About WALL Photography & Design

WALLP&GBeauty exists within each and every one of us; it also exists everywhere around us – in nature, in our homes, and in virtually every aspect of our lives. I am inspired by natural beauty, and as a professional photographer creating inspiring images that accentuate beauty is truly my passion.

I am an experienced professional photographer with an extensive background as photojournalist for nearly 30 years, including my service in the U.S. Army. Throughout my career I’ve had a number of great assignments, including work as a staff photographer with the European edition of the Stars and Stripes newspaper. I see photography as art and love the world through my lenses.

In addition to my photography skills, I am also a talented graphic designer. I have produced logos for groups and designed numerous pamphlets, brochures, newspapers and magazines.

My education includes multiple courses at the Defense Information School. I am also a 1993 graduate of the Army’s Advanced Photojournalism Course at the University of South Carolina School of Journalism and Mass Communications.

If you are looking for someone to photograph an event; capture an image of beauty for your personal viewing pleasure; create a custom graphic or design a graphic product I can help make it happen.

I can be reached by phone at (703) 283-5287; on Twitter @WALLPhotoGrafx; by email at WALLPhotoGrafx@verizon.net; or my website at http://wallphotografx.smugmug.com.

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“You don’t take a photograph, you make it.”
― Ansel Adams

New year, renewed commitment to my craft

We’re now a month into 2016, and it is high time I buckle down and get myself newly focused on moving forward.

Last year was a great year for me, but it was not without challenges and distractions. On a high note, I attended my first Imaging USA and earned my first Professional Photographers of America (PPA) photography exhibition merit. However, professional development requirements of my full-time job took me away from home and photography for several weeks.

Looking forward into this year, I am really excited following my second Imaging USA conference and exposition. This year PPA’s annual event was conducted at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, Georgia, in early January.

Once again, my wife and I spent three days soaking up a lot of great education, ideas and resources, which I will share in more detail in future blog posts. Our personal highlight was “The Art of Evoking Emotion” by Jerry Ghionis, in which we were extremely honored to be asked to participate as he demonstrated his techniques.

Attending the conference also provided a great opportunity for us to catch up with old friends, as well as make some really great new ones. We are both looking forward to building relationships and getting together with everyone again at Imaging USA 2017 in San Antonio, Texas next January.

I am now in the early stages of setting goals for my business for this year that I hope will better enable me to remain more focused on growth. I have a lot of great ideas that I can’t wait to get started on, and in the coming weeks and months we’ll see how effective it is.

The hardest part in all this for me is that I am currently only able to devote evenings and weekends to my photography and graphic design business, as I am still devoted to a full-time job.

It is important to keep reminding myself to remain patient, as this is all part of my – crawl, walk, run – approach to position my business for success on a full-time basis when I retire from my full-time job down the road.

Much of what I’ve taken away from Imaging USA is oriented towards the photographer who is either running a full-time photography business, or prepared to dedicate themselves to being full-time. So I have to take what I am learning and figure out how to tailor it to fit my needs at this time.

Here’s looking forward to a great year!

Reflections On Thanksgiving (Merit)

Titled “Reflections On Thanksgiving,” Wayne V. Hall’s photograph will be in the International Photographic Exhibition alongside other top photographic works from the competition and traveling and special invitational displays. 
© Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

“Life is your art. An open, aware heart is your camera. A oneness with your world is your film. Your bright eyes and easy smile is your museum.” – Ansel Adams

Photographer’s Work Goes to International Exhibition

Wayne V. Hall of WALL Photography & Design is honored by peers and jurors for high-quality photography

SPRINGFIELD, Va. – A photograph created by Wayne V. Hall of WALL Photography & Design in Springfield has recently been accepted into the General Collection of Professional Photographers of America’s 2015 International Photographic Competition. Hall’s work will be on display at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, Georgia Jan. 10-12, 2016. This International Photographic Exhibition is held in conjunction with Imaging USA, an annual convention and expo for professional photographers and several photographic associations.

