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My Busy Year of 2014

January 10, 2015

I was planning to write this post right at the end of the year, but got caught up on some work and found myself already scheduling trips for the new 2015 year. Looking back at the images I took throughout the year and the new stamps in my passport, there is no doubt about it; 2014 was a very busy year.

When you do what you love mostly for a living, means you are willing to commit more and more time to your work and think about it 24/7. Not once did I say to some of my friends who are also creative independents that ‘I am my work and my work is me’. Taking a day off is usually taking a day off from myself. Or from my creativity, my head or from the way I look at things. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t complain. I am happy when I am busy and I can be climbing on walls when I’m not.

2014 was a year in which I ‘jumped’ on almost every opportunity I got and I didn’t hesitate to book flights and trips with minor preparations. ‘Don’t Think too Much but See What Happens’ was sort of a mantra.

At the end of February I traveled to Central Portugal. It was a new destination to explore that didn’t fall from Provence or Tuscany. I have visited in Coimbra and got a special permission to shoot the magical library in Coimbra’s University. I have shot many colorful Portuguese tiles in Aveiro. I walked trough olive groves, almond trees and vineyards in Alentejo, stayed in some chic wine hotels such as Casas Do Coro and Casa Des Penhas Dourades  and caught up with good friends in Lisbon and Sintra.

Central Portugal


Later on in March I flew to Paris to shoot a Patisseries Guide to Paris. By all means, it was the sweetest assignment of the year; sweet as the Mont Blanc Patisserie in Angelina (which, by the way, was the first Patisserie I shot on that assignment). But it was also a very hectic and intense four-days-shoot in which I had to photograph 32 patisseries all across Paris. During this sweet assignment, I met and photographed some of the top Patisseries Chefs in France, got into their kitchens (some of them are quite secretive) tasted the best Eclairs, Paris Brest, Saint Honore, Mille -Feuille and Macaroons. Here are some of the ‘Behind the Scenes’.

KITCHENS, patisseries in Paris

Patisseries in Paris

Right after completing my sweet adventure, I shot a great story for Feast Magazine about Rue du Nil. I got a glimpse into one of the smallest streets in Paris, (exit metro Sintier) a street which happened to set a new tone in the culinary scene in Paris. I happened to discover some of the most friendliest chefs, interesting store owners, a really good coffee spot I went back to and of course, some really good food. Luckily, a good friend of mine who has a great sense of style, joined me to this assignment and together we explored this 2nd Arr gem.

After spending two weeks in Paris, I have decided spontaneously to travel down south to the French Riviera and spend some time with two friends of mine; Liza, who was living in Nice with her husband (but was ready to move to London) and with the talented photographer Millie Brown, an Aussie expat who lives in Beaulieu-sur-Mer and photographs the Southern French region. Thanks to Millie and her beautiful blog, I got curious about shooting Laundry in Menton and South of France and this quick break in the French Riviera left me with a taste for more.

French Riviera

Sivan Askayo-french riviera-1

In May I have traveled to New York. My second home with a Capital H. I’ve stayed in Manhattan for the whole month; catching up with friends and colleagues and visiting all my favorite spots and hang outs. I cannot even described how much I missed the City. At the end of the month I was assigned to shoot a story for Lonely Planet Traveller, describing the top fun things to do in New York. I couldn’t have asked for more! It was a great opportunity to do some of the things I have always wanted to do but never really found the time.

Together with Orla, a fun writer from Lonely Planet Traveller, we cruised the city from Uptown to Downtown, using all sorts of transportation. We found ourselves trying out cocktails at 10 am in the morning (research for the article, mind you) in some of the sleek and chic bars at the Meat Packing District and later on rushing to Coney Island to interview some Circus performers, making sure to come back to the city and take a HipHop Class at Alvin Ailey School (research as well). I am anxious to share some more of my shooting experience but you will have to wait for March 2015 when the article will come out. Please stay tuned. I promise to blog about it in more details.

Apart from capturing Manhattan during sunsets and sunrises, taken from both Midtown and Long Island City, and discovering some of the most stylish secrets bars, I have also spent more time in Bushwick in Brooklyn, documenting some of the coolest street art walls by Bushwick Collective for my Street Art/Graffiti shoots collection. According to Vogue magazine, Bushwick is becoming, if not already, one of the coolest neighborhoods in the world.

