photography by layli samimi and quotes by her & her loved ones; 
new piece up every friday. see all of them here.

// sorry it's a day late, ya'll...i'm in israel drinking too much coffee and eating too much hommos.


and about Wounded Knee...

shot i took of the Wounded Knee memorial site on Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, SD.
 i would humbly like to remind every dear reader about the anniversary of the Wounded Knee Massacre. december 29, 1890 was the day that at least 300 of our Lakota brothers and sisters were brutally slaughtered.

From my Master's thesis: 

The Native American people’s history in the Black Hills is one that is equally tragic and courageous. History records the calamitous Wounded Knee Massacre in 1890 when “at least 300 unarmed Lakota women, children, and men were ruthlessly butchered by American soldiers” (Valandra, 2005) on what is now the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, just two hours southeast of Rapid City. As Yellow Horse Brave Heart (2000) recounts,

Wounded Knee Massacre has reverberated through the hearts and minds of Lakota people,” constantly reminding the Native people of the genocide and ethnic cleansing that took place. 
the mass grave
 my dear friend, Andrew Ironshell posted this great video of Johnny Cash visiting the especially powerful Wounded Knee and he sings his song called "Big Foot":

if you are not familiar and properly acquainted with the history of Wounded Knee, i suggest you get educated in this tragic, unjust, shameful part of our American history.

please take the time to pass this on, and educate others about this day in history.



photography by layli samimi and quotes by her & her loved ones; 
new piece up every friday. see all of them here.

// sorry it's a day late, ya'll...i'm in israel hanging with the homies and totally spaced it until my sister reminded me.


if only

i celebrated christmas. i mean, come ON, LOOK AT THIS BODUM-BEAUTY [!!!]:

 found here.



photography by layli samimi and quotes by her & her loved ones; 
new piece up every friday. see all of them here.

// happy friday ya'll.


the holy land for one month.

we're going to the holy land for a month to see my family. my brother & his wife are coming from beijing and my sister is coming from brooklyn. its going to be amazing. but three amazing babies and my dear brother jorma and sister in law mo are going to be sorely missed.

the last time baktash and i were in israel together was 2008. this is going to be epic.


yet another reality check - and an important one at that.

"Be not the slave of your moods, but their master. But if you are so angry, so depressed and so sore that your spirit cannot find deliverance and peace even in prayer, then quickly go and give some pleasure to someone lowly or sorrowful, or to a guilty or innocent sufferer! Sacrifice yourself, your talent, your time, your rest to another, to one who has to bear a heavier load than you -- and your unhappy mood will dissolve into a blessed, contented submission to God."

serving others is the key to life. some days i feel down and out, as we all do. and if i were to just remember this quote and this beautiful trailer from occupylove.org i think i'd feel better. its like a reality check. i think once i am reminded that our purpose here is to serve others and gain deeper connections with our human family, i feel more remarkable, more powerful.

my dear friend kya sent me this video clip recently and the trailer was so powerful. it really moved me emotionally. not enough people are speaking out about love, connection, unity & peace. most don't feel comfortable engaging in such topics of dialogue. it's not cool, its too "airy fairy", too vulnerable, etc. f that.
this is the meat of the earth,
this is the anchor of our souls,
this is the light & joy on the chaotic sea.
this is the truth in the silence.

what a powerful message!

these are some of my favorite quotes:

"its really hard to create community if the underlying knowledge is that we don't need each other..."

"joint consumption doesn't create intimacy, only joint creativity and gifts create intimacy and connection. "

"love is the expansion of the self to include the other."

"the heart wants us to be of service."

"the lover knows that more for you is more for me too. if you love somebody, their happiness is your happiness, their pain is your pain...love is the expansion of the self to include the other."

thank you, kya for knowing the language of my soul.  this video's message is why i am a peacebuilder. why i got my masters in conflict transformation. 

let's never forget to reach out and extend our hearts to people who need love, offer a sincere smile or a conversation to a lonely stranger, hug your loved ones extra long and extra hard, listen to someone's pain and love with all our hearts, unapologetically. 

what were some of your favorite quotes? 

// for more on the man speaking during this trailer, go to his website here [interesting dude].



photography by layli samimi and quotes by her & her loved ones; 
new piece up every friday. see all of them here.

// happy friday ya'll.

