Married!

Yes, yes… I know!  I’ve been delinquent again in posting!

Kristina and I have been married one month tomorrow!  Here’s one of our favorite pics from the wedding.  Kristina & ScottThe photographer that the chapel supplied was pretty decent although I would have liked it if his camera had come off f1.2 at times.  About half the images that we got were blurry!  There were a bunch of good ones though!

The plans were to go out on the strip and do a quick photo shoot after the wedding but we were both exhausted with emotion and the fact that it was like 11pm when we finally got back to the hotel.  The room we had at the Wynn was pretty nice!

The rest of the week was pretty great!  We did do a photoshoot out on the old strip on Freemont Street.  The place was mobbed!  Two concerts going on, people everywhere, lights flashing, Kris in her dress, and me carrying a light stand and umbrella, tripod and camera through it all!  At one point, after about three shots a policeman on a bike stopped and asked what we were doing.  I explained that we had just been married the night before and we wanted to do some portraits.  He said that the light stand and umbrella were freaking out the security people there and pointed up into the sky.  It took Our Wedding-0058a second before I understood that the whole place is covered with cameras, watching everything.  I said that we were just going to do a few shots and then move on and he said that would be ok.  So, off we went!  Found this cool wall outside one of the hotels and used it for a great background – I just love this image of Kristina!

The farther down the street we went, the more people we had to contend with.  It would have been nice to have an assistant with us to keep an eye on stuff but we made out pretty well!

The next days were filled with walking the strip and traveling to shoot.  We had lunch at the Carnegie Deli and, thankfully, I knew enough to order one sandwich for the two of us!  Best reuben we’ve had but we still couldn’t finish it!  Then we stopped at Serendipity 3 for dessert later on and couldn’t finish those either!

The highlight of our trip (outside of marrying the love of my life) was our run up to Zion National Park.  It was one of the most rewarding days of shooting that I have ever had!  Kristina will tell you a slightly different story though…

You see, I was busy shooting a small waterfall and helping a group of woman to get a decent shot of themselves with their iPhone.  Meanwhile, Kristina had walked upstream and discovered a Great Blue Heron in the stream!  She stalked it for quite a while before I found her.  Of course I wasn’t going to go without shooting it too!  I worked my way in pretty close and, shooting with my 70-200, I was getting some pretty good images.  The heron was keeping one eye on me and one eye on the water the whole time.  I figured he was looking for lunch.  I thought to myself that it would be great to capture him catching a fish.  As I watched, he suddenly got much more intent on the water.  LasVegas2013-0525I reached up and switched to continuous high (9 frames per second on my D3) and waited.  Sure enough, as I sat there, the heron’s head dove into the water and pulled out a 6 inch long fish!  I had started shooting as soon as I saw his first move and continued until he swallowed his lunch!  It was awesome!

Unfortunately, Kristina had already packed up her camera and was preparing to move on.  She was very upset that I got this capture and she did not.  But, without her, I would have never seen the heron at all.  So this is her shot too!

More to come so stay tuned!

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A New Step

Scott Slattery Photography

At the Carson Family Reunion this last August!

Many of you have followed my journey over the years, some as close friends, some as wedding and portrait clients, some as Facebook acquaintances and fellow photographers.  My life is about to take another major step.  My fiancé, Kristina, and I have made wedding plans!

Originally we had planned a March 1st wedding (3-1-13) but we weren’t sure of where to do it, who would be able to attend, how much it was going to cost, all those details that many of our wedding clients have to contend with.

But serendipity has intervened in our favor!  Kristina, as many of you know, is the Assistant Vice President at Maple City Savings Bank in Hornell, NY.  The Board of Directors and the bank President have chosen to send her to the National Convention for the Independent Community Bankers of America during the week of March 11th in, you guessed it, Las Vegas!

After some planning we have changed our wedding date to March 13th (3-13-13)!  Yes, I know what you’re thinking, 13 is unlucky.  However, as my birthday is also on the 13th, it has always been a lucky number for me!

We are flying out of Buffalo on March 8th, carrying a bunch of cameras, flashes, and stuff… oh, and clothes, too…  We will be at Circus Circus for Friday and Saturday night and then moving to the Wynn Las Vegas and Encore for Sunday through Friday and returning on Saturday.