Sivan Askayo-New York-1-3

Sivan Askayo-New York-1-2

On June 1st, I’ve jumped on the flight that took me from New York to Athens. Spending one night at Semiramis Hotel designed by Karim Rashid and waking up very early in the morning to catch a very early flight to Milos, the southwestern most in the Cyclades group. Milos was another assignment I got to shoot for Lonely Planet Traveller and it was such an educational experience.  I have paired up with Duncan, a well travelled writer, who was interviewing some of the locals and together we documented their lives on that volcanic island.

One of my most memorable experience was not caught ‘on-film’. It was a Friday night, the last day before heading back to Tel Aviv. I was spending two days in the scenic fishermen village, Klima. My house was literally on the water and I could hear the waves while I was in bed. I was drinking my morning coffees and my evening wine with my neighbors; locals fishermen who hardly speak English. We communicated mostly with smiles and with gestures such as pouring wine and eating greek cheese.

Lonely Planet’s story is coming out this Summer and I promise to blog about it in more details once it is published. All I can say is that it is going to be a great and colorful story. I am really curious to see it on print.

Milos Greece

Sivan Askayo-Milos-1

I know it sounds very hectic, but for me, that was the way to go. I like it sometimes when my life are on the move.

I have stayed two weeks in Tel Aviv and at the end of June I have decided to escape the humidity and get some Scandic vibe in Copenhagen and Stockholm. My mom has always wanted to go so it was a good reason for me to travel again.

Ever since Noma was chosen as the best restaurant in the World, and WallPaper magazine named the Danes as the most beautiful people, it seems that Copenhagen got her groove back, and no wonder it is considered one of the coolest city in Europe. Talking about WallPaper magazine, Copenhagen is one of these places that look like exactly taken from the magazine’s pages.

We spent four days in Copenhagen, exploring the Danish Design Scene, the Nordic Cuisine, and some unique museums that left us in awe. We also got a glimpse inside Hotel d’Angleterre and had lunch in its Michelin Star’s restaurant.

Copenhagen was great and welcomed us with warm weather and long daylight time. It didn’t get dark before midnight, so I had more time to shoot.



After less than one hour flight we found ourselves in Stockholm, the Venice of the Scandic part of Europe.

It was in Stockholm when we changed roles and my mom was the impatient teenager who was anxious to visit the ABBA museum while I was waiting for her outside. The weather was a bit on the grey-rainy side, but Stockholm is such a beautiful city; a mix of modern design, cobblestone streets, medieval atmosphere (mostly in Gamla Stan area) and everyone is wearing H&M. I didn’t have any previous knowledge about Stockholm, to be honest. I was mostly following an article I read in Travel+Leisure few months before my visit, which directed me to the most stylish locations.

The highlight of my visit, which is highly recommended, not only for photographers, was Fotografiska Museum. It is located in a former customs house in Sodermalm and is showing work of photographers around the World. It has a great book shop and an amazing view from the third floor.

Another great thing about Stockholm, which matched well me and my mom’s personality, was the Swedish love for Coffee, or in other words, their Fika. Sort of like Starbucks coffee in every street corner in New York, same as in Stockholm.


Sivan Askayo-stockholm-1

In the first week of August I have traveled to Provence with a good a friend of mine who is the perfect partner for any Travel spontaneous decision. The only thing that guided my choice to start at Marseille was MUCEM and the fact that Marseille was chosen as the European Culture Capital for the year of 2013. We stayed in Marseille only one night and then we rented a car and traveled to Cassis, which was just magical with its turquoise color water (definitely I should go back) and the hidden Calanque. We took a boat ride to see three Calanques de Cassis and I got tempted to jump off the boat into the water.

From there we drove to Arles, where we followed the steps of Vincent Van Gogh . We saw Cafe Van Gogh, this is the Cafe than Van Gogh painted in The Cafe Terrace on the Place du Forum at night and the hospital where Van Gogh was taken after cutting off a portion of his ear. Throughout this trip I was in search of Lavender fields. I was happy to finally find them in Saint-Rémy de Provence, once I have visited the Saint Paul Asylum, where Van Gogh was hospitalized. Not once when I look at a painting in a museum, I wonder to myself how do life look like in these locations. Visiting Saint Remy de Provence was a great opportunity to see what inspired Van Gogh’s painting and what did he see around him.

Note to self: Keep taking trips following the lives of your favorite Artists.


Sivan Askayo-provence-1

Since I didn’t have enough of Paris in March (I never have enough of Paris actually) I booked another last minute flight to Paris at the end of September. It was originally to shoot the scenes of Fashion Week in Paris but I ended up mostly catching up with my friends and colleagues who live there. Coincidence or not, related or not, I have spent some time over coffee and wine with three Aussies photographers who I admire their work; Millie Brown who came back to Paris for fashion week, Carina Okula who I adore her work and sensitivity and Carla Coulson, who is such an inspiration for me.

I’ve spent some time with Gail from PerfectlyParis, who I became friends with after I have stayed in one of her apartments in Paris few years ago and photographed Chef Constance and her adorable baby in their cozy apartment. I jumped on a Culinary tour Baguette to Bistro, discovered some new cafes, ate a lot of cheese and most of all, enjoyed my friends’ company.



So the year is not over yet, and I’m trying to squeeze the last few months of it. In October I was a sent by Conde Nast Traveller Magazine to shoot a story in Antwerpen. It was my second time around in this fashionable city, and it was fun coming back and visiting some of the locations I have discovered at the first time, but this time of shooting was quite intense. Tight on a deadline, I managed to shoot more than 20! locations in 48 hours, making sure I cross off all the locations on the photography’s brief, knowing I don’t have a second chance to shoot it (Tight schedule, remember?)

As small as it is, Antwerpen doesn’t stop to amaze me. Shooting some of the most popular and high end restaurants, capturing delicious dishes which are kind of complicated to shoot and dealing with some of the top chefs, was a great learning experience. The Antwerpen story is coming out to print this Summer and I promise to write about it in more details.

Sivan Askayo-ANTWERPEN-1

Sivan Askayo-ANTWERPEN-1-4

And now it is already the second week of January, trying to get used to Two Thousand Fifteen. I already have few assignments booked and some new locations to travel to. As much as I am anxious to stamp my passport and jet-set the Globe, I am trying to breath in, enjoy the present and see what happens.

Have a Happy, Healthy and Well-Travelled Year.




L’Eclairs de Genie; Feast Magazine

July 29, 2014

If you are on a diet, this post might ruin your efforts to lose weight. In that case, I strongly recommend you skip to the next post and just ignore this one. If you are not on a diet, have a sweet tooth, curious about new things or heading to Paris soon, this post is for you.

I was in Paris in March, shooting a story for Feast Magazine about Rue du Nil for their August issue. In addition, I was asked to shoot a cover for the Bite Size Pieces section of the most popular Parisian Eclairs of the well known pastry chef Christophe Adam, the man behind L’Eclairs de Genie. It seems as the eclairs’ collection is changing by the day and the season and the colorful eclairs come in a range of creative flavors, filling and topping.

Even though I got from Feast Magazine a detailed list of the eclairs they wanted me to shoot, not all the eclairs were available on that day but some different flavors were presented on the counter. I arrived to the store quite early before its opening hours, just so I can have the space (and the eclairs) for myself but within minutes after its opening, the store got crowded by hungry and curious costumers.

Of course I had to try! At least three of them.

My favorite was Eclair Audrey, named after Audrey Gellet, who won a French baking competition in a television series and was honored to create her version for L’Eclairs de Genie. The eclair has chocolate and tonka bean cream, orange praline and candied oranges.

L’Eclairs de Genie is located in 14 Rue Pavée, steps from Saint Paul Metro station.

Editorials Travel

My Q+A for Resource Magazine, Paris

July 20, 2014

I feel a bit over exposed in the short interview I did for Resource Magazine, Summer Issue. But then again, part of our job, as photographers, is to highlight and focus on one object while keeping other in the shadow. Same with our lives. There are matters we feel comfortable to share and talk about, and there are those we prefer not to discuss.

However, this is not the first time I am sharing my personal path and what led me to establish a new career for myself (divorce and lay off from work) and most likely, the second time I am sharing my story with Resource Magazine’s readers. The first time was on September 2012, being interviewed about my personal photography project ‘Intimacy under the Wires’. Take a look here.

But let me share some of my Q+A I did right after submitting the images to the Productions of the World; Paris. Here is my favorite part: The First and Last questions in the interview.

Q: What’s it like having your work published in publications like Travel+Leisure, Marie Claire Italia and Conde Nast Traveller? 

Me: These are publications that I’ve always wanted to work for and I feel very proud. Now that I’ve been published, I need to pinch myself to remind myself it’s really happening. It feels good because people don’t know how hard it is to shoot. When you see the printed pictures it all looks so perfect and defined, but there are so many things that a photographer needs to do to get the shot. I always feel accomplished when I see the magazines.

Q: Now that you’ve become established in photography, what could you say your biggest obstacles are? 

Me: When you go on a shoot you need to think ahead of time about what can go wrong, and when you work in a different country with different people, the obstacle is that you never know what they’re thinking. Sometimes I’ll construct a shoot in my mind and people don’t see it the same way as I do- but this is all part of the job!