*do you read HERE'S TO LONGING every friday? if so, i'd love to hear about it in the comments section below!



i just had to share with you these strikingly beautiful [if i do say so myself] photos of kristen. i met her about a year ago in LA and she is the loveliest girl and quickly becoming one of my favorite angelenos. we had a blast and may i just say that i love my job as a photographer??

the photos are here to prove it! [and i don't even have the film developed yet!]

kristen and i had a ball.

if you or someone you know needs family and/or individual portraits, i'm your gal.

i do photo shoots for families, individuals, bands, production companies & creative groups. i would love to shoot you [with a camera]! pass it on.

email me --> laylisamimi[at]gmail.com



1 // anything TED related i love. thanks to my dear friend Rox, when TEDxWomen came to Beverly Hills, us 2 lucky suckers gots to go [mega sweetness/radness inducing]:

 2. this quote by Abdu'l-Baha is out of this world amazing. like, can i carve this in to my door, so every time i leave my house, this is the last words i see???:

"Have patience - wait, but do not sit idle; work while you are waiting; smile while you are wearied with monotony; be firm while everything around you is being shaken; be joyous while the ugly face of despair grins at you; speak aloud while the malevolent forces of the nether world try to crush your mind; be valiant and courageous while men all around you are cringing with fear and cowardice."

(‘Abdu’l-Bahá, quoted in Star of the West)

3 //  this daniel johnston cover by beach house:
p.s. oh one more thing -- i did an AMAZING photoshoot today in malibu with a beautiful, dear friend who kicks some serious butt in los angeles. photos/sneak peeks soon.



photography by layli samimi and quotes by her & her loved ones; 
new piece up every friday. see all of them here.

// happy friday ya'll.


trunks of vintage memories.

my grandfather is in the front of the photo

my grandparents are amazing. and i wish so badly that i knew them when these photos were taken. some times we take life and age for granted. once they were as young as me and my siblings and they did things we do now. what i wouldn't give to be able to share a cup of coffee with my grandparents when they were my age and have a real sweet heart-to-heart about things. my Moore grandparents are still alive and i love to ask them stories about their lives, cos they weren't always my grandparents. like they used to ride horses with their buddies. they're badass.



photography by samimi-extremie and quotes by her & her loved ones; 
new piece up every friday. see all of them here.

happy friday, ya'll. i don't know about you guys but we're going up the california coast with my baby sister. #sofreakinpumped


on sisters.

my dearest sister towfigh and i have long talked about this notion of sisters, in fact, she was the one who introduced me to this "name" for your loved ladies in your life. i have since adopted this title for myself, in my life and it make so much sense.

lovely towfigh was visiting in LA this past week, she left yesterday, and it was super hard for me to have her leave, tearing at my heartstrings, and it really struck me again. as it does every time i see one of my sisters. upon reflection, i know how lucky i am, how humbled i am, how happy i am, and how on earth was i lucky enough to have so many strong, amazing, powerful, beautiful, hilarious, intelligent, creative women in my life.

i can honestly say with all conviction -- if i didn't have them in my life, i wouldn't have the support that i have, i wouldn't be as strong as i am, i wouldn't feel as loved as i do.

i don't know how many of you have powerful intimate relationships with your women [and men]. i don't know how many of you share your deepest thoughts & feelings, pain & fear, successes & failures with them. but i encourage each of you, to push yourself a bit farther, dig in a bit deeper, explore the capacity of true friendship, and when you are able to lead with your vulnerability, let your guard down, express the unspoken and engage your loved ones in your truth, your fear, your light --  that to me, is what TRUE friendship is, what TRUE family is - those that will love you unconditionally, goofy or sad, angry or joyfully confident. and always be there to listen and encourage.

i just wanted to write in so many words, about how touched and moved i am by the love i feel for my sisters. and i wanted to share with you these stop-my-breath-heart-racingly BEAUTIFUL portraits, in hopes that their power & radiance will rub off on you, too.

and how lucky am i? i get to see this beautiful baby sister tomorrow. in LA. i'm speechless and excited beyond belief:


lash samimi aazami adventures part 2

as you may have noticed, my dear friend ryan came to visit from the congo last week and we shot one million photographs. i know you'll get overwhelmed by the amount of photographs i post about our trip, so i will share the part by part. here is part II, part I was the part that i posted below with the 35mm photos. 

i have been wanting to shoot in our loved living room since we moved in, and what better opportunity then when ryan can be a part of the photoshoot and take radtastic photos. here are [a lot] of my favorites: