Saying Goodbye to a 300 Year Old Friend

As far back as anyone can remember the massive Oak tree stood over the back of the home on my family’s farm in Lexington, South Carolina. This majestic tree filtered the morning light like none other I have ever seen, it shaded our family cookouts and fish fries during the summer, played host to many of my childhood fantasies of fighting villains, and many occasions drew my ire in the fall as it dropped an unprecedented amount of leaves that required my young arms to rake, as it did for countless generations before me.

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Product Photography Innovative Arms 2016 9mm Lineup

I had the opportunity to spend a few days in the studio during the fall of 2015 to produce some product photography of several new products being released by Innovative Arms (an Elgin, SC based designer and manufacturer of NFA firearms and silencers) at the 2016 SHOT Show®. Thankfully that wait is now over and we can share some of the images we created to help them launch and market their new products. Over the next few days as SHOT Show goes on we will share some of the product photos we created for the launch.

Today, lets take a look at their new 9SX 9mm silencer as well as their new Sig Sauer MPX Integral.

Innovative Arms 9mm Suppressors and Integral MPX
The Innovative Arms 9SX provides the 9mm performance you’ve been looking for in a compact size. Accommodating both rifle and pistol the 9SX is rated for full auto 9mm fire and is user serviceable for cleaning. The 9SX includes a booster piston, fixed barrel spacer and a tool for disassembly.

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Product Photography Innovative Arms Interceptor Silencers

We had the opportunity to spend a few days in the studio during the fall of 2015 to do some product photography of several new products being released by Innovative Arms (an Elgin, SC based designer and manufacturer of NFA firearms and silencers) at the 2016 Shooting, Hunting, and Outdoor Trade Show (SHOT Show®). Thankfully that wait is now over and we can share some of the images we created to help them launch and market their new products. Over the next few days as SHOT Show goes on we will share some of the product photos we created for the launch.

The Innovative Arms INTERCEPTOR™ 5.56 gives excellent sound suppression, recoil reduction and precision accuracy in a compact package. Seen here mounted to a Custom 12” AR-15 SBR. All INTERCEPTORS are full auto rated on barrels down to 10″ and are available with or without our patented Exoskeleton Shroud and in colors: Black, OD Green, Flat Dark Earth or Brushed Stainless.

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Inside Firearms Manufacturer PTR Industries for USA Today

A few weeks ago I spent the day at firearm manufacturer PTR Industries in Aynor, SC during an editorial photography and video assignment for our client USA Today.

Aynor, SC — GunsRelocated: When Connecticut and New York passed strict gun laws following the 2012 Newtown massacre, some gun-makers firmly rooted in the heart of the firearm industry made life and business-altering decisions. They left. In their pursuit of cheap land and deep tax breaks offered by friendly suitors from South Carolina, Texas and Nevada, they have been forced to contend with new challenges: finding skilled workers from the plentiful pool left behind in the so-called “New England Gun Valley’’ and new distribution channels to get their products to market.– Photo by Brett Flashnick, Freelance

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Rayovac Battery for MacBook Pro: A Cautionary Tale

Rayovac Laptop Battery for MacBook Pro, COM11061, purchased on November 16, 2011 has a catastropic cell explosion after only 6 months of use. (© 2012 Brett Flashnick/flashnick visuals, llc.)

Batteries for most of the devices that we as photographers use these days are far from common at local shops (especially here in Columbia, SC) and far from cheap at the specialty retailers who stock them.  Aside from a few devices that use standard AA (LR6) batteries, electronic camera accessories use special rechargeable or photo lithium batteries like the Canon Speedlite ST-E2 transmitter which takes a 2CR5 lithium, or the Sekonic L-358 Light Meter that takes a CR123A, or our backup Audio Technica wired lavalier mic that uses 357 button cells, not to mention the cameras themselves, on the notebook computers we use to process our images on location.  In situations where I’ve been in a pinch and needed something immediately the folks at the local Batteries Plus store on Harbison Boulevard have always come to my rescue.  They always seem to have what I need in stock at a fair price with good customer service. I can’t count the number of Rayovac Lithium 2CR5’s, CR123A’s, CR2450’s and 357 button cell batteries that I have bought from them over the years.

