Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Brittany and David

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Thursday, December 15, 2011

15 Days at HCC

"15 Days at HCC" is a personal project I did interviewing and photographing 15 students during my last 15 days at Houston Community College. Please scroll the page down to the bottom to begin the journey of these 15 very different students, starting with Day 1. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Day 15

Day 15: Elisheva
Age: 21
Major: Photography
Hometown: Houston
Connection to me: I am me!

     For Day 15 I wanted to do something different . Richard gave me the idea to do myself, being that I myself am also a student. However I wanted to include everyone I had interviewed in it as well, so I had everyone ask me some questions and combined them. I am missing 4 people. Unfortunately, I never saw Hawwa, Edrick, Hussein, and Jeff again. I do want to thank all the students who sat with me, answered my questions and allowed me to post them. I learned so much from this project. I learned that every person is a world. I learned that you really can't judge a book by its cover and I learned that though we all may be in one classroom together, at the end of the day, each person goes home to their life, to their world. Thank-you to the students who let us see a part of their world.

Gino: Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 
Me: I see myself either living here, China or in Israel. I will probably G-d willing be a mother and either be working for myself or a newspaper/magazine.
Gino: If photography doesn't work out what is your plan b? 
Me: I think I am ambitious enough to make photography work for me no matter what. If for some reason it falls through I can always open my own dance studio and teach dance. I can also just be a mother. :)
Julia: If you had to pick either being skinny and poor or fat and rich, which would you pick?
Me: How fat? :/
Vladimir: Would you still believe in religion if there was life on another planet or if you had taken a philosophy class?
Me: Yes.
James: What would you want for your last meal?
Me: Greek salad! I'll eat it any day ;)
Yenter: What made you fall in love with photography? And how did your husband become an artist?
Me: I always thought photography was the coolest thing, even as a little kid. My favorite thing to photograph is people because each person is so different and has their own story. My husband, unlike me has never had any formal training in art. He is just naturally talented. 
Yenter: Is there a place you really want to go to and take pictures?
Me: No where in particular. I love to travel and will go anywhere if given the opportunity.
Emma: Have the people you interviewed over the past few weeks had an impact on you? If so, is it good or bad?
Me: It has impacted me and for the good. I've learned so much from each of you and now look at people differently.
Emma: The only Jewish guy you interviewed was gay. As an orthodox Jew, does that bother you a little bit?
Me: A. He has Jewish blood, but he is not considered Jewish because his mother is not Jewish. B. No it doesn't bother me. People are people and everyone has their own battles.
Richard: Tell me about being Jewish and what it means to you.
Me: Being Jewish means acting, dressing, eating and living in a Jewish way. Unlike most religions, Judaism affects every aspect of life from clothes to dinner to what you do on the weekends. To me being Jewish means that I am a part of G-d's chosen people and therefore I have to live up to it. 
Brittany: Would you wear kinky fetish (bondage)?
Me: No, would you?
Brittany: Yeah but its expensive.
Sana: Whats the craziest thing that happened to you?
Me: I met and married my husband at 19 years old.
Sarah: What event or change in life will make you feel as if you've accomplished your lifetime aspiration.
Me: I guess to have my work published in a prestigious magazine or newspaper would be pretty awesome.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Day 14

Day 14: Sarah
Age: 22
Major: Psychology
Hometown: Houston
Connection to me: none

Me: Do you live with your parents?
Sarah: Yes
Me: So they are married?
Sarah: Actually, no they are divorced but still live together. 
Me: Do they sleep in the same room?
Sarah: No, no physical contact between them.
Me: Why?
Sarah: I dont know. When I was in highschool they said they stayed together for me but now I'm in college and they are still living together.
Me: Do they fight a lot?
Sarah: They argue, but much less than before.
Me: Do they see other people?
Sarah: No.
Me: Was the divorce hard for you?
Sarah: Yes, they would argue a lot and my mom would take her anger out on me. 
Me: Why do they still live together?
Sarah: My fathers a pastor. It could be for his image. Many people don't even know they are divorced, even after all these years. I think my mom is afraid to leave because she is just so used to living with my dad. The main reason they got divorced was money, don't let an object like that tear your family apart. 

