To Market, to Market we go!

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In Kuwait the market is referred to as the the “souk” and in Israel it is the “shouk.” They are similar language and atmosphere, with vendors selling their wares, calling out for you to come over, and the colorful array of people milling about. It is fascinating and quite a sight to see. It is a great place at which to shop and grab a bite to eat. We particularly enjoy sipping a local Israel craft brew at the Beer Bazaar and people watching.

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That said, my favorite part of the Carmel Market (shouk) in Tel Aviv is that it’s adjacent to the arts and crafts fair on Nachlat Binyamin Street.

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Every Tuesday and Friday starting at 10:00am, the artists setup their stalls on what used to be the longest street in Tel Aviv. First created by a group of craftsmen as a suburb of Tel Aviv, it ended up becoming a part of the city limits and was further developed. Nachlat Binyamin is made up of historic buildings dating back as early as 1911.  In 1988 the converted pedestrian street became home to one of the largest arts and crafts markets in Israel, hosting over 250 artists. (Visit-tel-aviv.com).

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The thing that makes the Nachlat Binyamin experience unique, is that it is mandatory that each artist sells their own work. Allowing you to meet and purchase directly from the artists themselves, not a broker or studio employee. This also creates a vibrant culture of creatives working together and developing relationships. Which you know I love!

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I have to credit my fabulous neighbor/explorer, Julie (above), for introducing me to the market as well as the Hatachana Train Station and Neve Tzedek neighborhood.  She introduced me to several artists she had purchased from in the past and with which she enjoyed good rapport. It was through Julie that I met my favorite Israel ceramist and Instagram buddy, Orna Barel.

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Orna’s work is beautiful and inspiring, but beyond that, she is a lovely person. I have been know to message her and give her a heads up that I am bringing friends to the market or pre-order items that I love on her Instagram and she is always welcoming and treats the newcomer really special. {I’m hoping to feature her in a post in the near future, so this is not the last you will hear about Orna!} Honestly, it is creative community in action. On that note, check out Orna on Instagram or at her Etsy shop.

There are so many artists that I enjoy seeing again and again at the market including Smadar Dagan-Yehieli, a fabulous jewelry designer, discovered by my mother-in-law on our adventure to the market. Thanks to our Kiwi friends’ visit, I was introduced to a new-to-me painter, Osnat Shavit, who produces some gorgeous landscapes, still life, and scenes of childhood. There truly are so many great artists to check out.

To complete the art scene of the market Nachlat Binyamin is a hot spot for sighting some of the incredible graffiti art by MR and other well known Tel Aviv artists.

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Since Julie’s first gave me a tour of the area, I have introduced the market to all our visitors and a couple other expats. After Melissa’s visit to the area, she said I have to bring everyone there when they stay with us; and I totes agree. A trip to the market and the surrounding areas is a must for everyone visiting Tel Aviv!

If you have had the pleasure of shopping the at Nachlat Binyamin we would love to hear what artists you recommend!

Cheers,
kdg

Image_Hack – Changing the way women are portrayed in the media

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Do you remember the Real Women campaign by Dove a few years back? As women – we saw “real” women in the pages of magazines, we pictured ourselves as one of them, we related to them and therefore to the brand. In response, some of us went out and started buying more Dove products. Although, it was successful in building brand loyalty, creative director, Kenneth Kaadtmann, of Mindshare ad agency, states that,  “For Dove, it has never been about Dove; it’s about making an actual difference to society. Great brands hold great power, and therefore great responsibilities.”

Unfortunately, it never really made a long lasting impact to change a rather unrealistic industry. According to Dove’s Global Beauty and Confidence Report from 2016, 7 out of 10 women can’t identify with the images they see in ads. The advertising industry tells us that according to research, they are simply giving women the images they want to see. Alternatively, if the industry truly started showing women images they could relate to there would be a paradigm shift and the numbers would start to reflect that.

