1804: April 2018 Photography

April 2018 Photography

Mixed April Light: The light was good at noon on the last Saturday in April. The local gardens turned a bit subtle. ~ Saturday, April 28, 2018

Flower Street: Late April – Melrose Avenue suddenly turned into Flower Street – with a giant new floral mural. The colors are eye-popping. The colors are eye-popping everywhere, actually. ~ Friday, April 27, 2018

Look Closer: There were those words on the wall of the big glass skyscraper across the street from the Roxy on the Sunset Strip – “Look Closer” – a promo for something or other – but good advice. Look closer at the details on the Sunset Strip. The Strip is endlessly fascinating. At least the details are. ~ Thursday, April 26, 2018

Hollywood Reversed: George Raft made a fortune playing gangsters in those old black-and-white movies, and in the early thirties he took his money and built the iconic Hollywood Tower apartments on Franklin Avenue. He’s gone. It’s still there – and in 1942, Johnny Mercer and his friends founded Capitol Records and built a complex nearby, on Vine Street. In 1956 they built circular a skyscraper on top of that, shaped a stack of jukebox records. It’s still there too – but Hollywood is changing. Both are being surrounded by giant glass towers. Hollywood is becoming a city. That’s the reversal. ~ Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Love Alley: A giant “Love” mural, with pigs, hidden in an alley just off Western Avenue at the north edge of Koreatown – and nearby, a green black woman, and an old wooden Indian, and a bright white abandoned avant-garde theater. None of it makes sense, unless it does. ~ Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Photographing Color: Sometimes color is enough. This is Melrose Avenue at Harper, where the only subject matter is color, and that’s more than enough. ~ Monday, April 23, 2018

An April Saturday: Just another Saturday in Hollywood – sunshine, and tourists everywhere, and no movie stars anywhere – but the real stars, and the high drama, are in the gardens, on the quiet side streets. ~ Saturday, April 21, 2018

Descanso Artiste: Descanso Drive at Sunset Boulevard in Silver Lake – the iconic old apartment building where Jackson Browne lived in the early seventies – the big black Club Los Globos – an old dance club so retro it’s now far beyond hip – new shops and new galleries – vivid colors everywhere – this scruffy section of town has gone all artsy again. ~ Friday, April 20, 2018

Dark Waters: April is the cruelest month, mixing memory and desire – and here in Los Angeles there’s that odd April day when a cold storm blows in, down from Alaska, darkening everything, and then blows right out again. This is Heavenly Pond in Franklin Park on one of those odd April days – dark waters. ~ Thursday, April 19, 2018

Isolation: The word suddenly appeared in big yellow letters on a deep blue wall – “Isolation” – so this week’s street art must be about alienation, mixed with a bit of paranoia – and so it is. It always is. ~ Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Let It Be: When I find myself in times of trouble, Mother Mary comes to me, speaking words of wisdom… “Drive over to Malibu. Watch the surfers. Sit quietly. Smoke the pipe. It’ll be okay.” ~ Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Malibu Geometry: A simple pier can be mysterious – the geometric patterns of the Malibu Pier on a sunny afternoon, and other mysteries. ~ Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Middle April: Spring is progressing nicely in Los Angeles. Here’s the proof. ~ Saturday, April 14, 2018

Sycamore Spanish: South Sycamore Avenue between First Street and Second Street in the Wilshire District – a street of Spanish Revival apartment buildings from long ago, when everyone in Los Angeles wanted to live in a hacienda, before everyone moved to low featureless new ranch houses out in the suburbs. Something was lost – romance or something – but these old buildings have been lovingly restored – even the giant Moorish Art Deco concrete monster that sits in the middle of the block. The Moors did invade Spain in 711 and kind of took over. The last Moorish city, Granada, was captured by Ferdinand V and Isabella I in 1492, and then they were gone, except for the architecture – the Alhambra and all the rest. This giant Moorish Art Deco concrete monster is historically accurate in its way – and South Sycamore Avenue is, by the way, lined with sycamore trees. This is a good place. ~ Friday, April 13, 2018

Orderliness: When the world seems to be spinning out of control, which seems to be happening at the moment, a dose of pure geometry can help. A walk around the old buildings from the twenties and thirties on Highland Avenue, just south of Santa Monica Boulevard, can help. These are formal and orderly buildings. Orderliness is solace. Keep calm and carry on, and look around. ~ Thursday, April 12, 2018

Hollywood Gals: There are two new quite exotic women on a wall on Las Palmas in the middle of Hollywood – the walls always change – but these two fit right in. Hollywood is all about exotic women. ~ Wednesday, April 11, 2018

California Central: Three murals at Ocean Park Boulevard and Main Street in Ocean Park – that sunny enclave between Venice Beach and Santa Monica – seem to capture the essence of Southern California – the sun and the sea and all the rest. Or this is wishful thinking. But even the bus stop is eye-popping. ~ Tuesday, April 10, 2018

The Great Escape: An underpass – Ocean Park Boulevard – Santa Monica – the day the horses escape from the carousel on the Santa Monica Pier – so they are real horses after all. There are dolphins and whales on the other side of the underpass. That’s an escape too. ~ Tuesday, April 10, 2018

April Roses: Gardeners in Los Angeles had cut back their roses in what passes for winter out here. Things were pretty bare, but it’s April again. The roses are back, lots of them, better than ever. ~ Saturday, April 7, 2018

Traffic Art: Public art in the median, Santa Monica Boulevard, West Hollywood – two works by Peter Shire than have been there for years, complementing the traffic – because Los Angeles us all about the cars, and the endlessly fascinating traffic. ~ Friday, April 6, 2018

Hollywood Inside-Out: For every positive there’s always a more interesting negative – the Hollywood Palladium, Sunset-Gower Studios, Columbia Square. ~ Thursday, April 5, 2018

The Power Grid: Technology can be visually mesmerizing. This is what keeps Los Angeles going – Adams and Electric Drive – just south of Venice Boulevard – the power out here. ~ Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Tightrope: This week’s new street art seems to be about walking the difficult tightrope of life. ~ Tuesday, April 3, 2018

A City of Angels: Fairfax Village, between Melrose Avenue and Pico, one of the oldest Jewish communities in Los Angeles, has turned irreparably hip – with a location shot for some movie or other this day. Julie Newmar – Catwoman on the old Batman series (1966-1967) – owns most of the buildings down there. She’s eighty-four now. She rents to some strange people – but the real angel is Raoul Wallenberg. He stands on the corner of Fairfax and Pico, and the local street artists have added walls of visual commentary around him. He’s the only angel here. ~ Monday, April 2, 2018