This is my favorite time of year. The home stretch, the big finish, the race to get everything done, and then I get to leap off the grid into the family zone. However, there is always one more thing to do and each year, it's my look back at the year that was. Going through the vast collection of photographs to showcase these highlights allows me to celebrate a year of accomplishments - feeding my inspiration for the year ahead. So let's get to it. 2013 was another Herculean year in my photography world. This was a year that had many themes. For us, it was especially the year of the Mitzvah - as many of you know we Partied HARD with the Juricks in September but we took the spiritual journey to Jerusalem in the summer and experienced an even deeper connection to Israel for Bar and Bat Mitzvahs. Using the ancient port town of Jaffa as a fashion shoot backdrop, we captured some amazing portraits of the kids that were used at the party later in the year. See original blog post here. Thank you to Mitzvah Magazine for publishing the story.
Infrared Steals the Show
While the kids' Mitzvah was the centerpiece of the year, it's easy to see how these infrared images were also a big part of the year's showcase. Each time a new set of black and white infrared photographs were published, I've received overwhelmingly positive feedback to their unique high-contrast, ethereal and even haunting look.
You may order these and other landscapes on aluminum or archival luster here.
Hard to believe Applause "Fiddler on the Roof" was in this calendar year, but when I looked back, I was reminded of one of the greatest Applause performances in their company's amazing history, with Max Nusbaum in the lead role of Tevye. Additionally, Applause Hip Hop Dance Troupe became the talk of the year and made for incredibly dramatic images, thanks to the choreography by Trammell Logan.
LAUREN FASHION SHOW
Special mention in this highlight reel goes to the Lauren Fashion show at the Hearst Building simply because it's eye candy for all. Beautiful supermodels, gorgeous clothes, runway design by the amazing team at 360 Design Events by Matthew David Hopkins. They created the sublime setting for the Lauren by Ralph Lauren show, the first runway show in this spectacular space It was a total visual highlight of the year.
I can't mention supermodels without also mentioning rock and roll. Live music continued to be a passionate source of inspiration for me this year as Jason and Emily at Live Nation and Jesse and Ronni at The Bowery Presents and Peter at the Bowl and the Cap set me up with plum assignments to capture some of the biggest names in music. Justin Timberlake, Rihanna, Dave Grohl and the Sound City Players, Tom Petty, Black Sabbath, supergroup Atoms For Peace (Radiohead's Thom York and Red Hot Chili Pepper's Flea), and Pearl Jam (at the awesome Barclays Center) were major highlights. Thanks to Rock Paper Photo and fans like you who have me signing limited edition archival prints! Thank you to Rolling Stone for including my photograph of Phoenix in their year-end list of the 40 best live photos of 2013!
Ok, so we've got supermodels, check. Rihanna and Justin Timberlake, check. How about super fans? We'll let's take it a step further and introduce the adoring fans who are lucky guests at some of the parites where Jason Derulo, Cher Lloyd and Austin Mahone had performed this year. Then, let's look at all the party people who enjoyed celebrating life throughout the year.
Let's keep the party vibe rolling and showcase one my favorite entertainment highlights this year...the Robot!
One thing is for sure...kids of all ages freak out for a C02 freezer-blasting, laser-toting, neon-flashing entertainer in a crazy suit.
Robots would have nowhere to spray their CO2 or shoot their laser beams if not for the fabulous rooms in which they entertain. So let's take a look at some of the most beautifully designed rooms (and tents!) and salute the fabulous designers, event planners, and entertainment teams who have made magic to bring them to life including Gourmet Advisory, Total Entertainment, Jennifer Gould, Pat Glenn Productions, Arthur Backal,Ed Libby, Matthew David Hopkins and Laurie Stolowitz at 360 Design Events and Matthew David Celebrations, Anthony Taccetta, Louis Miller, David Beahm, Heather Licata, Dejuan Stroud, Lawrence Scott, Stone Kelly, and Michelle & Scott Farber at M Studio Events. I would also like to send a huge salute to my team Mark Sweeney, Paolo Ferraris, Michael Rodenbush, Bia Sampaio and my rockstar wife Gal for making everything perfect all the time.
Now that the rooms are set for the party to begin, let's add the beautiful people. I like to add the guest of honor into the set and setting of their gorgeous room or in the case of one lucky Bar Mitzvah boy...the snow-covered field at Yankees Stadium!
With each opportunity, I aim to create the most beautiful and flattering photographs possible and it's usually the photo session before the main event when the opportunity is best to harness the light, location and expressions to make everyone look their very best.
All of the above wouldn't be possible if it were not for the spiritual power of the Torah. My approach to capturing the importance of a Bar and Bat Mitzvah reading from the Torah is for it to be as visually memorable as can be. I want my families to share these photos down the generational line to their kids and grandkids.
That brings us to my favorite portraits of the year. To me, they showcase the joy and beauty of love.
Please leave a comment below if you like what you see. Thank you for taking the photographic journey with me in 2013 - have a fantastic new year and we wish everyone success in 2014!
Labels: 2013 Year in Review