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RSU Public Television 25th Anniversary Celebration

Back in the days before there was cable and hundreds of channels from which to choose, Public Television singlehandedly nurtured my intellectual and aesthetic life with its programs on history, art, music, politics. And interesting enough, now that there are a gazillion channels from which to choose, Public Television still informs and challenges me in countless helpful ways. So, I was pleased when asked to photograph the 25th Anniversary Celebration for the Rogers State University Public Television Station. As is customary, I began by taking studio quality portraits of those who have come to the event. This is so much fun: extremely fast paced, with people lined up eager for a portrait, and only a minute to a minute and a half to greet each individual or couple, to pose them to look their best, then to draw a great expression from them for a superb portrait. I find it exhilarating. The portraits are in the gallery at the bottom of this posting.

If you are one of the attendees at the event and would like a complimentary digital copy of your portrait in this posting, just get in touch with me and I’ll be happy to email it to you. Also, please remember the special promotion that I will be doing for all of you: if you contact me and book a portrait session that takes place before Thanksgiving, and at the time of booking your session, you make a $20 contribution to RSU Public Television, then I will waive the session fee and also supply you with a complimentary 8×10 from the session. This offer is good not only for you, but for any of your friends, family, and colleagues. So, tell them about this terrific offer to support RSU Public Television, get in touch with me yourself, and lets create some marvelous portraits!

Tom Launius, CPP
Oak Tree Photography

Great Gatsby

The flappers and molls, gangsters and style-setters of the Roaring Twenties were in full regalia at the Will Rogers Memorial on a September Saturday, when the stars came out and the Fall breezes were blowing. I enjoyed the privilege of being the photographer for the evening, and I had no shortage of people, dressed to the nines, eager to pose for the camera and show their Great Gatsby style. If you’re one of those people and you see your picture among those displayed here, get in touch with me by phone or email, and I can arrange for you to receive one of the images.

Tom Launius, CPP
Oak Tree Photography

Poses with Poise

When it comes to portrait photography, no one wants to “look posed”. In fact, I’ve had clients tell me, “I don’t want to be posed in my pictures”. At the same time, everyone wants to look good in their portraits. And, if that is going to happen, just “being yourself” or “acting natural” in front of the camera won’t cut it. In fact, that approach usually leaves people looking heavy, tired, or awkward in their pictures. So, I direct people in ways to stand, where to place their hands, and, most of all, how to connect with one another to show their bond of love. As I direct them, though, I keep things playful, encouraging them to breathe and to have fun. As I do this, I enjoy myself too, and the results show in the portraits! The above portrait is a pleasing example of this: the family and I had a great time together during the entire session, and once we came to the point of taking this portrait of the whole family, they were relaxed and responsive to my direction, confident that I was on their side and was leading them into looking their absolute best. Do they “look posed”  in the portrait? (That is, do they look awkward and unnatural?) Not at all! But were they posed? Well, yes they were, but in an artful way that makes them look like they were just being themselves. Which, of course, is the point with all posing!

Tom Launius
918.729.0500

Fulbright Scholar

A portrait of a young woman in a black dressI’ve had the privilege of photographing more than a few people down through the years, but rarely have I had someone with such an outstanding combination of attractiveness, personality, and accomplishment, as I have found in Lee. She recently graduated with honors from Oklahoma University, and her mother asked me to create portraits of her before she moved on into the next phase of her life. And an adventurous life that will be! After a season of travel and study in Washington, D.C., she will be serving in Malawi as a Fulbright Scholar, researching farming practices and the impact of hybrid seeds. Having never before had the honor of photographing a Fulbright Scholar, I found Lee to be a totally delightful, engaging person, bright and personable as we enjoyed a beautiful evening portrait session at my outdoor portrait studio in Claremore, Oklahoma. When Lee and her mother saw the results of the portrait session, they were thrilled! One of the images even ended up in an article about Lee written in the Tulsa World. I’m proud to have taken Lee’s portraits, and I wish her well in all that she has to look forward to in life.

Tom Launius, CPP
918.729.0500

Tweenager

In the olden days (translated: “up until the last few years”), senior portraits were only for high school seniors. But nowadays, that fun experience has moved back a few years. Now, more and more often, the so-called “tweenager”, someone who is 10, 11, or 12 years old, is getting in on the action: multiple outfit changes, multiple locations, multiple poses, major fun. Maddie, in the portrait above, is just one of many tweenagers in the Tulsa area whose portrait I’ve taken recently. And–guess what?–they are fun! The boy or girl has the best time, and the pictures turn out great. A tweenager portrait session is a great time in life to get some extraordinary portraits made.

Tom Launius
Oak Tree Photography
1.918.729.0500