Welcome to the Derek Johnson Photography Blog! Check in often as I chronicle many of my client portrait sessions, share product previews and share my experiences in photography and life in general.

Posted on Mar 17, 2018
Posted in Creative, Seniors, Teens

Fashion Shoot with Shop Stevie and Dani Boutique

I affectionately called them my “Stylish Seven”! I’ve been working with most of these ladies for at least a couple of years and I’ve been amazed at how they’ve grown and developed into amazing young ladies both in front of the camera and in their schools and communities.

I’m all about partnering with local boutiques to highlight their styles and give my models and the studio local exposure.

This occasion was no exception. Danielle Lazaro of Shop Stevie and Dani boutique is a friend from way back. We met for the first time at a photo shoot, have spent many a shoot together, her as my makeup artist and even my model in some shoots. We’re besties forever and of course I jumped at the opportunity to highlight her newest venture of her online boutique.

There’s nothing more powerful in your home market than highlighting a boutique’s styles with local models, particularly active young ladies with deep social media connections.

We quickly developed a plan and shoot schedule to highlight some of Danielle’s current styles and of course my Stylish Six models were more than up to the challenge.

DJP Studio was up and firing on all cylinders for this shoot and we came together and made magic! These girls are beyond amazing and I’ve seen their comfort in front of the camera and in their own skin improve dramatically through the years.

Check out the results. All of these looks are available at Danielle’s online boutique. Click HERE to shop and enjoy.

Posted on Mar 17, 2018
Posted in Creative, Teens

I’m always excited and eager to do creative shoots to continuously refine my technical and artistic skills. I’m blessed to have access to some amazing young people who are always eager to be in front of my camera.

This time I wanted to do a nighttime shoot in the bustling Uptown Charlotte area.

Surprisingly or not, this was my first time doing a true nighttime shoot. Part of the signature look in portraits is my subject backlit by the fading sunlight, like in this image:

Ahjaia Tisdale Prom Portraits in Pineville NC park

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The sun is my friend and my partner in creating amazing images. I wanted to push myself and challenge my normal shooting style by taking away the sun and relying on the nighttime lights of Uptown Charlotte to light my background.

To even further challenge my shooting skills I employed my set of LED light panels. Yes, I’m abandoned my comfortable and ever useful strobes for a continuous light source to light up the night during this shoot.

I rounded up a handful of past clients who always come through with fierce looks and style and we met in Uptown an hour or so after sunset. The night weather was perfect – being neither too warm or too cold – so we set out on foot to capture images up and down the main corridor of Uptown Charlotte: South Tryon Street.

My stylish young ladies slayed as always and created some fun and fantastic images. Working at night with my continuous LED lights was different but no less fun and allowed me to shoot faster with no lag between shots. The lighting rig was super light and portable and we just had a great time moving from place to place capturing amazing images.

Interested in doing a Creative Shoot with Derek Johnson Photography?

My current and recurring clients receive special privileges and are always invited to participate in creative shoots. If you’re interested in having you own custom portrait experience and possibly being invited to participate in future creative shots, Contact Me and let’s talk about a Portrait Session!

 

Uptown Charlotte Nighttime Shoot

















Uptown Charlotte Nighttime Shoot with Teen Models

 

 

 

Posted on Oct 09, 2017
Posted in Creative

 

Southern Elegance Creative Shoot in Fort Mill SC

I was so excited to meet Beth Vanderwalker earlier this summer through a post on Instagram. I reached out to her to introduce myself and offer my services on a collaboration project and we immediately hit it off. Beth is the owner of Simply Jane Formals, a local formalwear shop in the heart of Fort Mill, SC. They’re motto is,”Dressing the Queen in You.”

Beth shared with me how Simply Jane Formals got started during our first meeting: “Simply Jane Formals began with an idea to share dresses with other girls looking for beautiful dresses at an affordable price.  My daughters came up with our name (Jane is a family name that goes back several generations) , started an Instagram, and it took off.”

We quickly planned and executed a major fashion photo shoot to showcase some of her most popular gowns for pageants and formalwear. This very quickly turned into a major production that provided us with access to a historic southern house in Downtown Fort Mill, SC. This was truly a collaborative effort with amazing models, some of which were former and current SC pageant participants, a handful of AMAZING gowns, bloggers, a makeup artist and of course me the photographer.

