orit harpaz [photographer]

Documenting the beautiful metamorphosis of individuals into families, women into mothers, men into fathers, and children into their own little people is at the heart of Orit Harpaz's photography.

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I’ve known Michelle since high school. We spent a year in Israel at the same boarding school our junior year. It’s always endearing to see someone you’ve known in their youth be in such a wonderful place in their life. Her smile when she looked at her daughter was filling for everyone. We were all for that moment in time, affected by her little girls pure joyfulness.

What a lovely and charming family! The 3 older siblings are enjoying their new one year old sister. No competition for attention between these brothers and sisters. Bella’s got everyone’s attention right where she wants it. Mom and dad are beaming with joy from the smiles that adorn beautiful Bella’s sweet face.

It was my first time meeting sweet Lily but I’ve known her dad since he was just a little older than her. His big sister and I have been best friends since junior year of high school. We go way back. It was very meaningful to create these beautiful memories for The Ellenson Family. They are moving to Seattle in a few months and starting a new chapter in their life. I’m going to miss them but new adventures await!

Oh, The Ziman Family is like a familiar sweet scent that conjures up fond memories. I’ve been documenting this family consistently for 9 years. I am not just photographer and they subjects. We have a symbiotic creative relationship in making the images together documenting each stage, hobby and creative outlet.  Their family has grown from 4 humans to a menagerie of animals. Sabina (the dog) wins for most photogenic out of the bunch…

I love these photos!!! This gorgeous family was so much fun! We went to the beach on a beautiful sunny 72 degree Saturday morning in January (how lucky are we??). They were so stylish in their whites and gold, had genuine beautiful smiles and just knew how to have a good time.

A few weeks ago I went to Portland, Oregon to visit my friend, Heidi, who moved up there 6 moths ago with her family. I fell in love with the moss covered tree in her side yard. It looked like it came straight out of a fairy tale. So we went with the theme…

And I present to you the fairest of them all…Queen Heidi…

This is my first published interview about the business of family portrait photography. I am honored to be included amongst a group of other talented women in the niche of family portrait photography.

My son and I met our friends last Friday at Leo Carillo Beach hoping to explore the tide pools. We got there at high tide so the tide pools were covered but we did find a really cool cave and found starfish, mussels and sea anenomes. I couldn’t take my camera into the cave because the water was too high. But I did manage to get a few portraits on the sand…

I had the privilege of documenting Olivia. At 14 years old, her confidence and maturity are in tact. As a talented dancer, she carries herself with grace and poise. I’ve known Olivia since she was 7 years old and to witness her grow into a beautiful and blossoming young lady, is such a joy.

Thank you to the talented Heidi Cicero for costume and styling!

from mama & me portrait day on April 21st, 2013

The sun peeked out from the clouds as the Box-O’Malley Family walked along the path to the secluded spot up the hill from the famous Griffith Park carousel. 5 year old Jameson was outgoing and talkative while his younger brother, Conner, was a bit shy and apprehensive at first. And then there was 5 month old Zoe. A sweet and observant baby who warmed up to me pretty quickly. I had the joy of documenting this family twice before. When mom, Laurene, was my son’s kindergarten teacher and she was pregnant with Conner. And then again when Conner was 5 months old. I love watching families grow and expand. I love the expansiveness of family.

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My First Family

These photos are of my family. My dad was the family photographer. With camera always in hand, he documented my childhood so intently and prolifically that it felt as if no moment was ever missed. As I grew older, I resented having the camera share my special moments. I covered my face and made silly faces at the camera.

But now, as an adult and with a child of my own, the appreciation for these photos, for these mementos of my history, runs deep in my veins. So much so, that I have made it my life’s work to document those special moments for other families . Yes, it’s more planned and sometimes posed, but I try to recreate that feeling I have every time I see a photo with my parents and siblings. That intimacy that only a mother and father have with their child. That love that permeates from family.

Now as adults, my siblings and I don’t speak much nor rarely spend time together. We live in three different states, have our own lives and families. The threads that held us together as children have frayed with the passing of time. But there are always the photos to look at, to reminisce about and to find comfort in what once was.

The beautiful Ziman Family has a small farm in the heart of urban Los Angeles. Two handsome sons, Sabina the bulldog, Bhutan and Tigo the parrots, Cheech the tortoise, Easter the bunny, and 5 chickens, Carmela, Carmelita, La Preciosa, The Golden Goose and Pippi. Who needs a partridge in a Pear Tree?

A very special family…

The first few months of being parents is transformative.  It was inspiring to witness these wonderful people cherish this beautiful little human soul they created together. Documenting them was like watching a bucket of love spilling over the top of the rim and all who were present were bathing in this new found joy.

My dear childhood friend of 28 years recently moved to Menlo Park after she and her family lived in Singapore for the last 3 years. Theo and I spent 4 days with Francesca and her beautifully sweet daughter, Lilah. We cooked, baked, hiked, made cement garden tiles, took walks and had late night tea while pouring our hearts out to each other. Witnessing our kids bonding and beginning their own friendship was the icing on the cake! Thank you Francesca and Lilah for our special time together. And thank you Gino for capturing the photo of the four of us together!