A panel of 43 eminent jurors from across the United States selected the top photographs from more than 5,000 total submitted entries at Gwinnett Technical College in Georgia. Judged against a standard of excellence, just over 2,100 images were selected for the General Collection and 1,085 (roughly 21 percent) were selected for the esteemed Loan Collection—the best of the best. The Loan Collection images will all be published in the much-anticipated “Loan Collection” book and over 200 selected General Collection images will be published in the “Showcase” book by Marathon Press.

Titled “Reflections On Thanksgiving,” Hall’s photograph will be in the International Photographic Exhibition alongside other top photographic works from the competition and traveling and special invitational displays. These images constitute one of the world’s largest annual exhibits of professional photography gathered simultaneously under one roof.

About PPA:

Professional Photographers of America (PPA) is the largest international non-profit association created by professional photographers, for professional photographers. Almost as long-lived as photography itself, PPA has roots that date back to 1869. It assists more than 28,000 members through protection, education and resources for their continued success. See how PPA helps photographers be more at ppa.com.

Reflections On Thanksgiving (Merit)

Titled “Reflections On Thanksgiving,” Wayne V. Hall’s photograph will be in the International Photographic Exhibition alongside other top photographic works from the competition and traveling and special invitational displays.
© Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

“A great photograph is one that fully expresses what one feels, in the deepest sense, about what is being photographed.” – Ansel Adams

Inspiration Fuels the Soul

First of all, let me start by apologizing for the long hiatus; I got hung up in preparing images for competition, and an extended period of time in school associated with my full-time job. But thankfully that is all now well behind me, and I look forward to diving back into my photography pursuits.

Through it all, the one saving grace from my time away was taking my gear with me to Kansas City and having time away from school on the weekends to shoot; now I just need to bear down and get editing.

That said, I must return to where I left off – my mentor session with Dennis Hammon during the third day of Imaging USA. As you can figure, thousands of photographers attend Imaging USA; many, like myself, are first-time attendees. I found this opportunity for 20 minutes of one-on-one time with a very skilled and seasoned professional photographer to be very insightful. However, in retrospect it was 20 of the quickest minutes of my professional life.

It was refreshing to gain a new perspective on an approach to some of my favorite images. I spent a fair amount of time reworking my images, adjusting for the guidance Dennis offered, and am very hopeful it will pay off during the International Photographic Competition – which will take place in Atlanta Aug. 3-6.

More importantly than just modifying my previous work, Dennis’ counsel has provided me with new perspective in my approach to photography, which I am beginning to see reflected in some of my more recent work.

The last image I sought to shoot, and perfect, before going to school – “Innocent Serenity” – I feel is a perfect example of what I took away from that 20-minute session. In fact, a long-time friend and colleague said “of all your work you have shared with me, I think that is quite possibly the best image you have ever produced,” when he first saw it.

I am glad to be back; once again drawing from inspiration I have gained along the way, and I am now ready to continue moving forward in my journey of artistic growth.

The Pentagon Memorial – in Washington, District of Columbia – honors the memory of 184 men and women who perished in the September 11, 2001, attack on the Pentagon. © Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

The Pentagon Memorial – in Washington, District of Columbia – honors the memory of 184 men and women who perished in the September 11, 2001, attack on the Pentagon.
© Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

“A great photograph is a full expression of what one feels about what is being photographed in the deepest sense and is thereby a true expression of what one feels about life in its entirety.” – Ansel Adams

Learning to Work Smarter; Not Harder

In my most recent postings, I have been chronicling my experience at Imaging USA; so I’ll pick up where I left off – with day two of the conference. I spent the majority of this second day attending sessions focused on improving workflow and productivity.

This day was very important to me, as I recently made the jump from Apple‘s Aperture to Adobe‘s Photoshop Lightroom – after Apple’s recent decision to no longer continue upgrading its professional-grade photo management and editing program that I had come to love and rely on so much after using it for many years. The transition from Aperture to Lightroom has been a little challenging, and I really need to learn all I can about getting the most out of my new photo management and editing tool if I am going to success in this business.

