Thursday, October 1, 2009

The tragedy of Turkey

Finally found the links of the serie of articles I wrote as guest columnist for Turkish Daily news between 2007 and 2008. Soon I hope to publiish another, new serie of articles in another Turkish daily.
The next two weeks I will publish the old columns here since they are still actual for the Turkey of today. Today the first one.
The tragedy of Turkey
Monday, January 15, 2007
Hans A.H.C. de Wit

The branding of a country has become a crucial issue in today's world. Whether we like it or not, globalization enforces countries to compete with each other. Self-supporting economies, one of which was Turkey until the beginning of the 1980's, are simply anachronistic today.
Those who still believe in that protectionist economic policy should just look at Zimbabwe or North Korea.
The branding of a country is important not only for the attention and trust of foreign investors but also for the choices of tourists. It also reflects the country's social, political and economic achievements. And, the products that a country sells abroad are a definitive aspect of its brand. In all these regards, Turkey is not doing well.
Just go back to last year. During the infamous “cartoon crisis,” some Muslim nations decided to boycott Danish products and when the Armenian genocide bill passed the French lower house, an unofficial boycott of French products was announced in Turkey. Did the first boycott hurt Denmark? Of course. Did it hurt the Danish image in the world in general? No.
And the boycott of French products didn't hurt France at all. It is still one of the leaders in the world regarding food, life style, fashion, language, literature, culture, etc. France's image got a bump, but it's still among the top destinations in the world that tourists choose.
Turkey simply cannot change that. But what about Turkey, which hopes to boost it exports to $100 billion in 2007? How many people abroad know that they buy Turkish products?

Continue reading here

Shootout on the streets of Istanbul

Maybe you have witnessed a fair share of shootouts over the course of your life. They may have been from Western movies, but it still counts. What you haven’t seen though, is a camera shootout on the streets.

In this photo series, fashion photographer Akif Hakan Celebi (Istanbul, Miami) takes style to the streets in Istanbul, Turkey.

Take a look at the photos above to get a whole new understanding of what it means to point and shoot.

It’s called “Diary of a Serial Shooter” and it was made for the 2009 Istanbul Fashion Film Festival. Done with models Aysu Ergin and Elif Domanic.

It takes quite a fabulous photographer to make something so high as the fashion these ladies are wearing and bring it down to the streets of Turkey where they then fight with old video cameras.
In the meantime, Istanbul became more and more a hotspot for fashion & models!

Day Opening - October 1

Golden Gate bridge at night.