Oak Tree Photography bio picture

Welcome Groupon!

Welcome, Groupon! I’m glad you purchased my on location portrait offer back in September. To give you some sense as to how all this will work, consider the following:

Please, please, please be aware that your Groupon expires on March 31st! I can only honor the offer if you call and book a session that happens no later than that date. After that date, you can still book a session with me, but your Groupon offer will only be worth a discount equal to the face value of your original purchase price, which is $39. So call as soon as you can to schedule your portrait. Please be aware that I am almost always booked 3 to 4 weeks in advance, so if you call the last week of March, I cannot guarantee that I can fit you in before your offer expires! So please call Tom as soon as you can at 918.729.0500.

When you call and we schedule your portrait session, please be aware that this portrait offer will take place in three steps:

  1. We will do a pre-portrait phone consultation with you at the time you call. During this conversation, we will discuss how to prepare for the portraits themselves, including clothing colors and styles. We’ll also guide you through our range of products and how you can best make use of them. At the same time as this conversation, we’ll also email you some resources that you can refer to as you prepare for your portraits.
  2. Then there is the portrait session itself. This will last an hour and will be fun, fast paced, and enjoyable. You’ll have a good time, I guarantee!
  3. Then there is a post-portrait consultation that will take place. This needs to be scheduled no later than 30 days after the portrait session itself. During this session, I will meet with you in person, typically in your home. We’ll look through your digital proofs. You’ll pick out the ones you like, and then make your decisions about how you would like to put them to use. You will make payment in full for your order at this time. I accept cash, check, and major credit cards. Please be aware that this post-portrait consultation will be the only time you will see your images. I do not post images online.

In making this offer, my assumption is that most people will be wanting on location portraits of their families or of their high school senior. However, you could also use this offer for engagement or bridal portraits. Sorry, no pet only or children only portrait sessions. Also, sorry, but I cannot mix portrait types in the same session (like family AND senior portraits in the same session). If you would like more than one type of portrait session, then I will be happy to book another type of session for you at my regular studio rates.

As for family portraits, this offer is for up to six people, including pets. If more than six are involved in the portrait session, then I will need, at the time of the portrait session, to collect an extra $25 per person for each person over the limit.

Being an “on location” portrait photographer means that I will meet with you at an agreed upon scenic location. Currently, my available on location session dates are on Thursday and Saturdays. These Session dates take place at the following locations:

  1. Gilcrease Museum Elegant. We meet on the porch of the Thomas Gilcrease home for timeless estate portraits, then move into the immaculate wooded grounds for a variety of beautiful portraits.
  2. Stuart Park Classic. This hidden jewel is near the Gilcrease Museum and has flowers in the Spring, colors in the fall, and verdant landscapes every time in between.
  3. Tulsa University Campus. We meet on the west esplanade of the McFarlin Library, and then use the ancient oaks and vintage stone of “the U” for a range of priceless portraits.
  4. McNellie’s Urban Edgy. We meet in the side parking lot of McNellie’s on East 1st Street, and then walk the back alleys of the Blue Dome District for portraits with grit and style.
  5. Will Rogers Timeless. We start on the south portico of the Will Rogers Memorial in Claremore, then move to a spacious private yard with landscaped vistas. For residents of Rogers County, these are the two places to be!

This Groupon offer is for the above listed locations only. If you wish to have on location portraits taken outside of these areas, including at your home, then please contact me for information on the additional rates that apply for other locations.

Well hey, didn’t this post go on and on? But I wanted you to have a clear idea of what was involved so that you could get the fullest enjoyment out of this offer. I trust that you will purchase a Groupon for Oak Tree Photography. I look forward to creating great portraits that both you and your descendants will treasure.

Tom Launius
Oak Tree Photography
918.729.0500 or 918.729.0501
tom@oaktree.pro

Bridal Portrait, Done Right!