Interestingly enough, when you search for “beautiful women” on Shutterstock, a popular image search engine used for media campaigns, these are still the first images we see:

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However, there is hope. Image_Hack is Dove’s fantastic, new initiative that has potential to truly change the market with long term and lasting effects. It challenges the ad agencies and companies to use more realistic images in their campaigns. Browse some of the images that have already been submitted here and learn more this innovative concept.

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As a mom of two girls, a previous art director in advertising, and now a photographer, I am excited to get involved with this project and be a part of that change. Will you join me and the Image_Hack initiative? #equalwomen

here’s to change,

la

CREDITS FOR THIS FORWARD THINKING CAMPAIGN GO TO:

Client: Dove
Agency: Mindshare, Denmark
Creative Director: Kenneth Kaadtmann
Client Director: Michael Hansen
Strategy: Mette Bierbum Bacher
Copywriter: Kenneth Kaadtmann
Copywriter: Anne Ingevold
Art Director: Sune Overby Sørensen
Digital Designer: Andreas Berglund
Media Buyer: Henrik Welling

Inspiring Artist: William Kentridge

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Photo by Sebastian Luciano

I remember being in high school, in South Africa, at 17 years of age and we went on a field trip to the Pretoria Art Museum. As an art student we had been learning about William Kentridge. His work was proudly on display that hot summer day in Pretoria. I had very little knowledge and appreciation for the greatness of the artist at the time. And I never gave it another thought passed our final exams that year.

Last year my husband and I went to Rome for a second honeymoon. You know the kind, where you are finally done being pregnant and are finally out of the baby phase of life and you can now start to enjoy your spouse a little bit more with your children getting more and more independent…

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Anyway, I digress, it was during this trip to Rome that I came across the great wall of ‘Triumphs and Laments’ – the brief history of Rome. It gave me a vague feeling of nostalgia, and a strange familiarity, yet I had never seen it before. It was later, during a BBC interview with Mr. Kentridge that I connected the dots and his story came alive for me.

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This piece is a 550m long frieze (erased from the biological patina on the Tiber embankment walls of Rome’s urban waterfront). It consists of more than 80 figures, up to 10m high and represents a silhouetted procession of Rome’s greatest triumphs and tragedies. To celebrate its launch, he and his long-time collaborator, the South African composer Philip Miller, devised a series of performances featuring live shadow play and more than 40 musicians.

The hope is that, [as] people walk the extent of these 500 meters, they will see images of the history they find both familiar and transformed in some way. And this will reflect the complex way in which a city is represented… We are trying to find the triumph in the lament and the lament in the triumph, putting together a sense of history from fragments.’ – William Kentridge

William Kentridge was born in 1955 in Johannesburg, South Africa and still resides there today. Both his parents were attorneys during the apartheid era and they represented the oppressed and marginalised.  This explains where he gets his political slant from. With a strong artistic voice he is able to communicate what we think and feel during turbulent times over tabu subjects. He makes you think, holds you accountable, and inspires you to do something – to make a change. He calls us out. Whether we are guilty or not.

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At first he wanted to be an actor, gave it a good try but when he realised he was failing, he went back to his first consistent love, drawing. Eventually, he became comfortable calling himself an artist and he has never looked back since. More than just art for arts sake (which there is nothing wrong with by the way) he genuinely has content that makes political leaders squirm in their seats. He took his charcoal drawings to another level and started to create short films – successive charcoal drawings, always on the same sheet of paper, contrary to the traditional animation technique in which each movement is drawn on a separate sheet. In this way, Kentridge’s videos and films came to keep the traces of the previous drawings. His animations deal with political and social themes from a personal and, at times, autobiographical point of view.

On the art market, Kentridge’s artworks are among the most sought-after and expensive works in South Africa: “a major charcoal drawing by world-renowned South African artist William Kentridge could set you back some £250 000”. Kentridge is represented by Marian Goodman Gallery in New York, however over the years he has also had work in all the major galleries around the world, including the Louve, Paris.

The South African record for Kentridge is R2.2 million ($250,000), sold at Stephan Welz in Cape Town in 2010. One of his works reached $600,000 at Sotheby’s New York in 2011.

The above images were photographed from a Phaidon Publication.

