Some images from a great restaurant, Au Passage, in the 11th Arrondissement of Paris, for Edible Queens. Known for lovely small plates, this restaurant is often fully reserved for its first earlier seating, but is first come first served in the late seating, and is often patronized by chefs throughout Paris who are attracted to the fun innovative menu with a touch of classic cuisine. Article to come soon!
It was fascinating to document a completely different world for a few days last week at the Paris Air Show. My assignment was to shoot the “trade only” (not public) part of one of the largest air shows in the world, for one of the top aerospace engine and equipment manufacturers.
Shooting a mix of photo and video, I covered meet-and-greets with governors, trade secretaries, and military brass. I covered trade show presentations of new products, created portraits of pilots, and documented various VIPs visiting the company’s exhibition space. I crept into cockpits and peered into fusillages.
And yes I photographed planes. Lots of planes - fighter jets, commercial airliners, bi-planes, small private planes, and even helicopters. It was a thrill to get a first glimpse of the new Lockheed F35, a super fast fighter that had the ability to land… on a battleship! (of course, a good amount smaller than an aircraft carrier). It was also wild to watch commercial Boeing airplanes doing huge sweeping banks, knowing (hoping?) that they would never do this in a regular flight, in order to show the capabilities of the airplane.
As a bonus, I got to learn some of the vocabulary of the aerospace industry: “static” airplanes are those on the ground; “content” is the word manufacturers use to refer to the parts/equipment on a plane that they’ve produced; the “cowl” is the steel hood that goes on an engine. Good stuff!
I covered a massive product launch for Samsung at the Carrousel du Louvre, about their QLED technology. The event was so large – over 1000 attendees and press from 15+ countries – that the agency asked me to assemble photographers and videographers for simultaneous coverage over multiple locations. Luckily I had been building my contacts over the past few months here, and together we produced still photos, video footage, interviews, and time-lapse for Samsung. See how Samsung used the images here and here.
You first hear the brass band in the distance, belting out a traditional processional, before you see the visscherbande (fisherman’s band) marching down the street. The tambour major, dressed formally as a drum major should, leads the band and directs the rhythm and the choice of songs. Immediately following the group of trombone, trumpet, fife, sousaphone, snare and bass drums is the “premiére rang” (the first line) of Carnavaleux -- costumed revelers, mostly men, dressed as fishermen, sailors, or literally with fishnets as skirts, cross-dressing as women with wigs, leggings, dresses, sometimes reminiscent of a Scottish kilt with long kneesocks. It’s an honor to be in the first line, as they link arms and parade in front of the rest of the gang.. until the music changes, signalling the first line to do their duty, which is to hold the line, as the mass of people push shove and generally make a ruckus, all while singing traditional songs. The line needs to protect the band from the masses, and sometimes there’s a serious challenge, as the line mutates and rotates to accommodate the shifting and pulsing crowd. It’s all in good fun, of course, because it’s Carnaval in Dunkerque!
Lawyer, electrician, waiter, student, writer, secretary. Neighbor, cousin, acquaintance, enemy, work buddy, all of those normal roles of life disappear during Carnaval. All types of people from Dunkerque (called Dunkerquois), all celebrate their Carnaval as equals and together. Everybody masks, everybody participates, everybody marches in the parade and sings traditional songs – the “bandes” are not really a spectator sport.
Carnaval in Dunkerque lasts nearly three months, every weekend from January until April, with the peak activity happening around “les trois joyeuses” (the three joyous days) of the Dimanche, Lundi and Mardi Gras. The Dunkerque Carnaval was the first real one in France, with more than three hundred continual years of tradition – the first recorded mention of the Carnaval festivities in Dunkerque was in 1659.
Its origin lies in the story of the fishermen, who used to dress as women and parade in bands, before they embarked on dangerous three or four month fishing trips, long journeys to Iceland, where some did not return from the roiling seas. And, since it was a difficult life, one incentive was that they received a portion of their payment up front before they left, some of which they spent on one last long wild romp with their mates.
I'm headed back soon for "les trois joyeuses" - Dimanche, Lundi and Mardi Gras! Allons-y!
