Yorick Bites!

Yorick Bites!
'Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him...' David Nields has fun with a prop skull in the spirit of the classic scene from 'Hamlet.' Nields will be teaching an upcoming acting Shakespeare class at the Imperial Centre.

This Guy Was Excited

You've won...A NEW CAR!
William Johnson celebrates after winning a Chevrolet Blazer in a drawing held Tuesday by BHT Inc. for the top workers at its McDonald's restaurants. Johnson has been without transportation for the past two weeks after his previous vehicle broke down.

Winter Wonderland

Winter Wonderland
Natalie Harrison, 9, on right, plays in a fake snowfall Friday during Rocky Mount's winter wonderland event at the Imperial Centre. Children at the event were able to sit on Santa's lap and play in the snow-like foam suds that were released every hour.
Below: Daniel Simon, left, and Ryan Agan, both 5, try to catch the fake snow--Simon in his hands and Agan, perhaps unwisely, in his mouth. Bottom: Victoria Hennessey, 7, plays in a fake snowfall.

Winter Wonderland

Winter Wonderland

State Champs!

2-A State Champs
Tarboro's Brandon Richardson, above, rallies his team after they defeated Burnsville Mountain Heritage in the 2-A state championship game Friday Dec. 11 at Kenan Stadium in Chapel Hill. Burnsville Mountain Heritage defender Clay Parker, below, tackles Tarboro running back Chris Lane Friday.


Offensive player of the game
Tarboro running back Chris Lane, above, was named the offensive player of the game.

Tears of Joy
Shedding tears of joy, Tarboro's Takoby Cofield, right, walks onto the field with teammates Jamias Williams, center, and Darrius Staton after Tarboro's victory. 
Got the trophy
Tarboro's Markell Pettaway shows off the 2-A state championship trophy.

Rocky Mount Christmas Parade

Rocky Mount Christmas Parade

Rocky Mount Christmas Parade

Rocky Mount Christmas Parade

Emotional Rollercoaster


Southern Nash players, above, react as their team takes on South Johnston in overtime during the Eastern Regional final. Only minutes later players try to collect their emotions after losing the game with a blocked extra point attempt.


The Guy with BIG Arms

Meet Mr. Olympia

Brandon Williams, left, has his iphone signed by 2009 Mr. Olympia Jay Cutler on Oct. 19 during an appearance at the Fit 4 Life on Sunset Avenue in Rocky Mount. Below: Cutler gets in a workout at Fit 4 Life.

Meet Mr. Olympia

Losing her Home

Losing her home

Ethel Rivera poses at the front door of her home on Hunter Hill Road on Nov. 11. Rivera is in the process of moving out of the home that will be demolished to make way for a widening project for Hunter Hill Road.

Service With a Smile

Two generations

Sgt. Monika King, left, of the U.S. Army 849th Quartermaster Company and Erma Lucas, Retired U.S. Navy, share a laugh on Nov. 10 during a dinner at the U.S. Army Reserve Center in Rocky Mount. The Joint Veteran's Committee of Nash and Edgecombe Counties hosted the event as a send off for the 849th, who will be deployed to Afghanistan on February 4 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Pharmacy Business Portrait

Northside Pharmacy

Pharmacist and owner Dr. Angela Stokes shows off the compounding lab at Northside Family Pharmacy on Bishop Road. The compounding lab is a facility used to mix custom capsules, creams and ointments--a feature not found in many modern pharmacies.

Victory at the 'Junction'

Victory at the 'Junction'

SouthWest Edgecombe players celebrate following the teams victory over Tarboro in the cross county rivalry game that's become known as the 'Function at the Junction' at SouthWest Edgecombe High School.

N.C. Wesleyan Game Day

N.C. Wesleyan Gameday
Running back L.J. Scott, left, and wide receiver Donte' Mack relax in the locker loom at N.C. Wesleyan on Sept. 12 while waiting on their shuttle bus to Northern Nash High School for a home game against Salisbury. With no football stadium on campus, even the team's home games are on the road.

