barely bridal 1 כולה כלה

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about a month ago my friend Ruth, who’s a very talented makeup artist asked me if I want to start working with her on an alternative wedding project, of course I said yes, but we both didn’t really know what we want to do, we just knew that we want to start working on something together.
we both work in Israel shooting wedding as well as fashion and we decided we wanted to do a series of simple shoots that are leaving the romance behind and all the regular wedding stuff we see all over the place, but we still missed a large element of styling.
Then my wife suggested we reach out and find “alternative” dresses, looking for girls who made their own dresses, bought a regular dress that happens to be white (or not), found something old in the attic, or just have an interesting story behind their dress. and that’s what we decided to do. I wrote a status on facebook and the feedback was amazing, we had one session, we’re planning now the next and we’re waiting to hear more interesting stories and see more awesome dresses as we move along.
for our first session, Gal modeled five dresses and we’ll release each dress as a separate post.

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the first dress we want to show is from our friend  who wanted to stay anonymous, but still liked the idea and wanted to take part in the project.

1. So what’s the story?

- a couple of days after the proposal we flew to London, there we saw Issey Miyake’s gorgeous fabrics and dresses. I saw a few stunning white dresses, didn’t try them on and left. The whole trip I thought about those dresses, and on the last day I said I have to go back to try it on and check the price. I immediately bought it, thinking it could be a second dress if it won’t feel appropriate as a wedding dress (because we didn’t plan anything for the wedding yet).
when we returned to Israel, we decided to separate our wedding to two events, the official ceremony and a big celebration.  The ceremony was very small with 30 guests, and the celebration that followed had 350 guests.
I never imagined myself as a bride, and i decided that for such a small event, i can totally wear the Issey Miyake dress, and to give up the “pleasure” of a wedding dress.

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2. how long did it take to make/find/choose/decide?
– the decision was immediate, buying it took four days
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3. Price?
– around $500

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4. any regrets?
– not at all, still loving the dress

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5. a wedding dress for you is?
– meaningless, another pretty dress and a little special.
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photography: Elad Baranga
make up artist: Ruth Toledo
jewelry: ShirAn Mann (page/shop)
model: Gal Melnick

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the lost island pictures

the island wasn’t lost, and i wasn’t lost on it. even though it did feel like that sometimes.
but the files got lost, in a way. exactly a year ago i was in Bonaire in the Dutch Antilles for about a week for a job. most people arrive in bonaire to go scuba diving, but we hardly spent any time in the water.
I had no idea what to expect. I thought of a beach city, so i thought of tel aviv or barcelona, really touristy right near the beach, touristy and sketchy one street over, and after that, a full city with lots of life, local food and interesting stuff to see. I thought about working with factories and factory owners in China, and i thought it would be awkward and weird.
But it was neither, we stayed at Captain Don’s habitat, a real life pirate of the Caribbean. There’s even a weekly happy hour in the resort’s bar to go hang out and drink rum with Captain Don. He’s not really a pirate, but he’s an old school diver with an amazing resort, worth checking out if you are ever in that part of the globe. But if you leave the resort, there’s nothing there. on the coast you’ll get to the next resort, but going inland, it’s just desert, you can’t get anywhere without a car, and we were really fortunate to have great hosts that picked us up to the factory, took us out to eat really great local food, brought us into their homes and were the friendliest people i ever got a chance to work with.
the timing was also perfect, not that weather is a concern in a place like this, it’s 28 degress during the winter and 31 degrees in the summer. It’s so hot there, that you can’t find a beer bigger than 250ml. The locals told us that they tried once to import bigger beers, but no one liked them. Most of the beer there was Polar from Venezuela, but also some dutch and american beers were available. But all in small bottles and ice cold. And while we were there they were celebrating Holand’s new king, so we enjoyed a long weekend of parties and parades.
a super chill spot with really friendly people, kind of opposite from everything i know, maybe it will be cool to get back there some day.
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keep it simple

