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Do you ever pull images into Lightroom or Photoshop and decide to make a black and white image of one of your shots, and when you do, it just seems to lack a little life and vibrance? When we first starting shooting, I would always feel like my black and white images lacked something, that little bit of extra POP that would make them come alive.

What I discovered was a simple technique that takes your images from just a regular black and white, to an image that really stands out. That trick is explained in this short, 7 minute video!



If you want to grab our full-set of 29 Lightroom Presets, you can do that today over at the store!


Did you enjoy this video? If so, then please share it with your network! Click HERE to Tweet it out!

Have you ever been on a shoot, and just KNOW that your client is feeling uncomfortable? Then you start to feel uncomfortable and things just go downhill from there? We have felt that way before and it is not a fun experience for anyone!


(image from Daniel & Stacia’s super fun non-awkward wedding!)

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US Session | Matt & Joanna

by Zach & Jody on August 26, 2014, posted in Uncategorized


In 2001-2003 I (Zach) interned in Rockford, IL at a large church, and one of the girls in my class was Joanna. She married a talented photographer named Matt (click the link to see his FB page!) and the two of them over ten years later, called us up for a portrait session in Nashville. They said that even though he was a pro shooter, and she was a make-up artist, that they didn’t have any professional images of the two of them other than some “stick the camera on a tri-pod” type of stuff. Many of us pro photographers know that feeling, don’t we?

They knew they wanted something that showed their sleek side and their love for each-other and Jody and I were honored that they came down from Ohio to have a session with us. We not only loved shooting them, but were blessed and encouraged to be with them in our time together last week. We had lunch and got to catch up and get to know each other better, and talked about growing stronger marriages, kids and lots of stuff in-between.

It was a great time together and we are excited to show a little sneak-peak of their shoot with you all!










You guys are amazing and we can’t wait to see you again in the near future!


Come on a shoot! | 48 hour deadline

by Zach & Jody on August 19, 2014, posted in Photo Tips & Tricks

We are excited to introduce to you a brand new video teaching series entitled In the Raw!

In the Raw video series zach gray


FREE VIDEO update!

We are sooooo confident that you will LOVE the new video teaching series that we are GIVING AWAY one of the five set-ups in the video for FREE! You can download the free video HERE! Read on to learn more about the IN THE RAW videos!


The Pain

This series was birthed out of my (Zach) frustrations when I first began photography and was trying to learn more about creative lighting and portraiture.

When reading other tutorials I felt like the specific how-tos and technical key information were missing, which prevented me from learning what I needed to know. Not to mention the fact that I (and most other creatives) are visual learners.

After devouring whatever content was available, I went out, practiced, and had a LOT of trial and error refining these techniques on my own (thank-you, Jody for being my subject ten times over :)


Above is one of my first creative portraiture shots. Yes, we all start somewhere.



The Answer

Understanding this exact pain is how In the Raw came about.

After spending the last 8 years shooting, learning, studying and teaching photography, we decided to create and release a video instructional series that brings you, the photographer on real, creative portrait shoots with me, Zach, and walks you through every step of the process.

Take advantage of the 48 hour special on this series and get:


  • Almost 2 hours of teaching content
  • 5 full set-ups on the Andy Davis creative portrait shoot
  • Live shooting & detailed explanations of all set-ups
  • Lightroom & Photoshop editing of final images
  • 20 Lightroom pre-set downloads included ($29 value!)
  • Full gear list of equipment used on the shoot with direct links
  • Much much more!

 Click below to see what other photographers are already saying about it!



Creative Portraiture| Andy Davis, Part II

by Zach on August 14, 2014, posted in Photo Tips & Tricks

Welcome to Part II of the Andy Davis creative portraiture shoot!  If you want to read up on part 1, you can do that HERE.

This is the first shoot featured on our brand new, about to release In the Raw video teaching series. For those of you who may have missed what In the Raw is, it’s where I (Zach), bring you along to creative shoots I have and I share how I execute the shoot from all aspects including gear, client interaction, lighting, editing and more. These shoots are rough and raw and I’m excited to share them!

This video series does not kick off until Tuesday, August 19th so in the meantime, enjoy Part II of Andy’s shoot!

Today we are going to break down one of the crazier shots that I did for this shoot.



This image, believe it or not, was shot this way in the camera using what is called a “ground glass” technique. Ground glass is the glass that you looked through on old Twin Lens Reflex style cameras (and many others). [click to continue…]