Here is the full article.

Editorials Travel

Resource Magazine, Summer Edition. Productions of the World; Paris

July 20, 2014

For the third time (and hopefully not the last) I am honored to contribute to the series ‘Productions of the World’ in the Photography Trade magazine Resource Magazine. In the previous articles I wrote about Tel Aviv and Lisbon, and this time it is all about Paris, one of my favorite cities to photograph and visit. I was happy to get an email from Aurelie, the Editor of Resource, who has asked me to share some of my Paris’ pictures. I couldn’t have asked for a better compliment, coming from a native Parisian like Aurelie.

If you are a photographer who is interested to shoot in Paris or have any upcoming production or a shoot there, this article will definitely help you plan it. And if you are not a photographer but still, visiting the French capital, you will find some great tips and recommendations.

To read the full article, please click here.


Patisseries Galore in Paris

May 10, 2014

When people ask me what I do for a living and I answer: ‘Travel Photographer’ their first reaction is usually ‘Oh, so I guess you get to travel a lot and be in all these fancy hotels, right?’ 

Well, I DO travel a lot (after all, this is the only way for me to do my work) but being a travel photographer doesn’t necessarily mean I sunbath along the poolside in an exotic island while I am on assignment or stay in those super luxury hotels I get to shoot. Being a Travel Photographer also means following the client’s brief, carrying some heavy equipments (mostly all day on your back) spending a lot of time in front of the computer editing pictures (unless you have an assistant who does it for you) and marketing yourself among magazines, photo editors and potential clients because nobody else will do this for you.

Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE my job! I get to explore a lot of buzzy and brill places, meet very interesting and diverse people from different ranges, see some marvelous interiors and eat delicious and exquisite cuisine. Yes, Just like one of my recent assignment in Paris.

On March I got one of the most enjoyable shooting assignment; To shoot a Patisseries Guide to Paris based on a popular blog in Israel called Paris Chez Sharon. I couldn’t ask for a better assignment which combined two of my favorite things; Patisseries and Paris. When my friends heard I was about to go to Paris to shoot some of the top Patisseries chefs and boutiques, they happily volunteered to be my assistants on board. I must admit, it was a dream assignment but it was also an intense one; Sharon, the blogger behind the book, made sure to schedule all the shoots in advance and it was managed as a well controlled military operation; I shot 32 (!) patisseries in 4 days, running around from one location to another, whereas in each location the Patisserie chef himself was welcoming us with something sweet to taste. As much as I care about my figure (especially on assignments) I couldn’t say No to a famous Patisserie chef or Chocolatier who hands me his best Patisserie in front of my face.

And Yes, I did try MOST of the desserts; after all, not everyday do I get to work with such a delicious client, right?

So here are few images that reflect my love to Patisseries and Paris.

Stay tuned for more delicious images soon… meanwhile, make sure to check the previous of the book here.

Window or Aisle?

Window or Aisle: Carin Olsson

July 19, 2013

window or aisle, carin olsson, paris in four months

I’ve been writing about Paris quite a lot in the last couple of months since I visited the city three times in one year. I think that in one of my posts I even mentioned that I have this day – dream of living in Paris for few months, indulging in some French boulangeries, pâtisseries, fromageries.

While I continue to day dream about it, Carin Olsson, originally from Stockholm, Sweden, is actually DOING IT.

Carin is the persona behind the visually beautiful blog ‘Paris in Four Months’. She moved to Paris January 2012 for four months, mostly to learn French and to eat all the great food that Paris has to offer. She fell in love with the city, and came back to live there again a year later, January 2013. She is still not sure if she will be staying in Paris forever. ‘I’ve said to myself that I should stay as long as want to, but there are so many cities and exciting places to explore in this world before settling down. So perhaps I’ll go away for a while and then come back to Paris again, who knows?’

She shares with her readers bits and pieces of her Parisian life. If you follow her long enough (also on facebook and instagram) you will learn that she loves Fashion, Sweets (my favorite category) Store Windows and much more. Especially I am looking forward to her Weekend Reading category. She always finds these gorgeous flowers that she pictures for her Weekend Reading finds. I love looking at her big-sized images that sometimes fill up my computer screen and make me feel as I am right there, with her, in Paris.

If you are planning a trip to Paris soon, I encourage you to check Paris in Four Months.  If you want to know more about Carin and how she approaches new projects and what is next for her, read below.

Thanks Carin! Can’t wait to walk with you one day in Paris.


Where are you originally from? I’m originally from Sweden. I grew up in a smaller city outside of Stockholm but during my teens I moved back into the city.

