Although more and more airports are installing power stations for the power-hungry mobile devices, there are always more travelers than power stations. The worst is when there are no power stations and travelers must sit next to an outline along a wall that are so worn out that the plug doesn’t stay in the outlet. Thus, my need for a solid portable power supply. A few weeks ago I decided to replace my well used but underpowered portable charger from Trent that served me well for 3-4 years.
After some searches on Amazon and Google, I found the RAVPower Portable Charger on sale and decided to give it a try. This is my initial review which I will update after a few months on the road.
Charges iPhone from 40% to 96% in 20 minutes.
Arriving at the gate with 20 minutes until boarding time with two iPhones to charge, I decided to give this a try and it didn’t fail me. I charged an iPhone 6+ that was 40% to 96% before we boarded then charged a second iPhone with at least 3/4 charge on the portable charger remaining.
It is narrow enough to fit in a standard messenger bag without issues and the light is a nice feature when in a dark area and you need something from your bag.
It comes with a ‘sleeve’, but I find it more of a hindrance than value because it makes the portable charger too slick to hold. I ended up leaving the cover in the bag and use it to ‘protect’ the charger during transportation versus use. I would like some resistant material on the inside to prevent the charger from falling out of the sleeve. Unfortunately, this is the type of sleeve that other portable chargers that I own use which causes me to ‘ditch’ them.
The initial charge took a few hours which is understandable for the amount of power it holds. As of this writing, it is still on sale and a great bargain as a gift to someone you know that always seems to run out of battery power. RAVPower 16750mAh Portable Charger affiliate link
Sounds of birds chirping woke me from a deep sleep after more than ten hours on the road a few hours earlier. The journey to North Carolina from Pennsylvania was eventless and the traffic minimal for a Sunday before a holiday. Even though birds were chirping, it was very dark outside. Why? The sound of birds was my alarm sound and not the sound of the ‘real’ birds welcoming a sunrise. Looking at my phone where the bird sounds originated, I noticed the temperature outside was slightly above 32 degrees. Didn’t the weather folks know this was a beach town in the south and this temperature is reserved for the north? Rubbing sleep from my eyes, I got ready for a cold sunrise on the beach thinking, all of this for a photo? Yes, it was a cloudless night and the sun was predicted to rise three hours from now in all of its majestic glory and warmth (:D).
The car was covered with drops of ice and the thought of running back into the hotel and under the warmth of a blanket raced through my head. Maybe I should enter a rehab program for photographers that are crazy? The car warmed up and the heated seats were a welcome to a chilled body making the short ride to the beach easier.
Navigating my way toward Wrightsville Beach provided a new display of lighted decorations. Maritime figures such as mermaids, dolphins, and more were on many of the light poles providing a holiday look to the town. Few people were on the streets this early on a brisk morning. I drove by a few runners dressed in warm running outfits who might need a rehab program similar to the one I need for crazy folks who go out in the early morning on a cold November day.
Finding a parking spot near Johnnie Mercer’s Pier was easy with quick access to the beach. There were a few walkers and workers cleaning up the area for the day’s activities.
Wrightsville beach pictures
“If you want to be reminded of the love of the Lord, just watch the sunrise.”
― Jeannette Walls, Half Broke Horses
Before the Sun rose, the sky was filled with great color!
As anticipated, the early morning sky was filled with bright stars and a beautiful sky. I walked along the beach near Johnnie Mercer’s Pier and found a few spots that would provide a great sunrise image. Huddled near the tripod and camera, I waited until the sky started to change colors and I was not disappointed. Experimenting with a few different settings on the camera with the intent to ‘freeze’ the water and create a glow in the sky.
Two plus hours passed from the time I arrived at the beach and a faint orange glow peaked the horizon providing a slight mist and fog like effect over the water. I could hear real birds in the distance but most remained huddled around each other staying warm.
A lady gathering sea shells walked the beach dress similar to me in a few layers of clothes and warm gloves while a few others ran to the beach, grabbed a quick sunrise image and immediately jogged to their respective cars to escape the cold morning air.
