June 17, 2012
When I was six, my dad and I liked to take pictures together in the neighborhood, so I have enjoyed making photographs since I was a little boy.
Later on, in high school, I was the photographer for the yearbook, and I did the same later at MIT, where I was studying physics, without at first having the slightest idea to do photography as a career.
I had assignments from MIT, the Communications Office and the Alumni Association, and also Wellesley College (Hilary Clinton’s Alma Mater) and I started thinking that I could make a living out of photography. At the same time I got more and more skeptical of the idea of becoming a physicist and I luckily had a terrific philosophy professor who encouraged me to do what I really wanted to do, and not what I thought was expected for me to do.
Another history-changing event encouraged me in changing professional direction: I started to photograph Minnesota Senator Eugene McCarthy during the Presidential primary in New Hampshire. He was running against President Lyndon Johnson on an anti Vietnam War platform, and I was soon recruited by his press secretary to becoming a photographer for the campaign. For this I had to take a leave of absence from MIT and traveled for the whole term realizing that I liked this kind of work much more than standing in a laboratory all day and measuring things again and again and again….
So I knew I had to take a decision and I thought that traveling the world meeting interesting people (including beautiful women), to eat and drink and get paid for it was more appealing than a lab. After three seconds of thought (maybe four) my decision was taken. My parents would have preferred my becoming a scientist, as it is more prestigious, but then my father bought me a new NIKON for the start at MIT and kind of sabotaged his own professional ambitions for his son.
I think that when he started to see my published work, he was content with my choice, and hopefully proud as well.
Nevertheless, I did my degree in physics but never used it afterwards.
I did not start traveling until after graduation, and my first trip was to the Middle East, on assignment for an educational publisher to illustrate a geography book for kids. I liked the fact that people lived differently, the difference in clothing and foods and customs.
And as I am naturally curious about people, they were very welcoming and open to invite me to join into various ceremonies and situations So I got access to their private circles and to weddings (and commando training) and captured on film what I observed. Generally my focus was and is people, their movements and emotions. I do not often photograph landscapes void of people, and the same could be said for my photographs of architecture. Even when I photograph food, I try to observe and show people during preparation and service and, of course, the eating and drinking.
(Working for chefs is always especially nice as they also trade for meals.) I am generally very interested in the food industry, including farmers, products such as ham and cheese making, and of course, wine makers (Petrus, Yquem, just to mention two). But again, I focus mostly on the people aspect such as capturing the joy of wine tasting. (Whenever possible!)
I have done a lot of work for the New York Times and travel magazines such as Delta Airlines Inside Magazine. I have worked for der Feinschmecker Magazin in Hamburg and for and with numerous top chefs: Guy Savoy, Alain Ducasse, Pierre Gagnaire, Paul Bocuse, Yannick Alleno, the late Bernard Loiseau, Georges Blanc, Daniel Boulud in NY….. I have also worked for Amnesty international, the United Nations, and of course numerous private event organizers.
One of my favorite photographs is of red umbrellas in front of the Eiffel Tower. I remember waiting for a friend who was late to join me to see an exhibit at Paris’ Trocadero, and it started all of a sudden to hail very strongly. I knew there would situations to capture and ran over toward the Eiffel Tower and there was a frantic couple with red umbrellas.
I am also happy about photographs I took in early China 1983 and 1985 when the economy started to change. These long ago paid for this self-financed trip.
Another favorite is of a couple having a drink in a bar in Paris, during a shoot for the New York Times, their legs crossed at the Kube Hotel in Paris. They only accepted my taking a picture without showing their faces, as the guy was not divorced yet.
I met Alain Ducasse through a common friend who was the US Ambassador to France. Her communications person was going to Monte Carlo and I gave her a letter for him, proposing that I do a long story with him to illustrate the concept of “quality”. He liked the idea of a photo study of him and I soon found myself taking a plane with him from Paris to Nice to go back to Monte Carlo. He promptly fell contentedly asleep on the plane. We became friends and we worked together from time to time for about five years. He was the start of my photo series of great chefs.
I have spent many joyful moments accompanying them in the creative process of cooking, and we get along well, as they understand that I am there for an emotional reason, not only a technical one.
