Play and praise! – Second Baptist’s Beach Retreat in Pensacola, FL

Events, Giving, travel

Second Baptist’s Beach Retreat in Pensacola, FL
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

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This summer, I took on a new challenge while trying to get more involved with my church (Second Baptist Church Houston). I signed up to be a condo leader on the church’s high school Beach Retreat in Pensacola, FL. I’ve always heard great things about how lives are changed each year at the retreat, so I threw my name in the hat hoping that I too might make a difference in even one kid’s life.

I was pretty nervous going into the trip, because I had never been a chaperone of any kind in the past. But alas, I survived!

The trip there and back was two full days on a bus, with many bus rides in between. We had some sun and rain, and lots and lots of sand. I saw laughter and tears, high-fives and hugs.

The best part of the trip though, was witnessing lives being changed. Over 450 high school students (and a few adults too) made professions of faith and were baptized. It was a beautiful thing to witness!

Being a photographer, I, of course, couldn’t leave home without my camera. So I have quite a nice collection of photos to share from the trip.

Enjoy!

SILENT SOUNDSNEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0005NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0003NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0006NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0007NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0002

BEACH AND BAY PLAYNEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0036NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0012NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0013NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0014NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0015NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0016NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0018NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0037

ON THE MOVE

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WORSHIPNEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0048NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0039NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0045NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0040NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0053NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0044NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0049NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0046NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0051NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0028

THE MESSAGE AND RESPONSENEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0054NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0029NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0030

BAPTISMNEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0031NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0033NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0032NEvansPhotos_Beach_Retreat_Houston_Second_Baptist_Woodway_Event_Photographer_Portofino_Resort_Pensacola_Florida_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Blog_0034

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If you need photography at your next event in Houston or beyond, contact me, Nicki, to set up your event photography. nevansphotos@gmail.com

Nicki Evans Photography – 2016
Have camera. Will travel. Just add water.

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer

Greenlight for Girls – Event photography at Space Center Houston

Events

Event photography at Space Center Houston
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

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On May 15th, I spent the day providing media coverage for the Greenlight for Girls (g4g) event at Space Center Houston. The event was held to spark interest with girls (ranging from middle school to early high school age) in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) through the international g4g program. On hand to help with the event were scientists, engineers and various volunteers from a local industry site.

Throughout the day, the girls participated in hands-on experiments and heard from a few guest speakers including Greenlight for Girls international project manager Jelena Lucin, U.S. Representative Sheila Jackson Lee and retired NASA astronaut Brian Duffy.

Enjoy these photos from the event.

NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0002NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0032NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0031NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0030NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0009NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0010NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0012NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0027NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0029NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0026NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0017NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0028NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0018NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0019NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0021NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0022NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0025NEvansPhotos_Houston_Event_Photographer_Nicki_Evans_Photography_Space_Center_Covestro_Greenlight_For_Girls_B_0013If you need photography at your next event in Houston or beyond, contact me, Nicki, to set up your event photography. nevansphotos@gmail.com

Nicki Evans Photography – 2017
Have camera. Will travel. 

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer

First impressions count. – The importance of executive portraits

Blogs, Faces, Houstonians

The importance of executive portraits
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

First impressions count. What kind of first impression do you make?

There are a lot of elements that play a part in first impressions, and those factors vary from meeting someone in person versus “meeting” them online.

When meeting in person, your appearance plays a part in that first impression, as well as your handshake, eye contact, attentiveness to the conversation and your social skills. On a job interview, for example, those items probably end up playing a stronger role in the meeting than what’s on your resume. Your resume probably landed you the interview, but you can’t pass “Go” or collect 200 dollars without making a good impression at the interview.

In this day of instant access to information via the Internet, the first impression you made on that hiring manager or future client or soon-to-be new co-worker could have been made far before that interview. It could have been made through a quick search on LinkedIn. So what did that first impression say?

Hopefully you’ve had your resume reviewed and you spell-check everything before posting your bio, employment history and list of accomplishments. And to put the cherry on top, you’ve made the investment in an executive portrait by a professional photographer. If so, the first thought when your name pops up on LinkedIn is, “Now, he is someone I’d like to have on my team,” or maybe, “If this person has the same level of professionalism that her profile exudes, I’d love to do business with her.”

I know that looks aren’t everything and you can’t judge a book by its cover, but with just a few seconds and a first glimpse on a LinkedIn profile, you certainly don’t want to risk deterring a future employee or potential client in any way with a sloppy profile photo or no image at all.

If you don’t invest in yourself and your career, why should someone invest in you?

