Sometimes you meet someone and you immediately KNOW this is a good, wonderful human, Dorie is that. She is warm, inviting, humble, and kind. I had the privilege of photographing her in her New York City home for a feature in The Kitchn, just in time to celebrate her new book, Everyday Dorie. After she’d made sure none of us were hungry, thirsty or in need of caffeine, she graciously stood and sat for portraits and whipped up what she calls her Ricotta Spoonable.
What you can’t see in the pictures is all the water we spilled. There was some strange joojoo going on that day, which, Dorie told me later, didn’t end after the shoot, but we laughed and all was well.
My favorite picture is the one at the end of this post. You can see how loving she is.
Corrie is obscenely creative, talented, and loyal. One afternoon we took a journey together to create her portrait and landed on this, inspired by and an homage to the great Frida Kahlo.
We have become good friends in the past year, thanks to many weekends spent together photographing her book, Handmade Houseplants. It's coming out next month, and we are both super excited about it. Her craft skills are INSANE (just LOOK at forest of plants surrounding her) and she teaches you how to do it in her book, if you're game. I'm proud of this lady and grateful to call her my friend.
I started out this whole photography thing by documenting folks in their home kitchens, and I still love it. I got to do it twice with Alison Roman, last year for Bed Bath & Beyond and this year for The Kitchn. Alison is an incredible professional cook who sometimes eats popcorn for dinner and uses seafood as self-care. My kind of person.
Last fall, Tocha and I got to go to Italy for the first time, purely for vacation. It was amazing. This was our view out the window where we stayed at Terre di Nano. I loved watching how the view changed with the light during the course of a day.
I was always drawn to photos of babies being bathed in kitchen sinks, or snapshots from my own family albums of my infant sister being bathed in a blue plastic tub. There is something incredibly sweet about what's going on in the moment, even if the reality involved hysterical crying a mere two seconds after the fraction of a second caught in the photograph. Below is Anton, one of the sweetest kids I know, taking a bubble bath.
I loooove Shake Shack. It's the best burger out there, hands down. It is the perfect size, the perfect ratio of bun to burger to cheese to lettuce, tomato and of course, that crack sauce! You better believe I was excited when they called. I've had the privilege of working with their design team for over a year, photographing in-store collateral and other content. The designers there are some of the nicest, hardest-working people I have ever met. Below are some of the fun images we created over the past year, styled and designed by the talented team at Shake Shack. Thank you Cathie, Michelle, Kearney, Marybeth, Eugene, and Mark!
Side story: Once I paid $150 for a ShackBurger. Tocha and I had an intense craving one day. We got in the car and drove to the nearest Shack. We roll easily into a parking spot, which is nearly impossible to do in downtown Brooklyn. We rejoice, happily eat our burgers and fries (so. good.), and walk hand in hand back to our car...only to find that horrible orange piece of paper on our windshield. A parking ticket for $150. Our desire for Shake Shack had blinded us to the NO PARKING signs. So that was the most expensive, delicious burger ever. C'est la vie.
Do you know Debra? Maybe you've seen her on the street in NYC or over at Advanced Style. Her creativity is obvious in her dress but when I met her I understood it to be so much more than that. It is boundless, playful, and loving. She is brilliant but doesn't take anything too seriously.
Debra is a ROLE MODEL. How many women of "advanced" age do we see in the media who can guide us to the incredible, liberated life we can all have, at any age? This has bothered me for awhile, especially as I get older. I want to see more examples. I want to photograph and celebrate more women of advanced age.
Read this well-written piece about her and one facet of her genius, which is making couture-style hats out of, wait for it, PAPER TOWELS! Thank you to Eventbrite for bringing us together to create this fun feature.
I get to photograph women a lot, and I love it.
I love drawing out the beauty in every person I photograph. We're not lacking, we are worthy without changing a thing!
Thank you to my friends at Cup of Jo for creating a platform that celebrates women in all our forms, beauty, and humanness.
Last summer, I got to shoot two features for GFF Magazine, including the cover! This summer, I'm sharing them. Better late then never, right? I've personally made the Blueberry-Thyme Hand Pies and the Seeded Tomato Cucumber Salad. SO GOOD. Olivia's recipes are always legit.
We ended the trip with an excursion to the city of Cochin in tropical Kerala, a southern seaside state, where the highlight was encountering a magical musical procession with elephants (scroll down for the video clip I took on my phone, if you like!). Cochin is a melange of cultures, as befits an old port city. The oldest living Jewish woman resides there, and is taken care of by a Muslim man and a Catholic cook! Beautiful, no? See if you can identify her below.
Lastly we got a taste of vibrant Bombay, which was amazing. I would have loved to spend more time there. I'll simply have to return! Don't miss my first post for the full story.
People said, you will be overwhelmed, you will get sick, and you will love it. I didn't get sick, and I wasn't overwhelmed, but the last part turned out to be true. I did love it! In fact, India felt like love itself.
It's a place where the spiritual IS the everyday. What a wonderful experience, like getting a warm and chaotic hug, so different than where I live in the U.S., where the sacred exists but is somehow separate, to be pursued or not, depending on where you fall and how you bend. I haven't digested it. It's only the beginning. All I know is, I could feel my heart opening. I'll post more next week. (happy, thank you, more please).
I was there because the good people at AJWS invited me once again to document their study tour, this time in southern India: Hyderabad, Bangalore, and the country side of Telangana. Please read my previous post on Guatemala to get a sense of who AJWS is and my admiration for their work and the human rights activists (especially women) they work with. I met so many bad ass women (I'm talking about you Praneeta, Rama, Devrashi, and Shumona!) whose playfulness and warmth belie their fierceness and diligence in fighting for women and girls, for LGBTQI rights, and for access to land and resources among many other things.
I was invited to photograph the launch of Hetty McKinnon and Jodi Moreno's new community cooking space, Neighborhood Studio in Brooklyn for the April 2018 issue of Delicious Magazine. The place is infused with the lovely energy of these two ladies, and Sophie Tatlow's incredible design beautified the event. And the food, of course, was delicious! I highly recommend the cauliflower as a dazzling main course. Recipes are included in the article.
In January, I had the privilege of traveling to Guatemala with my favorite human rights group, AJWS, and 13 rabbis. They are committed to advancing social justice and ending poverty in 19 different countries around the world. It seems trite to say that I'm inspired by the activists I meet on these trips, but I am. Most of the time, I work in the commercial world and it is so good to step into a different one, where ordinary people have dedicated their lives to service. It's marvelous to see that it doesn't take special circumstances to be courageous. It's simply something you do, a choice you make everyday, sometimes in the most mundane ways. Everywhere I go, I'm humbled and I'm in love. People are kind, brave, generous, warm, and of course, flawed. They're just like you, they're just like me. We are all beautiful humans.
I am especially moved by women, not only by the incredible work they do for their communities and on behalf of the marginalized, but on a personal level, how they dare to take up space. I didn't learn this growing up, and I had everything I needed while many of them didn't. I'm called to be courageous, powerful, and whip smart.
My official job was to document the experience of the wonderful rabbis in AJWS's social justice fellowship program as well as the grassroots organizers whom AJWS works with. I loved every minute, and if you've never traveled with rabbis, well, I can say that they're very good at making you feel seen and listened to. Fun!
I loved Guatemala so so much and would like to return for a longer stay to study Spanish (love Guatemalan Spanish!) in Antigua. Thank you, AJWS, for the work you do, for being a great client, and for exposing me to a better world. Best job ever.