My work, and finding out what their non-professional passions are has made us closer, I have spent vacation with some of my chef friends, including watching Pierre Gagnaire cook for fun with Tuaregs in the Algerian Sahara, and in an ancient city in Mali.
In 1996 I joined the internet image library Corbis and since then have done very well with royalties from them. I have noticed the massive change in the market due to the evolution of digital cameras, the changing economy, and the massive increase of image supply on the net. The internet has changed the market for photography extensively, but I am relieved to see that it cannot replace the need for quality.
Interview with Owen Franken – www.owenfranken.com
Find Owen’s offer on 7jades
June 1, 2012
Fashion and Art had always been a passion, so hairdressing seemed like a natural choice.
I have lived as an expatriate for 15 years now. I love the sense of the community it brings, along with the contrast of unknown cultures. My work is mainly inspired by some of the hairdressing royalty, mainly from London, Trevor Sorbie, and Anthony Mascolo to name a few.
I love the diversity that working with an international client base offers. We meet people from all over the world every day. It always keeps it interesting.We offer a high end service in all aspects of hairdressing, some beauty services and bridal packages. Our demographic cannot be defined as it is for all ages and walks of life, the main defining element being that they are English speaking clients.
It wouldn’t be professional of me to divulge personal stories of clients; however, we regularly have clients that come to the salon who have had disastrous experiences in other French salons, mainly, as they don’t speak the language. It is always rewarding when we are able to fix their hair and offer them a professional service in a language that they can identify with. This is successful because it gives them back the confidence that they need. After all, hair is your best accessory, so it has to feel good.
The most difficult thing about running a business in a country where you don’t speak the language is that there are obstacles every day. Sometimes the most simple of things can take weeks to sort out. It has however taught me a level of patience I did not know that I have. I became a better person for working through the turmoil’s and triumphs that we experience on a daily, weekly basis.
Interview with Victoria Nelson (Creative Director – Style Pixie Salon)
April 16, 2012
Story for Cani Class – Dog Training, Dog Dancing, Puppy Training, Canine Consultation
I have a passion for dogs since childhood. When the company where I used to work fell apart, it felt obvious for me to come back to dogs and combine work and passion.
I had the chance to study in a bilingual school from Kindergarten to Final Year. I grew up with friends coming from various countries. I liked this coeducation and it is still a pleasure for me to meet people coming from various horizons and pass on my knowledge to people from all countries, whether it be in French, in English or in Spanish.
I help people train their dog using positive reinforcement methods. I also help owners address any behavior problem that they could meet with their dog (fear, aggressiveness, barking, housebreaking…). Cani Class’s clients come from very varied backgrounds, from the English student looking for help with his rescue dog to the American CEO who needs advice regarding the puppy he has been offered. Women are usually the ones who call and who participate to the training classes. Children are often interested in Clicker-Training sessions.
Meeting new people and new dogs makes my work very enriching and never boring. I learn each day more than during the 9 years I worked in an office. I like to keep on learning, attending seminars and training classes, sharing with my colleagues, in order to provide my clients with the latest information. Promoting positive training methods is also a very fulfilling part of my job.
There are some lessons which I am particularly proud of. For example, a lady called me for her 3-month old Beagle who seemed to be very difficult to train. When I came to their house, I saw that there was a total lack of understanding between the dog and his owner. The lady was told very bad advice like shouting at the puppy when he jumped on the sofa, turning him unto his back when he nibbled, shaking him by the neck when he was playing too roughly… I explained to her the normal behavior for a puppy and how he perceived those inappropriate punishments which were only making him go more and more crazy. By changing her vision of her puppy and using positive training methods, the dog appeared to be a very sweet companion for my client.
Some people often start with a training package and finish asking for Dog Dancing lessons because they find how fun and interesting it is to train their dog in good spirits.
The most difficult for me is the commercial part. When you have clients, you tend to forget the commercial part, concentrating on what you like more. However, it is important for an entrepreneur to never forget to promote his company. It is one important aspect of his job that he cannot put aside. I, now, plan and schedule all the tasks I have to do week by week, so that I don’t forget anything, not even the less interesting part.
