Working as a multimedia reporter for several decades in one of the most volatile regions of the world, I would also commonly shoot my own photos and footage in order to more deeply comprehend the subjects I was covering.

Striving to be as accurate and focused visually as I am in print and online, that journalistic aptitude and essential thematic clarity of vision carries over to my current photography, where I mainly work in black and white, in order to see the soul within the image, rather than the distracting gloss of color.

Although I have worked with many DSLR cameras and desktop editing suites over the decades, in recent years, as mobile camera lenses and software have exponentially improved, I’ve almost completely moved over to smartphones as a quality photographic tool of choice, and online editing platforms for the immediacy and cross-platform shareability of the results.

Dave Bender

Deadly Stones: a masked Arab youth fires off a slingshot at Israeli Border Police during an alleyway confrontation in Kfar Shiloach/Silwan, a contested Jerusalem neighborhood.

Massed Media: an Arab holds a staged “protest” moment for sympathetic media during a during a street confrontation in Kfar Shiloach/Silwan, a contested Jerusalem neighborhood.

Street Fighter: a masked Arab youth hurls a stone at Israeli Border Police during an alleyway confrontation in Kfar Shiloach/Silwan, a contested Jerusalem neighborhood.

Sacred Melodies: Hassidic Jews from New Jersey chant a “niggun” at a cenotaph honoring 3rd Cent. Mishnahic sage, Yehuda II, near Tzfat, in northern Israel.

Tzfat Night Bus: a Tzfat city bus appears to vanish into the Ottoman-era Saraya Fortress as it rounds a traffic circle in a time-lapse shot.

Sea of Galilee: shafts of sunlight break through low clouds over the Kinneret Sea of Galilee, as seen from the Mt. Of Beatitudes.

Jerusalem of Lights: Jewish tombs on the Mount of Olives face the Old City.

Pesach Prep: Youths duel with rolling pins between batches of Pesach matzos at the traditional tomb of Shem and Ever in Tzfat.

Negev War Memorial: a timeline of battles to liberate the Negev is etched into a wall of a dramatic memorial in Beersheva, in southern Israel.

From Darkness to Light: rail commuters at Tel Aviv University hurry beneath garlands of Israeli flags as the nation transits from Memorial Day to Independence Day celebrations.

Tel Aviv Takes All Kinds: Hassidic youth gaze at the Mediterranean Sea and passing joggers at Tel Aviv’s “Namal” pedestrian promenade.

Ethiopian Princesses: Doe-eyed immigrants at an Absorption Ministry housing center in northern Israel.

Wedding Memorial: an Israeli child at a wedding in Tzfat gazes at memorial candles lit in the memory of a trio of teens – Naftali Frenkel (16, of Nof Ayalon), Gilad Shaer (16, of Talmon), and Eyal Yifrah (19, of Elad) – who were kidnapped and murdered by Hamas terrorists south of Jerusalem in June, 2014.