Here’s a rundown of everyone who helped make this an amazing summer fashion shoot:

Gowns: Beth Vanderwalker of Simply Jane Formals

Photography: Derek Johnson Photography

Hair and Makeup:

Kim Amiolemeh

The Models:

Special thanks to:

Enjoy these images from our super fun and glamorous shoot!

Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC

 

Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC

 

Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC

 

Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC

Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC Southern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SCSouthern Elegance Fashion Shoot in Fort Mill SC

Posted on Nov 06, 2016
Posted in Products

Have you seen it? Canvas wall art design! Many people have been choosing the option of canvas wall designs to decorate their homes. Canvas is a great way to showcase your recent photography session because they have a warm and casual feel to them.  They are also lightweight and easy to hang compared to framed images.

Jasmine Soler Family Canvas Wall Art Grouping

 

Many people love the choice of a great wall design to use as “art” in their homes.  They feel that having images of their own family is a better option to some other art pieces because the images are reminders of the importance of family, the connection you share and they give the kids confidence in who they are and whom they belong to.

Dotson Family Wall Portrait

 

We would love to help coordinate and place the best images from your session, print them on varying canvas sizes and design a layout perfect to make your walls “pop” with greatness. Schedule your session today and let us help you design with canvas.

Posted on Nov 06, 2016
Posted in Family, General

I’m sure you have uttered the words “we don’t need a professional photographer” at least once in your life.  We get it, choosing a professional photographer, coordinating outfits, getting everyone “on board” seems overwhelming and unnecessary,

but stop thinking like that RIGHT NOW!

Hiring a professional photographer will not only get you fantastic pictures to treasure, but a real professional can help you with all aspects of planning for the session so you don’t have to stress or figure it all out. For example, ideas with posing, tips for coordinating outfits, a variety of locations and so much more. We know what looks good in front of the camera and we know how to edit behind the scenes, as well as offering portrait packages that will make your heart skip a beat every time you walk by it in your home.

Wehrmeyer Family Portraits Wall Grouping

Yes, mobile phones are getting better every day.

Selfie sticks proliferate society and make group photos easier than ever. The beauty of mobile images is their spontaneity, but careful planning of an professional portrait session that you’ll all be talking about for years is worth a little planning and investment in time.

A beautiful wall portrait of your family that you can enjoy from anywhere in your family room is a valuable and timeless piece of home decor.

Wehrmeyer Family Portraits in Fort Mill SC

It’s time to stop thinking professional photography isn’t for you, and schedule your session today. You won’t regret it!

Posted on Jul 16, 2016
Posted in HS Seniors

I’m so excited to share with you my latest Class of 2017 Senior Portrait Session. This one was by far the MOST AMAZING opportunity of the year with a destination senior portrait session in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Yes, I was on vacation!! My lovely wife Kenya and I are avid cruisers and this was the 9th one for us.

I had always dreamed of doing a destination portrait session in some of the beautiful Carribean ports of calls we’ve visited on our Carnival cruise adventures. Well this cruise started like all the others and involved me spending some time in the tiny launderette where guests can iron and wash clothes. Early in the cruise I happened to be in the ironing room with a beautiful young lady and her mom. We were all minding our business ironing our clothes and eventually we started talking. As I found out that Maegan was a rising senior I took a chance and introduced myself as a senior photographer and we decided to do Maegan’s senior portrait session in San Juan.

Well the rest of this amazing story can be best told by sharing Maegan stunning images. Thanks again mom and thank you Maegan for trusting me with your senior portraits. Your family is wonderful and I’m so glad we met up in the ironing room at the same time and really hit it off.

Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico Maegan Harris senior portrait session in San Juan Puerto Rico

 

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Posted on Jul 04, 2016
Posted in Tween_Teens

Happy Independence Day everyone! As we all celebrate this time of our nation’s independence and all of our freedoms that we so richly enjoy, let’s take time to also thank our service professionals and brave soldiers who keep us safe every single day.

As an annual ritual, I have a fun and creative Americana portrait session with some of my models and Catherine Harrison and Makaila Efird did not fail to impress and help me create amazing images celebrating this holiday.

We met at the beautiful lakes in Catherine’s neighborhood and had a great time flying the red, white and blue.

