Tuesday @ 7: #21 - Holly Robertson

For the record, there were a ton of photos I could've chosen for this post, but I tried to hold back and still feel like I'm posting a ton of them. I LOVE this shoot. I definitely want to start moving more this direction artistically.

So Holly. Holly is fantastic. She's a junior here at DBU and fellow photographer and that's how we met. I was shooting an event and needed a flash and, being far more prepared than I ever am, she had one. I called her up and asked if I could borrow it and that's how we connected over photography. Ever since it's been a "hey, we should totally hang out and talk photography and stuff!" And it's just not happened. Well, today it happened! And it was great!

Holly and I are both extraverted feelers, so finding something to talk about was not difficult at all. We caught up about the semester and our photography businesses. She's been blowing up recently. I feel like she's doing so many shoots all the time. The first project that I saw from her was her photographing her friends with handicaps. It was so moving to see her love for them and the way she was portraying them.

That's the dream for her too. She wants to do photography and ministry, but specifically to youth and the handicapped. Her boyfriend is going into ministry and she wants them to be able to ministry side by side and I think that's awesome. I'm always looking for ways Katie and I can do ministry together so I totally understand that. 

Both of us happen to be in extreeeeeeeemly long relationships with our high schools sweet hearts, so that was fun to talk about. When you've been dating someone for 5+ years, it can get pretty hard to find someone who understands, so it's really nice when you get to talk to someone who knows what it's like. Her and her boyfriend have been together since like freshman year of high school and Katie and I have been together since right before my sophomore year. So yeah, we knew where each other is coming from.

A bit about this shoot. This shoot seriously feels like a step up for me. I love what we were able to make here with this shoot. With Fall (the best season) here, this shoot captures the colors and mood of it so perfectly, looking at these gets me so pumped for the cold weather and sweaters and leaves everywhere. I can feel it all ready. I love being able to try new things and this shoot feels like an evolution toward where I want to be as a photographer. 

All of this is at a time where I'm struggling with figuring out what's next for me. I've never been good or enjoyed school, but for the first time ever I'm considering and pursuing grad school. God's been moving in my life in weird ways and I'm starting to walk down a path that I've never even considered before. While Katie and I are planning a wedding and preparing for marriage and she's transition jobs and all of this is happening at the same time. It's daunting place to be. I feel a lot of uncertainty but I'm also incredibly happy with where I am and confident that God know's what he's doing. Which is definitely a great thing because I sure don't.

Tuesday @ 7: #19 - Austin Crosby

and we're back!

I took a break from Tuesday @ 7 in August just because I needed a break from a lot of things. I had just finished a class, had another class coming up, and knew school was going to officially start soon and I wanted to be as rested as possible for it. But here we are, it's September and I'm ready to jump back in the game. I woke up at 5:45am this morning to do yoga with my roommates and my good friend Jake who is basically a yogi, then Austin and I hit downtown to do this morning's shoot, and man, I love this shoot. I guess the time off was good for me after all, because I can't think of a better shoot to start back into Tuesday @ 7 with.

Austin transferred into DBU last year and he moved into our townhome because he had become friends with Adam when Adam interned at a church in Houston where Austin is from. When Austin moved in, Adam was the only person who knew him. I remember Adam saying something along the lines of: "Guys I promise, you're gonna love Austin. Nobody doesn't love Austin. He's like the most likable guy ever." That might be my interpretation of it but it was something like that.

And he was right. Seriously. It's impossible to not like Austin. His first week in the townhome he made bacon-wrapped dove pepper poppers. I knew he was gonna be awesome when that happened.

Austin, first of all, has one of the best singing voices I think I've ever heard come from a guy. He was writing music in junior high and high school and is insanely talented. He leads worship for the students at First Baptist Dallas and plays music in pretty much every capacity here at DBU. He has such a heart for ministry. His goal is to one day be a teaching pastor but he's legitimately content doing whatever God has put before him, which for right now, is youth and music, and he puts everything he's got into it.

I'm not 100% sure about the context around the story, but apparently Ben Rector said he's the most photogenic person ever. So if Ben Rector tells you that, it's true. Maybe I should send these photos to him to prove it.

This was such a fun shoot to jump back in with. It was a blast hanging out with Austin all morning before class and getting to shoot these. Also, he wore a suit fancy suit, so that just makes him that much more cool. We talked about how we wished we could rock a suit every day. I think I lost the one suit jacket I had. I need to get a new one.

