Saturday, November 22, 2014

The Middle East Institute Annual Conference

Keynote Speaker Senator Tim Kaine
November 19-20--Washington, DC--The Middle East Institute hosted their 68th Annual Conference at the Grand Hyatt.  This two day reception and conference honored dignitaries in their quest to inform and make a difference in Middle East.  The conference entitled "Navigating the Storm: The Middle East in 2015" provided a variety of ideas, opportunities and transitions for peace, harmony and goodwill.
MEI Visionary Award Winner Shafik Gabr
Panelist Cenqiz Candar
Technical Notes:  Images shot on Nikon D810 and Df cameras.  So you think you can shoot these images on a camera phone?  You might get one or two usable images with your camera phone.  To get consistent usable imagery, I used quality Nikkor lenses, shot at high ISO, color balanced the files and adjusted for grain and sharpness. There were five panels with five panelists.  Each person was photographed as well as group and audience photographs.  Each person was photographed from various angles and hopefully at a good moment.  Over 2000 frames were made throughout the event but that number was edited to show only publication worthy images.

Copyright 2014 Laurence L. Levin
All Rights Reserved

Saturday, November 08, 2014

DC Special Olympics Fall Classic Basketball Tournament

Kennedy School 
November 06--Catholic University, Washington, DC--Passion, athleticism and friendships abound at Special Olympic events.  The DC Special Olympics Fall Classic provides opportunity for athletes to get out of class for the day and join in the competition.  As a long time basketball referee, I cherish these games.  The pure sportsmanship and players enjoying the game make it a enjoyable competition. In between the games, I made these team photos.

Teams from DC participated in the DC Special Olympics Fall Classic Basketball Tournament.  Teams played 3on3 and 5on5.  Hosted at Catholic University.  For more information

Ballou Senior High School
Sharpe Health
Photographs made on a Nikon D810 with two SB-800 in a Westcott Rapid Box.

Copyright 2014 Laurence L. Levin

Saturday, July 05, 2014

Family Photography: Laura and Khalad

July 04, Washington, DC--Three generations, bringing every one together to concentrate on sitting still and showing a good face.  Each personality shows through.  Sometimes one or two people might lose their concentration, so its my job to get them back on track and "look good for the camera!"

(technical notes)  Shot with my Nikon Df, two Speedlights SB-800, both in Westcott Rapid Boxes.  45 degrees angle and back light.  This lighting system provides soft and even lighting, easy setup and convenient.  It has provided a great solution inexpensively,  that helps to keep my overhead low!

©Laurence L. Levin
All rights reserved. No publication rights granted.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Basketball Athletes from the USA Games

Team Utah teammates, Travis White and Lindsey Atkinson
June 18--Princeton, NJ--The USA Games Special Olympics.  My involvement with Special Olympics  started when I officiated basketball games in Washington. DC.  Since that time, I have worked games locally, at the National Games and at the International Games.  At this years 2014 USA National Games, I tried to do portraits  to capture the inspirational and dedicated of the basketball athletes.
Team Utah, Joe Pratt
Team Maryland, Nora Nickle
Team Maryland, Munir Vohra,  J Megonigal

©Laurence L. Levin
All rights reserved.  No usage rights granted without the permission from Special Olympics, Inc.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Basketball: USA National Games Special Olympics

Florida vs. New York
June 20, Princeton NJ--For the third time, I was invited to officiate basketball for the Special Olympics USA National Games.  A great honor to be surrounded by remarkable athletes and volunteers for a week.  The competition is fierce from the highest level to the lowest level skilled athletes.  Sportsmanship is evident at all levels of play.  (Other athletes could learn a lot from Special Olympic athletes.)  The athletes had intensity, determination and showed an athletic competitive edge that provided exciting and great play.  Special Olympic athletes can do anything.  They just need an opportunity and these games proved to showcase their athletic skills, positive attitude and friendship.

Team Florida vs. Team New York, referee Joe Mitchell 
Team South Dakota vs. Pennsylvania
Team Washington, DC vs. Team New Jersey
Team Washington, DC vs. Louisiana, referee Joe Mitchell
(Technical Note) All these images were made with a Nikon Df.  This camera continues to surpass all my expectations.  The auto white balance handled all the various lighting conditions I encountered.  The vivid color, ability to focus quickly in low lighting conditions and using high ISO with excellent results are all outstanding qualities of this camera.  This camera is my second body and will continue to be a valuable asset in my arsenal.

