I am an admitted photography nerd- I spend much of my free time watching video tutorials or reading essays on the art and science of photography. Recently I find myself particularly fascinated with tutorials by Alex Koloskov from Kyiv, Ukraine at https://www.photigy.com He is a mad genius when it comes to still life product photography! His tutorials are on the pricey side, but he offers a free webinar every Friday for free online streaming. I've learned SO much from him in the last several months. I highly suggest you check out his site and YouTube channel if you want to see some cool stuff.

This week we are discussing "reflection vs. refraction": Reflection refers to a change in direction of light when it bounces off a substrate. Refraction is the change in the direction of light as it passes through a substrate. Imagine a bottle of beer in a tinted transparent bottle. The "reflected" light appears on the surface of the glass, reflecting the lights in the room the photograph is taken in. The "refracted" light is the light that bounces around *through* the glass and the liquid, creating highlights and shadows inside the object. Knowing how to control and manipulate the amount of reflections and refractions is essential to successful product photography.

Every summer my wife and I take a trip to the North Fork of Long Island with a few of our friends. It's fantastic wine country out there, and we spend a few days relaxing, sipping new and tasty wines, and just unplugging for a bit. At the end of our trip we always visit Lavender by the Bay where the girls stock up on all sorts of lavender products. The car smells like Provence for the rest of the 2 hour ride home, and we continue to use it for several months as a fragrant air freshener in our home.

I had the opportunity to shoot a portrait of artist John Avelluto today in Brooklyn. Always a pleasure to work with him!

John was born and raised in Gravesend, Brooklyn, attended high school in Bay Ridge, where he currently with his wife and two lovely daughters. A first generation Italian-American, John has always been immersed in food culture, both at home and professionally. He worked for his father, Domenico Avelluto, at his two successful restaurants, first Mazzei on the Upper East Side and then Hostaria Mazzei in Port Chester, and spent two and a half years talking about fancy grapes at Long’s Wines and Liquors in Bay Ridge. John earned an MFA in painting from Brooklyn College, often mixing the concepts of food and art in the restaurant and his studio. With a specialty in faux painting and a wicked sense of humor, John’s paintings have awed audiences and garnered critical acclaim in ink and the blogosphere. A long time advocate of the arts, John is a founder of the 5th Ave Storefront Art Walk (SAW). After talking about food and grape for years, John is thrilled to be the proprietor of a dedicated wine bar in his neighborhood.

I am honored to have been asked by Real Food, Real Kitchens to participate in a photo shoot for their upcoming cookbook. Jammi Sloan Yorke came by our place in Bay Ridge yesterday to photograph me preparing my *twice award winning* seafood chili. 

Family, food, culture and history; these are the essence of Real Food Real Kitchens, a cooking series that goes into the real kitchens of everyday people and explores one of their most cherished traditional family dishes. Real Food Real Kitchens tells the intimate story of a person, their family, and their culture and how food creates an emotional bond that connects them all together.

Looking forward to the release of the cookbook in the fall! For now, check out this quick snap, and keep updated via their website at http://realfoodrealkitchens.com

The fantastic music website NO ECHO is featuring a gallery of some of my favorite live music photographs that I've taken, along with a little background behind how each image came about. Check it out here: http://www.noecho.net/features/photographer-jason-jamal-nakleh

One of my favorite images from a trip to Paris. The light was incredible that day. Paris is my favorite city in the world! The food, the culture, the history- and oh, did I mention the food? I've been there a few times, so I don't bother sightseeing anymore I just eat my way around the city.

Last year I had the pleasure of working on a book for legendary photographer ART KANE. Art was one of the most profoundly influential photographers of the twentieth century. A bold visionary, his work explored a number of genres - fashion, editorial, celebrity portraiture, travel, and nudes with an unrelenting and innovative eye. Kane developed a style that didn't shy away from strong color, eroticism and surreal humor.

From the original film, I scanned and restored all of the images included in this book. The project was organized and curated by Art’s son, Jonathan Kane and his wife Holly Anderson, a brilliant poet and lyricist. Jonathan is the original drummer for the experimental rock band SWANS, current photographer and photo editor, as well as a musician and a friend. We sat together for almost 12 months and worked on each image in the book, one by one, until he felt they represented what his dad would have originally envisioned.

The book is finally here. This stunning hardback edition from Reel Art Press is the first time Kane’s work has been collected into one comprehensive volume. Beautifully curated, it is a fitting tribute to one of photography’s most original and creative forces. Visit Art Kane’s website or order the book from Amazon.

Lots of people may know about the great VSCO Cam app which is one of my favorite photo editing apps for the iPhone, but not everyone is aware that they have amazing film emulation presets for Lightroom and Adobe Camera Raw. I've been using their film presets for a while now, and really love them. To me, they help create the most realistic film looks I've seen from any editing software. Between all 6 packs, all of the classics are there, from Kodak TRI-X to Fuji Gold, to Agfa Scala and beyond. Each pack has a different set of films, including Modern, Classic, Instant, Slide, Archetype and Alternative Process. If you're serious about your photo editing, and want to recreate that classic "film" feel, VSCO is the way to go. 

http://vsco.co/film

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