a (pre) bar mitzvah portrait

I'm not a boy now. I'm a man, I hope. I hope I've had my artistic bar mitzvah somewhere.
Jeremy Piven

Being selected to photograph the milestone that is a Bar Mitzvah is one I take into my heart. It is an honor to be trusted to tell this particular story, this moment in time; the boy that will soon step into the shoes of a man. Let alone the request from the mother of this boy, a particular honor given her work in the world and our past collaborations together.  So, when asked to cover this event for her son, I wanted to know and understand the what is for the threads of right now will be stitched together with those to come - of the service rehearsal, of Shabbat dinner, of the Bar Mitzvah party; together they will tell the whole story of the boy that will be a man. 

ziv,  01/03/16

For the session, we planned for a few hours at home - a little outside if the weather permitted and inside oriented around real life at home weaving in aspects of her son's hobbies and interests alongside aspects of the upcoming Bar Mitzvah - studying the reading that will be shared (alongside his Mother who is guiding him in this) and a portrait with is prayer shawl.

As a hockey family (yay) I could not help but start there, outside in the street playing as if it were July. I was also happy to learn that on this particular day, it was marked with the transforming of the back yard into a hockey rink. With low mid-afternoon winter light, the sun cast a glittering orb of light that shimmered and shined on the connections and affections so readily present. 

On the inside, the scenes of day-to-day life played out alongside that of music and the practicing of a beautiful silver trumpet in his room and we ended the day with a reading recital and portraits.

Though I spent a mere afternoon within the grace of this family, I left feeling like I'd reconnected with old friends. And as part one of two more to follow, I can only smile from my heart at what's to come.

This is the story of that day - the living, the laughing, the love. The documentary alongside the portrait.