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I have been meaning to post some before and after examples for a really long time because one of the main things that separates DCPG from other photographers is our post-processing (aka editing, retouching, and yes, “photoshopping”).   Don’t get me wrong, we do not believe that Photoshop can “save” a bad photo or is a substitute for fundamental photography skills, but we do know that it can make a huge difference.    We know full well we could just shoot-to-burn and make tons of money that way; it works just fine for lots of photographers.   DCPG sees the art in what we do and treat each individual photo as such –  this love and attention before, during and after we take a photograph is what our clients pay for.  

Over the years, we have run into a little bit of resistance.  Some people want photos straight from the camera to save time.   Others wonder why our prints and products are more expensive than say, Wal-Mart or Picture People.   True, there is no cheap, same day, in-and-out service with DCPG.   However, what you sacrifice in so-called convenience is worth it to get a one of a kind piece.   Anyone who owns a small business, has a family or is getting married will tell you how central it is to their lives.    We respect and revere that by making sure that the final product beautifully displays your vision, your love and your history.  Your reflection, our artistry.

Long story short, we are going to break our long-standing rule of never posting unedited images just to show you the DCPG difference.   Here is a sampling of unedited photos and their finished counterparts:


More “before and afters” can be found on our Facebook page!

In other news, we will be releasing a Mother’s Day promo soon.  Stay tuned…


How did I not blog this yet?? Yikes! / Taste Magazine, a new local website + quarterly themed magazine (first theme being food, obviously), launched on the 16th! DCPG worked extremely hard on this first issue – we photographed and edited shots of food, chefs, details and interiors for 21 local restaurants all in about 5 days.  We were exhausted beyond belief, but seeing our photos in gorgeous print and covering a good 90% of the magazine was amazing.  It was also really cool to experience all these restaurants that we’d either not heard of or never thought to try out.  Big big thanks to Hannah and Allison, the editors/owners of SevenCities and all the restaurants/chefs/owners who graciously welcomed us! Definitely check out the website, but please, also pick up a copy of Taste – it’s beautiful!

The launch at Big Easy was packed, but fun.   Here’s DCPG enjoying the fru-its of our labor:

Also, be sure to check out Restaurant Week!! Our personal faves (from being heffers and eating most of the food we shot) were the Boot, Rajput, Imperio Inca, Shula’s, and Eurasia.

Here’s our cover image, shot by Lester.  This yummy looking steak was from the ultra luxurious Byrd & Baldwin Bros.  in downtown Norfolk:


A few outtakes and faves —

Some delicious looking steak also from Byrd & Baldwin:


The beautiful dining and bar area of Terrapin, near the Oceanfront.   This was my favorite restaurant interior design.  Very simple, but well done:


Chef Willie Moats of the Big Easy on Tazwell:


Bar area at the Big Easy.  How awesome is that floor? Also, note the cameo appearance of SevenCities editor, Allison Hurwitz, working hard in the background:


Taste’s preview/advertising guide making a guest appearance at the Terrapin staff line-up:


Josh and Dave (formerly of Relative Theory Records), who own and run the Boot – great restaurant and great venue:


All this restaurant work plus the hotels that Mendell shoots has inspired me to start plans for a new DCPG website devoted to our commercial work.   Keep an eye out for that!  Speaking of new websites, if you haven’t visited our glam/boudoir/makeover division at, please check it out!

Cheers to a new magazine, new president and a new year!

– Cies