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PPP at the SC Book Festival

This is an open invitation for everyone to join me for special panel discussion of the Palmetto Portraits Project at the SC Book Festival this Sunday, May 20, 2012 from 2:20-3:10pm.

The festival and panel are free to attend and will be held at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center, located at  1101 Lincoln Street, in Columbia, SC.

I will be joined by Series II photographer Vinnie Deas-Moore from Columbia, SC, Series III photographer Cecil Williams from Orangeburg, SC, and I will be representing the photographers of Series IV.  We will also be accompanied by author, Josephine Humphreys who wrote the forward for the book, and the panel will be moderated by Harriett Green, Director of Visual Arts at the SC Arts Commission (and my adviser for the Artists Ventures Initiative grant from the SC Arts Commission.) For more information about the 16th Annual South Carolina Book Festival please visit scbookfestival.org.

The panel discussion is scheduled from 2:20-3:10 in the Richland Meeting Room (located at the back) of the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center. (see map below)

If you are just hearing about this project for the first time, here is a brief history of the Palmetto Portraits Project, as stated in the book.

In 2006, the first year of the Palmetto Portraits Project, the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) commissioned six photographers to focus on portraying South Carolinians in the Lowcountry, the Piedmont, and the Upstate, reflecting the full range and diversity of the state’s citizens, occupations, and recreational activities. In creating a collection of art to display within MUSe’s educational and clinical buildings, the university hoped to remind students, faculty, staff, and visitors of those they serve at MUSC and throughout South Carolina. Each photographer was given free rein to subject matter. MUSC did not establish any guidelines or place restrictions on whom the photographers might choose as subjects. At the conclusion of the inaugural year, the six photographers invited six additional photographers to create the second series for the Palmetto Portraits Project. This ongoing method was repeated for Series III and Series IV, concluding in 2009. In this way, these accomplished artists helped perpetuate the project, broadening the scope of participation and reaching other photographers throughout the state.

The undertaking was managed by the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston. Project partners and the selected photographers expanded the ultimate impact by donating an identical set of finished photographs to the permanent collection of the South Carolina State Museum, in Columbia. This publication accompanies the exhibition, and serves as a lasting record of this historic adventure.

Reminiscent of the Farm Security Administration’s photographs of 1930s’ America, the Palmetto Portraits Project is a visual survey of state residents at the end of the first decade of the twenty-first century. Novelist Josephine Humphreys provides a first-person narrative about what it is like to be “from here,” and contemplates our shared kinship. Mark Sloan of the Halsey Institute offers insight into the privileged access that portrait photographers have long provided into the lives of their subjects. In the Afterword, South Carolina State Museum chief curator of art Paul E. Matheny, III, offers an assessment of how these portraits may be viewed by future generations, and applauds the photographers for capturing “the soul of the state.”

The Palmetto Portraits Project partners include the Medical University of South Carolina, Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art at the College of Charleston, and South Carolina State Museum, in Columbia.

Palmetto Portraits Project Book Details

Hardcover: 176 pages

Publisher: University of South Carolina Press (December 15, 2011)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0615354742

ISBN-13: 978-0615354743

Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 10.3 x 0.9 inches

Available for purchase at the SC Book Festival, Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.

Speaking at SC Center for the Book 2/16/2012

I’m excited to announce my first speaking engagement of 2012. On Thursday, February 16, 2012 I will be speaking about my participation in the Palmetto Portraits Project at the South Carolina State Library’s Center for the Book (an affiliate of the Library of Congress Center for the Book). This program is presented in partnership in cooperation with USC Press.

This event will take place at the SC Center for the Book located at 1430 Senate St. in Columbia, SC from Noon-1pm, and it is free and open to the public.  I will be joined by Paul Matheny III, art curator at the South Carolina State Museum  and South Carolina Novelist  Josephine Humphreys, who wrote the essay for the book.

During this talk I plan to share my process for finding an creating the portraits that I was commissioned to photograph for this project. I will also be glad to answer any questions regarding the book, my process for finding and creating engaging portraits as well as any general questions about photography.

If you aren’t able to make the event you can find out more information about the Palmetto Portraits Project on the MUSC website. If you are interested in purchasing a copy of the book it is available from USC Press and Amazon.com.

-Brett