Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Japan Travels--The Meal of a Lifetime

The preparation of Kobe and Yonezawa Beef
The must try at least once in your life experiences.  A traditional Japanese steak house that incorporates Teppanyaki, a Japanese cuisine using an iron griddle to cook the food.  The chef cooks your meal right in front of you.  The Gion Hanasato in Kyoto provided that unique adventure. 
Tools of the Trade

In a renovated tradition house, the limited seating provides a quiet yet relaxing atmosphere.  Two types of beef were prepared.  Yonezawa beef is considered a delicacy and the cattle are raised with strict requirements in the southern part of Yamagata, Japan.  The more well known Kobe beef.  The other beef from Black Cattle raised in Hyogo area of Japan.  This delicacy is known for its flavor, tenderness and marbled texture.  

The master use of cutlery 
The highlight of the evening, is watching the master chef’s cooking skills.   It’s an athletic demonstration as our chef precisely utilizing the several tools to cut, mix and serve, the vegetables, meats, and rice. You watch all in amazement as you can hear and smell the food cook right in front of you.  You get a real education in the food and how to properly cook.  
Preparing the Rice

So what if this is the most expensive dinner one has ever paid for?  The entertainment value and not to mention the most delicious meat you will ever eat, it well worth the experience.  You sit right in front of the "action".  You develop a report with the chef and learn about the meats and many other things about Kyoto and the Chef's experiences.  An incredible night of learning and enjoying.  
Main Course
Perfect Portions
Rice Course
Raspberry Sorbet
The Chef says good-bye
The custom of saying thank you and bowing to the customer
It's nice sometimes to just sit back and relax, see the "action" occur right in front of you.  Pick up the camera when something interesting happens, then just sit back again and enjoy the meal. This was a fun AND delicous event to photograph.   Images made on a Panasonic Lumix G5, available light.  Last image made on a iPhone 11

Copyright 2019 Laurence L. Levin
All Rights Reserved. No publishing or usage granted without permission.
Instagram @larrylevin
Facebook Larry Levin 
Rated #1 2019 DC Event Photographer by Peerspace

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Japan Travels--Japanese Gardens

Japan Travels—Gardens. Tranquility Now.  Unique  areas, based on traditional aesthetics and philosophies.  Natural ornamentation emphasis on nature’s landscapes. My goal was to capture the tranquility of each area. To make images that when looked at would provide sense of peace and relaxation.  Visiting new places helps you to see better.  You know when million of tourists equipped with their phones are continually snapping away, there is a desire to be more reflective and think better images.  Although it is vacation, you work hard, walk slower and absorb the scene. You carefully compose, adjust for the desired affect and click.   
The Rock garden, “Hasna Garden” around the Fukuchiin Monastery, near the sacred mountain,  Koyasan.  The modern rock garden was created by the acclaimed architect Mirei Shigemori.  

Photo #4 A woman poses on the bridge of the Kyoto’s Maruyama Park.  At the foot of Mt. Higashiyama, and since 1931 is designated as a Place of Scenic Beauty.  This was established in the Kamakura Period (1185-1333).  With the famous weeping Cherry Tree, this area is the place to be during Cherry Blossom season and New Year’s Eve. A place where people queue up with their photographer to capture their scene. Realizing this scenario, after missing one woman, waited for the next setup.  As an event photographer, found a wonderful situation, positioned myself in an inconspicuous area and tried to make impactful images.  

Photo 5  The Lower Pond and fishing deck at The Temple of Golden Pavilion in Kyoto.  A Zen Buddhist temple dates back to 1397.  Rebuilt after a fire in 1955.  It’s gold-leaf coating glistens in the sun.  The gardens surrounding the temple is a landscape garden, the pond contains 10 islands, zen topography and the bridges reflect famous places in Chinese and Japanese literature. 

Photo 6 The Honmaru Garden at the Kyoto Imperial Palace.  

Copyright 2019 Laurence L. Levin
All Rights Reserved. No publishing or usage granted without permission.
Instagram @larrylevin
Facebook Larry Levin 
Rated #1 2019 DC Event Photographer by Peerspace