Working alone can also be difficult because you may doubt, you may get demotivated. I found a lot of support with my colleagues from all over France and also from other countries. Mutual-aid between dog trainers using gentle training methods is very common and appreciable.
Irène Sautelet, Founder of Cani Class
April 13, 2012
I was alwys interested in beauty and glamour and that’s why I really like the relation to beauty in my work. It is a fun thing to facilitate well-being to guests and attend to them in their leisure.
I had my first international experience in the London Soho house, where I stayed for one month. It was my first five-star hotel, and the first time I had worked in a private members club. For me, especially the outgoing behavior of the Brits was really exciting.
We offer beauty treatments, massages, body treatments, manicures, pedicures, personal training and yoga. Our club members are mainly from Berlin, local guests of the day spa and hotel guests from the US, UK and from Germany. Most of the guests are in their mid-40’s. Our clients are from various vocations, including the media, the medical sector, lawyers, CEO´s in the financial sector and the automotive sector.
I especially like that my work provides contact with a wide range of people. To facilitate the feeling of well-being in a luxury environment makes my work more exciting and interesting.
We offer therapeutic massages that serve as relaxation techniques, but also as easing of the tissue and the muscles. Especially highlighted is the Swedish massage that works with attrition, vibration and detonation. Our Salon Services are also very versatile. For example, we have a Caribbean therapy that includes a manicure with fragrant rice.
The major obstacle I have had to overcome was to find good staffs that are able to work with our guests in a friendly and calm way. They also have to fit well with our clientele; otherwise it will be difficult to facilitate well-being.
Grit Engelbrecht (Spa Manager at Club Olympus)
It all started when I was a child born to German / Russian parents and my parents moved to Germany from the United States. That was my first expat experience. Professionally, my initial spark to work in the field of immigration was, when a person from the American Citizens Abroad came to me all shook up holding a letter in his shivering hands, asking me “What did I do wrong?” Once I read the letter, it was hard for me to keep my posture and not snort with laughter. He was addressed (in a rude tone) by the German TV and radio tax authority to (finally) register his TV and/ or radio. He did nothing wrong, it was not communicated to him what was going on.
My father had German / Russian parents. My mother comes from Silesia (now Poland), her father came from Masuria (now Poland) and her mother from Lithuania. My mind is so flexible that I can start things the American way (after a short brainstorming, start a project) or the German way (develop a plan, test the plan, redevelop the plan from the results of the first test, then maybe actually start working on it).
I am a German / American lawyer for immigration, commerce and taxes. I bring persons into Germany.
It is something creative: transferring a dream into reality and not just combating with precedences in court.
One anecdote I remember: An American / Kazakh couple of tax consultants wanted to live in Germany. After the German consulate denied to accept their application, I persuaded them to apply again because they were confused by a couple where the husband has the right to first enter Germany and then apply for a permit and a wife who can only apply for a permit from home. I further suggested not to teach Kazakh tax law in Germany because the German authorities would never believe that they could make a living off of that in Germany. I suggested to consult the German energy sector how to save Kazakh taxes and tax penalties.
Americans are generally considered to be treated preferentially in Germany. Well, my experience shows that such is not always the case. The foreigners’ office in Dresden did not want to believe an American elderly lady that she has severe disabilities (e.g. paralyzed on side) and had good reasons to have family reunion with her son. The 30 year old head of the foreigners’ officer wanted that her son vouch for her. Since he was earning as little as artists do, that it would be ridiculous to have a “beggar” vouch for a “millionaire”. This argument convinced that person. Every single requirement of the law had to be proven – painstakingly exact. It was only then that the one who decides the case considered to grant it.
Determining my target clientele and the strategy for the correct exposure are the big challenges in this field as my typical clients are from abroad and mainly not from Germany. So, an advertisement in a local newspaper would not make sense.
Alexander Baron von Engelhardt
Founder of the law firm Alexander Baron von Engelhardt, BERLIN
July 1, 2011
A go-kart is a small four-wheeled vehicle. Go-karts come in all shapes and forms, from motorless models to high-powered racing machines, some, like Superkarts, being able to beat racing cars on long circuits.