When it comes to photo stuff, everyone seems to be booking me for October because they don't want to shoot in the heat. So if you want to get in on the October action, let me know! It really is getting better out there though, so if this month works better for you, we can definitely shoot in September as well. I know a lot of people will be graduating in December, so let me know if you're wanting some senior photos!

Thanks for coming back and checking this out! Tuesday @ 7 is officially back every Tuesday so be sure to like my Facebook page and follow me on Instagram to know when it's up!

See ya next week!

Tuesday @ 7: #18 - Lyeah Soland

This will be a short one. Things have gotten a bit crazy. Yesterday I got in a wreck about 5 minutes after we finished this shoot. So that happened. I'm okay. Hopefully my car will be okay too. Also, we're having to move all of the stuff out of our townhome because we're getting new carpet, and I have another shoot tonight (that I'm super pumped for). So this will be mainly photos.

Lyeah is awesome. She reached out to me a while back because she's launching her fashion blog really soon. She's a student at DBU with me and is super involved on campus. I love working with people who are just starting out because I know what that feels like. I still feel like I'm still starting out in a lot of ways, and I love it when people work with me because of that, not in spite of it. So I love being able to help others who are just getting started as well. She's studying business, marketing, and psychology, which are like my three favorite topics in the world. 

There's this coffee shop inside the Joule hotel and it's really small but really cool. I'd highly recommend it.

Sorry for the lateness and shortness of this post. It'll get back to normal soon I promise. I have so many shoots that I haven't posted just because I haven't had time. This class I'm in is over after next week, then I'm just gonna have a catch up week where I share all the work I've been doing besides Tuesday At 7 that just hasn't had the time to get posted. I can't wait for it and I think you'll love the shoots! Till next week!

Tuesday @ 7: #17 - Jonny Cantwell

And we're back! Sorry about not having Tuesday at 7 last week. Things got a bit crazy. But today we're back with my friend Jonny, and let me tell you about Jonny. If Forbes had a "25 under 25 Up and Coming Businessmen," Jonny would be #1. Easily. Jonny's gonna take over corporate American someday and it's gonna be crazy.

I know few people that actually dress the part for exactly what they want to do, but Jonny really does wear a suit like this almost every day. It's so awesome. It's like what every guy secretly wants to do, but Jonny just does it. He knows and has been mentored by some of the best marketing/business minds in the country and is always getting huge opportunities in that world. He knows what he wants and is called to and he just goes for it. He doesn't let anything hold him back. I love people like that.

On top of all of that, Jonny has a bigger smile than you and bigger biceps than you. The biceps are totally irrelevant. It's just true. But he really is one of the happiest guys I know. He's always smiling and laughing and having a good time. It was hard to get a serious face out of him this morning just because he's always so happy. He's always happy to see you and that's one of the coolest things about him.

Jonny and I both have one more year here at DBU. I know he wants to stay in Dallas after he graduates. He'll probably walk straight into a job with The Richards Group knowing him. I'm so jealous. That'd be awesome. I'm thankful for my friendship with him because he brings out a side of me that doesn't get to show a lot. We're both strategic and love business and marketing and reaching people with messages that matter. He's better at it than I am. But it's nice to have someone who gets all that stuff and loves to talk about it. We all gotta have those people around us who make us better and Jonny is one of those guys.

Not Tuesday At 7

Today, I wasn't able to do Tuesday At 7. It's a sad day, but it ended up being best. Next week, we'll be up and running with my good friend Jonny Cantwell. But for this week, I decided that since I wasn't able to do a Tuesday At 7 shoot, that I'd just post some random photos I've taken recently and write some stuff that's been on my mind along with them.

Putting yourself out there is one of the scariest things you can do. You open yourself up to all kinds of judgement when you decide to tell your story, publish your work, voice your opinion, share your ideas. We crave approval and affirmation so badly, we hold out on putting ourselves out there so people don't like us. There's too many untweeted tweets, unposted posts, and unsaid comments in conversations because I'm so afraid of what people will think of me. And I bet you're the same way. We want people to like us. We suppress who we are to fit the expectations of others. And I think that's sad. That's sad because we, the same people who are scared to put ourselves out there because of what people will think of us, are the same people who cause others to fear putting themselves out there. When someone actually has the courage to do it and we disagree with them, we let them know. And typically, as witnessed on most Facebook statuses, we not only deconstruct their position, we deconstruct their character. We don't separate their opinion from their character. Even though it would be entirely unfair if someone did that to us. We know that we are not the sum of our opinions. We are much deeper and much richer as humans than that. Yet we reduce others to an idea and have no problems picking that apart. And this is where the fear comes from. It comes from me. It comes from you. We cause others to fear.