Mr. Kentridge is a truly inspiring artist to follow and one I am deeply proud as a fellow South African.There is just so much more to him, than I have shared here, so I encourage you to look out for him in book stores and galleries near you. May be he will challenge how you see the world and history.

Cheers,

la

Capturing the Cunhas

View More: http://dgdesignsphotography.pass.us/cunha-family

When I reflect on my experience photographing Lindy-Ann and her monkeys, I feel privileged to be their photographer and a part of their family. I was a bit intimidated going into our first session, but Lindy-Ann’s confidence in my skills calmed and encouraged me. To be honest, I still call her for a dose of encouragement and truth weekly! I am so thankful to have her in my life.

We had two very different photography sessions together before I left Kuwait and it is so fun to see how much can change in a year, especially with kids.

{Cunha Family Session 1}

Location: Al-Corniche Club, Kuwait City

Date and time: November, 2014. 8:30am

Weather: Bright & Sunny

Although this was one of my earlier sessions, I am still very proud of these images. Capturing the love in their interactions was a thrill. One of my most favorite shots of the whole session is when her three little monkeys are laughing at their dad behind me, they couldn’t help but glow with pure joy.

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Since I had the gift a knowledgeable client, I took advantage of it and debriefed with Lindy-Ann after our session. We shared our thoughts from the experience on both sides of the camera and it has helped me be a better photographer. It takes a lot to trust and be vulnerable with someone, but if you find the right client I suggest getting their feedback, it will help you grow.

One of the main things we both learned was that to capture bubbles you need a good deal of contrast in background. A bright beach morning with kids in white made our bubbles hard to see. The next time you are hoping to photograph a delightful little bubble scene, be sure there is enough contrast or color on location and your shutter speed is high enough to balance stopping motion and allowing in the right amount of light in.

{Cunha Family Session 1}

Location: Scientific Center Boardwalk, Kuwait City

Date and time: November, 2015. 8:30am

Weather: Sunny & Windy

For our second session we had a rocky start, because our location of choice, Al Shaheed Park in downtown Kuwait, was sadly closed on Friday mornings and we hadn’t checked before we met there. Standing outside the gate we came up with a Plan B and moved our shoot to the Marina Crescent. This threw ALL of us a off a bit. I was unable to use my plan for the shoot and a chunk of our time was lost. All that said, we had a fantastic time and it was a completely different feel from our first session.

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The lesson here was to always double check your location’s opening hours as well as restrictions, as some parks and monuments have photography restrictions, including Al Shaheed. Another important note is you should always do a recce, or reconnaissance, tour before meeting your client there, so you know what you are working with.

Each session brings it’s own unique circumstances and situations no matter how many times you have used a location, prop, or pose. The important thing to remember is to approach each one with an open heart, because you never know when a client will become a lifelong friend, or in our case partner.

Cheers,

kdg

Inspiration from the streets

Lindy-Ann and I find that when we are feeling uninspired we need to look at other art forms for a fresh perspective. If you have been following me on Instagram (@dgdesignsnphotography) you may have noticed lately that I am really inspired by the urban art scene here in Tel Aviv, Israel.

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What is urban art?

Urban art is a term that refers to the various art forms found in or about a city. Including graffiti, architecture, sculptures, street photography, and the application of yarn or Perler beads to buildings.

To be honest, I have missed out on appreciating urban art for a long time. Even though I worked as an interior designer at a firm just south of Dupont Circle in Washington D.C., I just hurried past on my way to the Metro. It wasn’t until someone asked me what my favorite thing about Kuwait was and I tried to think of something other than my amazing friends, that I realized it was the urban art that spoke to me.

Driving is worst thing about Kuwait, seriously Israelis do not compare. However, it was sitting in traffic at the longest streetlight rotations of my life (10 minutes long!) when I started to look around and  noticed that the bridges were painted with themes of the Gulf. I pointed them out to my Liz, who had been driving the same roads 2 years longer than me, and she was amazed she had never noticed them.