Where did you study photography? I’ve actually never studied anything in this category I’m afraid, although I would absolutely love to study photography and design in the future. Everything I’ve learnt about photography so far I have my dad and my ex-boyfriend to thank for. During many years I just watched them with a camera, in front of editing programs etc. and when I finally picked up my own camera I already had a bit of knowledge and tricks in the back of my head. I also think I taught myself a lot. I’m almost never happy with my photography which pushes me to find new ways and reach better results.

What made you want to learn it? I always had an interest for photography but it wasn’t until I made my first move to Paris that I realized how much I actually loved it. I would often spend my days walking around, exploring the city with the camera in my hand. After staring my blog and finding a way that I could share these photos I just wanted to get better and better.

If you weren’t a photographer what would you do?I unfortunately don’t think I can call myself a full-time photographer just yet but someday I hope to be able to do so. But if I couldn’t be a photographer in the future I would have loved to be an event planner. I looove organizing and planning! Or work at a magazine.

Where do you get your inspiration from? During the last year it’s been Paris. When I walk around the city I get the most inspiration. I love that I never seem to get tired of these beige, white and grey Parisian streets. Although I’m hardly the only one… Paris is extremely photogenic and very beautiful.

How would you describe ‘Your Paris’? Paris has a lot of different sides and they’re not all picture perfect and stunningly gorgeous, I’m aware of that. But I think I choose to see the prettier sides of this city. I love the history, the architecture and the romance of Paris.

What do you mostly love shooting? When I first started taking photos I focused a lot on the city itself but lately, during the last couple of months or so, I’ve really enjoyed shooting people too. I love capturing emotions and different moments, preferably when the person in front of the lens doesn’t notice the camera. Hopefully I’ll get some chance to practice this more in the future as well.

How do you usually approach a new project?  It depends on the project but since I love to organize and plan and usually sit down with a pen and a pad and try to sort everything through. Time frames, places, people – everything that is a part of the project needs to be written down. I need to see things in front of me to really be able to grasp them and to organize my thoughts.

What are you working on right now? At the moment I’m working on two different articles for a Swedish magazine, both with Paris as the main subject. Hopefully I can share more once these are in print but right now all I can say is that they both involve two of my biggest passions; Paris and food.

What do you see and want next for yourself? I would love to focus more on the photography part. I feel happy and excited every time I pick up my camera and that’s how I would like to feel every minute of every day. I would also love to go a little bit more towards the fashion side of photography. Right now, that’s the most exciting for me!

Window or Aisle? Aisle for sure. I get kind of claustrophobic if I’m forced to sit in the window seat.

Window or Aisle, Carin Olsson, Paris in Four months

Window or Aisle, Carin Olsson, Paris in Four months

Window or Aisle, Carin Olsson, Paris in Four months

Window or Aisle, Carin Olsson, Paris in Four months

Window or Aisle, Carin Olsson, Paris in Four months

Window or Aisle, Carin Olsson, Paris in Four months

Window or Aisle, Carin Olsson, Paris in Four months


Tel Aviv vs Paris

April 1, 2013

Tel Aviv vs Paris, City Spikes

Tel Aviv vs. Paris is an on going photography project I’m shooting. These are two cities I visit quite often and observe them as an outsider.

I must admit that I was very inspired by Vahram Muratyan’s project ‘Paris vs New York, a tally of two cities’ so I decided to pull my photographic eye into it and see what comes up. I’m choosing a phrase/a location or a word (in bold) and see how it interacts in these two cities.

Image above: City Spikes  Notre Dame vs. Dizingoff Center Tower

Tel Aviv vs Paris

Image above: Common Bread Cheese Rolls at Du Pain et des Idees vs. Soft Bagels at Abu-Lafia

Water Fronts  Tel Aviv Hilton beach vs. La Seine

Image above: Water Fronts Tel Aviv Hilton Beach vs. La Seine

Young Love  Notre Dame vs. Rabin Square

Image above: Young Love  Sitting along the Seine and watching the Notre Dame vs. Sitting in front of a pool in Rabin Square