The problem with this is, of course, is that sharing your ideas, work, opinions, and story is so crucially important. At some point in time, someone shared something of theirs with you, and it changed your life. Maybe it was in a song or a speech or a book or a conversation or even a stupid little tweet. Someone had the courage to put themselves out there and it changed your life. And we all have the capacity to do that. We all have the capacity to just say what we've been learning and change one persons life. In fact, it's our obligation to do so. If someone had the courage to share apart of themselves hoping that it could help me, even in the smallest of ways, then it's my obligation to do that for others. It's selfish of me not to. If I didn't then I'd be nothing but a taker. Christians are called to be the ultimate givers, and that means giving others our experiences, ideas, stories and work for their benefit and good. 

So what's the solution? We have an obligation and yet and we end up being the barrier for others and, through a vicious cycle of critique and judgement, ourselves from fulfilling that obligation to help others with what we have. The solution, I propose, is a boring word with strong implications.


It's a sign of maturity to be able to disagree with a man or woman and yet never question their character. Civility is strong. Civility is respect. It's been an interesting journey growing into adulthood and seeing so many hypocrisies in lessons I was taught growing up. 

I was taught to respect everyone, yet somehow it's okay to disrespect the politicians I disagree with. I was taught to love everyone, yet somehow it's okay to rail against the pastor's who's theology doesn't line up with mine. I was taught to share, but told I'm irresponsible when I attempt to be generous. I was taught to be slow to speak and quick to listen, yet when a controversial issue is in the public debate it's commonplace to quickly state a position without listening to the other side. 

It takes courage both to put yourself out there and to withhold judgement from others that do. And we have an equal obligation to both. People are not their positions. Opinions do not equal character. Our ability to listen is far greater than our ability to speak. 

I truly believe that before we debate any issue, it's our responsibility to reclaim civility as a virtue, as a trait of our character. If someone put themselves out there and you disagree with them, remember that it took courage for them to say it out loud at all. Respect is never optional. 

I know these words have nothing to do with these pictures. But sometimes there are words and pictures that never get to see the light of day because it never feels like there's a place for them. I'd like to start finding more places for them. I think it's important. My friend Jon said that God has recently been teaching him to be bold and to always be clear about where he stands. I'm feeling God starting to teach to me the same thing. It's scary. But God gives courage. I always want to listen more than I speak, and I also want to learn how to speak more. I've been burned in the past by people who have shot me down after speaking up. I've had my salvation questioned and have literally been called "the downfall of America" after speaking up in certain circles in the past. That's not respect. That's not civility. It's also not courageous to let that stop me from speaking up. So that's what I'm going to try to do, because I feel it's an obligation. I've been influenced by too many people more courageous than I to not speak up in the hopes of helping others. 

Tuesday At 7 will be back next week. I can't wait to get back on a roll!

Tuesday @ 7: #16 - Paige Tatman

When I picked Paige up at 6:30 this morning, she had made me a cup of coffee. That should give you a hint of the kind of person that Paige is.

Paige was roommates with my fianceé, Katie, for 2 years. They met each other in the Zeta Chi sorority here at DBU and quickly became best friends, so naturally, that's when I met Paige. I realized really quickly why they were best friends. Like Katie, Paige takes her time, is slow to speak, carefully processes everything she takes in, and thinks on a deeper level than your average Joe (Jane?). There's not a whole lot of small talk with Paige. She cuts right to the chase. She's interested in you. That always makes for a good conversation.

Paige Tatman-8.jpg

"When's the last time you did a photoshoot?"


You'd never know it from these shots. Whether or not she was comfortable in front of a camera, she pulled it off really well. I love these shots. Maybe the 5 spiders we ran into and me freaking out helped loosen her up in from of the camera. We seriously ran into a ton of spiders. You've heard it said, "anything for the 'gram." But I say, "nay, not if there are spiders in the way." We still found some solid places.

