No, it's not Trump Tower, but close. Welcome to Orlando, site of the 2015 meeting of the NABE Communications Section.

No, it’s not Trump Tower, but close. Welcome to Orlando, site of the 2015 meeting of the NABE Communications Section.

In early October, a few of us from Arizona Attorney Magazine had the opportunity to present at a national conference. Today, I’m happy to share great recaps of those two presentations.

Karen Holub, our Art Director, and I spoke at the annual conference of the National Association of Bar Executives Communications Section. It was held in Orlando, which is a (head) trip of its own.

My plenary presentation was on the topic of “the art of presenting.” It was a blast, and I was privileged to share the podium with the talented and long-suffering Catherine Sanders Reach of the Chicago Bar Association. She provided invaluable content to the banquet room of communicators. And I provided … well, why don’t you read the terrific coverage we got from the talented and generous writer Marilyn Cavicchia.

Attendees gather to hear us talk about the art of presenting.

Attendees gather to hear us talk about the art of presenting.

True professional Catherine Sanders Reach exudes patience while Communications Section Chair Russell Rawlings and I trade picture-taking.

True professional Catherine Sanders Reach exudes patience while Communications Section Chair Russell Rawlings and I trade picture-taking.

The day before, Karen presented with terrific colleagues from San Francisco and Nashville on design for the non-designer. Her presentation was funny and valuable, and she simply crushed it. Here’s how Marilyn described that session.

And here is a photo of Karen presenting.

Karen Holub explains design for a roomful of non-designers. She spoke slowly.

Karen Holub explains design for a roomful of non-designers. She spoke slowly.

Her slides were eye-opening (which is what you want in slides). Among my favorites was this one, which chastised all of us in legal publications for our often too-easy use of images like gavels (and scales of justice, omigod the scales) to illustrate complex concepts. Try harder, she suggested, and you’ll be surprised what can happen.

Enough with the gavels in legal journalism, ok?

Enough with the gavels in legal journalism, ok?

Finally, at the Friday closing luncheon, those of us in the State Bar of Arizona were recognized for professional achievement. My terrific colleague Alberto Rodriguez accepted an award for the Bar’s “Finish the Ballot” campaign. And I got an award for leadership.

Alberto Rodriguez and I with awards from the National Association of Bar Executives, Orlando, Fla., Oct. 2, 2015.

Alberto Rodriguez and I with awards from the National Association of Bar Executives, Orlando, Fla., Oct. 2, 2015.

You can read more about the honors here.

Alberto Rodriguez, State Bar of Arizona, right, and fellow honorees at the National Association Of Bar Executives Communications Section workshop, Oct. 2, 2015.

Alberto Rodriguez, State Bar of Arizona, right, and fellow honorees at the National Association Of Bar Executives Communications Section workshop, Oct. 2, 2015.

Over time, I’ve learned that presenting and participating in professional service yield great benefits, and that the considerable time we put in garners much in return. I hope you agree.

Congratulations to my great fellow-workers on your achievements and willingness to lead.

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September 2015 Arizona Attorney: JAG lawyers stand in front of F-35 at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona. (Photo by Karen Shell)

September 2015 Arizona Attorney: JAG lawyers stand in front of F-35 at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona. (Photo by Karen Shell)

Today I’m pleased to preview an article on lawyers who serve at Luke Air Force Base. It’ll be in the September issue of Arizona Attorney, and it’s quite a feature.

Written by attorney and JAG officer Rodney Glassman, it’s a complete picture of what goes into serving as an attorney in the Air Force. Adding to the story are the amazing photos, shot on location by photographer Karen Shell.

We’re always happy to feature photos of our Arizona lawyers. But equally exciting was the opportunity to include the new and path-breaking F-35 jet. It’s always nice to break news as well as sound barriers.

Our Luke AFB JAG opening spread (photo by Karen Shell)

Our Luke AFB JAG opening spread (photo by Karen Shell)

Thank you to Art Director Karen Holub for shepherding the photo shoot and for the story design. Here are some photos from the shoot. (Click to biggify.)

It was also fun, as always, to write headlines for our cover. As you can see, I ultimately opted for Gotta Jet. But my backup—and still a strong favorite—would have been Legal Zoom.

Get it? Yes, probably not as good and definitely more controversial.

The complete story is in the magazine mailed this week to readers. It will be available online September 1.

Attorney Mark Bockel poses in the Larsen Gallery, Scottsdale, as photographer John Hall shoots his picture, March 12, 2015.

Attorney Mark Bockel poses in the Larsen Gallery, Scottsdale, as photographer John Hall shoots his picture, March 12, 2015.

The annual photo shoot for our Creative Arts Competition winners was held last week, and it looks like it was terrific.

I say “looks” because I was out of town and had to miss it. But that makes me doubly happy that Art Director Karen Holub thoughtfully provided me some “behind the camera” shots. (Which is kind of amazing, as she was herding cats, a photographer, and multiple lawyer-winners.)

All of the professionally shot photos will appear in the May issue of Arizona Attorney Magazine—along with the talented artists’ work. In the meantime, click here to see last year’s winning work.

Thank you to the Larsen Gallery in Scottsdale for hosting our shoot. As always, your space and the work you display are remarkable.