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As I started to look for inspiration around the city, I found that there really is art everywhere. In Kuwait there are also the swanky blue and white water towers, the geometric and iconic Kuwait Towers, and my favorites spot with painted steps and graffiti by the fabulous the Cocoa Room restaurant. (If you are in Kuwait it is a must!)

Now living here in Tel Aviv, I’m inspired on a whole other level by the gorgeous Mediterranean, landscapes, and ancient ruins melding with modern urban art. There are sculptures of people climbing walls, giant flower pots in the center of traffic circles (kicars in Hebrew), and streets of graffiti. There is literally art everywhere, it is a photographer’s dream.

We recently went on a graffiti tour of the Florentine neighborhood in Tel Aviv, with a fantastic tour guide, Guy Sharett from StreetWise Hebrew. He educated us on a few artists, shared about the gentrification plans for the neighborhood, and helped us slow down and see hidden gems around us. Guy also noted that there is a clear distinction between a street artist and a kid with a can of spray paint, there are unwritten rules of respect among the artists and a vandal doesn’t abide by them. Unfortunately, this along with some of the edgy content lends to the negative stigma of graffiti as an art form. I walked away thinking about how these artists are sharing in creation of the city’s culture and that their art is out there, however temporary it may be, for people to appreciate or if nothing else, start a conversation.

If you are feeling uninspired or negative about your current city, I challenge you to take a closer look and notice the urban art around you. See what speaks to you, some of it won’t and that’s ok, but you may be surprised.

cheers,

kdg

Capturing Love Challenge

We love opportunities to grow and take our photography to the next level. One way we do this within our community is through themed photo challenges. In honor of Valentine’s Day we have created a 14 Shots of Love Challenge. Join us and share your unique perspective, as we capture the love all around us. We could all use a bit more LOVE these days, don’t you think?
Use the hashtag #dgrcplove2017 to share your photos with us!
xoxo,
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Who we are

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Hi Lindy-Ann and Katie here, co founders of DGRCP collaborative and A Colo{u}rful World blog. We are so glad you are here!

DGRCP Collaborative is the merging of our two creative hearts and our collective experiences.  We are creatives, photographers, teachers/mentors, moms, wives, daughters, believers, and above all, friends. The spirit of this blog is to share our knowledge, educational tips, our projects, and our lives with you.

When we were deciding on what to name our blog we decided to include two things that make our collaboration so magical – 1) how we see color and the extraordinary in the ordinary and 2) that we are both expats or citizens of the world.

If you are not familiar with the term “expat”, it refers to expatriates or those living outside their country of origin. Lindy-Ann is from South Africa currently living in Kuwait and I (Katie) am from the United States, previously living in Kuwait, and currently in Tel Aviv, Israel. There will definitely be more on our backgrounds and tele-collaborating in future posts, but for our very first post we thought we would share the DGRCP story.

Back in September of 2014 while we were both living in Kuwait, our families met at child’s birthday party. To be more specific our husbands met and thanks to Lindy’s husband, J, plans were made to have dinner, sans children. In the trenches of mothering infants and toddlers, it was a much needed night out.

Over dinner, I (Katie) peppered Lindy-Ann with questions about who she was before kids – because I mean we were all somebody before our little people came along. Come to find out we were both creative-career girls who were feeling a need for creative outlets! Kindred spirits indeed!

A few weeks later Lindy-Ann booked a family photo session with me. After one of my absolute favorite seaside sessions ever, Lindy-Ann invited me to brunch and there proposed that we should collaborate on something. Right there on the patio of Al-Corniche Club, in Kuwait – Lindy-Ann’s “happy place” – DGRCP was conceived. We didn’t really have a vision for what we would grow into at that time, we just knew that we would make a great team.

Now as we celebrate 6 years of collaborating we have blossomed and accomplished some amazing things together; from photography workshops to commercial shoots, branding and strategizing with other small businesses to publishing books and selling our work. We feel incredibly blessed and are full of gratitude for where we are and we are excited for where DGRCP is headed.

Sign up to join us on this journey as we explore this colo{u}ful world!

Cheers,

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