This fall, I spent a whole Saturday documenting a game day for the N.C. Wesleyan College football team, from breakfast to victory. With a few news assignments squeezed in there for good measure, it was a long day, but a fun project.

You can view the full slideshow of photos here: www.rockymounttelegram.com/sports/nc-wesleyan-football-ga...

N.C. Wesleyan wide receiver Devontae Atkins, below, leaps over Salisbury University defender Phillip Sheppard during game action Saturday at Northern Nash High School.

Wesleyan Football

Football Illustrations

Collision Course

Each Friday this fall we ran a piece of feature art with the prep preview story in the Telegram. For several of the biggest games I did a photo illustration.  This one is for the biggest game of the regular season around here--the cross-county rivalry of Tarboro and SouthWest Edgecombe.

I composited elements from about 9 different pictures to make the train picture below. I still like the concept, but being my first real attempt at such a large scale composite I now look back and see a lot of little things I could have done differently.

Please note: no football players were harmed in the making of these photographs. =)

Use Your Head!

Faith Christian's Zack Roberson, above, makes a header against Shannon Forest's Devon Tyson during an Oct. 27 game at Faith Christian School. Wilson Greenfield's Mark Dandanell, below, makes a header during the NCISAA state soccer championship game Oct. 31 against Faith Christian at the Gillette Soccer Complex in Wilson.

NCISAA State Championship

Face Off

Friday Face-Off
SouthWest Edgecombe quarterback Chris Ellerbe, left, and Rocky Mount High quarterback Collins Cuthrell.

The sports editor came to me with an idea a few weeks ago. We would shoot these two quarterbacks facing opposite directions and run the photos side by side so that the end product would look like they were starring each other down--except they would each be on their own turf.

It inspired me a little. The above photos are what I ended up shooting. I lit and posed the two exactly the same way (except in in opposite directions of course), and tried to expose the sky so I had dark skin on a lighter background and light skin on a darker background for contrast. If only they had different color jerseys...

Anyway, I was pleased with the outcome.

The picture below is of Nash Central High School multi-sport standout athlete Dominique Holloway, taken for an athlete-of-the-week type feature. It's unrelated to the above photos, except that it was taken on the same busy evening of football portraits across two counties!

Stand Out

Down East Viking Football Classic

Viking Football

Elizabeth City State wide receiver Dexter Manly, right, lets a pass slip through his hands as Chowan's Jackey Moore applies pressure during game action in the Down East Viking Football Classic at the Rocky Mount Sports Complex. A member of the Elizabeth City State marching band drum line, below, makes faces while performing at half time.


Viking Football

Elizabeth City State defensive end Malcolm Jenkins, right, strips the ball from the hand of Chowan quarterback CJ Westler.

Comic Shop

Comic Shop
Shop owner Jimmy Taylor surrounded with comic books at The Reader's Choice in Rocky Mount.

I was thrilled to find out that my new town has a decent little comic shop with a friendly owner. I was also thrilled to to see nice soft light flooding in from big windows in the front.

Taylor, like most people I photograph, was a little uncomfortable in front of the camera. When I shoot portraits I typically ask my subjects to stand where I need them and tell them they can just relax while I take a few test shots. At some point I discovered that some of the best poses and expressions where in the test shots when the subject was at ease.

Now I sometimes use the 'test shot' statement as a little trick when I want to get people just being themselves with minimal posing or instruction from me. It's pretty cool when you think about it; that with this little slight I'm able to set up lights and go about doing a location shoot right in front of a person without them even realizing they're having their picture made!

DDR Madness!

Chris Alderman and Daniel McLean, right, work up a sweat playing a Dance Dance Revolution game at the Mini Putt Family Entertainment Center in Rocky Mount. Below: McLean's feet are a blur as he attempts to keep up with a challenging song on the "Dance Dance Revolution" game.


