As Valentines day approaches, more and more men (and women) start to think of things that they want to do for their significant other to celebrate this hallmark holiday. I refer to it as a hallmark holiday not to be disrespectful of the holiday itself, but simply to state the obvious in that this holiday was created to sell greeting cards in a stretch where there weren’t any other holidays… Regardless, people tend to go out of their way to find that one extra little special element to make their valentines day unique. Whether that be some flowers, jewelry, Sweet Ass Cupcakes, or chocolates; usually the receiving party is happy.

(Canon 5D Mark II, 400ISO, Canon EF100mmF2.8Macro, 1/40th@F7.1.  Single Canon 580EX Speedlight fired by pocket wizard plus II Transceiver shot into a white bounce card set to 1/16th power from above the frame.)

If you don’t know what you’re going to do then don’t worry, there’s still time. (about two weeks actually).  Tomorrow the Indianapolis Star newspaper is releasing what we are calling the “Romance Section”, which will give you tons of great gift ideas for that special other.  From candies and private getaway hotels, to Personal Tanks and Uranium Ore….. other romantic stuff.  It’s all in there, and you should check it out.

(Canon 5D Mark II, 250ISO, Canon EF16-35F2.8L@16mm, 1/30th@F4.  Single Canon 580EX Speedlight shot through a 32″ Translucent Umbrella to above camera left set to 1/8th fired by Pocket Wizard Plus II Transiever.)

That’s Dan from the Shakolade Chocolate Factory up in Traders Pointe near 86th and Zionsville road here in Indianapolis.  Quite the shop actually.  He could make anything out of chocolate it appeared.  The things he’s brushing off in this image are chocolate heart shaped containers to hold more chocolates.  So when you’re done eating the inside chocolates, you eat the box too!  They had everything at this place, chocolate hand cuffs, chocolate high heeled shoes, chocolate tool kids (made of chocolate, not for working with chocolate)…..everything.  Most of their work is custom ordering, and I’ll tell you what; I was impressed by what I saw they could do.

(Canon 5D Mark II, 400ISO, Canon EF100F2.8Macro, 1/50th@F5.6.  Canon 580EX Speedlight set inside the candy case shot into the side wall to the right of all the candies set to 1/16th to illuminate Dan’s face.  Single 580EX Speedlight set to 1/32nd to illuminate the white wrappers of the foreground candies on the floor to camera left about 5′ back aimed up through the glass. Both speedlights triggered by Pocket Wizard Plus II Transceivers.)

That there is something that Dan does a lot of though: Making Boxed Candy hearts.  He said that most of his business is repeat because he will do custom orders.  Example being if someone likes no coconut chocolates, or is allergic to nuts and can’t eat them.  Instead of hoping for the best, and having to just get 17 out of 25 chocolates that you can eat, he’ll make a whole box of assorted chocolates of just what you tell him to.  Sounds like a sweet deal to me!  (My problem though is that I’ll eat things that I’m allergic too…..sort of a side ailment to go along with my “Small Dog-Idis”…)  .  Either way, Dan is single handedly making valentines day what it should have been about in the first place.  He cares for his customers the way that they care for the people they are shopping for.  Either way, Valentines day is in a few weeks.  Check out the Romance Section tomorrow if you don’t know what you’re going to do.  More Soon.