Vintage Books, Paris vs Tel Aviv

Image above: Vintage Old Books along the Seine vs. Old Postcards in Jaffa’s Flea Market

cafe, Tel Aviv vs Paris

Image above: Coffee Break  Quai de l’Hôtel de Ville vs. Rotschild Blvd

Tel Aviv vs Paris, City Overview

Image above: City Overview Montmartre vs. Tel Aviv Beach Front

Tel Aviv vs Paris, Holly Places, Notre Dame

Image above: Holly Places The Big Synagogue in Alenbi st. vs. The Notre Dame

Tel Aviv vs Paris, Street Art, Know Hope, Jef Aerosol

Image above: Street Art Know Hope vs. Jef Aerosol

Tel Aviv vs Paris, Trendy neighborhood

Image above: Trendy Hoods Gan Hachasmal vs. Canal st. Martin

Tel Aviv vs Paris, Columns  The Big Synagogue in Alenbi st. vs. The Pantheon

Image above: Columns The Big Synagogue in Alenbi st. vs. The Pantheon

Tel Aviv vs Paris, Shoes

Image above: Shoes  Window Display in Rue Rue Saint-Honoré. vs. Designer’s Studio in South of Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv vs Paris, Business Center, Azrieli Towers, business district of La Défense.

Image above: Business Centers  Business District of La Défense. vs. Azrieli Towers

Tel Aviv vs Paris, Night Lights, Agam fountain

Image above: Night Lights  The Notre Dame vs. Agam Fountain in Dizingoff Square

Tel Aviv vs Paris, Lucky Charm

Image above: Lucky Charms Padlocks on Pont l’Archevêché vs. Hamsa in Shuk Hakarmel


French Kiss your Life… in Paris

October 26, 2012

French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Travel, Love

It is no secret how much I love Paris.

For the last couple of months, I have visited the French capital five times(!). Each time, I discovered another part and aspect of the city, I got to know more new people and I experienced Paris in a different way, depends on the season, the weather, the locations I was staying in and things I got to discover.

It seems that every visit surpassed its previous one and exposed me to more exciting things.

Like as in my recent visit to Paris.

In the beginning of October, I flew to Paris for eight days to photograph a group of ten amazing women who took part in a life transforming seminar French Kiss Life, led by an inspirational woman, Tonya Leigh. Tonya, who came up with the idea, rejoined forces with Kayce Neill, an event planner from New York, who can plan events in any location on the planet.

French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Travel, Love, Women

French Kiss Life.

I instantly loved the name. Where else if not in Paris can someone learn how to fall in love with oneself?

As a Master Life Coach, an admitted hedonist and internationally trained sommelier, Tonya Leigh has a simple credo: French Kiss Life. Cherish Yourself. And The Rest Will Follow.

She is the founder and CEO of French Kiss Life, Inc., a company that teaches the art of living to the modern-day woman. With chic travel retreats, solo and group coaching, and her infectious blend of joie de vivre and practical mind-play techniques, Tonya inspires dynamic and driven women to live each day as an elegant and beautiful adventure.

The Inspiration Behind Le Voyage Paris

It’s one thing to read about the French way of life; it’s another to actually experience it.  As much as Tonya had studied the French Lifestyle, the concept of joie de vivre and the elements of personal style, it was only when she stepped off the plane in Paris a decade ago that she really got it. ‘Since that day, I have visited France a dozen times, and each time my life shifts more to what’s really important, living each day with passion, love and style‘. She admits.

Tonya wanted to share the Paris that changed her with a group of women who desire to learn how to French Kiss Life. Their Lives.

And why Paris? Because it is the place that has inspired artists for hundreds of years, it is the mecca of style and fashion, the city of love, food and wine. ‘In 20 arrondissements, you have the chance to see life as a grand fairytale, full of history, art and charm.  It also inspires a woman to live with passion, style and romance’ 

French Kiss Life, France, Paris, Travel, Love, Women

The Intentions of Le Voyage Paris 

Le Voyage Paris is not only about spending an amazing time in the City of Love, same as it is not just another visit to Paris. Tonya was planning it very carefully to make sure the following intentions will be accomplished; To expose women to a culture that savors life – the food, conversation, style, art and culture, to give women permission to indulge in life – fine perfumes, designer lingerie, fine food and wine, to show a direct correlation between how you feel about yourself and how you treat yourself, to offer women a chance to connect, share and support each other as they create lives they love and to see and enjoy Paris with other women, while also giving them an opportunity to ‘get lost’ on their own

Kayce made sure to craft the seminar in style and beauty and chose the best of the best of the Parisian vendors to serve well the seminar’s intentions;

Jovoy Paris

One of the most prestigious stores in Paris with a wide collection of rare and limited edition perfumes. We were all smitten by the charm of François Henin (I wish all men were like him) who explained us about the different kinds of perfumes, told some stories and  shared some secrets of what kind of perfume a woman should use if she wants to seduce a man. We enjoyed great champagne and some French deserts along sniffing the best perfumes. All of this wouldn’t have happened without Viviane, the PR person of Jovoy, who managed all the details.