The day’s first session for me was “Streamline Your Wedding and Portrait Post Production in Lightroom and Photoshop,” with Jared Platt, a professional wedding and lifestyle photographer from Phoenix, Arizona. Platt is a well-known lecturer on photography subjects, with a particular emphasis on workflow. Given my relatively short time using Lightroom, I found his presentation very enlightening. He is a dedicated professional, who is committed to sharing his vast knowledge with others. I had a rare opportunity to learn first-hand how dedicated and genuine he is through a personal interaction while attending the closing party – I cannot thank him enough for taking the time, and his profound generosity. I am already making use of the tools I gained.

I had hoped to continue on my theme with “From Camera to Client – Winning Workflow for Success,” with Julieanne Kost. However due to overwhelming popularity her session was filled to capacity and I was unable to attend. I did get an opportunity to attend her session on day three, which I will take about in my next post.

Later that day, my wife and I took time to tour the International Photographic Exhibit, which featured images from the 2014 International Photographic Competition, quite arguably some of the best photography you will ever see. It was truly enlightening to see the work of great photographers, which has helped inspire me to push my craft farther. During that tour I discovered the mentor’s corner, and scheduled a session to sit down with a mentor. I’ll talk more about my session with Dennis Hammon in my next post.

Sunsphere Before Sunrise

“Sunsphere Before Sunrise” – I captured this image in Knoxville, Tennessee, just before sunrise on my journey home from Imaging USA. I can see influences of what I learned from my experience there already taking shape in this image.
© Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

No man has the right to dictate what other men should perceive, create or produce, but all should be encouraged to reveal themselves, their perceptions and emotions, and to build confidence in the creative spirit.” – Ansel Adams

The ‘Art’ of Photography

Imaging USA had so much to offer, it was difficult to choose which seminar sessions to take in. If I had to sum up my conference experience with just one word per day it would be: Day 1 – PhotoArt; Day 2 – Workflow; and Day 3 – Production. So I spent most of my first day focusing on photography as art.

Through the years I think the thing that has drawn me to photography is the fact that for me it is a form of art that also requires a great degree of technical skill.

In the simplest sense, anyone who can push a shutter-release button can take a photograph – and this has never really been more true than today in this rapidly expanding age of digital photography. However, not everyone has the artistic talent to realize a vision in pixels, or has the eye to see the potential image before selecting just the right camera settings to capture that image. Finally, once an image has been captured, there is still another level that must be reached before an image is really a true piece of art.

Listening to a truly gifted photographic artist is how I chose to kick off Imaging USA with “The Case For Fine Art,” by Thom Rouse – a photographer who’s spent more than 20 years elevating his photography by creating works of fine art. It was inspiring to see how Thom has taken images and turned them into stunning works of art that truly reveals the soul of the subject.

Photography as art is not just limited to fine art, digital composites are growing in popularity among clients, so I thought it prudent to get a little more insight on this market.

While many photographers are doing exceptional things with composites, Ben Shirk has made composites the cornerstone of his photography business; so I chose to attend his “Making Money With Composites” seminar session. In just under a decade, Shirk has taken his training as a graphic artist, coupled it with his love of photography and built a business as a “Portrait Artist,” creating stunning works of art for his clients.

These two outstanding Photographic Artists are shining examples of the fact that in today’s world of digital imaging, photography is only limited by the imagination of the photographer-artist.

As a relatively new member of PPA (Professional Photographers of America), Imaging USA was my first experience attending a professional photography conference and exposition, so the trade show was also a very enlightening experience as I was extremely impressed with the amount and types of products that vendors offer to help photographer offer innovative salable items to provide their clients with lasting memories. Additionally, I was equally impressed with the number and variety of vendors offering creative solutions for producing and packaging photo albums.

As I have stated before, Imaging USA was ‘3 Days in Nashville Rocked My World,’ and I look forward to continuing my experience with what I took away in regard to Workflow (Learning to Work Smarter; Not Harder).

The Painted Isle is a small example of my recent efforts with compositing. While not a complex as the work of Rouse and Shirk, it is the result of two images blended together to create a stunning image. © Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

The Painted Isle is a small example of my recent efforts with compositing. While not a complex as the work of Rouse and Shirk, it is the result of two images blended together to create a stunning image.
© Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept.” – Ansel Adams

Lighting the Way

In my last post ‘3 Days in Nashville Rocked My World,’ I began to talk about my experience at Imaging USA, and how it changed my outlook on my future as a professional photographer, and promised to expand upon it more in coming posts. So I guess the best place is to start at the beginning.