Keep tight to stay warm!
The time spent was rewarded with a beautiful sunrise that is fully appreciated after the anticipation. The sun seems to creep up to the horizon then in all of its glory, rises providing light and heat.
The sun in all of its glory
Was it worth the time spent? Yes! A loud YES! – visiting the beach for a sunrise or sunset is always worth the time spent listening to the sounds of the ocean, the birds, and the feel of life coming from the rising sun! To me, it is like the Lord saying to all of life – “Good morning!” I have provided another day for you to enjoy!
Although I have been to Chicago many times, I never stayed in the city. However, on this trip to Chicago, I had the opportunity to stay in the city at the Hilton Chicago. Little did I realize how much there was to do within walking distance from the hotel. On my list of places to visit was Millennium Park and the park didn’t disappoint. It was clean and void of debris and vagrants.
In fact, I wish I had more time to spend in Millennium Park. During my visit, the Cubs were in the race to the MLB play-offs which is why the buildings were lit with Cubs. If you visit Chicago, I recommend visiting Millennium Park. No doubt in the summer, it is packed with people and street vendors. On this fall night, it was warm but there were not many vendors open nor was the park crowded providing the opportunity to move around without bumping into other visitors. I wanted to get a sunrise over the Bean, but time didn’t permit on this visit. However, I did get some other early morning images of the city which I will post in the future.
On this trip, I took my then newly acquired Lumix GX8 and the Panasonic 12-35 f/2.8 lens and it didn’t disappoint. Over the next few months, I will continue to post images from this trip and future trips, discussing my opinion of the Lumix GX8. The camera didn’t disappoint, delivering excellent quality in a smaller body than my Nikon Full Frame Cameras. I like the rangefinder-like look and feel and at first didn’t ‘get’ the viewfinder on the left side versus the middle. However, now that I used it for more than a month, I like it and find it odd when I go back to the Nikon. I can carry a complete kit in a shoulder bag with much less weight making the traveling with a camera more enjoyable.
Reflections in the Bean of Chicago
The sky created an amazing effect in the Bean. No doubt my image is one of many thousands, but I wanted my version as I saw it on this day. The reflections were tremendous creating a globe-like effect into a different world of fun and adventure.
There are many parts of a wedding that is filled with anticipation, the entrance of the bride, will the groom and/or dad cry when they see the bride for the first time? The first kiss, the first dance, but there is one part of the wedding which is often filled with statements such as, don’t smash the cake in my hair followed by the bride smashing the cake in the groom’s face.
Wedding Cake Cutting
When do you cut the cake?
From my experience, it all depends on many items. Tradition has it that the cake was cut at the end of the wedding reception signaling to the guests that the couple would change and leave. However, that tradition has been replaced by cutting the cake immediately upon entering the reception (which gives the venue’s staff time to cut it and serve the cake to the guests during the meal and the opportunity to clean up when needed). Others wait until after the meal is served but not finished and begin the cake cutting presentation. While others wait and do the cake cutting after the first few dances. There is no ‘right or wrong’ but only a time when it matches your desire for the reception.
Ensure you display your beautiful cake for the guests to see before it is cut.
Many venues and some D.J.’s put lights on the cake to ensure it is shown off to the hilt. Do everything possible to NOT put it in a corner where no one can see it or the photographers cannot photograph you cutting the cake. Too often the cake is put in a dark corner where the guests not only cannot find it but will miss the fun when you cut your cake.
Kiss after cutting your wedding cake and give your guests (and professional photographer) a great picture to share and you to put in your wedding album.
One complaint I hear from the guests is that they cannot see the wedding cake cutting. At Kendralla Photography, we incorporate both still images and motion into our packages creating a memorable keepsake for you and your family. What better way to share this fun part of the wedding with your guests and those who couldn’t attend but in a short video of your wedding cake cutting.