Benefit Concepts, Inc. recently invested in executive portraits with Nicki Evans Photography for their teams across Houston. During a day-long conference at the Norris Conference Center in City Centre, we setup a temporary portrait studio where team members could stop by to have their portrait made…57 in total. In addition to providing head shots that team members could use on their LinkedIn pages, the MyBCITeam.com team pages were updated to include these portraits.

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If you haven’t made the investment in an executive portrait for your individual LinkedIn page, or if your business needs to boost the image they project with portraits on the “About Us” page, contact me, Nicki, to set up your portraits. nevansphotos@gmail.com

For more executive and environmental portraits, browse through these galleries:
Faces – Executive portraits (both traditional and a little more fun) of Houstonians
Houstonians – Environmental portraits of the great people of Houston

Nicki Evans Photography – 2017
Have camera. Will travel. 

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer

UH Bauer in Action – Fall/Winter issue of Inside Bauer Magazine

Giving, Houstonians, Publications

Fall/Winter issue of Inside Bauer Magazine
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

Just before Christmas, my favorite project at the University of Houston’s Bauer College of Business was finished and released in print form…the latest issue of Inside Bauer Magazine.

With this magazine, and all of the previous ones for which I’ve had the pleasure of contributing images, I had the opportunity to meet a variety of amazing people with incredible stories. My job is capturing those people in their element and/or putting those stories into visuals.

The theme for this issue was “Service in Action.” The people of Bauer, whether new student or tenured professor, all have such hearts for giving. Some donate their time by working at summer camps or tutoring other students, some donate their athletic abilities by cycling cross country or teaching boxing, some donate money to fund scholarships. There’s never a shortage of people lending helping hands to those who are in need.

To read some of these stories and see videos featuring the great people of Bauer, check out the new Inside Bauer Magazine website. There are quite a few photos on the website as well, but for a few of my favorites, enjoy the rest of the blog.

If you have a toddler, check out this story on Bumble Brain Boxnevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0168nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0170nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0169
This sales professor gives back through his work at Habitat for Humanity.nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0177
And another sales professor spends part of her summer break at camp, helping kids who have life-threatening illnesses. nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0171
This bank executive invests in the community through an outreach program.nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0173nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0174
Think you have a busy schedule? Try managing it and coming out on top with a 4.0.nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0175
Board members play a huge role in service through the Bauer College.nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0176nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0180
Emma applies the “adventure mindset” to life and educational opportunities.
(P.S. Remember this look from the Emoto blog?)nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0172
Sometimes, giving back means a 3,500 mile bike trip across the U.S.nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0179nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0178
And other times, giving back means spreading culture through dance.nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0182
This Bauer alum found a career in TOMS, a company that thrives on giving.nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0191nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0192
Like TOMS, Luca Love Bracelets funds a greater cause.nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0185nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0184nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0187
The Knockout Factory provides mentoring through boxing.nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0188nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0190nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0189
Last, but certainly not least is my favorite person in all of Bauer…veteran, entrepreneur, educator, mentor and incredible man, Bill Sherrillnevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0195nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0194nevansphotos_houston_portrait_commercial_photographer_nicki_evans_photography_university_of_houston_inside_bauer_magazine_0193
For more photos from Inside Bauer, browse through these previous blogs:
Fabulous Faculty of Bauer – Spring/Summer Issue of Inside Bauer Magazine
(Mostly) Women of Bauer – Fall/Winter issue of Inside Bauer Magazine

Nicki Evans Photography – 2017
Have camera. Will travel. 

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer

 

Flashes of Hope – The gift of photography

Faces, Giving

The gift of photography
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

Even though I’d love to help out each charitable cause that comes my way, it’s just not possible to do so while also running a business and providing quality work for each client. I’ve found the best way for me and my business to give back to the community it to truly give from the heart.

“So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.”
2 Corinthians 9:7

One cause that really speaks to my heart is “Flashes of Hope.” This groups “honors the courage of children with cancer by capturing a moment in time and funding research so they will have the chance to create a lifetime of memories.” About this time last year, I joined ASMP for various professional benefits and found that the local Houston chapter of ASMP is very active with Flashes of Hope (FOH). I applied to be a volunteer photographer and was soon accepted to the MD Anderson chapter. Just a few days before Halloween, I had the opportunity to photograph my first group of kids for this great organization.

I wasn’t sure what to expect going in, but the whole day it felt like I was photographing your average kid from the local elementary or high school. By their big smiles, happy demeanor and wonderful families who laughed along with my corny jokes and goofy faces, you’d never know that these kids were sick.