A Beautiful Bride in Claremore,           OklahomaSometimes you get what you pay for. And such was the sad case with Rachel and her original wedding photographer. Let’s just discretely say that “free wedding photography” can turn into the “high price of cheap”. Her portraits didn’t turn out so well. So Rachel and her mother came to me, asking if I could do some after-the-fact bridal portraits. I was more than willing to oblige. The bride and her gown were still a match made in heaven, the hair stylist and make up artist were once again called upon, and we enjoyed the splendor of a Spring evening with everything green and the sun warm and smiling. The portraits were going along swimmingly, in no small measure because the groom, now a husband, was present and attentive. At one point, when the young husband stood to my right,  I asked the bride to turn towards him and smile. Now, up to this point, she had been looking at the camera and smiling in the direction of the photographer, who would be me. And the smiles were certainly more than acceptable for a portrait. But for her to turn her face towards her beloved and smile…now there was radiance. Her smile showed all the joy of their young life together, and all of the expectation for many years of joy to come.

Tom Launius
Oak Tree Photography
918.729.0500
tom@oaktree.pro

Close Up Photography Class

Fuschia Pink GeraniumYippee! I get to teach again at Tulsa Tech. This time, I’m teaching a course on close up photography. We’ll be using special lenses called “macro” lenses that allow you to get extremely close to small objects and yet still keep them in crisp focus. Of course, in the midst of a gorgeous Oklahoma Spring, what better things are there to photograph than flowers? To maximize our fun, every class will involve a major field trip to a beautiful location in Tulsa. We began at the Rancho Flores Garden Center in Tulsa at 4516 East 31st Street. They had the most amazing array of flowers, a super-abundance of them in stock just in time for the Spring planting season. The staff was exceedingly gracious and I appreciate all that they did for the class. And the class? They had a blast playing in the beautiful evening light that set off the flowers to their full advantage. I enjoyed guiding the class in everything from how to focus, how to light, how to compose. Why, I even got a chance to compose a few images of my own. The geranium to the right is one of mine. Such vibrant colors sure get you in the mood for Spring, don’t they?

The class will meet well into May. With field trips lined up to places like the Tulsa Rose Garden and Mohawk Park, how could we fail to have the time of our lives?!

Tom Launius
Oak Tree Photography
918.729.0500
tom@oaktree.pro

DD Ranch Branding

A photographer’s life is varied…which keeps everything fun! Here is a HUGE set of images from a recent calf branding I had the privilege of photographing. All of these images were taken in Rogers County, Oklahoma at the ranch of Mark DeWeese. To be honest, I’m just a city boy. But the western life is mighty attractive. The cowboys I met were all men of the highest character, with a work ethic unmatched anywhere else. And they were real gentlemen.  Why, at one point during the day, one of them even lent me his horse, in the hopes that I could get some pictures from that unique point of view. I managed to do so, but I was actually paying much more attention to the horse than to the photography at that point! At least the horse was gentle and forgiving. Thanks, Spook, for taking such good care of me!

Tom Launius
Oak Tree Photography

Tyler’s Claremore High School Class of 2011 Senior Portrait

Claremore High School Class of 2011 Senior PortraitEvery senior portrait session is like a story, with a beginning, middle, and end. And so was Tyler’s portrait session. Only, his story had a special wrinkle. Every part of the story was about the same thing: the Oklahoma wind! Oh my, on the day of his session, the wind blew and blew. Ten. Twenty. Thirty miles an hour. And when the wind gets going that fast, all of a photographer’s standard tricks for shielding your subject from the wind are challenged to the max. Place your subject on the downwind side of a large object (like a building)? The wind swirls around the corners and swoops right where you’re standing. Hold up a diffusion screen to block the wind? Don’t even think about it—the wind will pull it right out of your hands. Place your subject on the downwind side of two large objects (like two buildings at right angles)? The wind finds a way to skip over the top and swoop down on you. So what’s a photographer to do? Stay nimble. Keep laughing. And, most of all, notice that even the most steady of winds is not steady at all. It pauses. It blows. It pauses. It blows. It’s like the wind is breathing. As you get in touch with the rhythm of the wind, you can almost tell when it’s going to blow, and just when it’s about to pause. So when do you take the picture? Well, during the pause, of course!

Tyler was more than a good sport while the wind blew during his senior portrait session. He was having a good time, and so was I. Sure, he had to straighten his hair more than a few times. And we had to wait for the pause in the wind. But the outcome more than speaks for itself. The day may have been blustery. But Tyler, Senior Class of 2011 at Claremore High School, looks confident and composed. And why shouldn’t he? In Oklahoma, wind is so nearly an everyday thing that we might as well take it in stride.

Tom Launius
Oak Tree Photography