when we were little everyone had these simple 16page A5 notebooks. it was the standard in israel. a few years deeper into the school system we were introduced to the the 40page, and after that, fancy spirals came, and designed notebooks and whatnot. 
but these are the best notebooks, they’re so anti-designed that of course they will become a huge trend now with their brown paper back and small size… because in this day and age, it will take us forever to fill a notebook with more than 16 pages anyway. 
it’s also really easy to take a page out and share with friends, as long as you didn’t pass the middle.
i don’t know the whole story, but from what i understand, someone found a whole lot of these notebooks, and thought it would be clever to hand them out to artists from different traits and disciplines. it all came together to a big exhibition with over 350 notebooks in “beit ha’ir” the old town hall of tel aviv, now functioning as a modern art museum.
and they wanted to make a flyer. and taking a picture of a piece of art on one page of one notebook, just won’t cut it.
so we went downtown with a couple of friends. went to visit Babi, a Sudanese refugee who’s been living in Tel Aviv for the past four years and has a barber shop in Neveh Sha’anan. one of those perfect places with the posters with the haircuts you can choose from are numbered. and we thought it would be a good location for our shoot.
we gave the participants the notebooks to look through them as if they were magazines in the salon while they wait. and this is what we got.
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claes goran shanghai

before we decided to leave china we attended DAFF, the design art and fashion fair in shanghai. we went there for kicks, but ended up collaborating with two brands there, claes goran, a swedish shoe and bag company and a local brand OBA. at the event we shot their fashion shows and then kept in touch and thought about doing more shoots.
https://vimeo.com/69045574
we managed to do one shoot with claes goran before leaving. touring some great spots in shanghai, parks, commercial plazas, old neighborhoods and abandoned building sites all combining two classic chinese elements, green plants and piles of concrete.
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for more. check out their website http://claesgoran.com/en/


mark builds bikes

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a few weeks ago i went to meet mark to interview him for bawakawa.com . tomer from bawakawa told me that there’s a guy right next to their studio that builds funky bikes, for some reason, i thought it would be a really small workshop, with someone really old and a ton of bike parts, and seriously funky bikes… i don’t know why i thought that, it doesn’t really make sense.
mark is an awesome guy. he has the coolest stories, and really digs bikes. and not because they’re fast or rad, because they serve a purpose. he specializes in building work bikes and carriers, like he saw when he traveled in india and like you can see all around holand, filled with lots of kids.

we talked about traveling to india, to japan, seeing how design works over there, living in haifa, we both lived there for a short time and hated it for different reasons, and both have a great love for the city. he used to build bikes right around the corner from where my studio is. and he was very involved with the local punkrock scene. we have a lot in common and he was really fun to talk to.

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when i told yael about him and showed her the pictures i took, she automatically asked if he’s that guy i have a picture of from yafo. i didn’t even think about it, but apparently, i took a picture of mark riding a high-bike in old yafo in 2009, and posted it on my page. i have some more pictures from that day i need to send him.Image

hebrew readers can read the full interview here:
http://www.bawakawa.com/blog/?p=4324


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yomki2013

yom kippur is by far my favorite jewish holiday. it can only really be celebrated in israel, where people actually take a pause for this; secular, traditional and religious people all treat yom kippur as something special, and that’s what i seriously love about it.
I don’t take part in any of the traditional activities lined up for yom kippur. I don’t fast, i don’t pray, i don’t get bummed out… and it’s the only day of the year that I don’t think that the religious coercion in israel is THAT bad.
i enjoy the silence, the streets, the empty roads, the zombie-walk, the clear and quiet beaches, riding, skating, painting, taking pictures and enjoying this special phenomena that can only be felt here.
going back to my hometown won’t be as exciting as staying in tel aviv, because the contrast isn’t very high, most days there are hardly any cars on the road, so it’s no big deal, but in tel aviv, you really feel it.

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