Kristina has done some exhaustive research and chosen a pretty chapel for our ceremony!  You can see it at Vegas Weddings.  Our ceremony is at 9pm (midnight EST) so it’s a bit late for people here in the east.  We’ll be providing a live feed via Internet so that everyone that wants to can watch, too!

We’re thinking of some side trips to Bryce Canyon, Red Rock Canyon, and all around Vegas with our cameras, of course.  So there should be lots of great images when we get back and probably some posted to Facebook while we’re gone!

This trip wouldn’t be possible without Kristina’s mom, Mary, who is going to move in with the kids for the week!  I can’t begin to thank her for giving us this gift!  It would be great if we could afford to bring all of our kids with us but six plane tickets is just out of the question!

And one more bit of serendipity… the WPPI (Wedding and Portrait Photographers International) conference just happens to be in Las Vegas the same week!  I’ve always wanted to go to it but never had the opportunity.  So, while Kristina is attending her convention, I’ll be attending one of my own!

These last few years have been an emotional roller coaster for me.  Losing my job at Kodak to layoffs – the only job that I ever worked.  Continuing on with my photography business.  My divorce and all the feelings that go with that, the difficulties that both of my girls have gone through and are now passed and well on the way to acceptance.  Finding Kristina, falling in love with her and learning how to navigate a new relationship filled with love and acceptance.  My Dad’s passing and the effect that has had on my mom and my siblings.

And now it seems that all this was meant to be.  I’m not saying that everything is roses, but everything that matters is.  I can’t wait to continue on this journey with Kris and see our children grow, and to watch our love grow, if that’s even possible.

Kristina, I promise to love you and cherish you and protect you from harm.  I promise to try to be the best person that I can be and to stand by your side, for the good things and the bad things that life will throw our way.  I promise to accept you as you are and help you in any way that I can to reach the goals that we both have. You make me laugh and try to be a better man.  Thank you for loving me and giving yourself to me.

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Holiday Blues

I used to love this time of year.  Don’t get me wrong, I still do, just not in the same way.

Black Friday wasn’t a shopping day to me.  It was a day to start listening to Christmas carols in the car wherever I was going.  To start thinking seriously about Christmas presents.  To look forward to having a nice two week vacation over the holidays.

Christmas 2008

Dad – Christmas 2008

Last December, a year ago this week actually, my Dad was diagnosed with cancer.  He succumbed to the disease on December 23rd, 2011.  There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about him.

Today I met with Lauren to talk about photographing her wedding next August.  Lauren was a bridesmaid in Casey and Joel’s wedding that Kris and I photographed last year so I was excited to see her again.  As we were talking she mentioned that her Dad has been diagnosed with cancer.  I told her about mine and it was pretty emotional but I find that talking about him helps me.

Lauren said that there was some connection between me and her Dad that we had talked about at Casey’s wedding but that we couldn’t remember.  It turns out that Lauren and her Dad, John, both worked for MKS Instruments.  My son-in-law, Jeff, works there too!  So we thought we had figured out the connection.  Then she said that he was in the Army in Germany around the same time also.  To make a long story short, it turns out that John and I were not only in Germany at the same time but we were in the same company, HHC, 1st Signal Battalion!  We also both left there in 1988.  Small world!

Later on Lauren sent me a picture of her Dad from 1990 and sure enough, I recognized him.  We didn’t hang around in the same circles within the company but I did know him.

Then, on the way home it hit me.  We’re the same age, with the same background.  Lauren is between the ages of my girls, Wendy and Shannon.  John and I are both from the Rochester area.  We both served in the Army in the same place, at the same time.  We both returned to this area.  And he has cancer.

I started to think of all the things that I’m sure you are.  How fleeting life is.  How small our problems and difficulties are.  How important our family is and how stupid all those arguments are between parents and children, brothers and sisters.

My brother Brian used to say, in jest, “Can’t we all just get along?”  He meant it as a joke.  I mean it as a hope.  You know who you are.  Is it really worth it to hold on to these feelings and pain?  Let it go.  Forgive and forget.  I understand that it’s hard sometimes, but if it wasn’t hard it wouldn’t be worth doing.