Gravity racers, usually referred to as soap-box carts, are the simplest type of go-karts. They are propelled by gravity, with some races taking place down a single hill.
Besides traditional kart racing, many commercial enterprises offer karts for rent, often called “recreational” or “concession” karts. The tracks can be indoor or outdoor. Karts are rented by sessions (10 to 15 minutes usually), they use sturdy chassis completed with dedicated bodywork providing driver safety.
Karting is commonly perceived as the stepping stone to the higher and more expensive ranks of motorsports.
It can prepare the driver for high-speed wheel-to-wheel racing by helping develop quick reflexes, precision car control, and decision-making skills.
June 18, 2011
A fighter aircraft is a military aircraft designed primarily for air-to-air combat with other aircraft, as opposed to a bomber, which is designed primarily to attack ground targets by dropping bombs. The hallmarks of a fighter are its small size, speed and maneuverability.
Modern jet fighters are predominantly powered by one or two turbofan engines, and are equipped with a radar as the primary method of target acquisition. Armament consists primarily of air-to-air missiles, they can also employ air-to-surface missiles, as well as guided and unguided bombs.
The Aero L-39 Albatros is a high-performance jet trainer aircraft developed in Czechoslovakia to meet requirements for a “C-39″ during the 1960s to replace the L-29 Delfín. It was the first of the second-generation jet trainers, and the first turbofan-powered trainer produced, and was later updated as the L-59 Super Albatros and as the L-139 (prototype L-39 with engine Garrett TFE731).
The Albatros – the most widely used jet trainer in the world – is versatile, seeing duty in light-attack missions as well as in basic and advanced pilot training.
June 4, 2011
While for most of us our lives are largely peaceful it is likely that you have found yourself in difficult situations, and know people close to you who have personally experienced violence.
Even if you may never face physical threat from another human the consequences of such a scenario can be so serious and unpleasant that it is well worth preparing yourself in advance.
You may have never studied any martial arts before, or you may want a realistic approach that covers a spectrum from communication to simple practical methods that work in chaotic stress of violence.
Physical self defense is the use of physical force to counter an immediate threat of violence. Such force can be either armed or unarmed. In either case, the chances of success depend on a large number of parameters, related to the severity of the threat on one hand, but also on the mental and physical preparedness of the defender.
Self-defense, self-defence or private defence is a countermeasure that involves defending oneself, one’s property or the well-being of another from physical harm. The use of the right of self-defense as a legal justification for the use of force in times of danger is available in many jurisdictions, but the interpretation varies widely.
Self-defense is Nature’s eldest law.
~ John Dryden
June 3, 2011
Cognitive behavioral therapy (or cognitive behavioral therapies or CBT) is a psychotherapeutic approach, a talking therapy, that aims to solve problems concerning dysfunctional emotions, behaviors and cognitions through a goal-oriented, systematic procedure.
CBT includes a variety of approaches and therapeutic systems; some of the most well known include cognitive therapy, rational emotive behavior therapy and multimodal therapy. Defining the scope of what constitutes a cognitive–behavioral therapy is a difficulty that has persisted throughout its development.
CBT may involve various treatments including psycho-education, assertiveness training, social skills training, cognitive restructuring, behavioural modification, and exposure techniques.
The central idea of CBT is that emotional upset arise from the way we interpret the things that happen to us. Therefore cognitions (i.e. thinking) are an important target for therapy and change.
“People are disturbed not by things but by the views which they take of them”
May 20, 2011
A Driving Licence is an official document certifying that the holder is suitably qualified to drive a motor vehicle or vehicles.
Driving a car or a motorcycle is a pleasure for many. It is just refreshing to drive on a long, perhaps, lonely road, and de-stress out clogged minds with the gushing wind and clean, unpolluted weather on the countryside.
We offer a course conducted in English designed to prepare a candidate to take both the written test and the driving test.
Through individualized instruction you will learn the rules of the road and how to recognize trick questions, thus greatly improving your chances of successfully passing the test in the shortest amount of time.
We understand that most foreigners living in PARIS already know how to drive, but the four hours of practical driving are compulsory to familiarize you with the inspector’s requirements.