It made me happy to see all of them in such good spirits. At the same time, it broke my heart to know that these kids were in fact sick. I hope when I return to photograph again at MD Anderson, I’ll hear that all of these kids are well and in remission. After listening to the stories from the other volunteers, I know that won’t necessarily be the case. But at least I know that through the great work Flashes of Hope is doing, more and more cancer research is being funded each day, and the families who participate will go home with beautiful photographs of their children to cherish for a lifetime.

Take a moment and look at these photographs, say a prayer of healing for these kids, and if you have a little extra to give back this Christmas season, consider giving to Flashes of Hope or another cause near and dear to your heart.

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Nicki Evans Photography – 2016
Have camera. Will travel.

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer

Always board. Never bored. Part 2 – Slaying the best of both worlds

Projects, Recreation

Always board. Never bored. Part 2 – Slaying the best of both worlds
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

When I began searching for wake boarders to participate in my “Always board. Never bored.” project, Brandon was one of the first riders to respond. After chatting with Brandon a few times, I knew we were cut from the same cloth. We share the same love for water…that deep, unexplainable Moby Dick attraction to H20.

I actually had quite a few responses to my initial search for wake boarders, but finding people was less of a problem than making schedules align on days when the weather was nice. It happened that both fell into place on a Saturday in August when SMG Wake (where Brandon works) was hosting a demo day at the San Bernard River in conjunction with Liquid Rides and the Boomstick.

When I arrived at the party, there were tons of boats and people ready for a good time. I hopped on the new Malibu 25 LSV that SMG was demoing and got to hang out with Brandon and a rotating crew of riders for the afternoon. I made a few shots of some guys wake boarding, and a few of people wake surfing, before I was able to catch a set behind the boat. Such a fun ride (and bonus of photographing wake boarding)!

Then, just a few minutes before sunset, Brandon had a chance to strap on a board and take a set. With no real warmup at all, he was throwing some big hits and tearing up the river. His aggressive style and the soft evening light were the perfect combination for a few great shots! Unfortunately, a storm was rolling in, so it got dark quickly and we had to head in.

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Since Brandon is both an avid boat and cable rider, we decided to get together for more photographs at Hangar 9 in Conroe, where he often rides after work. We booked a day in October, and I arrived a couple of hours before Brandon, so I could play on the cable lake awhile. Then it was time to get to work. Well, who am I kidding? Photographing wake boarders is more play than work to me 😉

Since I’d shot with Parker at Hangar 9 a few months back, I wanted to try to get some new angles in my shots. In addition to the detail and straight-forward action shots, I used the towers from the cable to frame Brandon on a few shots, got a ride to the middle of the lake on the coolest barge ever (it had a built-in picnic table) to get closer to a few rails and then tried out my waterproof bag for a few in-water shots. And then, since I’m a sucker for a good sunset, I had to get a few shots as the day came to an end.

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Nicki Evans Photography – 2016
Have camera. Will travel. Just add water.

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer

Up, up and away – The Great Texas Balloon Race

personal, travel

The Great Texas Balloon Race
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

For quite a few years I’ve wanted to attend the Great Texas Balloon Race in Longview, TX. Every year, when it finally shows up on my radar, I realize I already have something planned for that weekend and can’t make it. So last year, as soon as I knew the 2016 dates, I went ahead and put it on my calendar.

As the weekend approached, the weather was a little questionable. But since it was only about a 20-30% chance of rain, my husband and I decided to go ahead and make the trip. We arrive Saturday midday, visited some family, grabbed a Jucys Burger (famous in East Texas) then headed over to the airport early to make sure we had good access to the balloon glow.

The balloon glow was my main reason for wanting to attend this event. I’ve always thought the sight of hot air balloons against a blue sky was beautiful. But to see them all lit up at night…I was like a kid in a candy store, just thinking about the beautiful photos I would make.

As we approached the airport, the sky was starting to cloud up a bit, but the forecast still looked to be in our favor. We parked and began walking in, only to reach the gate and find out the balloon glow had been canceled. Long story, short…we ended up being stuck in a parking lot during a thunderstorm for about an hour, trying to exit the airport with not much luck, and we didn’t get to see the balloon glow.

We were both pretty disappointed but still wanted to make the best of the weekend. We decided to wake up early Sunday morning to watch the actual balloon race, so we could at least see some balloons. I’m not much of an early riser. I rise for wake boarding, vacation and taking photos…that’s it. This early morning turned out to be worth it though, because I was able to experience something new and photograph it too.