©2014 Laurence L. Levin

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Monday, June 09, 2014

Young Arts Alumni Performance

June 06-Kennedy Center-Washington, DC,  YoungArts Alumni performance at the Kennedy Center's Millennium Stage in honor of the 50th anniversary of the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program.

Alice Blumenfeld, a YoungArts Alumna and U.S. Presidential Scholar presents Semblanza, which showcases her newest flamenco dance.  Accompanied by Hector Jose Marquez on vocals, Ricardo Marlow on guitar and Behzad Habibzai on percussion.

(Tech notes)  Shooting a stage performance is always tricking,  proper metering on the changing lighting setup, the quick action by the dancer and having enough latitude to have a good exposure. The new Nikon Df proved to handle this situation incredibly well.  Spot metering was flawless and shooting at an extremely high ISO proved to be no problem.  Can you tell this was shot at 10,000 ISO?  Grain is tight and color is vivid.

©Laurence L. Levin
All Rights Reserved.  No usage rights granted without written permission.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014


Thumbtack is a novel website that brings new opportunities to professionals to find potential customers.  As a photographer, Thumbtack attracts potential clients who appreciate my work and service.  I hope to find clients who will not only be long-term customers but friends as well.  I want to be known as a provider who goes beyond what is expected and exceed expectations in every job I do.

View my Thumbtack listing:

Friday, April 11, 2014

Cherry Blossoms

April 11--Washington, DC--Finally after a snowy winter, the Cherry Blossoms arrived.  Using a tripod in order to do a long exposure, I was able to capture the morning light.  Also,  using a pop of a Nikon Speedlight helped to highlight the over hanging blossoms.


All Photography Copyright Laurence L.Levin
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Saturday, April 05, 2014

TEDx Fulbright

Harriet Fulbright
April 5--Washington, DC--TEDx Fulbright,  an independently organized TED event held at the US Chamber of Commerce was a day of speakers sharing their innovations, ideas and Fulbright experiences.
Romain Lacombe, "Democracy in the Age of Data"
Michael Forster Rothbart, "Boxing Outside the Think: Creativity, Photography, and Seeing the World Anew"
Pritzer College President, Laura Trombley, Servus! Lessons Learned in Presidential Leadership the Bavarian Way
Celloist Danielle Cho
Massimiliano Versace, "Neuromorphics: Machines to Life"
Lisa Dyson,  "Turning CO2 into Oil"
The control panel: remote control of 4 cameras for Livecast and online videos.
The Speakers
Photo Notes:  The majority of the images made were shot with a Nikon D800.  Since they were streaming each speaker live on the Internet, a Jacobson Soundblimp encased the camera to eliminate any shutter sound.  I was given the ability to shoot anywhere within the room.  Since each presenter had less than 18 minutes, I had to work various angles and views quickly.  The room was expertly lit which made the exposures consistent.  I just had to keep out of view the four video cameras and maneuver throughout the room to get the coverage.

All Photography Copyright Laurence L. Levin

Thursday, March 20, 2014

DC Special Olympics

March 20--Washington, DC--The DC Classic is the end of year tournament for the basketball season for Special Olympics DC.  These are some of the coaches, athletes and officials.

Basketball Referee Joe Mitchell

Photo Notes: Two Wescott Rapid Boxes set up with Pocket Wizards and Nikon D800 Speedlights at 45 degree angles from the camera position.  Sunlight was hitting the basket early.  After sunset another Speedlight was pointed toward the basket.  All the set-ups had to be done within 20 minutes before the start of the tournament.  A quick round up of the subjects and the photos were made.

Basketball Officiating got me involved with Special Olympics.  These are the people who I have officiated basketball with for many years. 

Photographs copyright 2014 Laurence L. Levin
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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Sean McBride

March 12--Vienna, VA--Client, colleague and friend Sean McBride needed a new executive portrait. This gave me an opportunity to use my new light modification system.   Sean is an experienced strategic communications and organizational management professional.  His website is

Photo notes: This was the first time I used the Westcott Rapid Boxes with my Nikon Speedlite D-800.  Classic 45 degree angle from the camera position.  Luckily didn't need a hair light since some sunlight was coming through the window shades.

Photography Copyright Laurence L. Levin
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Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Best Buddies 25th Year Anniversary

Best Buddies is celebrating their 25 year anniversary.  To commemorate, a book was published to highlight their achievements and recognize people and companies who played a role in helping Best Buddies grow.  They honored me by including me in the book. For over 20 years I have documented Best Buddies events and people.  A wonderful organization that eliminates barriers and helps people realize their dreams.

At the end of 2013, One of my images appeared in this public service announcement in TIME Magazine.