This was actually my third time I visited Jovoy and its amazing crew. It is always nice to make friends when you least expect it. You can read more about my visit to Jovoy here.

Jovoy Paris 4, Rue de Castiglione, 75001 Paris

Jovoy Paris, Perfumes, Paris, France, French Kiss Life, Travel, Love

Jovoy Paris, Perfumes, Paris, France, French Kiss Life, Travel, Love

Cécile Hasroyan, a Personal Image Consultant 

What can be better than shopping in Paris?

Shopping in Paris with a chic Parisian image consultant. This is why Tonya and Kayce contacted Cécile Hasroyan who joined the women for a busy afternoon at Le Bon Marché Rive Gauche and explained the importance of choosing the perfect lingerie. ‘Lingerie is important because it’s the first thing you put on in the morning; it sets the tone for your day’ she explainedAfterwards, Cécile joined the women to a salon talk followed by champagne and chocolate and shared the top ten items every French woman should have in her closet, and the ultimate ways to wear chic Parisian scarves. After spending an afternoon with beautiful Cécile, I give more thought to what I wear. These insider’s tips are priceless.

Cécile Hasroyan, Personal Stylist, Image consultant, Paris, France, Travel, Love

Cécile Hasroyan, Personal Stylist, Image consultant, Paris, France, Travel, Love

La Cuisine Paris 

On the day devoted to food and wine, the women spent an antire day with the talented chef of La Cuisine Paris, a cooking school located across Hotel de Ville, that offers various cooking and baking classes in English. A morning start in an outdoor French Market in Saint-Germain-des-Prés to buy the perfect ingredients, followed by a few hours cooking class, ended in a delicious three course meal and great wine. Even I, lacking any sense of cooking, sinned in making the  finger licking chocolate mouse. The staff includes skilled international professional chefs (French and non-French). Highly recommended: Come hungry!

La Cuisine Paris, 80 Quai de l’Hôtel de Ville, 75004, Paris

La Cuisine Paris, Food, paris, France, Travel, Cooking Class

La Cuisine Paris, Food, paris, France, Travel, Cooking Class

La Maison Angelina

Lunch in La Maison Angelina seems for some as a dream, as waiting in line for a table might be long. Once you get in, consider yourself lucky, as this is one of the best places to dine. It is known for its ridiculously rich chocolate milk and the best Mont Blanc cake. If you are a chocolate lover (like me) don’t skip the chocolate milk and the delicious choux pastry headed by a golden layer of chocolate delicately combines with the strength of dark chocolate crémeux and sweetness of milk and white chocolate.

Its perfect location just across Jardin de Tuileries allows you to wonder these beautiful gardens once you have a sugar rush. If you are interested in dining at the restaurant, you must make a reservation, but the line to buy a delicious pastry is open to all.

La Maison Angelina, 226 Rue de Rivoli  75001 Paris

La Maison Angelina, French Kiss Life, Paris, Travel, France

La Maison Angelina, French Kiss Life, Paris, Travel, France

Private Dinner Party in a Parisian Apartment 

A private chef cooking a five course dinner, while sipping great wine in a nice Parisian Apartment, is always a great idea. On the 6th day Tonya invited the women over for a dinner and to raise a toast for the future and for the women they have become or want to become. As a photographer and an observer, it was great to see how some of the women changed their outward appearance and they way they were carrying themselves.

Dinner Party, French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Love, Food

Dinner Party, French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Love, Food

Kong Restaurant 

The last night in Paris was all about celebration. Therefore Kayce made sure to book in advance a long table at Kong restaurant, one of the stylish and trendies places in Paris. Some of you might recognize the place from one of ‘Sex and the City’ final episodes. Its glass rooftop on the second floor allow the diners to overlook Paris’ lights at night. Very hip and trendy location, which made the last night in Paris very magical.

Kong, 1 rue du Pont Neuf, 75001 Paris

Kong, Paris, France, French Kiss Life, Travel, Women, Love

The women who join Le Voyage Paris are also carefully chosen; Through an application process Tonya is looking for women who have a love to France (even though they may not have ever visited), successful women who haven’t given themselves the opportunity to enjoy what they have created, women who want to explore their own personal style and femininity and those who want to be a part of a brilliant group of women.

If you consider yourself one of those, don’t hesitate and join Le Voyage Paris for 2013.

The Beauty of Inner Life, Le Voyage Paris Schedule

As a Master Life Coach and an admitted hedonist, Tonya tailored the schedule of Le Voyage Paris in a luxury way that touches all senses and thoughts.