Candid Politics

Babington Technologies
U.S. Rep. Bob Etheridge, D-2nd District, above right, shares a laugh with Bob Babington during a tour of the Babington Technologies, LLC. plant off of N. Wesleyan Boulevard on Aug. 27.

Photojournalists inevitably shoot a lot of politicians. It's a fact of life that these events can sometimes be a drag, but they don't have to be. This photo is proof that you can indeed capture interesting candid moments from political events.


The above shot is from a feature on back to school fashion. It was a very energetic and fun shoot, the kids seemed perfectly comfortable in front of the camera--maybe even too comfortable.

Oh, and I nailed this shots on the first take!

Victims' Families

Victim's Family
Diana Nicholson holds a photo of her 28 year-old slain daughter Taraha Nicholson on Wednesday at her Whitakers home. Taraha was the fourth of five women found dead in Western Edgecombe County since 2005.

Tarboro Press Conference
Pepita Hargrove speaks to the media Tuesday outside the Edgecombe County Sheffif's office in Tarboro. Hargrove's sister Jarniece was the latest of six women found murdered in the vicinity of Seven Bridges Road. 

Locked Out

Locked Out
Layvonne McAuley, a longtime worker at the QVC Rocky Mount, inc. distribution center, discusses her concerns about the recent 401K dispute workers have had with the company at a flea market on Kingsboro Road. Many of the companies workers found themselves locked out when they came to work this week with little explanation from the company.

This assignment was a piece of cake!

Chocolate Delight

This assignment was a piece of cake!




Light from a neon sign refracts through wine glasses at Low-Key Sports Bar and Grill in Rocky Mount.

Fall Again


I posted some of the individual photos back in the fall when I took them, but I started thinking they would make a good grid; all the photos were done essentially the same, but no two are alike. No two leaves fall the same way.

I made these pictures by taking a variety of fallen leaves from my back yard and dropping them in front of the camera during a long exposure.

I had two strobes: one set to fire on first-curtain sync and one on second-curtain sync. A tungsten hot light provided the slightly warm blurred streak of color in between the two (mostly) sharp exposures. Some photos were done with only one of the flashes.


This blog is changing.

I'm cutting the pork and streamlining everything in an effort to make it more about the pictures. This change will affect the type of content posted to some extent, but most of the changes will be to the design.

I've dimmed the lights (darker page background), made the pictures bigger (yay!) and changed the template. The goal is to make the picture stand out more and have this blog and my website look the same--you know, like they actually go together.

The process left some older posts looking like they didn't belong, so I have gone back and made updates to much of the archived content on this site to preserve continuity. Still, I can't go back and redo everything, so some older posts will still have the slightly smaller photos of before.




Freddy "Street Genie" Greene performs on the soprano saxophone Friday evening at the Harambee Festival at Harambee Square in Rocky Mount. Greene is known for his virtuosic performances that frequently involve wandering through the crowd while playing. Below: Sauuda Eshe, left, dances with others in attendance as Greene and his band perform.



Ernest Barnes, 89, above, enjoys a hot dog and a little solitude before the concert. A World War II veteran, Barnes states he doesn't care for jazz--prefering gospel music--but he lives nearby and came to the jazz festival anyway. Downtown Rocky Mount, below, provided a quaint backdrop for performances, complemented by unseasonably cool temperatures.


Happy Fourth!

Happy Fourth!
A gospel singer performs Saturday at the Fourth of July celebration at Englewood Baptist Church in Rocky Mount.

I photographed three separate Independance Day celebrations around town this year, but I didn't get to stick around long enough for fireworks at any of them. How lame! But, hey, we do have deadlines to meet, and I got some good pictures just the same.

Gospel on the Block

Union Man

Union Man
Portrait of Peter Tapia, former President of the Rocky Mount chapter of The National Association of Letter Carriers.


Calvin Staton is surrounded by a spray of sparks as he grinds down new welds on a car in for repair Thursday at Medlin Brothers Body Shop on Hunter Hill Road.