ballroom

Albuquerque Event Photographer at Hyatt Regency Albuquerque Greater Chamber Mayor Keller

Albuquerque Event Photographer at Hyatt Regency Albuquerque Greater Chamber Mayor Keller

Press conference with Mayor Tim Keller!

Inside the Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting I was able to begin a day of event photography at the Hyatt Regency Albuquerque by photographing Mayor Tim Keller giving a live press conference. I have photographed the mayor perhaps a dozen times in the past, but this was the first time to photograph him at a press conference. It was pretty cool! From there, everyone went in to the ballroom of the Hyatt Regency Albuquerque for the formal part of the Greater ABQ Chamber’s annual meeting festivities where the mayor then gave a lengthy speech addressing mostly the issue of homelessness in the city. Being a professional event photographer has always taken me inside worlds I would otherwise never be privy to.

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NMACI 60 Year Diamond Gala Event at Sandia Resort & Casino

NMACI 60 Year Diamond Gala Event at Sandia Resort & Casino

A Diamond Gala at Sandia Resort & Casino

NMACI Diamond Gala 60th Anniversary was the first event I photographed in Sandia Resort & Casino in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Like many award events I have photographed throughout the past 10 years, it began outside with a social hour and then moved inside to a ballroom for the presentation of the awards. Being a professional photographer in part means being able to change gears going from shooting outside in natural light at 1/500th ISO 100 of a second to dimly lit indoors using external flash and ISO 2000+.

Politicians a plenty

Then it turns out many state Senators and Representatives would be present to receive awards, as well as Lt. Governor Howie Morales. I am very experienced at photographing politicians though, from mayors to governors to Secretary of Labor and the U.S. Surgeon General!

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Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce APD NYPD Lessons in Crime-Fighting Event

Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce APD NYPD Lessons in Crime-Fighting Event

NYPD visits ABQ

It is not every day one gets to photography the New York City Police Commissioner, the Albuquerque Chief of Police and the Mayor of Albuquerque! However, that was exactly what I got to do in photographing my second signature event for the Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce. The NYPD commish spoke to a packed ballroom on the theme of Lessons in Crime-Fighting From One of the Safest Big Cities in the World. Before that there were roundtable discussions with Q&A sessions. I was busy covering it all at the beautiful Albuquerque Marriott Pyramid North!

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PARC 45th Annual Black Tie Sapphire Ball at Vinoy Resort St Petersburg Florida Event Photography

Welcoming guests at PARC 45th Annual Black Tie Sapphire Ball - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/5.6 ISO 800 1/60th SB-800 hotshoe mountedPhotography often puts me into places I would otherwise never be.  Such was the case Saturday when I went to the Vinoy Resort in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida to photograph an event -- PARC 45th Annual Black Tie Sapphire Ball.  Somehow the "black tie" part eluded my mind so I was surprised to see everyone that dressed up when I arrived at the Vinoy!

Inside the Vinoy Resort showing why this was the Sapphire Ball for PARC 45th annual black tie event - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/8 ISO 200 4 sec tripod mounted with cable releasePeople were not the only ones all dressed up, the ballroom in the Vinoy Resort was as well reflecting the Sapphire Ball theme.  The chairs especially stoodout to me with their shape and striking sapphire blue covering including a sparkling diamond circle on the back.  I made this shot when I first arrived before the guests were allowed in.  Since I used a tripod and wanted to focus on the decorations, it was necessary to start with this type of shot first when photographing the event.  For sure the ballroom did not look like this by the time 11pm came around and Kool & the Gang had the place jumping!

Candid event photography before the PARC 45th Annual Black Tie Sapphire Ball - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/5.6 ISO 800 1/60th SB-800 hotshoe mountedAfter photographing the ballroom and some other outside establishing shots, I put away my tripod and went more mobile photographing the guests mingling out in the lobby.  I walked right into this scene and had my camera ready to catch this amusing reaction shot.

Encouraging high bidders during a charity auction for PARC at Vinoy Resort St. Petersburg Event Photography - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/5.6 ISO 800 1/60th SB-800 hotshoe mountedWhile dinner was being served, several items were auctioned off from charity ranging from a week vacation at a house on a private island to a custom diamond ring.  Many items went for over $5,000!  

Gayle Guyardo was an electric presence at PARC 45th Annual Black Tie Sapphire Ball event at Vinoy Resort St. Petersburg Florida - Nikon D90 Nikkor 80-200mm @ f/4 ISO 800 1/100th SB-600 speedlight hotshoe mountedFor many years I have kind of had a crush on Gayle Guyardo.  It was a very pleasant surprise to find out she would be presenting the winners of the Magnetic Man award at the event.  Seeing her in person only further strengthened the crush!  

Mike Alstott accepts the Magnetic Man award at PARC 45th Annual Black Tie Event - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/5.6 ISO 800 1/60th SB-800 hotshoe mountedAnother surprise was seeing former Tampa Bay Buccaneers great Mike Alstott.  He still looked like he could step onto the football field and play this Sunday!  He received the first of thirteen Magnetic Man awards.  

Kool & the Gang perform at PARC 45th Annual Black Tie Sapphire Ball St. Petersburg Florida event photography - Nikon D300 Tamron 17-50mm @ f/4 ISO 800 1/30th SB-800 hotshoe mountedOnce the awards were handed out and the auctions ended, Kool & the Gang took the stage and played a very enthusiastic set.  I am always impressed when artists can do this and make it seem like it's the biggest show they have ever done.  More shots from their performance to come in another blog post.

Photographing this event for PARC was exciting and a chance to have an evening I definitely would never have experienced otherwise.  Thank you Susan and Kelli!