Southern California Photography by Alan Pavlik, editor and publisher of Just Above Sunset
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Photos and text, unless otherwise noted, Copyright 2006 - Alan M. Pavlik

If you use any of these photos for commercial purposes I assume you'll discuss that with me

These were shot with a Nikon D70 - using lens (1) AF-S Nikkor 18-70 mm 1:35-4.5G ED, or (2) AF Nikkor 70-300mm telephoto, or after 5 June 2006, (3) AF-S DX Zoom-Nikkor, 55-200 mm f/4-5.6G ED. They were modified for web posting using Adobe Photoshop 7.0

The original large-format raw files are available upon request.

Contact the Editor

Visitors from February 28, 2006, 10:00 am Pacific Time to date -

Saturday, 28 October 2006
A Moody Shot
Topic: Light and Shadow
A Moody Shot
This was mistake - the settings on the Nikon were in the wrong place - but the effect is curious. This is a column on the old bank building on Hollywood Boulevard that is now the international headquarters pf the Church of Scientology.

A column on the old bank building on Hollywood Boulevard that is now the international headquarters pf the Church of Scientology















Posted by Alan at 3:21 PM PDT | Post Comment | Permalink

Updated: Saturday, 28 October 2006 3:22 PM PDT
Friday, 27 October 2006
A Feel for the Place
Topic: Graphics
A Feel for the Place
Our Man in Paris, Ric Erickson, editor of MetropoleParis, offers a glance into graphic design with his weekly shots of the posters in the kiosks there. Click on the link and go to "This Week's Paris Posters" for examples of what Parisians see - what's hot, and how it is presented. You get a sense of what's going on there, and there are some startling images.

Ric covers Paris. Hollywood has a different flavor. Below are this week's Hollywood posters - or maybe more than posters.

Below - the east wall of the Whisky a Go Go - 8901 Sunset Boulevard, on the Sunset Strip, not to be confused the Whisky à Go-Go that opened in Paris in 1947. This one opened on January 11, 1964 - with a live band led by Johnny Rivers and a short-skirted female DJ spinning records between sets from a suspended cage at the right of the stage. When the girl DJ danced during Rivers' set, the audience thought it was part of the act and the concept of Go-Go dancers in cages was born. In 1966, the Whisky was one of the centers of the Sunset Strip police riots. The club was harassed repeatedly by the City of Los Angeles, which once ordered that the name be changed - claiming "whisky" was a bad influence. It was the "Whisk?" for a while. The Byrds and the Buffalo Springfield were regulars, and The Doors were the house band for a while. Frank Zappa's Mothers of Invention got their record contract based on a performance at the Whisky. Jimi Hendrix came by to jam when Sam & Dave headlined. Otis Redding recorded his album "Live at the Whisky" in 1966 here. Then there were The Kinks, The Who, Cream, Led Zeppelin and so on. The next wave - The Runaways, X, Mötley Crüe and Van Halen, but also Blondie, Talking Heads, and Elvis Costello. Then came the "the godfathers of grunge" - Soundgarden, Nirvana and so on. Now this - 

Poster at the Whisky a Go Go, 8901 Sunset Boulevard, on the Sunset Strip, Disturbed, Ten Thousand Fists


















 Aardvark's at 7579 Melrose Avenue - west wall -

Aardvark's at 7579 Melrose Avenue - west wall



















Now playing at the Matrix Theater, 7657 Melrose Avenue -

Matrix Theater, 7657 Melrose Avenue


















Billboard, Hollywood and Vine

Billboard, Hollywood and Vine

Posted by Alan at 7:40 PM PDT | Post Comment | Permalink

Updated: Friday, 27 October 2006 7:42 PM PDT
Thursday, 26 October 2006
In the Land of Not Quite What It Seems
Topic: Insider Stuff
In the Land of Not Quite What It Seems
The setting, West Hollywood, the north side of Santa Monica Boulevard, in front of 9017 - Charles Agapiou Ltd Rolls-Royce and Bentley. This is the place to go for parts and service, for your Rolls or Bentley, of course. They also sell classic models of both, but not new ones. This is a few doors down from 9071 - Dan Tana's, where the Hollywood celebrities go when they want second-rate Italian food, or a good steak (see the notes below the photos).

The first shot - you have your classic Rolls with an ad rolling by, appropriately, for the new James Bond film - as it all comes together for a moment. But the second shot - on closer inspection we see the Rolls in being held together with duct tape.