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It took a few minutes before we began seeing balloons. This was the lone balloon for quite a while. He led the race by quite a large span.nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0001nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0005
Then, before you knew it, there were about 30 balloons all heading our direction.nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0009nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0006
As a sidebar to the race, a target drop is held along the “racetrack.” Each balloon pilot tries to drop a marker in a target area for extra prize money. If they are really on track, they can try their hand at tossing a ring onto a pole for even more money. nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0014nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0012nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0017
As I was photographing this balloon, I noticed something wasn’t quite right. Then I heard the crowd start chattering and gasping a bit. The balloon was on fire. In the few seconds where there were actual flames, I was thinking like a photojournalist + getting a little scared that this balloon was going to engulf in flames and fall out of the sky right in front of me + praying that this guy would be okay. Luckily, prayers were answered, and the fire was gone quickly. The pilot made a safe landing a few hundred yards away. It was a bit scary for a few seconds though.nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0013
On a happier note, there was a penguin-shaped balloon. Now you’re smiling, right? nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0011nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0015nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0016nevansphotos_tx_houston_photographer_editorial_commercial_advertising_hot_air_balloon_great_texas_balloon_race_nicki_evans_photography-1_0010
Hope you enjoyed my trip to the Great Texas Balloon Race. Maybe I’ll have to add the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta to my travel list next.

Nicki Evans Photography – 2016
Have camera. Will travel.

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer

Home is where… Part 2 – The oysters are harvested

Projects

Home is where…Part 2-The oysters are harvested
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

With a large part of Chambers County touching Trinity and/or Galveston Bays, it’s no wonder that so many people who call this county home have jobs related to the water and seafood. So the first installment of “Home is where…” features Jeri’s Seafood.

Jeri’s Seafood, based in Smith Point, began in 1970. Since then, multiple generations of the Nelson family have worked in the business on Galveston Bay harvesting oysters and practicing sustainability of the local reefs.

At Jeri’s Seafood, the day begins around 5:30 a.m., when employees arrive to head out to the reefs or begin shucking and packaging oysters. With little light (no sunlight at all), bucket after bucket of ice is loaded onto the boats that will go out to the reefs in Galveston Bay. During the summer months, trips to the reef are short because of the heat.

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Close to 6 a.m., when the sky is just beginning to lighten up, the boats leave for the bay.NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0003
About the same time, another crew works on moving bags of oysters between trailers and a giant drive-in freezer.NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0010
Inside, men dressed in hoodies (because it’s cold in there) and rubber boots line counters from one wall to the next shucking piles and piles of oysters. Pop the shell, drop the oyster into a bucket of water and knock the shell into a crate on the floor.NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0006NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0001NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0008NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0007
After about 30-40 minutes of shucking, the crates of empty shells begin to fill up. Two guys begin emptying the crates into the bucket of a forklift, so those shucking oysters never have to stop the process.

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After the forklift bucket fills up, the oyster shells are then taken outside, much to the happiness of waiting seagulls, where they are poured into a dump truck. Later these oysters will be returned to the bay to help sustain the reefs. NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0013
Around 6:15 a.m., the first full buckets of raw oysters are being sent to the next point in the assembly line for washing, sorting, weighing and packaging.NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0014NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0015NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0016
Once the oysters are placed into buckets for delivery, they are sealed, placed in boxes and then covered in ice until it’s time to be loaded onto an 18-wheeler. NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0017NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0018
The sun has now been out for about 15 minutes. Some people are probably just leaving for work or maybe even waking up, and the well-oiled machine that is Jeri’s Seafood is already on a roll for the day. NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0019NEvansPhotos_Jeris_Seafood_Smith_Point_TX_Chambers_County_Home_is_Where_Oysters_Houston_Photographer_Commercial_Editorial_Advertising_Nicki_Evans_Photography_0020
Stay tuned for the next installment of “Home is where…” Hopefully there will be a second part to the Jeris’ Seafood blog, when I have a chance to ride out to the reefs.

Nicki Evans Photography – 2016
Have camera. Will travel.

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer

Home is where… Part 1

Projects

Home is where…Part 1
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

It seems that many people (who grow up in small towns) want to get away from their hometown as soon as they have a chance. Many of them say it’s because there’s nothing to do. They want to see “bigger and better” things.

I always had a tiny desire to live in loft apartment in a big city, most likely inspired by the TV show “Friends.” But my desire was never based on wanting to escape my small-town life, just the chance to do something new and different.