Professional Photographers of America (PPA) hosted a pre-conference event Jan. 31 for first-year members attending the conference and expo, which offered insights into photography as a profession and the benefits PPA membership offers photographers to help them grow and develop. Fully expecting to get so much out of Imaging USA, I brought my wife (Lauren), and partner in life of more than 22 years, along with me as she will also be my partner in business as I travel down this road. In retrospect, it was quite possibly even more enlightening for her than I, as she has no background in photography but has a strong head for business.

I have already started to act on some of the take-aways from that session, as I have completely re-written my “about me” statement on my SmugMug Pro web site, and have also re-tooled much of the language I use to promote myself on social media.

The professional staff members of PPA also introduced us to the association’s latest marketing campaign designed to promote the import difference that hiring a professional photographer can make in capturing memories for clientele – See The Difference. This is an extremely helpful campaign in this day and age when just about everyone has a digital camera or smart phone capable of capturing decent quality images; however as photographers know, there is so much more that goes into great photography than just having a quality camera.

That session helped set the tone for Lauren and I for the following three days of Imaging USA. In the coming weeks, I will continue to share more of what I took away from the conference sessions and the trade show.

Antique-style street lamps illuminate the walkways throughout the Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, Tennessee. The soft light creates a serene ambiance for resort guests. © Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

Antique-style street lamps illuminate the walkways throughout the Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, Tennessee. The soft light creates a serene ambiance for resort guests.
© Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

A great photograph is one that fully expresses what one feels, in the deepest sense, about what is being photographed.” – Ansel Adams

3 Days in Nashville Rocked My World

The end of January marked my 1st Anniversary as a member of Professional Photographers of America (PPA), and what better way to mark it than attending Imaging USA – which was conducted this year from Feb. 1-3 at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Conference Center in Nashville, Tennessee.

My experience as a photographer spans nearly 30 years, and goes back to the days of film and darkrooms. I got my start working as a active-duty U.S. Army photojournalist, and it was only recently that I began planning to work for myself full-time as a professional photographer when I hang up my current full-time gig. I am currently seeking out every resource I can to ensure that when that day comes I am fully prepared to be very successful.

For those who don’t know, Imaging USA is PPA’s annual conference and expo, which features world-class seminars on a variety of topics for professional photographers; as well as a large trade show filled with vendors delivering the latest in technology, equipment, gadgets, as well as products – such as wall art, papers, albums, etc. Additionally, as a huge bonus for its first-year members PPA covers the Imaging USA attendance fee; something I learned shortly after joining last year.

Not wanting to be overwhelmed when I got there, I began early making plans to attend, and as soon as the registration window opened, I was among the earliest of early-bird registrants. As the year progressed and the conference began to take shape, I carefully mapped out the seminar sessions I felt would be most helpful for me as I build, grow and shape my business. Just days before leaving for Nashville, I learned of another huge benefit to first-year member attendees – a pre-conference event designed to help new members get the most of of their business and Imaging USA.

Well, I could go on here for days with all that I took away from Imaging USA, but I think its better if I spread it out a little bit as I continue to digest what I brought back with me. In the coming weeks, I will be adding new posts that focus on particular points or topics that I took away from the conference and expo. I really look forward to sharing.

Beautiful waterfall features inside the Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, Tennessee, provide exceptional mood lighting for diners at the resort’s Old Hickory Steakhouse, which is named in honor of President Andrew Jackson. One of Tennessee’s favorites son’s, Jackson was affectionately know as ‘Old Hickory.’ © Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

Beautiful waterfall features inside the Gaylord Opryland Resort in Nashville, Tennessee, provide exceptional mood lighting for diners at the resort’s Old Hickory Steakhouse, which is named in honor of President Andrew Jackson. One of Tennessee’s favorites son’s, Jackson was affectionately know as ‘Old Hickory.’
© Wayne V. Hall. All rights reserved.

“No man has the right to dictate what other men should perceive, create or produce, but all should be encouraged to reveal themselves, their perceptions and emotions, and to build confidence in the creative spirit.” ― Ansel Adams