Monday, March 31, 2008


Sunday, March 30, 2008


Hiking in the Encino Hills, lately I've noticed a burst in growth of the wildflowers.

And on Saturday I noticed in my own front and backyard, the lemon and strange tangerine hybrid tree are full of buds just waiting to become fruit. It's so nice to see splashes of color everywhere after winter.
While I was shooting the buds, I noticed a strange bug on the deck. I have no idea what it is, but it looked pretty cool shot with my Nikon 105 f2.8 micro lens.

Lucy followed me out so of course I had to take some shots of her. I love capturing the variety of expressions on a dog's face!

Later in the day, I stopped by the Julia Dean Gallery in Venice to check out the new show 4 Frames - 11 Southern California Photographers (including my mentor/teacher/friend Aline Smithson's work). My favorite work in the show was by Cindy Schafer - if I had the cash I would have bought her two flower shots (a dark reddish fern and a white group of flowers set against a blue sky).

Before I left Venice, I walked out to the beach to check out the Sunset. Because there was a little bit of a threat of rainshowers later in the evening, there were more clouds than usual.
Then I went to the latest Slideluckpotshow event at 5th and Sunset Studios. Slideluckpotshow is a great free event - part potluck, park slideshow. I sampled the food and actually was surprised by the good taste of some homemade vegan taquitos. The actual slideshow was an open air event on the roof. They had tons of folding chairs, lots of heat lamps, a VERY BIG screen, and an excellent sound system (all the slideshows are set to music). The clouds overhead were very dark and threatening rain, but aside from some light drizzle, the outdoor slideshow escaped the a downpour. Even if you missed the show, you can check out many of the slideshows on their site. I definitely encourage any photographers and photo enthusiasts to check out the next slideluckpot show event.

So all in all, between taking some cool backyards shots, getting to see a sunset over the Pacific Ocean, and going to the slideluckpotshow event, I had a pretty great Saturday!

Monday, March 24, 2008


On Easter Sunday I headed over to my Uncle Myles West Hollywood apartment for a homemade Easter feast compliments of his friends the Almouai family: Nawaf, Donna, Azzam and Isabelle. We ate early around 5pm and had roasted spring lamb (yum), rice, spinach, green beans, and for desert, rice krispie treats, middle eastern cookies, and Neapolitan ice cream! I was so stuffed, I didn't eat again 'til this afternoon! After dinner we talked, I took a much needed walk (after that huge meal) around the neighborhood with Isabelle, I played hide and seek with the kids, and then we had a lot of fun taking digital and Polaroid photos with lots of props including three different kinds of bunny ear headbands I brought.

Azzam, Isabelle, and my Uncle Myles embrace their inner bunny on Easter Sunday

Uncle Myles

Me and Isabelle

Me and my Polaroid MiniPortrait 203 - a recent Craigslist acquisition. This camera takes two side by side photos (two of the same or two different images) on one Polaroid picture. I'll upload some of the Polaroids I took at a later time.

Sunday, March 23, 2008


Easter was always one of my favorite holidays growing up because my Mom made it so much fun for me. We colored eggs and she hid chocolate bunnies and other goodies in the front yard for me to find. I'd walk around our huge front yard and she's say "hot" or "cold" depending on whether I was near finding chocolaty goodness in our various bushes or tucked behind trees or in flower pots. One year it was a bit too hot and a LOT of the chocolate melted and another time our German Shepard Heidi found one stash of candy before I did and chewed open the box. My best Easter find of ALL TIME was an entire box of Star Wars The Empire Strikes Back trading cards. Even though I'm Jewish, I was raised celebrating all the holidays. It wasn't until I was 12 or so in seventh grade that I actually realized that Easter was a Christian holiday and not just a universal one like Valentine's Day.