In the last few months, as I've explored the streets of Paris, I've continued to be drawn photographically to street art, the interesting typography of storefronts, and how magically Paris manages to combine the old and new in a fascinating mash-up of visual styles.
Some highlights have included Paris Photo in the Grand and Petit Palais, the Arts & Metiers museum, the Luxembourg Gardens on multiple visits, and as always the Aligre Market with fresh mushrooms and olive oil by the barrel.
Wishing you all a Happy New Year!
Au cours des derniers mois, en explorant les rues de Paris, j'ai continué photographier l'art de la rue, la typographie intéressante des magasins et comment Paris combine l'ancien et le nouveau dans un fascinant mash-up des styles visuels.
Parmi les faits saillants: le Paris Photo au Grand et Petit Palais, le musée des Arts et Métiers, les Jardins du Luxembourg à plusieurs visites, et toujours le Marché d'Aligre avec les champignons frais et l'huile d'olive au baril.
Je vous souhaite une bonne année!
Recently I shot an advertising campaign for Grand Central Terminal, to promote their retail stores. It was a multi-day shoot in September and November, with a variety of images needed: models with shopping bags in and around the building, night and daylight wide shots of the interiors and exteriors, and even lesser-known details of the landmark station. A lot of planning and preparation went into the project, so a big thanks to Grand Central, to their agency The Watsons, and production team Starlyn Creative!
One of the images was in Metro free newspapers in NY yesterday, and you can see other images on phone booths and in the NY Times shopping supplement. See a few tearsheets here.
I learned a lot about Grand Central, appreciating many of the finer details about the place, such as the exquisite lights, as well as the bronze rats at the Lexington Ave entrance, and a tree sculpture floating above the Grand Central Market’s east entrance!
I’ve been in Paris one month, and it actually feels like much longer, partially because it’s been light until 9 or 9:30 at night! Overall Paris is great, it’s a vibrant, stunningly visual, intense, diverse city, and that’s even my impressions during August when a large part of Paris is on vacation elsewhere!
I haven’t done that many traditional tourist sights in the city, between “installing” in our apartment in the 11th Arrondissement, taking “intensive” French classes every morning, and shooting a real estate project in the afternoons, it hasn’t left much time for other things. That said, I’m learning the city with my Velib bike-share, taking the metro and walking everywhere.
Some city highlights have included a recent private tour of the Senate and the Luxembourg Palace, having a sunset drink at a fun rooftop bar overlooking the 20th Arrondissement (rooftop bars haven’t quite caught on in Paris yet), catching an exhibit of the Czech photographer Josef Sudek at the Jeu de Paume museum, buying fruits and veggies and fresh fish and meat and cheese at the traditional outdoor market of Marché d’Aligre, exploring the Bois de Vincennes woods and park, a stroll through the ancient “passage couvert” which is a small covered antique passageway filed with old shops antique fixtures, and a restful weekend sojourn in Lille in the north of France, including a trip to the Musée du Louvre-Lens, an outpost of the Louvre with a fraction of the visitors of the main museum, and a fascinating layout and sequence of artwork! I also was able to walk the coulée verte, also known as the promenade plantée. An elevated promenade with gardens, it was the apparently the model for the High Line in NY, and one of the gardens featured one public water fountain which dispensed sparkling water!
One of the other major highlights of living in Paris is the neighborhood where we are situated, in the south east corner of the 11th Arrondissement. Near to the buzzing areas of Bastille and Oberkampf, it’s far enough away to be quiet if needed, but has plenty of great restaurants and cafes right here, and has a feeling of a Parisian neighborhood not frequented by visitors. I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the diversity of food options nearby - besides a few lovely French meals both high and low (bistros four-course “formula” and simple charcuterie of sliced meats and bread), we’ve had northern Chinese hot pot (called fondue), Thai, Lebanese, Italian, Vietnamese, and Algerian! Other nice things about my neighborhood are two small parks within a 5 minute walk, as well as a (slightly dangerous) amazing patisserie a few blocks away!
