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Jan 17 2014

Artist Photoshops Herself into Her Own Childhood Photographs

By at 1:44 pm
chino otsuka imagine finding me

1982 + 2005, France (China Otsuka)

Ever wonder what it would be like to hang out with your 7-year-old self? What about your awkward 14-year-old “don’t take a picture of me” self? Artist Chino Otsuka explores this fantasy in her excellent photo series “Imagine Finding Me.”

Otsuka manipulated old photographs from her childhood by placing varying images of herself in older years, side-by-side to her younger self in eerily authentic looking Photoshop creations.

Otuska explained the thought process behind her beautiful project:

“The digital process becomes a tool, almost like a time machine, as I’m embarking on the journey to where I once belonged and at the same time becoming a tourist in my own history.”

Take a look at these images while you ponder what your kids might do with all those iPhone photos of themselves. Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 16 2013

Interview + Giveaway: The Israeli-American Photographer Who Captured Motherhood in a Book

By at 12:11 pm

elinor carucci mother photograph book giveaway

Israeli-American photographer Elinor Carucci’s third photography book, released this past Setpember, is titled “Mother.” It’s an extremely beautiful, raw, and inspiring collection of photographs exploring Elinor’s pregnancy, birth, and the early childhood of her twins, Emmanuelle and Eden.

We got a chance to chat with the talented photographer on her inspiration for the book, what it was like to constantly photograph her children, and reconciling her career and her role as a parent. Want to get your hands on this beautiful book? Enter our giveaway at the bottom of this post.

What was your original inspiration for a book of photography about motherhood? 

The inspiration was motherhood. It’s as simple as that. The surprising thing for me was how little was actually portrayed about motherhood in the arts and photography. I feel that we’ve seen a lot of perfect celebrity photographs, and even in the history of art, a lot of Madonna and child images that, in a way, show a certain aspect of motherhood but definitely don’t go deep into the complexity of what it is to be a mother, to be a father, to be a parent. The inspiration was the intensity and the richness of the emotions and feelings, the complexity of the relationships that I experienced as a mother, and how much they were intertwined with one another and happening almost side by side, how intense of an experience it is. It is beautiful and joyful and magical and difficult and scary and full of failures and successes. It’s really a microcosm of everything we experience and feel, all of the emotions we have at once. The inspiration was to try to depict it the way I felt it, which was very rich and complex. Read the rest of this entry →

Jun 17 2013

Stop Taking So Many Pictures of Your Kids

By at 5:02 pm

taking picture of kids in swimwearI remember how the cost of taking pictures used to add up quickly, and how tedious it was to keep track of your film. On my teen tour in Israel in 1993, for example, I was always judicious as my finger hovered over the shutter. I would never have considered snapping a picture of every person on my trip standing in front of the same stack of rocks on Masada. Who had the time, energy, money, and interest in developing all of those pictures? Did I want to load a new roll of film in the middle of a hike?

The advent of the digital camera feels like a curse. Taking pictures is such a regular part of our lives that my 6-year-old asks to see shots immediately and requests I take new ones if she doesn’t like something about the picture. And since I have four kids, it should come as no surprise that I am drowning in digital photos. I expected to have the classic situation of endless pictures of my oldest child and next to nothing for my youngest. Instead, I have an obscene amount of pictures of everyone, and I don’t know how to manage them all.  Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 24 2012

Photo Tips: Capturing Special Occasions & Parties

By at 2:04 pm

My beautiful Little Bird recently had her first birthday. In preparation for her big day, I decided to plan a decent sized party at a restaurant. As a photographer, I also decided to have a friend take some photos to commemorate the day.

blowing out candle

Ok, so you are probably thinking, “Why the hell would you want to spend money on a photographer for a first birthday?” Or for that matter, why pay for a photographer to document other important events in your little one’s new life, besides the obvious newborn shoot and maybe 1-year photo shoot. But I can tell you, I have shot my fair share of brit milahs, baby namings, baby showers, and first birthdays and it is nice to be able to look back and remember those moments. Not having to be the one behind the camera or relying on a friend or family member for the photos makes it even better. Read the rest of this entry →

Dec 11 2012

Mom Stays In the Picture: Hanukkah Edition

By at 4:37 pm

Tamara and her kiddos

One of the most popular posts of late on the Huffington Post was one by Allison Tate about moms staying in the picture.

