New Year - New Work!


Hey, this is Mercedes!  

I have been working with TKP as an assistant, digi-tech, and social media director for a few years now.   JD, Nikki, and Kevin recently collaborated with food stylist Melinda Hutchison on this drinks video.  

I sat down with JD and Nikki to get their thoughts on their favorite parts of shooting together as well as Kevin's take on the editing process... 


Nikki:  As a photographer one of my goals is to spend time testing whenever I get the chance to keep my creativity fresh and learn new techniques.  When JD and I decided to do a collaborative project I was excited to see how we could bring our two styles together, mine being more editorial and his more graphic.  Through the process we tried a lot of different things to see what might work best.  In the end we decided on keeping the drinks hero, without any additional props and with a little more editorial looking background.  I think my favorite part of working together was seeing how great the final product turned out in the end.  Sometimes as a photographer it is easy to get into a routine or style of how you shoot.  It is really refreshing and fun to step outside your box and switch up the creative process.  I am definitely looking forward to what new ideas we can come up with together for future collaborations!


JD:  I've been with TKP for around three years now, and immediately knew when I was brought onto the team that it was a good fit.  As Nikki mentioned, our styles are creatively different.  This project gave us a chance to learn from each other.  Nikki and I have worked side by side on many projects, and have become experienced in shaping a variety of our clients needs, but have never tested together.  Bringing several creative visions together has its challenges, but we couldn't be happier with the end result.  Nikki and I look forward to continuing to do more projects like this in the future!


Kevin:  Editing video adds a new facet to my typical role as digital tech at TKP.  It was very exciting to work together with Jd, Nikki, and Melinda on this motion project.  Taking the music that JD selected and edited and incorporating it together with the video clips into one cohesive story was a very fun, creative challenge.  We really combined our strengths on this project and I think the final outcome speaks for itself.  I am really looking forward to working on many more motion projects that we have planned in 2018!  

Salted Caramel Coconut Milkshakes

Sometimes when you shoot food it's ok to get a little bit messy...

That is exactly what happened on a testing shoot that I (Nikki) did with the talented food stylist and recipe developer, Jim Rude.  I have had the pleasure of working with Jim on numerous projects for clients such as Jennie O Turkey, Farmer John's and Black Label Bacon.  While brainstorming for this project, Jim and I wanted to do something fun for summer and decided on two shakes and a stacked brownie recipe with plenty of salted caramel.  As Jim would say, "Tall, messy and lots of wow."  As you can imagine shooting anything with real ice-cream that starts to melt and change consistency immediately once you get it on set can be very challenging.  Add to that lots of ooey-gooey salted caramel and you have a lot of moving parts to capture.  After a little problem solving, teamwork, and a lot of caramel sauce we got our final, "beauty" image.  In the end we had a very successful day and walked away with three final beauty shots and a few extras... #tasteofsummer

Nikki Santavy | Tony Kubat Photography

For recipes check out Jim's blog at 

Photography and prop styling by Nikki Santavy.

Food styling and recipe development by Jim Rude.

Let's Make a Splash...

This photo was a fun one to shoot.  While I can't give away all my secrets, I can say that it's five exposures put together.  Since joining TKP around five months ago, I've really enjoyed experimenting with high speed photography, and getting the chance to use it with clients like Lift Bridge and Steel Toe Breweries.  

I have a new food portfolio in the works, so stay tuned for more food images with a twist.  

Thanks for checking it out!  -JD Havens

JD Havens Product | Tony Kubat Photography

Photography by JD Havens.  Click here to view JD's portfolio.