2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0001 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0002 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0003 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0004 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0005 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0006 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0007 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0008 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0009 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0010 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0011 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0012 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0013 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0014 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0015 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0016 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0017 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0018 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0019 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0020 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0021 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0022 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0023 2016 Americana Portrait Session with Makaila Efird and Catherine Harrison-_0024

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Posted on Jun 23, 2016
Posted in Teens

We recently completed our first Buckle Denim Model Shoot!  I’m so excited about my new partnership with our local Buckle Denim Store. Buckle is a high end denim brand with some amazing denim jeans and a host of other stylish designs for adults and youth. I personally fell in love with Buckle jeans about two years ago and have practically replaced every pair of non-Buckle jeans in my closet with Buckle jeans.

Through over a year of building rapport with our local Buckle store manager Kellus Sanchez we finally got the green light from corporate to do some co-marketing projects together. We scheduled a quick model shoot to capture some of their latest spring and summer styles for marketing pieces to promote upcoming Denim Parties. A Denim Party is a great in-store event where you can go into a Buckle Store, get a custom fitting by one of their talented stylists and enjoy savings to walk away with some amazing gear.

My DJP Me Models were definitely up to the task of representing Buckle and Derek Johnson Photography studio and did an amazing job at modeling their styles. Check out the images from the shoot. Be on the lookout for more information about upcoming Denim Parties with local Buckle stores.

Kimora Johnson modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model Shoot Kimora Johnson modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model Shoot Kimora Johnson modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model Shoot Kimora Johnson modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model Shoot Kamille Johnson modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model Shoot

Ishona Kinard modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Ishona Kinard modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Ishona Kinard modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Ishona Kinard modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Ishona Kinard modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Ishona Kinard modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Ishona Kinard modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Denae McDaniel modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Denae McDaniel modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Denae McDaniel modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Kyra Frye modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Kyra Frye modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Kyra Frye modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Kyra Frye modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Christopher Wilkins modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Christopher Wilkins modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Christopher Wilkins modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Christopher Wilkins modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot Kamille Johnson modeling Buckle clothing during DJP Me Model shoot

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Posted on May 28, 2016
Posted in Teens, Tween_Teens

I’m so excited to have completed my first DJP Me Model Shoot with my 2016 model team. Five beautiful ladies meet me at the dance studio for New Attitude Performance Arts Center for a fun fashion shoot to showcase some of the trends and styles for the spring and summer seasons.

Spring is here and it was the perfect time to highlight the latest trends for the season.

I had the young ladies focus on three styles for this shoot:

  • Skinny jeans or high waisted jeans
  • Skirts and dresses
  • Jumpers

 

The ladies did an AMAZING job selecting their outfits and representing these styles and the images are brag worthy. Check out the big Reveal Video with all the image from the shoot.

SEE THE REVEAL VIDEO HERE

Check out the awesome images below!

Animoto Lookbook__0019 DJP Me Model Amari Johnson during our first Model Shoot DJP Me Models Jaila Young and Cynthia Vu during our first Model Shoot DJP Me Models Amari and Kamille Johnson during our first Model Shoot DJP Me Models Cynthia Vu and Kamille Johnson during our first Model Shoot DJP Me Models Jaila Young and Kimora Johnson during our first Model Shoot DJP Me Models Kamille and Kimora Johnson during our first Model Shoot DJP Me Models Kamille and Kimora Johnson during our first Model Shoot DJP Me Models Kamille Johnson during our first Model Shoot DJP Me Models during our first Model Shoot DJP Me Models during our first Model Shoot

 

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Posted on May 12, 2016
Posted in Teens

I’m so excited to introduce my 2016 DJP “Me” Models!

So What In The World Is A “Me” Model?

I’m starting a brand new rep program specifically for teens and “before” teens in the age range of 10-16. My models are the face of my marketing and represent my studio throughout the year. We do some amazing creative photos shoots to create image that I will use in all areas of my business.

My Me Models are a part of an exclusive program and eligible to participate in special shoots and events that are not available elsewhere.

Their first model shoot is scheduled for Saturday, May 14 where they’ll be showcasing some of the latest teen fashions for the spring and summer. I can’t wait to share the images from that shoot in my upcoming Spring/Summer Lookbook.

So now introducing the 2016 DJP Me Models:

Kimora Johnson

Kimora Johnson Intro Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ishona Kinard

Ishona Kinard Intro Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cynthia Vu

Cynthia Vu Intro Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jaila Young

Jaila Young Intro Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kamille Johnson

Kamille Johnson Intro Image