Looking Back

As before, new photography has become difficult. Health issues. Limited mobility. The only thing new will be the Saturday botanical galleries, at least for a bit longer. But here is how this last week in August looked, out here, from 2015 to 2020, from the archives.

Prop Rentals (40 images): Life in Hollywood – the studios need props – independent suppliers provide them. Nick Metropolis’ prop rentals down on La Brea – and all of this is available to the general public too. Who knows? You might need some of these items, one day. ~ Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Fresh August Paint (30 images): In August, when the sun is blazing and it’s ninety at noon and getting hotter by the minute, there’s nothing like smell of acrylic spray-paint in the air. The street artists are at it again, adding more color to Los Angeles. This crew was at it in an alley behind Melrose Avenue. The Funky Lords – that’s what their new mural says – but they were pleasant young men, willing to chat. They were having fun – but there’s not a wall or fence down there that isn’t already taken. The crews paint over last month’s mural. This is August. Next month this will be hidden under that next extravaganza. ~ Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Friday at Pink’s (37 images): Pink’s – down on La Brea not far from Paramount Pictures – might be the most famous hot dog stand in the world. Since 1939 that’s where the biggest Hollywood stars mix with the common folks, standing in the long line in the sunshine. And now there’s a dragon next door, and a famous psychic up the street, and all sorts of odd things. A trip to Pink’s has become a real trip. ~ Friday, August 12, 2016

Cool Waters (25 images): Too damned hot (95) in Hollywood – too many tourists – it was time to drop by the lotus pools in Echo Park again. Yes, this may be the four or fifth gallery documenting this urban oasis, but it’s new every single time. And ducks are better company than tourists. And it’s cool down there. It’s always cool down there. ~ Friday, August 11, 2017

Local Geometry (25 images): An old office building on Beverly Boulevard – a severely geometric new restaurant on La Cienega – a white building with gold stripes – sometimes the geometry of things is enough. ~ Thursday, August 10, 2017

At the Courthouse (50 images): In front of every courthouse in every sleepy town in the Deep South there’s a statue of some obscure Confederate general looking heroic – a statement about justice there. In front of the rather drab midcentury modern Superior Court of Beverly Hills there’s this. The orange piece is “Sisyphus, 1985” – Alexander Liberman (1912-1999) – and the black and white piece with the red circle is “World on Its Hind Legs” – William Kentridge (1955-) – a statement about justice here. ~ Thursday, August 9, 2018

Dream Worlds (35 images): Just down the street – Frank Capra filmed “It Happened on Night” in there – Gilligan’s Island was in there – that’s Sunset-Gower Studios – with a bit of Siren Studios across the street – with new glass towers everywhere and the Hollywood sign in the distance. They build dream worlds here. And this is a dream world too. ~ Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Net Sunlight (35 images): The light at La Cienega on the Sunset Strip – the new glass towers and strung between them “Dream Catcher” (2016) – Janet Echelman. She was named an Architectural Digest 2012 Innovator for “changing the very essence of urban spaces” and this is what she does – machine-woven polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) and ultra-high-molecular-weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) suspended between skyscrapers. It shifts and ripples. Perhaps it catches dreams. It did catch the odd summer light this day. ~ Thursday, August 13, 2020

About Alan

The editor is a former systems manager for a large California-based HMO, and a former senior systems manager for Northrop, Hughes-Raytheon, Computer Sciences Corporation, Perot Systems and other such organizations. One position was managing the financial and payroll systems for a large hospital chain. And somewhere in there was a two-year stint in Canada running the systems shop at a General Motors locomotive factory - in London, Ontario. That explains Canadian matters scattered through these pages. Otherwise, think large-scale HR, payroll, financial and manufacturing systems. A résumé is available if you wish. The editor has a graduate degree in Eighteenth-Century British Literature from Duke University where he was a National Woodrow Wilson Fellow, and taught English and music in upstate New York in the seventies, and then in the early eighties moved to California and left teaching. The editor currently resides in Hollywood California, a block north of the Sunset Strip.
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