Many of the photos here aren’t “typical” Paris architecture shots as I’ve been roaming the streets mostly and not really going to a lot of tourist sites. I’ve been enjoying the street art and a few plays on words, especially in light of my French classes. It’s also been fascinating connecting with my fellow students, from all around the world. Interestingly, some of them are planning on living here, and it’s been great to compare notes and trade stories about France and further afield! It’s been quite challenging for me to be a student again, in class four plus hours a day, as well as struggling to speak French at lunch with my classmates, as well as homework at night! I think it’ll pay off in the future though!
Enjoy the photos!
Je suis ici á Paris depuis un mois, et actuellement j’ai le sentiment d’être là depuis plus longtemps, parce que il fait jour jusqu’à 21h00 ou 21h30! Généralement, la ville de Paris est formidable, visuel, bondé mais magnifique! Et ce sont mes impressions pendant le mois d’août, quand la majorité de Paris est en congé!
Je n’ai pas visité beaucoup de lieux touristiques traditionnels, puisque je me suis installé dans mon appartement dans le 11eme arrondissement, j’ai pris les cours “intensifs” de français chaque matin, et aussi j’ai fait un projet de photographie, en travaillant pour un bureau qui loue des appartements aux étudiants internationaux. Ça n'a pas laissé beaucoup de temps pour d'autres choses, mais cela dit, j’ai commencé à connaître la ville avec mon compte de Vélib. J’ai aussi utilisé le métro beaucoup et j’ai beaucoup, beaucoup, beaucoup marché!
Quand j’avais du temps libre, voici quelques choses que j’ai aimées: une visite privée du Senat et du Palais du Luxembourg; on a pris un verre dans un bar sur le toit dans le 20ème Arrondissement (les bars sur les toits ne sont pas encore communs á Paris), on a fait une visite au musée du Jeu de Paume pour voir l’exposition du photographe tchèque qui s’appelait Josef Sudek; on achetait régulièrement des légumes, des fruits, des poissons fraîches, des viandes, et des fromages au marché traditionnel en plein air, qui s’appelle Marché d’Aligre, on a exploré le Bois de Vincennes, on a fait une promenade à travers un ancien “passage couvert”, bondé de magasins vieux et jolis, on a fait un week-end de repos à Lille dans le nord de la France, y compris une visite du musée du Louvre-Lens, qui est une annexe du Louvre avec moins de visiteurs et une séquence fascinante d’œuvres d'art! Aussi, j’ai fait une ballade sur une promenade élevée, aussi s’appelle “la coulée verte” située au-dessus des rues. Le promenade était l’inspiration pour le “High Line” à New York, et un des jardins de la promenade a une fontaine qui distribue de l'eau pétillante! Incroyable !
Une des autres grandes joies d’habiter ici est mon arrondissement, le sud-est du 11ème. A proximité des zones branchées de la Bastille et d’Oberkampf, il en est assez loin pour être tranquille, mais il y a beaucoup de restaurants et de cafés ici, et a un sentiment d'un quartier parisien pas fréquenté par les visiteurs. J'ai été surpris par la diversité des options de restauration – on a mangé quelques beaux repas français, hauts et bas (bistros quatre plats "formule" simple et de la charcuterie et du pain), il y ade la cuisine chinoise, thaï, libanaise, italienne, vietnamienne et algérienne! D'autres belles choses au sujet de mon quartier sont deux petits parcs à moins de 5 minutes à pied, ainsi qu'un pâtisserie (légèrement dangereuse) étonnante à quelques pas de la maison!
Beaucoup de photos ici ne sont pas de l'architecture ou des photos "typiques" de Paris puisque j’ai été dans les rues la plupart du temps et je n’ai pas visité un grand nombre de sites touristiques. J’aime bien l'art de la rue et les jeux de mots. Il a été aussi fascinante de faire un lien avec les autres étudiants, de partout dans le monde. C’est intéressant, certains ont l'intention de vivre ici! Il était très difficile pour moi d'être un étudiant à nouveau, en classe quatre heures plus par jour, et c’était difficile de parler le français à déjeuner avec mes camarades de classe, et de faire les devoirs la nuit! Je pense que cela va certainement avoir de la valeur dans le futur!