Deep down though, I’ve always been a hometown girl. I loved growing up in a small town. I didn’t think of it so much as a type of lifestyle; I was just having fun being a kid. In hindsight, I know that most of the things I got to do as a kid are not the norm for kids in a big city…or probably not even in most smaller towns today.

We used to ride bikes from one house to the next, stopping to jump on one friend’s trampoline or take a swim in another one’s pool. We cruised around town on go-carts, scrounging up change from couches and laundry baskets to buy a pint of ice cream or a can of Spaghetti-Os at Hill’s Grocery (just for an excuse to drive the go-cart to the store). We fished and had mud wars. We roller bladed while pretending to be Nancy Kerrigan and attempted roller hockey. Other than occasionally stopping to play Donkey Kong on the Super Nintendo, we were rarely indoors.

As we got older and began to drive, whole new realms of fun opened up, as we could now hook up to the boat and go wake boarding any time. After that, summers and weekends revolved completely around the water…lifeguarding at the wave pool some days, wake boarding in “The Channel” at Fort Anahuac Park or occasionally taking a day trip down to the beach.

I guess I’m getting a little sidetracked while reliving my childhood. The point of the story and this blog series is to showcase my hometown, Anahuac, and the county, Chambers, where I grew up and spent the majority of the first 2.5 decades of my life.

Somewhere along the way, I discovered that aside from being a place where you can have a pretty great childhood, there’s so much more to Chambers County…incredible people with stories to tell, lots of history, a variety of industries and beautiful scenery.

There are about 14 cities or communities that make up the county: Anahuac, Double Bayou, Oak Island, Smith Point, Monroe City, Stowell, Winnie, Wallisville, Hankamer, Cove, Beach City, Old River-Winfree, Mont Belvieu and parts of Baytown. The people in these communities are fisherman, farmers, ranchers and hunting guides. Some people raise gators or longhorns, some harvest oysters, some fly crop-dusters,  some help conserve the marshes and wildlife within. And some do a little bit of it all.

For a few years (maybe more), I’ve had it in the back of my mind to do a photo series featuring all of those stories in Chambers County. This summer, I finally decided to stop thinking about it and just make it happen. The photo series, “Home is where…” will hopefully be one that continues for a long time, with blog posts as frequent as possible, depending on when I can fit these little adventures into my schedule. I hope to learn more about the place I call home and meet more people who can tell me their stories. And above all, I hope to tell these stories through my photographs.

Visit Part 2 to see the first story from Chambers County.

 

Nicki Evans Photography – 2016
Have camera. Will travel.

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer

 

Always board. Never bored. Part 1 – Parker rides park

Projects, Recreation

Always board. Never bored. Part 1 – Parker rides park
by Houston commercial photographer – Nicki Evans Photography

A few weeks back I mentioned in my “Love affair with water, Part 1” blog,  I was beginning a new photo series. Because of the Houston floods, I got a later start on the project than planned, but I finally have some images to share, so welcome to the first installment of “Always board. Never bored.”

Meet Parker.

I met Parker a couple of years ago at a grassroots wake boarding tournament just outside of Houston. We stumbled upon he and his family at the tournament because my husband recognized his mom from a restaurant we frequented in a small East Texas town (where we previously lived and where they currently live). Confused yet? Okay, so basically with less than 7 degrees of separation, we knew each other. We ended up hanging out most of the tournament with them and had a great time.

While chatting, we learned about Parker’s start in wake boarding. He grew up in an action sports family. While riding motocross at a Conroe track, he fell (figuratively speaking) into the world of wake boarding and began getting riding tips from one of the wake boarding community greats, Pat Panakos, while Panakos was in town building a new cable park.

At the time of the tournament, Parker had only been wake boarding about a month or six weeks but was already doing quite well in his novice state, hitting rails and landing 360s and backflips.

Fast forward two years to this summer. I started asking around Facebook to see if any wake boarders would be interested in being photographed for my project. Quite a few volunteered, including Parker. So Parker and I met up at Hangar 9 (the Conroe wake park previously mentioned) for an afternoon of him riding and me shooting.

In just two years, Parker is a completely different rider. He did trick after trick, hardly falling on anything. He pressed, grabbed, spun and flipped through so many tricks, I can’t even name them all. Let’s just say, I was thoroughly impressed. Hopefully you’ll be equally as impressed with his riding and the images.

Enjoy!

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Next: Slaying the best of both worlds

Nicki Evans Photography – 2016
Have camera. Will travel. Just add water.

Nicki Evans Photography – Houston, TX – Commercial Photographer