Working it.

Working it.

Wow! Where does the time go? It seems like the days just fly by and I'm always trying to play catch-up on the many projects and ideas I have going. I really enjoy writing this blog, but sometimes I feel there are just not enough hours in the day to accomplish all.

I had a very interesting conversation with a few people recently regarding networking and networking groups that I thought I would share. Some people are just so turned off by the whole networking group idea that they just won't hire you because you are part of a networking group. Even though your work is excellent, you provide great service and your prices are fair, they still won't hire you because you are part of a group and they feel it's unethical. This just makes no sense to me. They like you, your work, etc., but won't hire you because you belong to a networking group?  I don't really think it matters whether you belong to a networking group or not. We all network. If you belong to a group, good for you. I hope it's helping you in your business. I think what matters is the work, the service, the price. They should all be top notch and fair. Remember if you are going to recommend someone you are in essence putting yourself and your reputation on the line. Recommend only those that you feel are worthy of it and you in turn make sure your work is worthy of a recommendation.

The photo up top is that of dinner two nights ago. It was so, so good. It was an herb rubbed chicken with spinach, tomatoes and a balsamic wine reduction. Delicious!

See ya next time. 


Positive Energy

Hello. I had a busy week. I made about 20 headshots for various clients this week. The photograph up on top is that of Leanne Gerrard.

Leanne is a Life Success Consultant,

Leanne is an extremely genuine person who just loves what she is doing. She's had a tremendous, positive impact on many individuals. She helps you realize your potential and leads you on the path towards achieving your dreams. She offers workshops, coaching and seminars. Her classes are inspirational, fun and rewarding. She will help you succeed at leading the kind of life you had always envisioned.


The photo below is from my walking tour of New York City with a couple of students. I love to walk around the city and look for images that speak to me. The image of the graffiti on the wall of the building and the ladder leading down tell a story of people struggling, reaching beyond what only seems possible, and expressing themselves in any way they can. It speaks of survival and the need for self expression in this very urban area of the city. Making images, are what

inspires me. It is my positive energy. It is this positive energy that fuels me and energizes me to live the kind of life I want to live.

Positive Energy


Yup, I had this photo shoot today in beautiful Bergen County, NJ. So there I was taking a tour of the grounds, picking out good locations for the family which I was about to photograph. The mom was giving me a tour of the property and pointing out certain spots that she thought may work for her family's portrait. The property is quite beautiful, gently sloping down on the sides. Now yesterday it had rained - a lot. And there were wet leaves on the ground. So there I was with my nice clean clothes, holding my camera, walking down the slight inclination on the property, when all of a sudden, without any warning whatsoever, I fall flat on my ___. Ouch! Talk about painful and embarrassing. Me and my clothes were no longer clean, but hey, I saved the camera. I got some nice photos of the family and by the time the shoot was over, my extremely muddy ___ was now dry caked on mud. Ahh, nothing can make you more humble than falling on your ___ in the middle of a shoot. Yes, a very proud moment. I actually think being embarrassed once in a while is not such a bad thing. It humbles us and makes us more human. So to all those people out there who have fallen flat on their ____, I humbly salute you. I have now joined your club.

Until next time. 


Old Shoes

Barnacle Shoes

About a year ago, I had the opportunity to visit the

Metropolitan Museum of Art

with my husband to see the Robert Frank exhibit, Looking In: Robert Frank's The Americans. What a great exhibit it was! Robert Frank is a living photographic legend and a master photographer. His photographs documented America and what it meant to be American. The prints themselves were beautifully printed and simply presented. Those photographs historically depicted an America of a time gone by. They revealed to the viewer looking in, a historical pictorial account of America. As I viewed each of the great images presented, I could not help but wonder about the people in the photographs? Who were they? What kind of lives did they lead? Where are they now?

I came upon the "Barnacle Shoes" in the photograph above as I was walking along the shore. I had to stop and make the photograph. Looking at these old shoes, I could not help but wonder who they had belonged to. Who had worn the old shoes?  Were these shoes from a foreign land and just now washing up on our shores or were they simply discarded, forgotten, or just left behind? The more I looked at the shoes, the more questions I had. I look at these old shoes as Robert Frank must have looked at his subjects when photographing 

The Americans

. I am looking as the observer documenting and asking questions of what I see. I am choosing to make a photograph of barnacle shoes that have washed ashore. It is those of us who are photographic observers and documentarists, who constantly strive to show others that which most people, simply walk by and disregard. Perhaps we too should be more like Robert Frank and "Look In" to our world and help document our pictorial history. Document those things that are important to you and you hold close to your heart-your family, your children, your pets, your loved ones. Document your history so that you will always remember.