I was excited for this event after shooting some portraits and classroom images for Eagle Academy Foundation . They hired me again to photograph their big fundraising event, the annual Awards Breakfast. Hillary Rodham Clinton was the keynote speaker! I was glad to be a part of this awesome organization and loved documenting the breakfast and working for a great cause!
Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival combines hundreds of years of musical tradition with a relatively new carnival celebration. This carnival happens in May, off-season from other carnival pre-Lenten February celebrations. The festival gives visitors to this Caribbean island nation a chance to not only experience traditional Bahamian culture, music and food, but also enjoy some of the modern manifestations of the music scene, as well as the opportunity to “jump up” and parade with one of the “road fever” companies that march in the streets of Nassau on Carnival Saturday.
I got to spend a few days documenting the festival in the Bahamas for Afropop Worldwide. Take a look at some more images from the festival below!
I was lucky enough to be invited to document the Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival in Nassau, Bahamas, which gives visitors a chance to not only experience traditional Bahamian culture, music and food, but to enjoy some of the modern manifestations of the music scene, as well as the opportunity to “jump up” and parade with one of the “road fever” companies that march in the streets.
The main headliner of the concert portion was the amazing Wyclef Jean. I had the distinct honor of speaking with him, and the interview is posted on Afropop Worldwide, where he talks about his Haitian influences, vodou, and the Junkanoo festival. Enjoy!
The Eagle Academy Foundation, a nonprofit network of college-preparatory, public schools in challenged, urban communities that educate and mentor young men into future leaders, was looking to create some fresh and dynamic images for their re-launch of their website. I was excited to take some photos for the company website. They are hosting a 5th annual awards breakfast, one of the keynote speakers being Hillary Rodham Clinton. Looking forward to it!
Good Deeds Day is a nonprofit organization encouraging people to do good deeds throughout the year. They have an annual celebration that unites over 70 countries around the world in doing good deeds. I worked with Empire Entertainment and Reel Works to produce this time-lapse of the full setup and production, over 15 hours of image capture! All of the time-lapse in the below video was from that day. Check out the video below!
Behind the Scenes on the day of the event:
Recently I helped branding agency Red Rooster Group with their own re-launch of their website. They needed new photos for a fresh new look to their site and I was happy to deliver more lifestyle shots and portraits of the staff in action. The very talented staff were easy-going and I enjoyed getting creative with the team!
For more on their updated look, see below!
Also, Check out some behind the scenes of the staff and I in action:
Team Theory does more than just recruiting. They consult with growing technology companies and social enterprises, helping them to build their teams effectively. I had a lot of fun creating images of their team at work in their light-filled space. We got some in-action photos as well as the team head shots.
I wanted to share these photos and videos that I created for this wonderful organization called UMFS. In these videos, various staff members speak about Project LIFE, which helps foster children build their life skills after they age out of the system.
Take a look at the videos below to learn more about the program! It was great working with branding agency Red Rooster Group on this project!
Here's a behind the scenes video I shot and produced with director Ahron R. Foster for DEC3's music video "Put Some South in Your Mouth." It features time-lapse, interviews, rock star hair, lassos, beer clinking, and good old-fashioned American rock 'n roll! Shot in the Strand Smokehouse in Queens! Hells yeah! Here's more motion work I've done.
Iron Bridge Consulting is a construction and management firm that works in retail, hospitality and corporate installations. For the re-launch of their website, they commissioned me to create some environmental portraits of the team in their respective positions. Here are some of my favorites from the shoot.
Last year I shot a full campaign for New York School of Interior Design, creating images over a bunch of days for their viewbook, which is their main marketing vehicle for new students to this graduate school. I shot interiors, exteriors, images of the students in action, portraits of alumni, hallways, teachers, students, and design studios!
This was an example of a full rebranding project, whereby the Art Director supplied me with some visual ideas to capture, the equivalent of a mood board, and we had multiple meetings to plan and pre-visualize the images before the shoot. ImageBrief did a profile on this project.
For more details, see this case study!