The passing of a loved one or a divorce is always difficult.  We, all of my family, have had to deal with our fair share over the last year.  Now is a time for reconciliation, for loving one another, for coming together to support one another.

Life is fleeting.  Don’t wait to long.  It may just pass by and leave you with regrets that you should have done something sooner.

My prayers are with John and his family during this holiday season and with all those families who struggle to find solace.

I’m still listening to the Christmas carols but I’m touched with just a little bit of the blues and I’m hoping that the New Year brings everyone everything they need.  I love you, Dad.

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Happy Thanksgiving To All

There are many things that I am thankful for this week.  My fiancé, Kris, who is my love, my support, my wall to bounce ideas off, my partner, my photo buddy, and my friend.  Our children, Shannon, Wendy, Tyler, Shane, Dakota, and Eric, all of whom keep life interesting to say the least.  Jeffrey, my son-in-law, who takes such good care of Wendy.  My mom and Kris’s mom, two of the greatest women ever, who struggle through adversity with a healthy dose of perseverance and stubbornness – I really wish that we could help them more than we do.  My sister, Kristina, who gave my Dad the level of care that he needed in the last months he was with us and who continues to care for mom through her pancreas surgery.  My brother Brian, his wife Sarah, and their kids, Becca and Colton, my brother Michael, his wife Wendy, and their son Liam.  I wish that we could see each other more often or at all.  Kris’s brother David and her sister Vicky, and Vicky’s husband Paul, and Steve, the brother I have yet to even meet.  All of our friends, here and everywhere.

This is the first Thanksgiving that my Dad isn’t here with us.  It still saddens me that he is gone but I feel him with me and those little memories, things that didn’t seem important at the time, are what keep his love alive.  As I was carving the turkey and cleaning it up later on, all I could think about was Dad sitting at the end of the table after everyone was sitting in the living room or cleaning up in the kitchen.  He would pick every last morsel of meat off that bird, sampling little bits all the time.  Funny how that is the memory that sticks with me the most…

Christmas is only 5 weeks away and I’m sure that we will all have a similar memory of our own.  Don’t keep it to yourself.  Share it with someone you love.  Spread the wealth of good tidings and fun times and be thankful, as I am, for the people that surround you and make life worth living.

I hope that everyone has had a wonderful Thanksgiving Week and that this small note brings some thought and more than a little love into your day.

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Time to get back to this!

Sorry all!  I’ve been neglecting my blog terribly!  We’ve had an eventful wedding season and summer… Watch for lots to come!

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Shannon’s Last SEAS Banquet

As parents there are certain things that we want for our children when they are growing up.  We want them to be happy with themselves and have good friends.  We want them to be smart and get good grades.  We want them to be talented and excel in everything they do.  We don’t ask much, do we?

My oldest daughter, Wendy, will turn 30 this year.  She was always a good student.  I believe that growing up watching Mom and Dad go to college together and study their butts off influenced her study habits and showed her the benefits of education.  She went on to finish her high school career in the top 10 of ~ 350.  After attending the University of Rochester for 3 years in pre-med she decided to go the Physicians Assistant route and transferred to Daemen College for two more years.  Again she graduated at the top!  She is now a surgical PA working at Rochester General Hospital, married to a great guy,  and is living in a nice suburban house that she and her husband, Jeff, had built.  I couldn’t be more proud of her than I am.  Sometimes I think that she doesn’t know that.  Father/daughter relationships can be tough.  I love her with all my heart and I would do anything for her!

My youngest daughter, Shannon, will be 18 in September.  Yes that’s right, 12 years between them!  Wendy made a great built-in babysitter!  🙂  Shannon grew up in a country setting.  We built a house in Brockport on some land where, unfortunately, we were far from other kids her age.  She went to The Schoolhouse of Brockport, a wonderful daycare run by a wonderful staff.  We brought her there before school and then picked her up on the way home from work.  Shannon made some great friends at The Schoolhouse and they have remained close through the years.

