Monthly Archives: September 2008

MMA Institute of Charlottesville

This is Angie Hines, Charlottesville's Tuff Girl.

I started training in the martial art of Muay Thai several years ago under Frank Cucci, head of Linxx Academy in Virginia Beach.  My hubby Jason also went to the same school, studying Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.  We were both very passionate in our training, but when we moved away from the beach, we found it difficult to find a comparable martial art school in our area (Linxx Academy is quite awesome).

I happened to hear about the MMA Institute from a former teacher of mine who trains Monday afternoon classes at Gold’s Gym.  I drove out to Ruckersville where the MMA Institute is currently located and gave a trial class a whirl.  I found that everyone there was friendly, professional, and highly trained.  So, now I’m there pretty regularly.  There are a few instructors that I train under:  Dave Morris, Howard Hines and his wife, Angie.  I’d like to talk about Angie a bit.  Angie teaches the ladies Muay Thai class twice a week.  She has been training for about three years now, and is getting ready to compete in her second fight… this Saturday in Vegas!  The event is called Tuff Grlz Fight Night.  If she wins this competition, then she will have the chance to star in this new reality TV show on the Oxygen Channel, called… Tuff Grlz.  Anyhoo, I think she’s pretty awesome, and I think she is going to win.  I brought my camera with me a couple of times to class, and here are a few snapshots.  -Tammy


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Charlie Anne Bridal – Studio

These are bridal shots that we took of Charlie Anne a week ago.  She and her hubby Andre, who is a were legally married earlier this year, but are going to celebrate their married togetherness next month amongst friends and family.  After Jason and I photograph their wedding day, we will have the privelidge of shooting Charlie Anne’s  family reunion the following day.  It is going to be an eclectic mix of familes; her family hailing mostly from Georgia, and then some of Andre’s, who will be traveling from London and Brazil.

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Baby Jae – Ft. Washington, MD

This is Jae Riley.  Edible, isn’t she?  Jason’s longtime best friend (brother) and former Navy colleague/roommate, reknown military photojournalist Shane T. McCoy named his new yummalicious daughter after Jason.  She was born on Septmeber 4.

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Jerome and Karissa’s Engagement – Fan District – Richmond, VA

I am looking forward to Jerome and Karissa’s wedding ceremony taking place next month in October.  Their ceremony is to take place on Jerome’s family farm in Palmyra, with a reception to take place in Richmond.  These guys are really, really fun to hang out with.  We all did a fair share of walking and shot engagement portraits in and around the neighborhood of  Libby Hill Park of historical Church Hill east of downtown Richmond.

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Tom and Melissa’s Engagement – Tidal Basin – Washington DC

This is Tom and Melissa.  Great looking couple, huh?  We photographed their wedding this past February at the Occidental in DC.  It was a little chilly, I’m not going to lie about that.  Their wedding celebration was amongst an intimate number of family and friends and very memorable.   Tom proposed to Melissa at the Tidal Basin, so they wanted to have their engagement portraits taken there when it was warmer.  At one point, Tom wanted to pretend that we were paparazzi taking pictures of them alongside the busy DC roadway.  It was a lovely day for a shoot, especially when we were getting hit with a storm the day prior.

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New Website!

Well friends and neighbors, after a few ‘all nighters’ of working on this project, our new website is up and kicking.  We were going for a cleaner look and easier navigation.  Thanks to Jason for all of his hard work and design talent.  Another thank you to David Jay for introducing us to Show It Sites, which is what this new website is based from.  I want all of our fellow colleagues who share a link exchange with us to know that your links are going to be added very soon!  Thank you for your support and open networks!  Oh, one more thank you… to everyone who has given us their feedback and opinions of the site.  We really, really appreciate your time of going through the whole site and offering your observations and suggestions… you guys rock!!

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A Letter From a Soldier to His Girlfriend

Sarah had contacted Jason earlier this year with an interesting request.  Her boyfriend, Lee was getting ready for deployment, and she wanted to give him something special… pin-up portraits on 4×6 prints that he could keep close to his heart.

Sarah and stylist, Jessie Wisler from Moxie Hair & Body Lounge arrived at our home studio about a month later for the shoot.  Sarah had so many great outfits and accessories that she had found in her travels to consignment shops in New York and around town.  The shoot was a blast.  It was very difficult, but Sarah managed to narrow down five images for print.  The images were printed on metallic paper bonded to canvas.   Below is an excerpt from Lee’s letter to Sarah upon receiving his gift.  I still tear up every time I read this.  Thank you so much, Lee and Sarah for allowing us to share these beautiful words.

Date: Aug. 26, 2008


I opened the package you sent. Wow. It is the single greatest gift I have ever received in my life. I wouldn’t trade those 5 pictures or the thought and sentiment behind them for anything in the whole world. It is the best thing anyone has ever done for me. I’m not exaggerating. The amount of time and thought and love that went into those floors me. You are simply a great woman, and a truly excellent girlfriend. I can’t stop looking at them and even thinking of them makes me smile continuously. They are my prized possessions. When someone asks that question about if your house was on fire what would you save? Its these. They are so great I can’t say enough about them. They were even more surprising because, as you predicted, I don’t remember that conversation exactly…but the important fact is that you did, and you understood that I was serious and you made it a 6 month project which shows love and dedication that truly impresses me and make me feel so humble to be allowed to be close to you. I love them all. You are so unspeakably beautiful and he captured that so well. I can’t say enough and don’t know what else to say. I love them. I love you.


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