Memorial Day 2018


This is my hometown…~ Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band

Monday, Memorial Day, dawned with the sky was as gray as a battleship. However, the threat of rain never amounted to more than that – just a threat.

My little hometown held it’s annual Memorial Day Parade and it reaffirmed how much I like Allentown.

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The parade saw future farmers and current farmers, a number of local sports teams, Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, equestrians and old cars and clowns and Shriners and hot rods. Best of all, a nice crowd of people sitting on the curb or folding chairs, taking pictures, shooting video and cheering for those doing the parading.

I kind of like my point of view as a parade participant. I get to walk with Chase and Matt (Liv was up a bit with the Girl Scouts). Snapped a few shots with the little P-n-S. Think the one that leads off this post is the best of the lot – the crowd in front of the small business, Matt tossing candy, the kids in the front happy to get some.



A good start as we march into Summer 2018.

My Memorial Day post has become somewhat of an annual occurrence. Here’s a look at some past posts:

© Mark V. Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | All Rights Reserved 2018

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JSP Visual Week In Review ~ 05.27.18

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As parents, you never know what will stick with your kids.

Will they grow up like you, will they hold the same values, will they hate split pea soup the way you do?

Will they have the same interests – not that they should, just wondering

This week, Olivia said she wanted to shoot the sunrise for a school project.

“Well, we don’t HAVE to do it, but we’ve been talking weather in school so I want to do it,” she said. “I’m getting up at 5:15 a.m. to see it, ok?”

Now, me being me, I just can’t say “Sure, see you at breakfast.” I have to angle my way in.

“Sure,” I said “Want me to go with you?”

She did, so at 5:17 a.m. she was waking me up. I gathered up my Canon 70D and my small Canon point-and-shoot to give to her and outside we went.

We are at the end of a long street with a lot of trees. While the sun is “technically” rising around 5:30, I knew we wouldn’t really see it for another 25 minutes or so, once it cleared the trees.

To get a better shot, I suggested we hop in the truck and just go out of the neighborhood a little, to the field across from the farm up the street.

Having this general knowledge was key. She and I were out there shooting the sunrise, me the proud papa ’cause I was shooting the sunrise with my 11 year old daughter. Not sure she had ever “really” seen one before.

Yes, we’ve left on vacation trips early and have caught a couple that way. But this was the first time to she made the effort to set her alarm and go track it down.

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This was the second time we did something photographically-related. Last Sunday, I was shooting a performance the young kids did at the church – a recreation of a bible story they called “Malice In The Palace.” Actually, I was there just to run the video camera, but I had to shoot stills too.

So, while I was using the long lens in the balcony, I sent Liv down with my Fuji to get some shots from that lower angles (second tile above).

She already shows some penchant for photography, much more than I did at that age. Will she pick up this passion of mine for good and solid?

Too early to tell. But I’ve be lying if I said I didn’t hope so.


This Week’s Links:

What I Watched This Week: Last Flag Flying.

What I’m reading this week (still): Noir by Christopher Moore

Solving an Ansel Adams mystery.

A photographer’s love letter to New York.

Inspiration: Taking the photos no one else has taken.

The last days of Time, Inc.

Walking the streets with Geoff Dyer and Garry Winogrand

“It is not enough to photograph the obviously picturesque.” ~ Dorothea Lange, who would have turned 123 this week (May 21 is her birthday)

© Mark V. Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | All Rights Reserved 2018

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The Big Review


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Remember last month when I wrote about entering a portrait contest via Lensculture?

As I said then, my work didn’t make the short list. But as part of the process, all those submitting were able to get a free review of their images from one of the judges.

Have you ever had your images critically reviewed? Not me, really. I’ve never really had my portfolio looked at or commented on in this way so I was (hesitantly) looking forward to this feedback. I was hoping it would be too harsh, but I didn’t want shallow accolades, either.

I thought I would share with you the feedback I received. Read on…

So, there it is.

First, I’m pretty happy with this review. It’s was a bit more thoughtful than I expected. I know they had a lot to review, so I appreciate I got more than just a few sentences.

I also agree with the final assessment. I love environmental portraits, and feel they are more exiting than “seamless background portraits.”

Maybe EP’s are easier to make exciting. So what would I need to do to make a seamless exciting (save for having a famous person in front of my camera). This is a big pet-peeve of mine when I review others work on social media – all the fawning that happens when [insert big name photog here] shoots [insert famous person here] when the portraits are as pedantic as can be. Maybe it’s jealousy on my part, but many of us will NEVER get a famous person in front of our lens, at least not regularly.

So, how do I make that seamless portrait exciting, sans [insert famous person here]? Is it creative lighting? Better posing? A bit of both?

I liked this feedback. Can’t say I really disagree with anything said here. Going forward, I know I’ll continue to shoot both types of portraits. The goal will be to do a good a job possible to make each on interesting.

So, have you ever had such a review? What do you think of this one? Agree? Disagree? Too honest? Not honest enough?

Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

© Mark V. Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | All Rights Reserved 2018

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BTS Sunday: Hustling at Mid-Night


A quick behind-the-scenes look at The Mid-Night Hustle image from Friday.

Truth be told, I probably should have popped another background or overhead light to provide a bit more separation between the black hat and the black background.

I did like the soft red glow the tissue paper gave me to simulate a neon light look. A cheap and easy way to alter the light.

Shot with my Fuji X100T, f/2, 1/15th, ISO 400.

And, yes, I purposefully hyphenated mid-night. The Man In The Fedora was having his conversation around 1:30-2 a.m., not at midnight.

There you have it. Simple and easy Jersey Noir. 

Have any questions? Drop them in the comments or shoot me an email.

© Mark V. Krajnak | JerseyStyle Photography | All Rights Reserved 2018

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