Israel Behind the Lens: Photographer Zev Rothkoff Presents His Israel in 2015 [PHOTOS]

Photo: Zev Rothkoff

Israel Behind the Lens is a special series highlighting some of Israel’s top photographers. Below, photographer Zev Rothkoff shares his most memorable photos captured in Israel in 2015 and the stories behind them.

The city of Efrat in the Judean mountains gets snow a few times each year. This year we were fortunate enough to enjoy a beautiful snow combined with budding almond blossoms. On days such as these, it’s not uncommon for us to hike through the mountains, benefiting from the beautiful local and well-known scenery with a special icing. 

zev rothkoff efrat almond blossoms


The Golan Heights is blessed with rolling hills and lush plains. The Gilboane waterfall pictured here flows even in the dry summer. It makes for a great vacation to enjoy the refreshing water during the heat of the day. The rainbow you see is an added bonus, giving even more reason to never want to leave!

zev rothkoff golan heights waterfall gilboane


Pictured here is a recently excavated drainage tunnel from the Temple Mount area to David’s City. This tunnel was used during the destruction of the temple by Jews as an escape route to safety from the Romans.

zev rothkoff david's city jerusalem


This is the Southern portion of Western Wall. Visitors from all over the world come to this spot, which shows the original Herodian era pavement and the damage it endured when Roman soldiers threw down from the second Temple during their siege on the holy city of Jerusalem. This photo symbolizes to me a more serious view of the reality of Jerusalem as it paints the truth of the Jewish connection to the Temple Mount and the significance and deep feelings the Jews have towards it.

zev rothkoff western wall jerusalem old city


A lighter view of Jerusalem! Since 2009, the Old City of Jerusalem has participated in the Jerusalem Light Festival, an arts festival where the entire city is filled with artwork displayed on the Old City walls. The event takes place every summer. Pictured is Damascus Gate with a child’s artwork projected onto it. 

zev rothkoff damascus gate jerusalem old city light show


Olive trees symbolize peace and victory. In Israel, we rely on the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to protect each and every Israeli citizen. This photo tells me that our hope of peace is possible but we have to trust in the capable hands of our IDF soldiers.

zev rothkoff soldier olive tree

Zev Rothkoff was born in New York and came on aliya in 1973. An alumnus of Yeshivat Har-Etzion, Zev served in the army in an infantry unit, where he continued to serve for 20 years of reserve duty. After finishing yeshiva (religious studies), Zev studied dentistry in Tel-Aviv University, and focuses on implant dentistry in his office in Arnona, Jerusalem. As an amateur photographer Zev has had various exhibits in Gush Etzion and Jerusalem, and his photos have won contests. Among them was the Wikipedia heritage site competition in which Zev won first prize in 2012.  His main interests are sites, scenery, flora and fauna of Israel. Zev’s website includes a section of tiyulim (hikes) in Israel and almost every week a new series of photos are introduced.

To see more by Zev, visit his website.

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Source: Israel in the News