to schedule our next shoot. Sunday I had an 8 hr shoot for an independent film poster. I can't post the pics yet but trust me, It's going to be awesome.

Friday, March 2, 2007

Exciting times

Well, all my hard work is finally about to pay off. I am heading out to LA in the morning to meet with fashion designer Marrika Nakk. I discovered her work by shooting for Brocante, a small boutique here in Wimberley TX. I emailed Marrika to see if she would be interested in letting me photograph for her. She called me back immediately and started sending me clothes and giving me complete creative control of the shoots. Things are really taking off between the two of us so now I am heading to LA to actually meet Marrika and do some shoots there. While in the area I will be shooting with several other models including the beautiful Alike Boggan, #20 on Deal or No Deal. On my way to LA I will be stopping in Phoenix for a shoot and after LA I will be heading to Yosemite and then off to Vegas to shoot with Emily. An amazing friend and model who helped me build my portfolio when I was first starting out in fashion photography. So, I will keep you posted on my travels. Adios for now