Being different is not easy

Most of my editorial subjects would naturally point out the locations/themes they’ve been photographed in the past. That kind of info is very valuable to me because I will then know what NOT to use. I believe editors come to me because they want something unique, so I make it a point to create something different. There are a lot of blog posts by very successful and prominent photographers about why being different is important. However, different is not always easy/quick/simple, and my session with Matt Thornhill, Founder and President of Boomer Project, is an example of that.

After a quick tour of Matt’s office, which was an old bank with a lot of history by the way, I quickly zero’d into this room because it has not be shoot in before. Specifically, I was really drawn to that spotlight because Matt is a rock-star and the go to guy in his field.

Ok, aside from the spotlight the room is not very exciting.

This is where being different require you do go above and beyond anyone’s expectation, and some time meant getting your hands dirty. I moved all the furniture out of the way, found and move that wooden divider in place to give that space some flare. Then, I aimed a strobe with a red gel through the class door into the back of the divider to give it a bit of personality. (Don’t forget to reset the room after you are done!)

Here’s the final product:

Senior 2011 – Tony Antich

Tony AntichTony will be graduating from Gill Grove Baptist School in Chesterfield, VA shortly.  He is quiet and reserve, but larger than life on a basketball court.  Good looking guy that can really rock a suit.  Congrats and best of luck Tony!

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Modeling and Pageant Press Release


PRLog (Press Release) – Mar 21, 2011 – Photographer Ed Ip of Ed Ip Photography (/ and Makeup Artist, Joy Pfister, of Faces by Joy ( are filling a void in the central Virginia area for Pageantry modeling and headshot photos. The duo have teamed up to provide studio photo sessions for women around the state at an affordable price. Prices included: hair and makeup plus on site styling during the photography session by former Mrs. Virginia, Joy Pfister.
“as a former Mrs. Virginia America 2004 and Mrs. Virginia International 2008, I have had to travel for hours and out of the state often times to reach a really good photographer for my pageant photos. Then I still had to do my own hair and makeup”. Says Joy. “When I met Ed this past winter, I knew we had a winning combo for ladies in Virginia and surrounding states. We have worked hard to set up something really special for our pageantry ladies.”
To learn more about Joy or Ed or to book your session visit their web sites. or

Event | Nordstrom President’s Cup

I received a call from a creative shop from Seattle,WA in February asking whether I’m interested in shooting an event at the Nordstrom in Short Pump Town Center.  Well, umm…YES!

[singlepic id=106 w=320 h=240 float=left]Every year, the 4 top performing Nordstrom stores (1 in each store “size” category) in the country receives the “President’s Cup” — a member of the Nordstrom family will travel to that store to present a giant check and trophy.  For this instance, it was Blake Nordstrom, President of Nordstrom, who came to the store.    All associates of the store were invited to this high energy breakfast presentation, it is a big deal to win this award as one could imagine especially since this is the Short Pump’s 2nd in a row!

I didn’t sleep very well the night before because I kept going over the extensive shot-list provided by the agency in my head.  I am not a morning person but was instantly awake when the marching band arrived at 7:30am.  In a prior meeting, the store administrator gave me a general idea of the “schedule of events” but cautioned that portion of the presentation might vary based on what Mr. Nordstrom and the regional manager might have in mind.  Surely a great source of anxiety for an event photographer.  I found myself being caught out of position a few times and had to scramble to get close to the action — that’s the major reason why I carry two camera bodies each with a different lens (24-70mm & 70-200mm) for events so I can recover gracefully and still get the images my client is looking for.

I was very impressed with the company based what I’ve heard and saw.  Most importantly, I was very impressed by the energy of the people.  I would suggest to anyone interested to apply for a job at your local Nordstrom.  They said three-peat has never happened in the history of the company but I’m rooting for you Short Pump!

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Event | CBS6 Healthy Lifestyle Expo

I spent a few hours at the CBS 6 Healthy Lifestyle Expo held at the Richmond Convention Center in mid-February to capture images for The Health Journal.  The main attraction of the event was Dr. Oz and along came the crowd.  Dr. Oz took the time to walk amongst the expo-goers to say hello, shake hands and kiss the babies (literally) which presented a pretty big problem to all the photographers onsite — we couldn’t see him or get close to him.  It was very difficult to move around and I felt like a paparazzi just speed shooting hoping for a decent line-of-sight of the good doctor.  In addition, the event organizer told me that I would have a few minutes with Dr. Oz which unfortunately never materialized.  Luckily I’ve got a front row seat to his talk and took advantage of the opportunity.

A handful of my images are in the March 2011 of The Health Journal. Go grab an issue!

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My first billboard

The title of this post is a bit misleading.  It is not my billboard per se, rather it is a billboard using one of my image of Dr. Harpreet Grewal who is an amazing Cardiologist.  During the session, Dr. Grewal had a patient being prepped to get a pacemaker yet he was cool as a cucumber while I was sweating bullets to get him through the session as quickly as possible.  And THAT is why I am NOT a heart surgeon.

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The billboard can be seen west-bound on I-64 between the Richmond International Airport and Downtown Richmond.

Below is my favorite composite from my 30 minutes with Dr. Grewal.

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Modern Family

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About a month ago, my sister-in-law asked if I can take some family portraits for her family.  She wanted something different and as always, I’m more than happy to do anything different.  What is different?  I asked the same question and was given free rein to do what I thought would be different.  Knowing that my sister-in-law is a traditionalist and enjoy designs that best be described as “Victorian”, I knew I couldn’t go too far for the chart.

With “traditionalist” in mind, I was fully expecting the family to show up with matching turtlenecks.  But my game plan was quickly thrown out the door the moment they walked through with matching jeans, blue and white shirt combos.   My vision went from warm-snuggie-around-the-firepit to “Modern Family”.

From a technical standpoint, it was a pretty straightforward.  I used a Westcott 43″ white collapsible umbrella as shoot-thru to get broad/even coverage, I kept the shutter fairly open to bring in a bit more ambient.  Use natural light as rim whenever I can.  At one point I had to ball-bungie a 2nd SB-600 on to the light stand to get a faster recycle time but nothing out of the ordinary.  Time management on the other hand was a whole different ball of wax however.  Let just say I, being a goofball, generally cause kids to goof off even when I don’t want them to, and that I had to sort through A LOT of images where at least one niece had crossed-eyed, balloon-cheeks, general grumpiness, or being grumpy while crossed-eyed with cheeks inflated.

All it all though, good times!

Happy Holidays

It has been a great year for Ed Ip Photography.

Thank you for letting Trish and I, at Ed Ip Photography serve your photography needs this past year.  2010 has been a great year and it’s because of you!  We’ve had the pleasure of visiting families in their homes to capture family portraits, traveled to a number of places to be the official photographer for a number of events, and we have even expanded our services by moving into a studio space.  Again, it’s all because of great customers such as yourself.

Looking forward to 2011, we will be expanding our product offerings for individual, family and high school senior portraiture.  In addition, we continue to look forward to provide photographic coverage at  events throughout the country.

If you are on Facebook, you can find us at to join in on the fun and keep in touch!

We truly appreciate meeting and working with you this past year.  We wish you and yours safe and happy holidays and a prosperous 2011!