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Laura and Joey

I've been wanting to write this for a while. After every photo shoot is planned, taken, all the editing is done and before I hand over the photographs or blog them I first take a few minutes, blast on a song that I feel fits best with the photographs and carefully look at them. This helps me look at them through someone else's eyes, as if I had nothing to do with the process at all. The music draws me in and creates a story. So I'd like to ask you to look through these with this song playing in the background. See what kind of feeling it gives you to hear the music and see the photographs at the same time. Enjoy this most gorgeous couple's engagement pictures!

Day 13

Day 13: Sana
Age: 19
Major: Graphic Design
Hometown: Doha, Qatar
Connection to me: Printmaking

Me: When did you come to the states?
Sana: When I was 15. I was born in Doha then moved to Dubai when I was 10 for 5 years and then moved here. I went to a British school so I spoke English all my life. 
Me: Why did you go to a British school?
Sana: They were the best schools where we lived at the time. The rest were crazy Arab schools.
Me: What makes them crazy?
Sana: The Arabs are crazy, they get into fights a lot.
Me: You're not an Arab?
Sana: I don't really know what I am...
Me: What do you consider yourself?
Sana: Mixed, confused.
Me: Do you have a boyfriend?
Sana: Yes.
Me: Do your parents like him?
Sana: My dad doesn't mind him but my mom doesn't like him.
Me: Why doesn't she?
Sana: Me and my mom have a weird history. When I was born, I was supposed to be a boy which is considered better than a girl in our culture. She always treated me differently. When I was 1 years old my parents got into an argument and sent me to live with my grandparents in Pakistan. I stayed there for 4 years, my dad wanted me back. 
Me: Do you and your mom fight a lot?
Sana: We don't really interact at all.
Me: How long has it been like that?
Sana: Always. Once, when we lived in Dubai, I was 8 years old and we were having lunch. I was drinking orange juice and she had brought out water for me but I didn't realize and went up to my room after I finished eating. She got so mad, she came after me and beat the crap out of me. My dad happened to come home early from work that day and stopped her.
Me: Are you close with your dad?
Sana: Yes. I lost respect for my mom. She's really hypocritical. As a Muslim, you're not supposed to drink and I found out she's a heavy alcoholic. Once, when we were on an airplane and I was just falling asleep, she ordered orange juice and vodka. I asked her if I could have some of her orange juice and she wouldn't let me.
Me: Why don't your parents get divorced?
Sana: For the family. My sister just got engaged and if they did get divorced, she'd have a hard time getting married. Also, it would be hard on my little brother. I've learned to not worry about it too much. I worry about myself and my school work. 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Day 12

Day 11: Brittany
Age: 19
Major: Fine Art
Hometown: Ft. Worth, TX
Connection to me: Art History 2

Me: Do you live with your parents?
Brittany: Yes, I live with my mom and step-dad but my step-dad is kicking me out soon. My dad is messed up.
Me: How is he messed up?
Brittany: He is bipolar and wont take his meds. 
Me: Tell me about your hairstyle.
Brittany: Its practical. I used to have really long hair but it kept getting knotted.
Me: Do you smoke? Do drugs?
Brittany: Nope, my dad did all that, I saw it and said no I don't want to do that.
Me: What religion are you?
Brittany: Neopagen. It is similar to gardinary mukka which is British traditional witchcraft.
Me: So you believe in witchcraft?
Brittany: It depends how you would define it. I believe that to get in the right state of mind, yes it works.
For example, when my ex-boyfriend left me I went to the hospital for depression and it helped me open myself up to love again. It trains you to open up to certain things and close yourself to others.
Me: Did you hurt yourself?
Brittany: No, my dad is bipolar and always said if you ever feel like this you should take yourself to the hospital. 
Me: Do you have bipolar disorder? 
Brittany: Depression yes. Bipolar, I'm beginning to wonder especially because I'm on similar medication as my dad. I'm much better now than I was then. I say, if you plan on committing suicide, wait a year. If you're that miserable and can't wait, then I understand.