Ilene Squires Photography

Friday, April 29, 2011

One Week in Buenos Aires, Day 1

Since this was an epic year for me, a couple friends of mine decided it would only be appropriate to plan a girls trip to Argentina. Why not? Five star food, beautiful weather and another chance to rendezvous with Spanish speakers? I was all in!

We found some decently priced tickets on Copa, though I would never, I repeat, NEVER, recommend that any of y'all fly with them. The service was by far the worst of any of the international flights that I've been on with the trade off being the price cut. To compensate, we found a beautiful apartment on airbnb in the stylish and highly desirable Palermo Soho neighborhood. I'm talking less than $50 USD/night!

Here are some beautiful photos of what was our 'hood for the week. Enjoy!

It was a beautiful, sunny autumn day as the foliage fell to the ground on the tree lined blocks. Isn't it just crazy that you can get in a plane on one side of the world and exit on the other? That concept still blows my mind! 
Girls trips fill me up! Aren't they just lovely? I was getting my portrait skills on with my new 50mm.
Palermo is home to some of the  most eclectic street art in the world. 
My favorite lighting is that golden hour just before the sun sets.  

In a cab just before Easter, we were stopped just a block away from the our apartment for an impromptu procession. Gotta love them South Americans and their go - where - the - wind - blows attitudes! I took this picture from the back seat of the cab. 
 Our rental home for the week was equipped with a beautiful terrace, state of the art appliances, a gym, pool and unparalleled community of transients and Argentines. 

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The City of Angels 2011 Marathon

Last year I made a great - BIG - wish to run the Honda LA Marathon to celebrate my 30th Birthday. Why not? The city I grew up in? My family and long time friends there to cheer me on? Sunny skies and the Pacific Ocean? It seemed like the perfect pairing; somewhat romantic, ambitious if you will. It was August. I was on vacation. It was still warm. I swiped my card and I was committed. Let's not forget that I also had something to prove  which was "I'm turning thirty and I can still drop it like it's hot!"

OK, so I had NO idea what it meant to train through an East Coast winter (trying, to say the least); or to compromise my entire social life for 6 months (2-3 hour runs every weekend + 4 days of evening runs during the week, no drinking, and a runner's diet... BLEH!). All of this was an adventure, probably the most challenging physical experience of my life. (Well, besides the time my family "hiked" the Grand Canyon, without food or water, in the middle of July!)

All the glamour doesn't stop there, either. Right after the New Year I fell ill twice and  January just happened to be one of the snowiest months in NYC history. Why did I want to do this, you ask? Funny. I asked myself that a million and one times. Frankly, every time I had to lace up my sneaks and hit the pavement with my 10 pounds of gear on. What I learned from this, however, was an age - old adage I've known all along which is, life is about the journey, not the destination. With the dark and lonely hours spent running Central Park and The Westside Highway, I was left only with my thoughts. And boy did they wander into the past, the present and the future. I felt inspired with the little changes I observed in my speed and endurance and the wonderful friendships that ensued all because of this small feat, I had chosen to meet with tenacity and diligence.
On Friday March 18th, Jorge and I boarded our preferred local airline, JetBlue, for our JFK --- Burbank flight (woot - woot!). Moisture wicking apparel and chaffing cream in tow,  I was a bundle of nerves and hardly slept the two nights prior to the race on Sunday March, 20th. With little sleep, I arrived at Dodger Stadium on race day with my poncho and runner's beans in hand. The sea of 26,000 runners was an emotional hurricane combined with the thousands of spectators that lined the Stadium - to - Sea route. Even in the torrential downpour that ensued, LA held it down! As I ran past some of the many places I frequented in my youth, I felt a deepened sense of pride and accomplishment in the woman I have "grown up" to be. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Ilene Squires Photography Featured on Black Bridal Bliss!

Thanks to the viral effect of posting updates on my Facebook page, Bridgette Bartlett of the blog Black Bridal Bliss, otherwise known to the blogging community as Triple B, found Erika & Donald's Vintage Harlem Engagement shoot. She loved it so much, she decided to feature it here!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Vintage Harlem Engagement Shoot: Erika and Donald

Erika was researching Harlem photographers when she came across my website. Without knowing who I was, she then saw my own engagement pictures and immediately reached out to Jorge, who she had gone to college with. What a small world! Naturally, Jorge referred Erika back to me and it was a done deal. When she explained her concept about doing a Harlem Renaissance engagement shoot as a prelude to her upcoming wedding, I was over the moon. Vintage + Harlem?! Two of life's little treasures that inspire me to keep chasing my dreams as a photographer.

Donald and Erika will tie the knot on October 15th, in Memphis, her hometown. Both in medicine, they met by chance a few years ago at Vanderbilt's Homecoming Weekend, their beloved alma mater. Though Erika and Donald didn't know one another as students, they shared an undeniable attraction which has carried them through a long distance relationship (she's wrapping up her studies in Memphis and his medical practice is in South Jersey) and now, their journey to the altar. 

I met up with the lovely couple at the new, illustrious, Aloft Hotel, where they were spending the weekend. After a quick rendezvous in the hotel lobby, we proceeded on to the brownstone lined blocks of West Harlem. Later, we shot over to Lenox Avenue, where we took advantage of the landscape, and topped off the first round of their shoot in the historic Mt. Morris Park District. After a quick wardrobe change into an elegant pairing which channeled 1920's Harlem, we traveled to the Cotton Club. It's Spring, but it was freezing! So this last stop was a quick one but captured the essence of old Harlem, and the bride and groom to be. 

Erika and Donald, you are one handsome couple. Period. You epitomize beauty and brains and are so lucky in love, it made me want to get married all over again! I hope you revel in your images as much as I enjoyed shooting them. Congrats and love to you!

All images shot with my new Canon 50mm/ f 1.2