In addition to a feature story in the November issue of Birmingham Magazine, I just found out today that one of my images was chosen as the “One Shot, City Through The Lens” image in the November issue of B-Metro Magazine. I’m thrilled and incredibly grateful to have published work in my hometown’s two major magazines in the same month. Somebody pinch me! But, much more important than this photo being published, is the story behind it. Children’s of Alabama is a very special place and does amazing things for sick kids in Alabama and beyond. I’d like to say thank you to the people who believe in my work and allow me to capture theirs. It’s really a dream come true. I love Birmingham.
I had the best experience today photographing a visit by the Atlanta Braves to Children’s Hospital. I loved watching the kids’ eyes light up as they got to play baseball on the Wii and playstation with some of the players. Now that’s what it’s all about right there…Big hearts for little kids! I love my job!
This is the second year I have been given the opportunity and the privilege to photograph aTeam Ministries annual Heart to HeART Gala with special guests Coach Gene Chizik and his wife Jonna. I asked my friend Emily Kicklighter to help me shoot the event and Tina Folsom kindly offered to help as well. So, the images I am sharing with you in the slideshow, although they have my watermark since it was my event to cover, are really a composite of our efforts shooting as a team on this event. There was a lot to cover and I could not have done it without them!
aTeam Ministries, founded by Andy and Jan Thower, offers spiritual,financial, and emotional support, through a variety of programs, to children and their families within the pediatric cancer community. Andy and Jan were led to begin this ministry when their son Anderson was diagnosed with ALL (Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia) at 16 months old, and their eyes were opened to the needs of families with the life changing diagnosis of pediatric cancer. They believe they were called to this ministry and live out 2 Corinthians 1:3,4. Anderson is now four years old and about to finish his treatment in March!
aTeam’s Heart 2 HeART event gathers children with pediatric cancer and pairs them with a professional artist. This is done to celebrate the children by aiding them in expressing themselves through art. The culmination of their work is two pieces. One piece is created by the child, with the aid of the professional, in the professional’s style. The other piece is done by the professional with the inspiration being drawn from their interaction with the children. These works are then presented in aTeam’s annual Heart to HeART Gala, aTeam’s primary fundraising event. aTeam Ministries provides spiritual, emotional and financial support to these families. Read this article and this web page to find out more about Coach Gene Chizik and wife Jonna’s involvement in this ministry.
This year’s Gala was held at Ted’s Garage, with event planning by Neillie Butler of Mariee´ Ami, floral arrangements by Bloom, catering by Kathy G & Co, audio and video by Feel the Beat Entertainment, and auction by Granger Thagard. It was once again an amazing fundraiser for the pediatric cancer community.
For those of you who attended the event, the online photo proofing and ordering gallery will be available March 10. Please refer to your event card or check out my Facebook page for updates, information and links. In the meantime, please click on the link below to get a slideshow preview of images from the event. Thank you Andy and Jan for asking me to be a part of such a special night.
And the photographer actually got to jump in a shot too! Thanks to Landry Chizik for taking it!