Photowalk: Venice Beach at Night

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In my previous post, I shared a video montage of Venice Beach in the daytime. One of my favorite beaches, Venice Beach is home to a diversity of people and culture. The walls are filled with color, the people all beautiful in their own ways, the streets crowded with the hustle and bustle of vendors, tourists, and residents alike. Music is usually heard in the background, from the stalls that line the boardwalk or from street performers trying to get you attention.

But Venice Beach at night? It is a whole different world when the sun goes down.

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The streets that are usually filled by people are empty, with a few stragglers here and there. Shops and restaurants are closed, lacking in color and life. The boardwalk is illuminated only be street lamps that keep people from hiding in entire darkness. Occasionally, a cop car would drive past, keeping peace and quiet at bay for everyone.

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The exact night I went to Venice Beach with my friend MB, California had legalized weed. So you bet yourself supporters are low-key celebrating themselves that night. At one point, I had walked past a group of teenage kids with a cardboard sign that read “We need Weed.”

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If you’ve frequented Venice Beach as much as I had, being in that same place at night time is an eerily interesting concept. You know what you should expect, yet your senses are warning you that there is something lacking: the life, the vibe, the soul that keeps Venice Beach alive.

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MB and I walked up and down the street that separated the buildings from the beach. We found interesting alley ways and took a gander to see what we’d find. We walked past one restroom building and overheard a few men about to start a fight, one side provoking the other. When the cop rolled past, every one was forced to keep their cool. But other than that, everyone just minded their own business. A couple of late night musicians still played music into the night, a handful of couples walking hand in hand maybe trying to walk off the dinner and drinks they just had.

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While I am not going to suggest one explores Venice Beach at night by themselves, I do encourage seeing it at night, bring a few friends, make an adventure out of it. Even though you know it’s the same Venice Beach, the stark contract between night and day is very much noticeable.

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Happy Summer everyone!

 

xo,
Jaja, the forever tourist (IG: @theforevertourist, #theforevertourist)

Let’s talk about life.. and that Drake wall in LA

Hello, everyone! Jaja here, your resident #theforevertourist. I apologize profusely for not being active on the blog as much as I should have. Life happened, and uh, yeah. I’m just so happy that I have my fellow bloggers keeping everything active here. Thanks so much, ladies!

Let’s talk about what I’ve been up to lately.

I started a new job just a couple of months after starting this blog, and that new job basically took over my life! It was a different “career path”, something I never expected to be in, so I wanted to focus my energy into learning more about that. Aside for my new job (that I love so much), I have started a couple of projects here and there as well. Mainly, a vlogging channel on YouTube. As soon as everything’s more streamlined, I’d be more than proud to share that with everyone. Also, when the year 2017 came to be, I only had one resolution, to improve my skills as a photographer. So that’s another thing that took up a lot of my time: going on adventures, taking photos, scheduling portrait sessions, going on photo walks, editing, editing, and EDITING. I was editing photos up the wazoo, y’all.

Anyway, I feel like I’m kind of caught up with most of my projects, so I decided to jump back in the blog. Like I said, I appreciate Maeven and Justine for keeping things running.

So, let’s go back to “touristing” yeah?

When I got my new job, I found myself a photography buddy. You’ll see him occasionally on my photos, coz I make him pose for me too when I shoot random portraits. Since then, we’ve been going on tons of photo walks, mainly exploring Los Angeles. Now I know I consider myself a Chicago gal (not a fan of the absurd summer temperatures here), but walking up and down the streets of Los Angeles gave me a new sense of adoration for the city. Just like that, I started falling in love with the City of Angels. There’s just so many things to do here, and hey, places to eat as well. The best way to see the city is to walk of course.

When my friend GN asked if I wanted to check out “the Drake wall” I gave him a weird look. I have not heard of such a spot downtown.

And then he showed me some photos.

Basically, it’s the Weller Court hallway in Little Tokyo in DTLA. It’s obviously much cooler to see it at night. The hallway is lighted up in neon pink/white/purple. Oh and the lights move too. Of course, I found the place very interesting. It’s literally just a hallway. It takes you from the street to the inside of the court. But of course everybody can see the resemblance of the background from Drake’s Hotline Bling video, which begs the question “How many people actually tried to recreate the video after seeing this hallway?”

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Of course, we didn’t just drive through all that LA rush hour traffic just to take photos of this hallway. We walked a couple blocks down to where the food is! Well actually, we just stopped by Mikawaya, a dessert place in Little Tokyo that carries tons of mochi ice cream flavors. HEAVEN!!

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It was getting late so we headed back to the car. But not before trying some night photography on the street as well. We practiced with moving lights by taking photos of the cars speeding past and by writing using a pen light. I thought it was a fail on my part. I should already know how to do this. But NOPE. I mean, we tried. I felt like my photography skills regressed that night. Hence, the practice and practice and practice.

Well, that’s it for now. I have a few more photo walks to upload and talk about, and I can’t wait to share it with everybody. If you’ve been to any of the places I’ve visited, or you’re planning to go, let me know what you guys think! Have a nice rest of the week everyone!

xo,
Jaja, the forever tourist