Friday, August 26, 2016

It's All About The Eyes

I've been back from Israel for more than six weeks now, but been so preoccupied with working through those photos that I haven't had much of a chance to do much street work in New York. I went out with that in mind on two different occasions this past week. My 'street muscles' need a serious workout. I have to get back into the groove of seeing what's around me and then exercising my index finger to push the shutter. But I did happen to get one good shot yesterday.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Israel 2016 - The Last Day

On the final day of my visit to Israel the group of artists with which I was traveling had an arts fair in Arad. The artists had mini-workshops for those who came to try their hand at some creative skills. And I had an opportunity to photograph more kids.

I departed for home the next day. But leshana haba b'yerushalayim!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Israel 2016 - Shabbat

Almost shabbat. Can't shoot on shabbat, but one of our host couples made a Kabalat Shabbat for us before sundown so that we could have a kiddush. Shirah and Gadi Segal were a very interesting couple.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Israel 2016 - Arad Day 4

We had lots of free time on our fourth day in Arad. We were turned loose to do what artists do, art. And I photographed them doing it. I was deeply impressed with these two.

Anne could take any material and find some creative way to make art out of it.

Marilyn never stops. When she's not turning seemingly indiscriminate blobs of watercolor on paper into flowers or landscapes, she's a sketch machine.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Israel 2016 - Arad, day 3, part 2

The best part of the day for me was spending time with the school kids during their art class. Such beautiful young faces! They were fascinated with my camera. Wanted to use it to take pics of me with their friends. I'd love to go back and spend time teaching them about how to take great photos and how to use images to tell a story. But since this was the first time for an artist exchange, our trip was more exploratory and experimental. We didn't have much of a chance for any substance.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Israel 2016 - Arad, day 3

Our third day in Arad began with a demonstration of and lesson in flamenco dancing by a local practitioner. I 'dropped the ball' during this session. I took lots of photos of the demo, but was too involved participating in the lesson to take photos of my co-participants trying to execute the same moves. Only much later, after reviewing my work for the day did I realize that I missed a golden opportunity for unique material.

Following that, we visited an art class in a local elementary school. The experience was another of the highlights of my time in Arad. The kids spoke little or no English, and we spoke no Hebrew. But once we were turned loose to interact with the kids, everyone had a wonderful time. It was a goldmine of photo opportunities. This post is photos of us (the artists) working with the kids. The next post will be about the kids posing for me.

Our flamenco instructor explaining to us how to move gracefully:

Jared showing the boys how to execute an intricate brush stroke.

Gail explaining a philosophical concept about creativity:

 Marilyn, who was never without her sketch book, showing the kids what she did:

At one point the kids asked for Marilyn's sketch book and pen to make their own entries into her sketch journal:

Friday, August 12, 2016

Israel 2016 - Arad day 2

Part of the itinerary for our time in Arad was to spend an evening visiting and having dinner in a bedouin village. The bedouins were originally pastoral nomadic tribes living in the Negev and Sinai peninsula. Their lifestyle has changed quite a bit over the past few generations and they've become more settled. They usually live in distinct villages but integrate well into Israeli society.

I was looking forward to this experience and photo opportunity, but was very disappointed to discover the 'village' we were to visit was little more than a reconstructed Disneyland-like village with some local bedouins dressed in costumes who talked to us about their village lifestyle. When we returned to Arad after the evening experience I discovered that one of the program administrators had visited an actual 'live' bedouin village near Beersheba. When I expressed some misgivings about our experience at the make-believe village and my wish that I would have much preferred to go to a real bedouin town, I was told that it was just a town like any other and I wouldn't have found it interesting. Really?

The make-believe village was called Kfar Hanokdim.

One of our group of artists with the founder and owner of the village.

There was a large tent restaurant in which a bedouin woman was making flat bread for the evening diners.

 As part of the presentation of bedouin village life, we were served tea.

A bedouin village woman talked to us about her family life, told stories of her husband leaving her for his second wife, and her striking out on her own to establish a career. After the talk she sold trinkets to us.