Dreaming of summer, snow is coming

Another visit to a beautiful St.Marteen last summer. All that lush is so addictive, I cannot bear the thought of snow and slush.
I used new “vacation” lens this time Nikon 24-120mm F/4 on D610 body. Results are pretty decent though bokeh is quite bad with this lens if background is too busy, you will notice donuts.






Joe Giron: Poker Photographer

At the beginning of the 21st century, poker experienced an extraordinary spike in popularity because of the birth of hole-card cameras and online poker. In 2003, then accountant Chris Moneymaker turned his $40.00 into $2.5 million dollars after winning a major poker tournament. Dubbed as the “Moneymaker effect,” his victory marked the start of the poker boom.


When the poker boom happened, online poker providers saw an increase in their annual revenue. Cryptologic, the parent company of the world’s first online casino site InterCasino, used to own one of the biggest poker networks in the world. The company reports that it had processed over $30 billion deposits from players around the world during poker’s popularity peak.

Like most spectator sports, one of the most important elements in chronicling the event is to capture that raw emotion that people have while vying for millions of dollars. Since 2005, Joe Giron has been a hired photographer for major poker tournaments around the world.


Before beginning a career in poker photography, Joe Giron had been a photographer in the music industry for over 28 years. He is famous for being the official photographer of the legendary heavy metal band Pantera. Joe was there the entire ride of the band’s career until the lead guitarist, Dime, died in 2004.

After his stint as Pantera’s photographer, Joe began shooting editorial and commercial work in the gaming industry, particularly in the world of poker. He draws inspiration from his photojournalism background when he is trying to tell the story of a specific poker tournament.

“For me the essence is going beyond the basic poker-face photography and capturing images that tell a story about what these players are going through to become champions, or the dejection of getting so close and falling short,” said Joe.

Joe’s favorite picture is that of Will Molson’s when the latter won at the Caribbean Adventure High Roller. Molson had finished runner-up for two previous years, and finally scored first place in 2011. Molson’s dad was on the rail, ran over, and hugged him.

2011 PCA_25K High Roller_Final Day

To this day, Joe still covers major poker tournaments. When he was asked if he ever hated working long days, he simply responded: “I’m doing what I dreamed of doing as a kid, I don’t feel like I’ve ever worked a day in my life.”

Nikon D610 and Eye-Fi card

I’ve been using Eye-Fi Pro X2 card with Nikon D7000 before and it’s always been hit and miss with it. Since getting D610 couple of weeks ago damn thing started working flawlessly even with OEM application. Files are getting transferred almost immediately in direct mode and there is no connection breakouts. Whether this attributed to something new in D610 or updated firmware on Eye-Fi card I don’t know but main point that this solution works now. I was about to get WU-1b wireless transmitter but see no point now.

Dreaming of blue

It’s time again to go to warm waters and blue skies. This photo was taken on St. Martin about a year ago, I feel I need to be there right now.


Published: Take Me editorial in Unfolded magazine

Fashion editorial shot in late summer right under Gardiner expressway was just published in Unfolded magazine. All of these are shot with natural light only, lense wide open.


See full editorial here.

Carmina Cristina makeup line ad campaign and BTS video

I recently worked on advertising campaign photos for a new makeup line by Carmina Cristina. For these shots I used two silver reflective 42″ umbrellas, one as key and another for fill.


Photography: Andriy Zolotoiy
Makeup and hair: Carmina Cristina 
Model and styling: Ada Adams
Retouching: Sarah Challenger 


And here is very nice behind the scenes video created by Stefan Vasilca

Black Priest fashion editorial in W25 magazine

Check out October issue of W25 magazine for my editorial shot at Bluffer’s Park. One of the images has actually gotten to the back cover. 


Website and blog issues resolved

Or so I hope … In the last few days I’ve changed hosting provider from GoDaddy to Arvixe and of course random things stopped working during the transfer. More than that, since my website’s back-end is on Windows now I’ve decided to migrate from WordPress to BlogEngine.NET just to create more trouble for myself as process isn’t as straightforward as we would like it to be.

But now all looks alright and I need to apologize to all of those who tried to access site in the last couple of days and stared at the Page Of Death.

And here is something fresh. Model: Kirsten, MUA: Delia

Eyewear tests

All new website and blog

Finally my old Flash based website is dead. The new responsive design works on all modern desktop and mobile browsers, has integrated management console and boasts high resolution images. And all of that developed by moi ;) Blog still requires some tweaking but will be up to speed in couple of days.

See it here

Lightroom 4 is buggy

Lightroom 4 seems to hang on me quite often during raw photo selection / ratings where LR3 used to work just fine. First major version of the software always have some issues that just cannot be tested by a single company, when they release application they pretty much letting world users to crash test their product. There is so many possible combinations of hardware, OSs, camera files etc. which makes it completely impossible to say that software is 100% bug free and will work on every single platform.