Have a great—and artful—weekend.

Here are a few more shots. (Click them to biggify.)

Arizona Attorney Magazine cover September 2014, grandparent visitation laws

Our September 2014 cover

Not to be timely or anything, but …

The September issue of Arizona Attorney Magazine has a great and detailed story on the twists and turns grandparent-visitation legislation has taken—in Arizona and elsewhere.

Meanwhile, National Grandparents Day falls this weekend, on September 7.

And yes, although it will not play for me, there is apparently an official song for the occasion (at least, according to Wikipedia).

A hat tip to Art Director Karen Holub for locating our aww-inspiring cover image. If that doesn’t make you want to call your grandfolks, I don’t know what will.

And thank you to our terrific author Michael K. Goldberg (read his feature article here). And thank you to the calendar for your unintentional cooperation.

 

Creative Arts Competition photo shoot, Tempe Center for the Arts, March 3, 2014.

Creative Arts Competition photo shoot, Tempe Center for the Arts, March 3, 2014.

One of my favorite days in the magazine’s year has to be the annual lawyer–artists photo shoot. This year’s version occurred on Monday afternoon.

Once again at the beautiful Tempe Center for the Arts, the shoot requires huge coordination and the establishment of numerous “shots.” We have single portraits (for each winning artist’s page in the printed magazine), as well as numerous group shots for the winners, honorable mentions, entire group, and other spur-of-the-moment combinations.

Karen Shell has been our go-to photographer for a number of years now, and I’m continually impressed by her creativity, willingness to adapt, and calm in the face of chaos.

Kudos also to Karen Holub, our Art Director. She herds multiple cats in the effort to get this whole affair launched, implemented, and sewn up.

Photographer Karen Shell (left) and Art Director Karen Holub consult on a shot.

Photographer Karen Shell (left) and Art Director Karen Holub consult on a shot.

In previous years, we’ve shot the photos in the light-filled lobby and on the lakeside patio of the TCA. But this spring, we wondered whether it would be possible to do something different. Could we get on the main stage and include shots of the gorgeous cherry-wood theatre?

You never know. Theatres and the acting companies that inhabit them can be a tetchy lot.

The happy answer: Yes. The result is a series of shots that capture the evocative theatre as well as the moody-black of the stage itself.

Here are a few photos (click to make them larger. The real deal—shot by Karen Shell and not be me on my Canon S110—will be in the May issue of Arizona Attorney. (Here is last year’s coverage.)

So what tastes good, confuses Accounting, and celebrates Access to Justice?

A cake, of course.

Here is just a slice of our delicious cake cover for the July/August Arizona Attorney Magazine.

Here is just a slice of our delicious cake cover for the July/August Arizona Attorney Magazine.

The upcoming issue of Arizona Attorney features a history-sharing cover story. We’re pleased to cover the 35th anniversary of the Bar Foundation—currently named the Arizona Foundation for Legal Services & Education. To do so, we are publishing the memories of many of their past Presidents.

At the magazine, we brainstormed what an anniversary needs, and of course we thought of a cake.

Search around in online stock art and you’ll see a lot of cakes. But a great sister like the Foundation only turns 35 once, so Art Director Karen Holub and I agreed a real, honest-to-goodness cake was best.

The craftsmanship was done by the talented Tammie Coe. You should see more of her work here.

cake maker Tammie Coe

Tammie Coe

The cake image above reveals a small part of the beautiful creation. I promised Karen I would not give away The Big Reveal. The whole thing will be visible on our July/August cover.

Oh, and the Accounting-confusion thing? Try sending a cake invoice to your Accounting Department coded for “Professional Services” rather than for “Food/Meals.” You’ll get a phone call.

Here was my emailed explanation to them:

“The cake was made as a prop for our photo shoot. Though it was edible (after quite awhile under hot lights), the bakery was hired first and foremost for its design skills and craftsmanship, not for eatin’!”

We try to keep it interesting.

Because I know you like to see how the cake (and sausage) is made, I share an early conceptual drawing for this cake project (below). The final result was quite a bit different, but we’re all about the process!

cake mockup AZFLSE v2

Cake concept drawing

Have a wonderful Independence Day. The blog and I may take a few days off (I consulted James Madison, who urged me to write more, a la The Federalist Papers. But my man Ben Franklin urged relaxation, which I will heed.)

In the annual cycle of Arizona Attorney Magazine, an event in early March has become one of my favorites.

That is when we schedule the photo shoot for the winners of the lawyer arts competition.

We publish those winners and their art in the May issue, and so the shoot occurs in March.

Art Director Karen Holub, left, and photographer Karen Shell collaborate at our creative arts photo shoot.

Art Director Karen Holub, left, and photographer Karen Shell collaborate at our creative arts photo shoot.

To achieve that, Art Director Karen Holub must wrangle about a dozen busy people to all congregate at the same time and the same place. Once she’s done that, she and photographer Karen Shell can work their magic. (Me? I attend merely to meet the winners, if I don’t know them, and to nosh a bit on the finger foods we offer; that’s my complete contribution.)

Here are a few of my own poor cellphone shots from the shoot (click any of them to view as a slideshow), held at the beautiful and hospitable Tempe Center for the Arts. All of the truly stellar work will appear next month, in print and online.