Sunday, December 08, 2019

Seven More Items to discuss when hiring an Event Photographer

Elite Sports Camp
Washington, DC

Seven more considerations when contracting with your event photographer---
  1. How many hours do you is your event and the time that you need the photographer on location?  Your budget and photographer's pricing seems to be a negotiated activity.  Determine what needs coverage.  Some photographers charge on an hourly basis, plus a post-production fee.  This fee is for the time and expertise needed for the photographer to edit, adjust, size and download the images from the event.  Each image needs this added work for your best results.  Any photographer worth their reputation shoots many images of each situation at your event in order to get that optimum image and to give you options.  
    Ambassador of the Slovak Republic
    The Potomac Exchange Luncheon
  2. Will the photographer charge a project price?  Just make sure you both understand the expectations of time, what needs to be photographed, the outcome of images and situations required, plus what usage rights will you receive?
  3. US Copyright law confers copyright to the originator of the work, even if a client commissions it.  Photographers can choose to charge a usage fee for images published beyond a basic agreement (usage and duration).  Figure out your plans for the final usage of the work.  (Press releases, company website, social media, collateral publications (print or web or PDF), marketing or advertising.). You can do a work for hire but standard practice for work for hire agreement is a higher price.  Most event photographers will provide unlimited use for editorial and public relations work.  Best idea is negotiate for what you actually need to keep within your budget.  
    Building Opening Ceremony
    The Middle East Institute
  4. Other items to discuss is additional request for work or coverage beyond the basic agreement.  How will items be billed?  What are the extras?  If it is a long day, will the client take care of a meal?  Does the photographer need an assistant?  Do you need another photographer? (Your main photographer has people you can trust.  Please ask.  If your event is in a different city, talk to your about travel.  Often times you want to work with someone you know and trust.  
  5. Digital Photography is instant but when photographing an event, your photographer needs time to go through the images--download, edit, adjust, and upload the finished images--this takes time.  Figure out what you need and when you need it.  If you need a specific situation, the photo can be ready in minutes for social medial.  However, the bulk of the work needs time.  Discuss your requirements with your photographer.
    Senator Chris Van Holland
    The Consular Corps College Gala
  6. Many clients will prepare a show flow of the event for the photographer.  In this spreadsheet is a time line of the event.  The time of each specific photo activity that includes the time, room location, activity to be photographed, and contact person, images desired.  Also, a list and if possible a headshot of VIPs at the event.  It is important to know so that the photographer can get those spontaneous images of your important people throughout the event.  
  7. Price and Value-------An experienced event photographer might cost a bit more, but as they say "you get what you pay for."  Define your budget and your needs, hire the best you can afford.  Remember the adage, "If you think it's expensive to hire a professional, wait until you hire an amateur."

For more information or discuss upcoming events please contact via email larrylevin@larrymail.net

Laurence L. Levin Photography
Events and Portraits
An experienced documentary event photographer
Providing Images the help to brand your event, organization, participants and your people.
Working with corporate, associations, charities, NGOs, film productions and friends to create memorable pictures.

Instagram @larrylevin
Facebook @LaurenceLLevin

Rated #1 2019 DC Event Photographer by Peerspace

Saturday, December 07, 2019

The Seven Tips on Finding an Event Photographer

There are many photographers you can choose from.........
.....Finding the right photographer for you and your events should not be stressful.  Follow these suggestions:
  1. Review the photographer's portfolio on their website and view their social media posts. Has the photographer shot situations similar to what you expect.  You can meet the photographer or initiate a phone conversation or get a recommendation.  Does the photographer seem to fully absorb your needs: available logistics, the venue, the personalities of your and event attendees and VIPs?
    Speaker at FIO Conference, Washington, DC
  2. Event details may seem similar, but the special circumstances can vary.  Has the photographer worked with elected officials, CEOs, diplomats and VIPs?  Can they follow standard and specialized protocols? Experienced with working with staffers and security personnel?  Does the photographer's body of work show consistantly high level images of members and guests?
  3.  Every event has surprises.  How will the photographer address variations?  Discuss with the photographer the kinds of challenges that can be expected as part of your pre-hire interview. 
    Meet and Greet for IDC
    Rep. Joe Kennedy with Mother Olga of the Sacred Heart
  4. Look for flexible, go-with-flow personality.  The more your photographer can alert you to the kinds of variation to expect, the more you can concentrate of other areas of event concerns.  Your photographer should solve problems for you rather than dump them back into your lap.  He/sh should make you look good and keep your costs as planned.  
    Vice President Pence
    Keynote Speaker, In Defense of Christians Dinner
  5. What kind of impression has your photographer made on you?  Does she/he display confidence with arrogance. Are they detailed oriented, show organization skills, seem personable, courteous, prompt, and talented?
    Awards Step and Repeat
    The Optical Society
  6. Value and Price.  An experienced event photographer will create the optimum results you require.  Once the event is over, the possible images you need are gone forever.  
  7. Hire the best photographer you can afford.  Less is never worth the headaches.  Remember the old adage, "If you think it's expensive to hire a professional, wait till you hire an amateur."
For more information or discuss upcoming events please contact via email larrylevin@larrymail.net

Laurence L. Levin Photography
Events and Portraits
An experienced documentary event photographer
Providing Images the help to brand your event, organization, participants and your people.
Working with corporate, associations, charities, NGOs, film productions & friends to create memorable pictures.

Instagram @larrylevin
Facebook @LaurenceLLevin
Rated #1 2019 DC Event Photographer by Peerspace