Until next time. 


Love Smile


The Kiss

There is no greater feeling in this world than that of love. Love is not only something that you accept, but something that you must also give. It's about you being good to people and showing some kindness and compassion. It's about treating people how you would want to be treated. It's about being considerate and helpful and concerned for each other. It's about being selfless and doing something for someone. Love can make someone feel special, feel hugged. It can warm the heart and put a smile on your face. It can make your day. It can be given by a simple "hello," a friendly handshake, or a warm "love" smile. Or it may be given in a letter or a note.

Today, I received my "love smile" in the form of a thank you note from a great lady, Barbra Edwards, my Marathon Press representative:

She wrote:

Dear Alina,I love to visit you. You will always do well with your kindness. People love you.



Thank you, Barb. Your kind words really meant a lot to me today. You are truly a special person and people love you too. Thank you.

And to everyone out there, for the rest of the week practice your "love smile" on all those you meet. You may just make their day.

Until next time. 


Baby Steps

David Ziser and Alina

The image above is from the "Digital Wake Up Call Tour 2009 - A New Dawn,"  led by legendary master photographer extraordinaire, Mr. David Ziser himself. It was educational, funny, rewarding, and inspiring. I was the fortunate recipient of one of the prizes also, but the icing on the cake was actually meeting David and his wife, LaDawn, and sitting around with a few other photographers at the end of the evening and just exchanging ideas and telling stories. I remember it proved to be a really great evening.

So last night I was doing a little web-surfing and came upon David's blog at

and something that David had spoken about during the seminar came to mind. His basic message to everyone was to follow your dreams and work hard to achieve what you want. How many of you out there are actually moving in a forward direction to achieving your dreams and hopes, whatever they may be? The way I see it is, even if the steps I take are baby steps, they are at least steps in the direction that I want to head in and in what I want to do and achieve in my life. They are steps in the right direction. Even though, it may take me a little longer, those baby steps are still important steps that I am taking. It's when we stand still and do nothing that we lose hope of our dreams and expectations. And yes, all the steps we take require hard work, a lot of hard work. But if it's something you want and love, then the work won't seem so hard because in the end it has led you to where you want to go. So take that first step, no matter how small it may seem. It will lead you to your dreams.

See you next time. 



Canon EOS 5d, with 100mm Canon macro lens. ISO 200, 1/200th second at f/9.0

One light: Photogenic strobe camera left; reflector

camera right.

Yup, I made cassoulet today. Yes, I do love to cook. I've been cooking since I was about 12 years old. I learned from my grandmother, who was a pastry chef; my aunt, an equally great cook; and my dad, a fantastic cook. I love to make cassoulet when I have left-overs. It's an easy and delicious 1 pan meal. 

So it occurred to me as I was making the cassoulet, and for those that don't know what it is, think stew. Anyway, it occurred to me that I should really start to photograph some of the foods I make . I've been wanting to do a family cookbook for years and this seemed like a good start. So here is what I'm thinking. The project must include photos and recipes. I am aiming for 50 recipes. Very doable, I believe, and it should leave me plenty of time to work on other projects. So today,  I officially start my family recipe cookbook. It will definitely be a work in progress. So for those that read my blog, please don't let me slack off and just ask me once in a while how my cookbook is coming along. You will definitely help me to keep on track. Thanks.


Hello World!

Hello World

I'm dedicating my first blog to my beautiful daughter.

Happy Birthday, my love.

Hello World! 

Welcome to the blog site for Alina Bliach and my official first blog ever. I am so excited! This is beyond cool! First and foremost a big "Thank You" to my family and friends for pushing me to finally start this. I love you all for your constant support and endless encouragement. Secondly, starting my blog

today makes it even more special for me. Today, together with my family, we celebrate a special birthday. Happy Birthday, honey! We love you.

So what is this blog going to be about? And will I be blogging in every day?

This blog will be about anything that I find interesting as I continue my quest to fuel my passion. I will not limit it to photography, however. There might be something that perhaps catches my eye or I find fascinating that I may want to pass along. It may be about things as they relate to life in general. It will definitely be about helping each other and encouraging each other. This blog will also carry photo related news, workshop announcements, new openings and other photo related info. It will be about my journey as an educator,  photographer and the images that I capture.

No, I will not be blogging in every day. I will try to blog in as often as I can. I will only blog when I have something relevant to say or share. I'll also be posting pictures from time to time and discussing them.

Please be sure to check back often. I'll try to make this as fun and interesting as I can. Thanks for stopping by.

I hope you enjoy the blog.