Friday I went shopping at Ralph's with my friend Cathy to buy eggs and Paas Easter Egg dying kits. This was going to be the first time I'd be decorating Easter Eggs since my Mom died. This year I just felt like I HAD to make them. I always thought it was a fun and creative activity and it was about time to do it again. I bought the standard kit and Cathy got one that had glitter sticks and beads. When we got to the register I realized I hadn't bought a single Cadbury Creme egg this year. Ever since they debuted Cadbury Creme Eggs (I'm guessing in the early 80's), that was my favorite Easter candy and I always looked forward to them reappearing on store shelves for that brief month before Easter. But at the register I realized I didn't have a taste or craving for them and skipped it altogether. I've been diligently cutting out most sweets for the past month and I guess those sweet taste buds have just been dwindling. I realized I also hadn't bought any PEEPS this year and now that was one Easter candy I just had to have. Besides, they're not as overly sweet and rich as the Cadbury Creme Eggs, so I think they would just hit the spot. But I didn't buy any PEEPS on the spot, I'm waiting til tomorrow when they're at least half off! :-) My Mom went crazy around Easter - she had to have Chocolate covered Malt Balls (I remember they came in containers that looked like small pints of milk), and Chocolate covered Marshmallows shaped like eggs. Yummy. Well so far this year I haven't had a single taste of chocolate on Easter, but I had a lot of fun making eggs on Friday (although it wasn't nearly as much fun without my Mom who just brought a wonderful playful spirit to the process). I got to take a few funny pictures of Lucy who briefly let me put bunny ears on her! LOLOL. And instead of running around the front yard looking for Easter treats, I took a rare moment to sit on a swinging bench that hangs at the front of the yard and just took in the blue skies and wonderfully warm weather. I just was thinking of how my Mom used to like to relax on the bench and have picnics in the yard when all of a sudden I started smelling a strong gust of Gardenias - my Mom's favorite flower. We don't have Gardenias in our garden and as far as I can tell neither do any of my nearest neighbors. Was it my Mom sending me an Easter message or just coincidence? The answer doesn't really matter. The Gardenias smelled lovely.

Lucy The Boxador Bunny!

Post Note: I just came across a fuzzy Polaroid of me Easter Egg hunting in the front yard in 1977!

Friday, March 21, 2008


A couple of weeks ago I was lucky enough to get to work with actress/singer, diva-licious Jenifer Lewis. I spent the day shooting new headshots and promo shots for Jenifer at her gorgeous home in Sherman Oaks. The lady knows how to live! We were blessed by absolutely beautiful afternoon light and regaled with lots of great stories from Jenifer who's worked with an amazing range of performers from Bette Midler (she was a Harlette!) to acting opposite Meryl Streep at the Public Theater in NYC. Here's to you Jenifer - congrats on the opening day for your new movie "Meet The Browns" and an upcoming turn in Hairspray on Broadway.

Jenifer serene in her garden

Jenifer and her adorable dog Cashew (aka "shoo-shoo")

still looking good!

"shoo-shoo" wants a kiss

Embracing my inner diva with Jenifer and the crew at the end of the shoot.

The Trailer for "Meet The Browns"

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Last night I had some unexpected dental work - a filling had to be redone - and the procedure plus the double dose of novocaine pretty much knocked me on my ass for the entire evening. I pretty much had to retreat bed from 3pm on, so I just figured it would be a nice time to catch up on cable. Luckily I found "The World's Fastest Indian" on the guide - a film I've been wanting to see for awhile. The film tells the true story of Burt Munro, a retired "Kiwi" who's lifelong obsession was modifying, riding, and racing his 1920 Indian Scout motorcycle.

Anthony Hopkins (one of my favorite actors) plays Burt and he's a glee to watch. Here's a photo of Anthony as Burt. Originally the Indian was capable of 55mph but by the time Burt was done tinkering it, it had reached speeds up to 200mph. Burt manufactured his own parts and did all the work in his backyard shed. You don't have to be into motorcycles or motorcycle racing to admire Burt and enjoy the movie. The movie is about passion, obsession, and the power of dreams - AT ANY AGE! Burt was in his late 60's (and living with a heart condition) when he made his first record making runs at the historic Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah. I'm pretty obsessed when it comes to my photography and my cameras (especially my Polaroids) so I really related to Burt's obsession. I've seen plenty of films about obsessed men who have made their dreams come true from "Tucker: The Man And His Dream" to the story of Howard Hughes told in "The Aviator," but what sets Burt apart from those two men is that he was just an average retiree living on a pension. At a time when most men his age were winding down, Burt had passion for his life and his Indian. He was a real character too, with lots of homespun New Zealand wisdom. The director of the film, Roger Donaldson, apparently was interested in Burt's story way back in the 1960's and did a short documentary about him, "Offerings To The God of Speed," a saying Burt had painted in his workshop on a shelf bearing a mix of old custom parts he had made over the years. Thanks to You Tube you can see this documentary. Burt lived life on his own terms and died at the age of 78 of natural causes. We should all be as lucky as Burt to have passion and obsession and dreams in our lives 'til the very end.

Monday, March 17, 2008


Ford Econoline Van inscribed with "Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death." Photographed in Westlake, CA on March 10, 2008

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Turquoise and White Ford Truck parked outside Frank McLain Rolls Royce and Jaguar repair shop, Encino CA. Photographed March 9, 2008.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008


I made this doggie montage for a custom joint birthday card for my friends Sheryl and Denny (aka "Lennard"). The dogs are their babies :-) I used Photoshop CS and a free web application called Graphita to make the thought bubbles. Click on the photo and it will open large enough to easily read all the dogs thoughts ;-)