Netanya: Travel Recovery Day, Reception

This is day 2 with Ecclesia Houston on a Breaking Bread Journeys tour of the holy land. I won’t write much today as it was basically a free day with the group taking it easy to recover from travel and jet lag. We enjoyed a small reception for the entire group to meet each other where we also met Christina Samara, co-owner of Breaking Bread Journeys.

We then enjoyed a group dinner at an outdoor cafe nearby the hotel. The views of the Meditteranean Sea from Netanya are breathtaking; we enjoyed walks on the beach, explored more of the town (there are cats everywhere, so I had to include a token cat-portrait impression or two), and took in yet another gorgeous sunset. The weather has been absolutely perfect. The official tour kicks off tomorrow bright and early. Here are some photos from the day. I could not decide on my favorite sunset shots, so I’m just throwing all of them on here– hope you enjoy!

Netanya: Arrival day!

Hi, I’m here in the holy land to document another group from Ecclesia Houston embarking on a Breaking Bread Journeys tour. It’s really late and I’m still recovering from the 8-hour jet lag. But I wanted to try to get something up before I sleep to commemorate the arrival day for an amazing group of new friends who have all come together to discover the beauty, depth, history, and diversity of this magical land. Here are some images from this first day together in Netanya, Israel, a simple beachside town with many beautiful, serene scenes to welcome even the most travel-weary sojourner.

Alaska Day 3: Chugach National Forest

Today was my last day of my all-too-brief visit with dear friends John & Heather. I was fortunate enough to get a tour of the stunning Chugach National Forest south of Anchorage, where we explored a few trails and drove to various scenic vistas. The weather was amazing, in the high 30s; sunny yet still quite invigorating for this coastal Texas boy (I consider anything under 45f “freezing”). We took the Seward Highway from Anchorage around the fjord-like Turnagain Arm toward the town of Hope, Alaska. The morning fog soon lifted to reveal brilliant cloud-dotted blue skies. Heavenly.

Click/Tap any photo to start a slideshow. 

Nicaragua: Compassion International visit

Continuing my tour with Ecclesia Houston… Today we woke up at the crack of dawn to begin our journey back to Managua to visit a Compassion International program. There we met 20 children that members of our group sponsor for education and nutrition support through Compassion. It was a very moving experience that neither the sponsors nor the children will soon forget. Compassion staff had several activities planned for the group, and all involved had a great time. There are over 46,000 children sponsored by Compassion donors in Nicaragua alone. It’s an absolutely impressive operation, making an exponential difference in the lives of an entire generation.

Then we made our way back to the coastal village we’re basing out of just in time for a spectacular sunset. Pastor Chris Seay led us in prayer before our evening meal. This group of 60 has already begun to bond and all are having a great time getting to know each other and the local culture.

These trips are always very challenging for me as a photographer because of the vast amount of subject matter, shooting hundreds of images, coupled with having to narrow them down and speed edit on a daily basis. Learning to let go and just release these as they are. Soooo hard! But I love it!

Click/tap on the first photo to begin a slideshow.

Blake & Meg Engagement

I had the honor of shooting this engagement, literally the engagement itself, and the portraits afterward. Located at the extreme east end of Galveston Island, this peaceful spot was like a secluded beach with very little foot traffic. I hid in a bush in the dunes while waiting for them to arrive at the spot he had arranged…

Here was the beautiful home and the setup for “the spot”…

I nervously awaited the couple, and then finally they arrived! Here’s the sequence of my “spy shots” …

Then I emerged and she was surprised yet again… they were a lovely couple. I managed to capture a few good portraits and then let them get back to their special time. As usual, I had a very difficult time narrowing it down from the 500 shots from the evening. There were some sequences just too sweet not to share! The light and environment was also worth documenting…

Then the walk back to the home where the party was waiting… great time for all.