Paige went to DBU obviously, but she is part of the nursing program here that partners with Baylor. So even though she lived on campus last year, she was technically a student at Baylor. It's confusing but makes sense when you're in it I guess. Either way, she's studying to be a nurse. And that's really Paige's heart. Between that and the coffee, I'm sure you can tell that her passion is taking care of people. She wants to help and nurture everyone around her and especially those that need it. You can see why her and Katie are such great friends.  

The leaves on her shirt in the picture below got stuck on her from the picture above. So that was a complete accident and I felt really bad about it, but it turned out to make for a killer photo.

I'd really only hung out with Paige with Katie or in groups of people before, so it was a blast getting to just hang out with her for the morning and catch up on her life. I love Katie's friends. I think community is a huge part of life and surrounding yourself with the right people, the people that build you up and encourage you and challenge you and check in on you, is one of the most important things you can do. Paige is one of those people in Katie's life and, therefor, one of those people in my life, and I'm thankful for that.

In other news, my class started this week so my schedule is not what I'm used to it being, but it's nowhere near as bad as I expected. I really expected it to be horrible, but it's way more doable than I thought it would be. I'll still sadly be less productive than I was in June and have to say no to more things, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Saying no is important. Saying no to one things let's you say yes to something more important. Maybe that's even saying no to something seemingly productive so you can say yes to rest. I hustled hard in June but I'm having to relearn what it means to take care of myself. To not run myself into the ground. Especially with this next year coming up. Senior year of college, running a business, planning a wedding, and making sure that I still have friends by the end of it all. It's a crazy season of life. 

This is my 16th Tuesday @ 7, which means I've done this for 16 weeks, or around 4 months. That doesn't seem like too long, but I really can't believe I'm still going. I've had some people tell me that they look forward to this every Tuesday which is crazy to me. The fact that people want to see some photos I take and read a couple of paragraphs every week doesn't make sense. But it's the small things. You don't have to do anything big to make a difference. Just show people you care. If you're one of those people that come back week after week, thank you. I don't take you for granted. 

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Tuesday @ 7: #15 - Jacob Gries

I got up early and took my friend Jake out on a TA7 shoot and it was awesome! I didn't even know where we would go until I woke up this morning. But I decided to go shoot at the Irving Convention Center since I've always seen cool photos from there but have never been. So that's where we went.

Before we got started though, we needed our morning dose of coffee and Jake lives in the Bishop Arts District, so we stopped by Davis Street Espresso at 6:30am for some "buttery" espresso (as Jake called it, but that's really the best way to describe it) and it was awesome.  

Jake was on the Germany trip that I went on over Spring Break and that's when we got close. He might just be the single most encouraging person I know. It's hard for him to speak without you leaving encouraged in one way or another. He just never really has anything negative to say and is always building you up. I think that's awesome. I want to be more encouraging like that.

When I was taking those last few shots, I said, "Wow, you're really good at looking like you're deep in thought.... wait, you actually are deep in thought, aren't you?" Yes, in fact, he was. He's just that kind of guy. Skip the small talk. Jake jumps straight to the heart of things and is always thinking on a deeper level, even at 7am. 

He started working for Initiative right after I left. I wish we got to work together. It was cool talking to him about that. He's experiencing all of the things I experienced. Spending time with Initiative changes the way you think forever and I love seeing people grow from just getting a taste of that culture. 

Jake is really into yoga. Like, really into it. He's been thinking about teaching yoga for a while now. We got breakfast at Oddfellows after the shoot and were talking about it and he expressed some doubts about being able to do it. We talked through it an by the end of it, he knew what he had to do. Don't be surprised if you see something on Facebook from him saying he's teaching yoga soon. Just saying. I'd go.


The light this morning was just as "buttery" as our morning espresso. I loved shooting at the convention center. 

In other news, I'm pretty tired this week. I start a class next week, I'm behind on some work, I haven't gotten a ton of sleep, and I'm learning that planning a wedding isn't the easiest thing in the world. We were all like, "We won't get stressed out! We're a chill couple!" How naive. It definitely isn't easy. But that's okay. God is at work and life is still good. Every day can't be smooth sailing. You just gotta keep moving forward. 

I'm interested to see how life is once school starts back up. Not only next week but also in August when I'll start being in class every day. I wasn't able to get all Tuesday/Thursday classes like I used to (which I'd highly recommend to anyone) which is a bummer, but that's alright. It's my senior year. It's the in-between. Engaged but in school. Working on a career but still have to work on homework. This is the tension of being 21. This is the transition season. I'm just trying to learn how to make the most of it.