I am writing to let you know of my impressions of getting Ashley's portrait done. It is difficult to put into words but please allow me to try…
My daughter is now seventeen and for the past several months, I had wanted to get a photograph of her made to preserve this special time in her life. However, I had been dragging my feet because standard studio photographs just did not speak to the feeling I wanted to capture. When I stepped off an airplane and encountered a display of your work in one of the RDU terminals, I knew immediately that you could capture the romance of the age that I wanted to preserve. As a designer, I deal with many forms of art and photography and I have seldom encountered that perfect blend of art and science that your works so perfectly convey.
On the day of the sitting, it was brutally hot and I was concerned that you wouldn't be able to get that fresh, natural feeling I was hoping to see. During the session, I saw a few of your pictures through the camera's eye and I know you had nailed what I was hoping to see early on in the session. Ashley was perfectly relaxed throughout the sitting and her pictures reveal an ease and naturalness with the camera. And, you made it look like you were just playing. When I reviewed the previews, I felt so moved by your talent that it was very difficult for me to select only one portrait, in fact I selected several poses as it was impossible to not want them all!
My husband and I are utterly delighted with the portrait you did of our daughter, both for the joy it brings our family now and for the heirloom that I know it will become for Ashley in the years ahead.
I will always appreciate being the recipient of your very special talents and gifts.
Sincerely, Nancy Magiera
June 21 Mr. Gray,
My daughter-in-law, granddaughter and myself enjoyed meeting with you on Thursday. We have compared prices and work of other photographers, and at this point your work is exactly what we want. I want to make the most of that money, but we do not want to compromise with anyone else’s photography.
See you soon, Ann A.
I am so glad God finds delight in overwhelmingly surprising His children beyond our already highest expectations. That is the infiniteness of God. I am convinced He is able to display His mightiness through the lives of men if we are able to receive it and let that power flow through our talents- if we are crystal clear vessels which shine His light instead of our own. And I am also convinced that the greatest talent of Sam Gray lies in his willingness to allow God to direct his gift. His humility is genuine. A portrait session, which I thought would be like watching a self, assured master at work was more like watching a young boy at play! His passion for re-creating what we hold precious in our hearts is startling and refreshing. It was like he was an unexpected helper who wanted to help us save these memories in a beautiful crystal box. As the camera clicked, it was if years and tons of love and emotion raced across my child's face. We watched as Sam drew out all the complexities of her character; impish wonder, discovery, mystique, awe, silly innocence- they tiptoed before us, spilling out like a wellspring of Childhood. Our hearts danced with hers and for a secret moment we all passed through the sometimes-blinded door of forgotten Childhood passed. And best of all, Sam helped us save it in a crystal box. It's ours to cherish. And I would not trade it for a thousand galaxies.