Rolls Royce, Santa Monica Boulevard, West Hollywood
















Rolls Royce, Santa Monica Boulevard, West Hollywood














A new Ferrari, in front of the Rolls - for the handicapped, of course -

A new Ferrari, with handicapped tag, Santa Monica Boulevard, West Hollywood













"To knock a thing down, especially if it is cocked at an arrogant angle, is a deep delight of the blood." - George Santayana


Dan Tana's - 9071 Santa Monica Boulevard, West Hollywood - celebrity notes -

Dan Tana's is something of a local landmark, dating back to 1964. Located just two doors down from the famous Troubadour nightclub (where Elton John made his debut in 1970), this old-fashioned, checkered-tablecloth Italian restaurant in West Hollywood been open for business for thirty years, and is a favorite hangout for the Hollywood set - a virtual club for many in the movie & music business.

In part, that's because the food here is good (and perhaps partially because publicity-shy celebrities like Bob Dylan can hide in the shadows of its dimly-lit interior).

George Clooney has been coming here for 25 years. Regular Dabney Coleman ("Madman of the People") even had the one-pound New York steak named after him (it will set you back $39). John Cusak and Linda Fiorentino were spotted here together. Ben Affleck and Matt Damon chose the restaurant for an early interview to hype "Good Will Hunting."

Drew Barrymore loves the place, and says "I had my diapers changed here!"

Lakers chief Jerry West says it's his favorite restaurant. So does Corey Feldman. Jim Belushi likes it because it reminds him of his hometown, Chicago. For others, it reminds them of New York. Cramped and dark, with a noisy bar, it has that kind of old-fashioned feel.

In Feb 2, 2003, famed record producer Phil Spector had dinner here (the bill was $55 and he left a $500 tip). Then he went to the House of Blues for a concert, where he met actress Lana Clarkson. They went home together, shots were fired, and Spector was arrested for her murder.

According to Army Archerd, in 2002, Leonardo DiCaprio was spotted at Dan Tana's picking up an order of chicken Parmigiana, chicken piccata, New York steak, French fries and two Dan Tana salads. Later, in August, Nicole Kidman was spotted entertaining a fleet of agents.

Other sightings include Brad Pitt, Meg Ryan, Benicio Del Toro, Piper Perabo, Ethan Hawke, Gwyneth Paltrow...

Following the 2001 Telethon for the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in New York, a number of the stars from that telethon stopped at Dan Tana's to watch the (tape-delayed) show on the restaurant's TVs. They included "Cameron Diaz, Chris Rock, Ben Stiller, Adam Sandler, David Spade, Lucy Liu, Jim Woods and Benecio Del Toro."

Jay Leno also dines here. (According the Army Archerd, Jay was dining near the columnist when a man came over and thanked him for helping to push his disabled car off the road and trying to start it for him!)

Recently, James Woods and Lauren Holly were spotted at Dan's. So was Alec Baldwin.

In 1999, Jerry Seinfeld celebrated his 45th birthday there with friends including Garry Shandling, and while he was there his table was visited by Milton Berle and George Clooney.

Never trendy, its a red meat & whisky place, dimly-lit with red leather booths and wine bottles hanging from the ceiling. When you look under "Pasta" on this menu, you won't find "angel hair with sun-dried tomatoes" - you'll find spaghetti with meatballs and lasagna. Expect steaks & chops, and expect to pay a lot more than you would expect from the looks of the place. Says Variety columnist Army Archerd: "It remains one of the favorites with Hollywood's taste-conscious. One of the best places for steaks in the U.S. …"

Dan Tana's is open for dinner seven days a week from 5 PM to 1 AM. Reservations are hard to get - so get them way in advance. Dress is reasonably casual, and they offer valet parking.
No celebrities in this case - the shots are from late morning, Monday, 23 October. None of them are ever up and out and about that early.

Posted by Alan at 6:25 PM PDT | Post Comment | View Comments (1) | Permalink

Updated: Thursday, 26 October 2006 6:26 PM PDT
Wednesday, 25 October 2006
For your amusement...
Topic: Color Studies
For your amusement…
One week before Halloween, three costumes on display on Melrose Avenue. Whether any of these are purchased and will be worn to any party is an open question - but they are available. Each makes a statement.

Halloween costume for sale, store window on Melrose Avenue




















Halloween costume for sale, store window on Melrose Avenue


















Halloween costume for sale, store window on Melrose Avenue

Posted by Alan at 5:51 PM PDT | Post Comment | Permalink

Tuesday, 24 October 2006
Signage - Color Studies
Topic: Color Studies
Signage - Color Studies
Melrose Avenue - Tuesday, October 24 - apart from the contrasting messages, good shadows -

Signs - Melrose Avenue


















To the left (of course), a very red wall, in many ways, with its own ironies -

Moa's Kitchen - Melrose Avenue










Across the street, in the alley behind Melrose, study in green, and in all things Hollywood (I'm not bad... I'm just drawn that way...) -

Jessica Rabbit in an alley behind Melrose Avenue, Hollywood

Posted by Alan at 6:48 PM PDT | Post Comment | Permalink

Updated: Tuesday, 24 October 2006 6:56 PM PDT

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