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Friday, October 28, 2011

Vivienne Says Boo! First Halloween Pictures

I have to tell you, I am not much of a "Holidays" man... While I am not Scrooge either, I never really cared for any of the holidays... I can totally get the family thing, and I actually enjoy some of those yearly gatherings. But, Christmas trees, carving pumpkins, dressing up for Halloween etc. have never been my thing. Until last year, when Jennifer showed up with a little living pine treeö I never had a Christmas tree in the house. That tree is still with us by the way, residing on the balcony, and it will be decorated this year as well.

Well, as you can imagine, this change is due to the arrival of Vivienne! Last Wednesday, Jen and I made some time for the family and we took Vivienne to a Pumpkin Patch. My main focus was to take a few pictures to document her first Halloween. Then we decided to get a mid-size pumpkin as well. More on that later. Let's talk about VivoşMinnoş...

It was a very pleasant day in Los Angeles, and although I wanted my daughter to wear some fall outfits, she politely declined and chose a dress to her liking. Once we arrived to the Pumpkin Patch, Jen and I were way more excited than Vivienne... She didn't have much enthusiasm about the place. Yet, she was game and posed for daddy. Although, she refused to smile...

The little munchkin in between two pumpkins! :D

My darling daughter is not even pretending she is having fun. To her credit, she was a trooper though. No crying, no fussing, she allowed daddy to snap a few pictures, and than showed some interest in the sunflowers while hanging out in mommy's arms.

Daddy had to take a few more pictures though...

Jennifer had work to do that night, I put Vivienne to sleep. Created a Halloween playlist on Spotify, and proceeded to carve my first pumpkin. It was very much fun. And I gotta tell you, I'm proud of the result!

I thought about his name for a long time... I wanted his name to be a Turkish name for some reason, I'm not sure why. There are only a couple of male Turkish names starting with P... Than, the Turkish word for pumpkin is "kabak". "Kerem" comes to mind, but leaves it as quickly as it showed up. So, I decided to call it Cédric La Citrouille. My daughter's first name is a French name, so why not Cédric and why not citrouille instead of pumpkin? Yes, "citrouille" is a feminine noun, but who cares? It's all for fun, right?

Cédric speaks English with a caricature-like heavy French accent in between the long puffs of his unfiltered Gauloises cigarettes.

I asked Cédric to hang out in front of the window looking down at Jen's parking garage, so when she gets out of the car, she could see him... He loved the idea, poured himself a glass of cheap French table wine, opened the window, lit another Gauloises and patiently waited for Jen's return.

In the morning, Vivienne was as supportive as ever when I asked her if she would pose in her Halloween costume. She put her costume on and posed with Cédric. I asked Cédric to abstain from smoking while around my daughter, and he respected my request.

Alright my lovelies, I will leave you with two pictures of our little monkey!

Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Noilya & Murat

I had the tremendous pleasure of shooting the engagement portraits of a lovely couple: Noilya and Murat. They will say "I do" tomorrow, and you can bet that the pictures of their wedding will be the subject of yet another Friday Photography Blog in a very near feature.
I was hired by Noilya and Murat close to their wedding day and we wanted to do an engagement session. Due to the time restraints and scheduling conflicts we couldn't arrange a shoot during sunset that we thought it would be ideal. Because of this, Noilya and Murat wanted to do a sunrise shoot.
Although I mentioned the potential heavy fog that would be dominant on a Palos Verdes morning, there was no way I could say no to a couple who was ready to get up way before the sunrise.
I was so happy they were eager to do this sunrise shoot!

Both Murat and Noilya were in an incredibly pleasant mood despite the early morning call. When shooting engagement sessions, the couples may be a little shy, stiff and uncomfortable with the presence of the photographer at first. Not with these cats. They were ready to shoot, and the above shot is literally the first frame I shot!

The heavy morning mist was so persistent along the coast, we were pretty sure that we were not going to see the sun. A resident of Palos Verdes, Murat took us up to Del Cerro Park and we hit the jackpot as far as the background was concerned. We were able to catch the early sunlight thru the mist thanks to the elevation.

Then, despite the fog, we headed down to the coast... And shot by the shore...

We stopped by at the couple's place to choose the outfits for the next leg of the shoot... Downtown Los Angeles... And, as most photographers, our first stop was Union Station...

The next stop was the gorgeous Olvera street. Here, I let the couple loose and told them to hang out, shop and be into one another.... And I snapped with a tele-lens from far away. These candid shots are the most fun for me! The couple obviously do know they are being photographed, but there is a more natural feel to their behavior and actions due to the fact that there is no camera on their face!

We wrapped after the few pictures snapped around the inevitable Walt Disney Concert Hall And I will finish the blog with one of those pictures...

I will be shooting their wedding tomorrow, and as promised look for the wedding pictures of this beautiful couple within a few weeks, right here on Friday Photography Blog.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Monday October 17th will mark the 15-year anniversary of my life's biggest achievement.
There is no way I could have completed it without the loving, caring, purposeful, smart, enlightening and supporting company and partnership of my wife, my life partner, my love, Jennifer Smith-Hanci. Some of you know her as Jennifer Fontaine.

In the month of March of our 15 years of togetherness, we were incredibly blessed, grateful and lucky to become the parents of a wonderful baby girl, Vivienne Emine Hanci.

So, this simple, to the point Friday Photography Blog is celebrating my family.

Thank you for the incredible 15 years baby, I look forward to a few more of those with the presence of the little peanut :o)

Maşallah deyin bakalım, biraz batıl yapalım. :o)

Friday, October 7, 2011

Macro Look At Our Little Garden

Jennifer keeps our gorgeous little patio green... I talked to you about that patio last week and on other prior blogs. Now, I would like to take you on a tour for a closer look. There are 2 jade trees, one pine tree, a pot with basil, rosemary, thyme and sage, a gardenia plant and a money tree...

Here are a couple of close up pictures of the blooming jade tree.

Jennifer got the pine tree last Christmas. Since then it doubled its size and after this Christmas, we are planning on transfering it somewhere it could continue its life without us putting ornaments on it. I think it's going to be huge to fit on our balcony.

A spider already built its web and caught its meal!

Our gardenia is blooming too!

Here are the herbs we cook with daily. Basil, rosemary, thyme and sage.

This little guy lives in Basiltown. Time to time he travels to Sageville to see some of his family. Jen saw him dining at the Blooming Basil Flower Inn, and she decided to leave him alone as she cleans those flowers before they bloom and any help is welcome. I will leave you with his good looking body and head shots. He is tiny, but the macro lens brings him close to your eyes and maybe even to your dreams (or nightmares depending on your take). Yes I think you should dream of my photographs :o)