Sunday, August 20, 2017

Havdalah - bidding farewell to Shabbat

The Havdalah ritual is my favorite to photograph. It's done in the intimacy of the home with all family members participating. And it presents some interesting challenges, which I'm still trying to master: random stray objects, odd combinations of people, and uneven lighting including the ritual candle.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Midtown Madness

The streets of Midtown NYC are crazy enough, but with President Trump in town at his home on Fifth Avenue traffic is just insane. For security the crosstown streets between 59th Street and 56th Street were closed from Madison Avenue to Sixth Avenue, and Fifth Avenue was closed to downtown traffic between those cross streets. The block between 57th and 56th Streets on Fifth Avenue, in front of the President's residence was bumper to bumper sanitation department trucks, and the opposite side of the avenue was bumper to bumper police vehicles.

The store owners on those blocks, who must pay exorbitant rents, were doing zero business. But there were demonstrators aplenty.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The Eyes of the Street

When ever people see me walking in the streets of NYC, for some unexplainable reason they think I'm going to photograph them.

Trying to ignore me:

Cautiously looking at me:

Loves having her photo taken:

Friday, July 21, 2017

Jerusalem, Capital of Israel - 12

The main entrance to the arab quarter of the Old City is through the Damascus Gate. The name for it, as with the Jaffa Gate, was given because the road from it out of the city led directly to Damascus and Jaffa respectively. Just inside the Damascus gate is an open area where many vendors bring their daily produce (usually of vegetables, but who really knows what else).

Public transportation in Jerusalem with the buses and light rail is very efficient (except when they're the target of terrorism)

The Mahane Yehudah market:

A vendor in the cotton merchants market of the arab quarter:

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Jerusalem, Capital of Israel - 11

Machane Yehudah, the outdoor shuk (market) is a paradise for photographers. So many types of people, faces, shapes, etc.

The arab quarter is a honeycomb of alleys and streets with shops selling just about everything (except weapons, those they keep at home until ready to use):

The Damascus Gate is the main entrance to the arab quarter. For security, Religious Jews for the most part avoid entering and leaving the Old City that way. But sometimes ......

The Jaffa Gate is the most used entrance to the Old City, as it gives easy access to all four quarters:
the arab, the Christian, the Jewish, and the Armenian:

Friday, July 14, 2017

Jerusalem - 10, a taste of the Capital of Israel for Shabbat

Shopping at the Machane Yehudah market before Shabbat:

Studying Talmud at the Hurva Synagogue in the Old City:

Itzy, the owner, hard at work at Marzipan bakery (Machane Yehudah) the maker of the best in the world rugelach:

Entrance to Damascus Gate of the Old City:

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Jerusalem, Capital of Israel - 9

More of the many many photos I took in Jerusalem. A Jewish photographer's paradise.

The Jewish Shuk - Machane Yehudah:

At the Jaffa Gate (western) entrance to the Old City:

The Damascus Gate (northern) entrance to the Old City:

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Jerusalem, Capital of Israel - 8

Machane Yehudah is the open market - shuk - of Jerusalem. The busiest time there is Thursday and Friday morning when the whole city shows up there to stock up for Shabbat.

Jaffa Road is a main thoroughfare with no vehicular traffic. The Jerusalem light rail runs the entire course of the road. It has many stores and many buskers:

Two synagogue doors in the Old City. An area adjacent to Hurva square is home to four Sephardi synagogues that were closed every time I visited the area.

The Eliyahu HaNavi synagogue:

The Istanbuli synagogue:

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Jerusalem, Capital of Israel - 7

More from Jerusalem, the most spiritual city in the world.

Machane Yehudah is the main shuk in Jerusalem. In recent years it's also become a hot spot for restaurants and cafés:

In the arab quarter of the Old City, streets are lined with vendors selling almost anything 😉:

On Jewish Quarter Street in the Old City:

 Nachlaot is an old neighborhood near the city center. This is one of the picturesque synagogues tucked into a corner a block from Machane Yehudah:

Monday, July 3, 2017

Jerusalem, Capital of Israel - 6

Walking the streets of Jerusalem is a feast for a street photographer. No matter where you look there's interesting faces and people.

Old arab at the market by Damascus Gate:

Harpist playing near Jaffa Gate:

Chatting in the Jerusalem Shuk - Machane Yehuda:

Arab couple (or trio) in Mamilla Mall - the upscale mall near the Jaffa Gate.
There is NO apartheid in Israel:

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Jerusalem, Capital of Israel - 5

Tel Aviv is all about commerce. It's a beautiful modern coastal Mediterranean city. Tsfat is the center of the world for Kabbalah and Jewish mysticism, and art. Jerusalem, the eternal, undivided capital of Israel is a mixture of many cultures. There's the old - the Old City, Yemin Moshe, Nachlaot - and the new. There are building projects on all the edges of the city. The adopted bird of Jerusalem (and indeed all of Israel) is the crane. There are moslem arabs and Haredi Jews. Churches, mosques, and synagogues. On public transportation it's not uncommon to find arabs, religious Jews, and Christians sitting next to each other (no, there's no apartheid).

In the arab quarter near Damascus Gate:

Machane Yehuda, the Shuk:

Pedestrian traffic in the modern Mamilla Mall, just outside the Old City:

Studying Talmud in the Hurva Synagogue:

Praying at the Kotel. Access to the Western Wall is open to everyone. The main section is for men of all denominations, and adheres to the principles of separation of men and women. Next to it, separated by a mechitza, is the women's section - where women are permitted to pray at the wall, read Torah, wear tallit and tefillin. And a new third section, build near Robinson's Arch, is the egalitarian section where men and women of any denomination of Judaism can worship together.