Shannon started swimming competitively for Sharks and Eagles Aquatic Sports, SEAS, when she was 9.  Her mom and I knew that she loved to swim (Wendy was also a water bug!), but we didn’t really have an inkling of how much she loved it!  The time commitment alone is daunting to many kids and their parents, too.  It started with two or three nights a week.  It blossomed into 6 nights a week with many nights of double practices when Shannon went onto the school swim team!

Any parent of an athlete will tell you that their children learned to budget their time wisely so that they get their school work done.  Shannon excels at this.  Sometimes she would procrastinate and leave her homework for after practice, making for some late nights, but for the most part she did a much better job getting all of her stuff done than I ever did!

Over the years of going to swim practice every night she made a bunch of new friends and so did her mom and I.  We both have served on the SEAS Board at times and helped out at every meet.  I have taken thousands of images that I have shared with the team!

Suffice it to say that swimming has been a constant lifestyle for a lot of years now!

In September Shannon will be going off to college at Dennison University after finishing her high school career at the top while taking college classes at SUNY Brockport half time, too!  And swimming 6 nights a week!  Once again I couldn’t be more proud or love her any more than I do!

This last year or more has been hard on both of my girls.  Their mom and I divorced and I have moved away to be with Kris, my new found love, and her boys, Tyler (17), Shane(15), and Dakota and Eric, 13 year old twins.  I have been blessed to expand my family to include Kris and the boys!  We are all enjoying the challenges that come with learning about each other!

It’s been hard on all of us, being an hour away.  I put a lot of miles on my car this year driving up 390 to Rochester!  Kris and I seem to spend more time in the car than home sometimes!  We have made a huge effort to get to Shannon’s swim meets and visit with the girls and my family every chance we get.  Kris has been wonderfully understanding about all of this and I love her dearly.

So, to get back on point, last Sunday Kris and I and Shannon’s mom, Anne, attended Shannon’s last Annual SEAS Banquet.  Such a bittersweet afternoon.  We’re all so proud of Shannon’s accomplishments in and out of the pool and, as she is going to swim at Dennison, we’ll have more traveling to do yet to see her continue her career.  But we leave the SEAS family that has been such a large part of all of our lives.

As I looked around the room there were so many new faces, new families.  But also some old ones… the Briggs’, the Champagne’s, the Amthor’s, the Tobey’s, the Schultheis’, and many more.  The coaches, Doug Tobey, Dave Hilfiker, Ella Schultheis, Brian Bartalo,

all of whom had some impact on Shannon, in and out of the pool.  We’re going to miss seeing them all.  I’m sure that we’ll make some trips to practice and see everyone.  I hope to be shooting team portraits next year again, too!  But it won’t be the same.

So we say goodbye to our SEAS family, wishing each of our senior swimmers, Shannon, Brittney Champagne, Sarah Briggs, and Kevin Sullivan the best of luck and success in everything they do!

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Senior Portrait Season Has Begun!

Senior portraits are so different from when I had mine done!  Sit here, comb your hair quick, smile, click click click.  All done.  You’ll get your order in 4 to 6 weeks.  Thank you very much… NEXT!  All of about 5 minutes.  Didn’t like that one?  Oh well, sorry.  Want to pay for another session?

Now Senior Portraits are totally different!  Some seniors like studio time but most want to go out on location shoots and have some fun making portraits that mean something to them!  And that is a blast!  I have shot senior sessions everywhere – at the beach (lots of waterfronts), at the park (lots of parks to choose from too!), downtown Rochester, in the village, even some at the high school auditorium!

I offer a few rep spots every year and I’m in the process of searching for more!  Shane and Ashley are the latest reps from Arkport!

As soon as it get’s a little warmer outside we’ll be going off to the locations of their choice  for a 2-3 hour session!  No 5 minute job – it takes time to make images that are natural and reflect you.  And I’m looking for great images!  Want to bring a friend – sure!  Do you play an instrument, a sport?  Bring props!  We don’t charge extra like the senior portrait houses do!

Call today and make your appointments before we’re all booked up!  585-415-1641 or scott@scottslattery.com!

And here’s some past senior portraits to check out so you can get some ideas!

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