In this short Hybrid Cake Cutting, enjoy the anticipation and fun of a great cake cutting!
Video captured with the Lumix GX8 and Panasonic 12-35 f/2.8 lens.
If you never attended a Serbian Orthodox Wedding, you are in for an exciting event when you attend your first. I photographed other orthodox weddings and similar events but never a Serbian Orthodox and enjoyed the entire day. It started with the pre-wedding festivities where the family and close friends attended a party called a Skup at the bride’s home while she prepared for the day. Guests were greeted with a Serbian band playing Serbian music not only during this part of the celebration but later during the reception when the guests participated in kolo dancing.
Groom arrives at Serbian Celebration
While the bride and her bridesmaids are preparing for the day, the groom arrives and a toast is given by the father of the bride to welcome him into their family. Laughter and more celebrating continues as the bride awaits her dad to see her for the first time. More tears of joy as the dad views his beautiful daughter for the first time in her wedding gown on her special day. Laughter and more tears follow as they embrace and others gather the family and friends to see her for the first time.
As she walks with her arm in her dad’s arm, the crowd of guests awaits her entrance. The little girls giggle as they see the beautiful bride descend the steps with her dad who in a few minutes will give a toast to his daughter.
After the toast and more celebrating, the bride and her bridesmaids leave for the church where a beautiful wedding celebration occurs.
Crowning of Groom at Serbian Orthodox Ceremony
They are crowned after the exchange of the rings (bethrothal) at the Royal Door and the binding of the cloth by the priest who crowns the groom first, then the bride. The binding of the cloth which symbolises the bride and groom are bound for life is as beautiful as the crowning of the couple. The priest recites the crown blessing three times, (The servant of God, [groom’s name], is crowned unto the handmaiden of God, [bride’s name], in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.)
During the wedding ceremony, the choir sang from the choir loft adding a beautiful sound to the Serbian Orthodox Wedding.
After the service which includes drinking from the common cup and a procession three times around the altar, the wedding ceremony concludes. The couple leaves the church and is greeted by family, friends, and the Serbian band playing.
Unlike other exits from a church, the couple is showered with coins and collected by children in attendance.
Later at the reception, the Serbian band plays and the crowd participated in Serbian Dancing and more fun filled activities. The father of the bride gives his third toast of the day to the bride and groom followed by a toast by the kum.
The dancing, laughing, and the celebration continued into the night.
Congrats to Samantha and John! Believing the best for your lives together!
Creative Bridal Portrait in Archway
Below is the 18-minute wedding show of the wedding celebration that we produced as a heirloom memory for the family. It contains audio, video, and stills with music and more. Enjoy!
If you enjoy a wedding with a theme and a setting from a popular movie and book, then I suggest visiting Tara A Country Inn in Clark, PA. Jaimie and Jones were married in nearby St. Michael’s church with their reception at the Tara. The weather was perfect to highlight a beautiful outdoor wedding reception.
There are many areas to photograph, but one of my favorites is the entrance with the tall pillars to frame the couple. As the sun set behind the Tara, the front glowed with the porch lights illuminating the couple creating a beautiful silhouette.
Romantic Setting at the Tara A Country Inn
For all of our weddings, we capture the moments from the day not only with still imagery but with video and combine the two to create a multimedia experience to help preserve the memories from the day.
In Jaimie and Jone’s show, notice there are parts of the speeches, dancing, and so much more to create a memorable heirloom item to share and cherish.
Bride and Groom Dip | Tara A Country Inn | Beautifully Lit Entrance
One of my favorite creative wedding poses is the dip. Where else better to perform this romantic wedding portrait is on the porch of the Tara with a twist of history tied to it.
Bride and Groom dip portrait
German wedding toast by the father of the bride:
“Jeder hört die Musik anders – aber der gemeinsame Tanz ist wunderbar.
Everyone hears the music differently – but the dance together is wonderful.”
If you are seeking a creative wedding photography style combined with a twist of motion (video), then contact us for a wedding photography quote.