Morning Service @ Beth Shalom | Communities Project

A few weeks ago I had an opportunity to photograph the morning service at Beth Shalom temple in Squirrel Hill.  As part of my "Communities" project, I would like to document as many different Pittsburgh communities as I possibly can.  That being said, I have special interest in the Jewish community.  Having grown up in the Soviet Union, religion has always been a taboo topic at home or at school.  Also, given the ever-present antisemitism, I did not find out that I were Jewish until I was 12.  I've been learning more about my heritage and culture in the recent years thanks to my kids, but having an opportunity to observe and document a religious service was a welcome experience.  Many thanks to Rabbi Adelson and the Congregation Beth Shalom community for welcoming me.

Spending time with my grandmother | Norfolk, Virginia

My grandmother Olga is 93 years old, soon to be 94.  She is an amazing woman and one of the most important people in my life.  Even though I talk to her on the phone about 3 times a week, I only get to see her 2-3 times a year.  Every time I take the drive from Pittsburgh to Norfolk, I promise myself that I will take a ton of photos of her; when I get to Norfolk I get caught up in shuttling my kids between my mom and my dad, doing family things and essentially not taking any photos of my grandmother.  This time I actually managed to stick with my intentions and over the last week I shot over a thousand digital frames of my grandmother and 4 rolls of film.  About half of the photos below were shot with a Canon 5D Mark III and processed with VSCO presets.  The rest were shot on Kodak 400 CN pushed to 800.

HelpPortrait Pittsburgh

Dmitriy Babichenko Photography | Help Portrait Pittsburgh We ran the Help-Portrait Pittsburgh event for the 4th year in a row on December 7, 2013.  As always, it has been an amazing experience!  In this day and age it is hard to believe that there are people who have never been photographed!  Huge thanks to Kevin Lorenzi for doing 99% of the organizational work, Allegro Hearth Bakery and Whole Foods of Pittsburgh for donating food to make the event more pleasant for everyone.  As a side note, these are cell phone snapshots of the original printed images:)

Dmitriy Babichenko Photography | Help Portrait Pittsburgh