Each day provides its own gifts.

Jasmine and I were walking around downtown Chicago, as we typically do, and noticed a staircase leading to the Chicago River.  Upon reaching the bottom, we found ourselves in a tiny park filled with the most amazing photographic elements.  It felt like we found a “photography spice rack” which contained all the necessary ingredients to create a great photo session:  horizontal & vertical lines, beautiful architecture, railings, a river, colored walls, foliage, and wonderful warm sunlight shining through the skyscrapers. Oh, and not to mention the best of all – Jasmine!

The funny thing is that we weren’t even planning to take photos that day.  I decided to bring my camera just in case, and good thing I did!

That morning, life presented us with the unexpected gift of a lovely park, in which, we created these beautiful portraits.

Jasmine, today is your birthday and the greatest gift I could give is my love and appreciation for you.  Your friendship was an unexpected gift given to me many years ago and slowly, over time, we untied the ribbon of that gift to reveal our relationship.  Now we’re engaged and I can’t help but to be thankful for everything you have brought to my life.  Thank you.

Love you!  Happy Birthday!

Beauty Portrait against wall of ivy in Downtown Chicago


Portrait photography in downtown chicago

Portrait photography in downtown Chicago


wearing yellow jacket and standing against wall of brown ivy

portrait photography in downtown Chicago and picture of American flag


the L train, elevated train going through downtown

Trump Tower and old skyscraper and model standing in front of graffiti door

calling a taxi in downtown Chicago


old water tower on top of building in downtown Chicago

model wearing yellow jacket standing in a brick alley


Beauty Portrait of Model in Downtown Chicago - Ivy wall and yellow coat

Sitting on a bench in Downtown Chicago wearing a yellow coat

One of our favorite places to get coffee is Intelligentsia coffee in Downtown Chicago, near Millennium Park.
Intelligentsia Coffee in Downtown Chicago near Milennium Park

Model Standing on side of Chicago River with city skyline in background


Downtown Chicago Model Standing in an old brick alley

Chicago Skyline from Adler Planetarium during the day

What unexpected, pleasant gift has life presented you?

…share it with me in a comment below

  • Kelley S

    She’s so pretty! Very good photography Sid!

  • Kelley S

    *weird, my last comment didn’t show up?- she’s so pretty! beautiful photography 🙂

    • Thanks Kelley! My blog temporarily went down, but I was able to figure it out *whew* After the blog went back online, I had to approve your comment, even though you’ve commented on here before.

  • Jennifer Vu

    These are beautiful Mandev, and so is Jasmine. The pictures make me feel like I was there lol.

  • Mundir

    Love love love it! I’ve been waiting for this blog all day today and it was worth the wait. Mandev amazing job and Jasmine you are beautiful!!

  • Cathy L.

    Jasmine – You are radiantly beautiful!!!

  • Jasmine

    Oh my goodness!!!!!!!!!! Mandev youre ability to capture quiet moments and catapult them to an entirely new reality is phenomenal!!! This photo shoot was so much fun and it’s amazing to see the final result 🙂 amazing work!!

    • Thanks so much, Jasmine. Thanks for all your support and encouragement, and thank you so much for everything you do. Love you! I love how these turned out 🙂

  • Carly

    Mandev these pictures are amazing!!!!! Jasmine looks so pretty. Her yellow jacket really makes her stick out in Chicago. These pictures should be in the Anthropologie catalog. I can’t wait for when I get older so you can take my wedding pictures 🙂

    • Thank you Carly. I’m glad Jasmine wore her yellow coat that day because it added a nice pop of color, especially against those backgrounds we found. And yes, when you get married, let me know. I’m always down for photo shoots before then, too, so let me know if you have any ideas 🙂

  • Chinu

    absofruitely beautiful! especially love the last shot!

  • Sophia

    wow sid…you are really talented. love the pictures. you are one lucky man!

    • Thank you for the nice comment, Sophia. I’m glad you like the pictures 🙂

  • Jasmine

    Loveeeee the pics! She’s beautiful and small world and all having the same name but it gets even smaller! I was in California last weekend and my cousins asked me if I knew a guy named Mandev…turns out Jasmine and my cousins wife arr first cousins!! 🙂 🙂

  • Brittany DeLorme

    Wow these are so awesome! Jasmine you are gorgeous and I love that jacket!! These are really fun and the last one is amazing!! Love these:)