Her piece has been shared almost seven hundred thousand times not only because it was powerful and true and speaks to deep insecurities that so many of us carry, but because it was a call to action. When I look back at pictures of my own mother from when I was a toddler, I see nothing but beauty. While I have very few actual memories of that person I can see that she is young, happy, and bursting with love for the little red-headed girl she carries in the pictures. And every time I see one of those pictures I think to myself, “I wish there were more.” Read the rest of this entry →

Nov 15 2012

A Cheap Person’s Guiltiest Secrets

By at 3:01 pm
first day of school

First day of school!

In August, I confessed to being cheap, and wondered if it was messing up my kids.

I followed that up in October with Five Easy Ways to Save Money for Your Family.

But, now comes the deepest darkest confession that an out and proud cheap person like me can make. I am going to talk about the things that I actually will–unashamedly–spend money on:

Item #1: Hebrew School/Jewish Day School Read the rest of this entry →

Nov 6 2012

Photos from Hurricane Sandy’s Damage in Long Beach

By at 2:56 pm
flooded playground from sandy long beach

Magnolia Park, post-Sandy.

On the eve of Hurricane Sandy, I sent my husband to Long Beach to bring my parents to my Northern New Jersey home. The local government was evacuating the island but my parents refused to leave. They said last year, they blew Irene out of proportion and nothing was going to happen. I was livid. So very very worried. And then the storm hit.

My brother went out to Long Beach on Tuesday morning to rescue them. Except, my parents were safe. Their home was one of the only ones that was NEVER touched by water. But for now Long Beach is devastated. The National Guard is roaming the streets. There is no power, no cell service, no sewer system. Broken shards of boardwalk are strewn all over the city.

The following photos were taken by my brother and his Long Beach friends during and after the hurricane (photo credits Jeff Rosner and Matsi Chinskey). Read the rest of this entry →

Oct 29 2012

News Roundup: Straight Talk About Vaginal Birth Risks, Middle School, and Breaking the Breast Milk Bank

By at 8:39 pm

All the parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.


Here’s a yucky but important topic: vaginal tears that result from vaginal childbirth. Turns out they may be a lot more widespread than most doctors know or admit, and can cause fecal matter through the vagina, flatus incontinence, and pain. Learn more so you can talk about it with your doctor ahead of time. (Motherlode)

Pretty much everyone agrees that middle school is the worst. But no one is really trying to make it better. Now researchers are discovering that helping middle schoolers have a better time predicts whether or not they’ll stay in school, and how successful they’ll be. (Slate)

As a mom you’re probably taking pictures of your kids and family all the time. But how often do you get in front of the camera yourself? One mom reminds us that someday when we’re gone our kids will want pictures of us, and we shouldn’t be erasing ourselves from our family’s photographic history. (Huffington Post)

A mom in Texas made it to the Guinness book of world records for donating a whopping 87 gallons of breast milk to her local breast milk bank. (NY Daily News)

Oct 23 2012

The Best Digital Cameras for Taking Photos of Your Kids

By at 12:04 pm
stacey ilyse photography

Courtesy of Stacey Ilyse.

Hey, I’m Stacey, a mom to my crazy drama queen little girl, Remy, who is almost (gasp!) 1 year old! I also happen to be a professional photographer. The lovely ladies at Kveller have so kindly brought me on board to share tips, inspiration, guidance, and more during your adventures in photographing your kiddos. I specialize in weddings and also, my passion, lifestyle family/children photography. Feel free to check out my work here.

In the meantime, have you ever wondered what the right kind of camera would be for your photo taking needs? Here are my suggestions, based purely on my preference (i.e. nobody’s paying me to say it).

I recommend two different cameras, both made by Canon. Read the rest of this entry →

Aug 27 2012

Five Tips for Making the Snazziest Rosh Hashanah Cards

By at 6:02 am
stacey ilyse family photo boardwalk

Show off those precious faces this New Year.

I remember, growing up, getting cards in the mail for Rosh Hashanah. They were always the normal, generic, Hallmark “Happy New Year” type card.

Nowadays, people are WAY more tech savvy and have the ability to create really fun cards that reflect and show off who they are and their adorable kids and family. If you want to give your Rosh Hashanah cards a personal touch this year, here are five tips plus a few resources for creating and producing the picture perfect photo card. Read the rest of this entry →

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