‘I believe that our inner world (thoughts and beliefs) create our outer world (style, how we nourish ourselves, how we communicate, how we carry ourselves, who we hang out with, etc.), so the schedule was created around both our inner and outer worlds’

The schedule was quite busy and dotted with great assignments in amazing locations. I was running around with my camera every morning from Avenue Victor Hugo (I stayed in a beautiful apartment in the 16th arrondissement) said Bonjour to Arc de Triumph and continued to the day’s activity and assignments, somewhere in Paris.

But beside the beautiful locations, insightful assignments and the elegant vendors, the women had the chance to meet some inspiring women who moved to Paris and started their lives there. One of them is Lindsey, a writer and the author of Lost in Cheeseland, one of my favorite blogs, as Lindsey is one of my favorite bloggers.

French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Love, Women

French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Travel, Love, Women

‘During Day One, I asked the women to go within and explore their desires (what they want to experience, feel and enjoy in their lives).  Day Two looked at our outer world, particularly tending to the details of our lives, specifically our lingerie and perfume, discovering our own unique scents and the underthings that made us feel tres sexy and confident. One day was dedicated to food and wine, exposing women to beautiful and thoughtful food preparation, the joy of wine and why food is important to the human experience.  The day of joie de vivre started with an assignment, where the women were each given a word and had to go out and fetch a food that symbolized the word for our picnic in the Luxembourg Gardens.  This day was about getting lost in Paris and finding the joy in each moment. Our final day was all about celebration – celebrating the women we are and the women we hope to become, celebrating our time together and celebrating Paris as the backdrop to beautiful self cultivation

French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Love, Women, Travel

French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Love, Women, Travel

French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Love, Women, Travel

French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Love, Women, Travel

French Kiss Life, Paris, France, Love, Women, Travel

La Voyage Paris was definitely a different way of travel and visit for me. I can’t wait for the next one and for my next visit to Paris.

Till then… au revoir Paris 

To find more about Tonya and Le Voyage Paris, visit her website, facebook page or follow her on Twitter.


New Yorker for a Day

Parisian for a Day

October 23, 2012

Parisian for a Day, Paris, Photoshoot, Fashion

It all started with a random shot of my sister when we were visiting Paris on June for my Birthday. We were walking in Montmartre and we found this beautiful Parisian cafe in Rue Gabrielle, with its amazing red doors and facade. I knew it would be the perfect backdrop to take a picture of hers.

Well, actually this is not exactly when it started.

A few months ago I have launched a new photography service in Manhattan (where I live) called ‘New Yorker for a Day’ in which I offer a photography session for tourists who come to visit the city and want to experience it in a different way and leave it with a long-lasting souvenir. As this service became quite popular among tourists and even among New Yorkers who want to have their pictures taken in the city they live, and since I am visiting Paris few times a year, I have decided to expand it to Paris as well and offer my service in the City of Light.

What can be better than feel like a real Parisian, at least for one day?

For more information and to find out when I am in Paris, drop me a line or send me an email.



Parisian for a Day, Paris, Photoshoot, Fashion

Parisian for a Day, Paris, Photoshoot, Fashion

Parisian for a Day, Paris, Photoshoot, Fashion

Parisian for a Day, Paris, Photoshoot, Fashion

Parisian for a Day, Paris, Photoshoot, Fashion

Parisian for a Day, Paris, Photoshoot, Fashion

Parisian for a Day, Paris, Photoshoot, Fashion


A Guy meets a Girl with a Camera

August 4, 2012

Travel, New York,

A major part of my traveling is connecting with local photographers and shoot with them in their local playground.

There is no better way (for me) to discover a new place, but through photography. It is even better when I do it with a local photographer; Someone who knows the best locations to shoot, the right hours for a sunrise or a sunset, the most photogenic areas of the city, the secret and hidden places and how to avoid the touristic traps. And when someone is visiting New York, I’m always happy to show him around, taking him to all my favorite places.

This collection of images is from different locations in the world. Some of the photographers I met randomly and stayed in touch, with some I know I will shoot again in the near future. With some, it was just a one-timer. Some serve as mentors, some serve as colleagues or friends. But they are all serve as a great talent with tons of inspiration.

Travel, A guy meets a Girl with a Camera

Travel, A guy meets a Girl with a Camera

Travel, A guy meets a Girl with a Camera

Travel, A guy meets a Girl with a Camera

Travel, A guy meets a Girl with a Camera

Travel, A guy meets a Girl with a Camera

Travel, A guy meets a Girl with a Camera

Travel, A guy meets a Girl with a Camera

Travel, A guy meets a Girl with a Camera