Coming tomorrow in the new issue of the online magazine Just Above Sunset, a photo study of one of the oddest apartment buildings you'll ever see - "El Bordello Alexandra" at 20 Westminster, Venice Beach. There's this web page where a local tries to explain the place.
Below are two of the fifteen shots that week be posted tomorrow. It's a giggle.
Topic: Color Studies
Noted on the ocean front walk, the "boardwalk" in Venice Beach (there are no boards), Thursday, 21 September -
Trompe-l'?il and Other Madness
Topic: Light and Shadow
Trompe-l'œil is of course one of those French terms one can throw around. We're talking optical illusion in what seems to be a realistic painting - as in tromper, to deceive, and l'œil, the eye. You've been had. It's kind of a joke on strict realism - there's more here, with samples, and the note that trompe-l'œil was (and is) often employed in murals, "and instances from Greek and Roman times are known, for instance from Pompeii." And there's Hollywood. Trompe-l'œil is employed in Donald O'Connor's famous "running up the wall" routine in Singin' in the Rain (1952). At the end of the "Make 'em Laugh" number he runs up a real wall, then he runs towards what looks like a hallway painted on a wall, but when he runs up this it's a large trompe-l'œil mural. He crashes through it. Whatever. The inside joke is that the song is a fake too, a shameless rip-off of Be a Clown from the movie The Pirate (1948). Nothing is ever what it seems.
Trompe-l'œil and Other Madness
Here's trompe-l'œil at Venice Beach, Thursday, September 21 - part of a study of four new murals there that will be posted in this Sunday's Just Above Sunset.
Other murals of note - like western line-dancing meets Van Gogh's Starry Night, at the Beach -
Topic: Light and Shadow
Walls in Los Angeles' Thai Town - Hollywood Boulevard from Western Avenue east to Normandie, approximately. The Thai Town photos will follow. The brick walls made for interesting compositions. The first two have been digitally equalized - that's increasing the local contrast of the image by reducing the overall dynamic range. The color values are true. The third photo is "as is" - without processing of any kind.
Topic: Technical Exercises
A technical exercise - shooting through glass to get both what's there and what's reflected from the street - Hollywood Wigs, 6311 Hollywood Boulevard, on the north side, between Ivar and Vine - Tuesday, September 19, 2:00 pm, full sun -
An appropriate place for the woman to wear the wig - The Frolic Room, 6245 Hollywood Boulevard, next to the Pantages - look for Hedy Lamarr's star out front in the sidewalk -
Bob's Frolic Room was featured in the movie LA Confidential - Jack Vincennes (Kevin Spacey) has a drink here, thinking about what to do next. It's just a dive neon bar from the thirties.