Wednesday, June 27, 2012

california on my mind

If it's not apparent already, I've been restless in Sacramento-- eager to explore and try new things at the same speed I did back in New York City. A few days after my San Francisco trip, I decided to take a spontaneous road trip down to Southern California with my best friend Jess.

Our extended weekend proved to be just the exhilerating sort of adventure we needed to spice up the beginning of a long summer to come. From the refreshing breeze to the unfamiliar but breathtaking scenery of the beaches and deserts, Southern California makes a strong case for itself as a paradise of sorts. The terrain varies from city to city, each offering a rich new color palette to explore behind the lens. 

We were lucky to stay with my wonderful Aunt and Uncle in the Santa Ana area, just a bit south of Los Angeles. On Friday, we met up with my sweet & talented friend Mary Claire Roman in Laguna Niguel. I've been admiring her photography for awhile and as soon as we met it was as if we had known each other for years.Mary Claire drove us to some of her favorite local spots, including the beautiful wilderness park where I shot my editorial "Desert Storm", last year.

As silly as it sounds, we frolicked in the desert flowers and roamed around the park, waiting for the sun to set.

Afterwards, Mary Claire took us further down the coast to Laguna Beach where we enjoyed a delicious meal at an Indian restaurant. We finished off our evening with some rosebud tea & girl talk back at Mary Claire's house. I'm so excited to see Mary Claire again when I go back down south in July!

The next morning, Jess & I drove up to Los Angeles where we met up with my friend Tara at her home in Westwood. Tara took us to Sawtelle Blvd, a little street of Japanese shops and restaurants. We shopped around and ate lunch before heading over to The Getty Museum.

This was my first visit to The Getty but I think it now holds the title of my most favorite museum I've come across thus far . The white modern architecture is a masterpiece within itself. And perched upon a hill overlooking Los Angeles, the natural light is incredibly crisp and beautiful. I could only imagine that if I lived in Los Angeles, I'd make frequent visits to the museum just to enjoy the sweeping views and fresh breeze.

We checked out a wonderful exhibition on the late fashion photographer Herb Ritts and explored the gardens for quite some time.

After we dropped Tara off, we drove across town to the Hollywood Forever Cemetery. Every Saturday during the summertime, the cemetery (next to Paramount Studios and the resting spot of many Old Hollywood souls) puts on public screenings of old movies. Two years back I had a wonderful time when I attended and saw the original black-and-white "Invasion Of The Body Snatchers". 

The screenings are a great way to catch up with friends, a half-day event that includes picnicking in line hours before the doors of the cemetery open. We met up with my friend Luka and his friend Kay and enjoyed a delicious vegan dinner from Cafe Gratitude before the show began.

Saturday's showing was "Chinatown", a neo-noir and classic Los Angeles film starring two greats, Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway. I've been dying to see the film, for years my father has had a framed poster of it that was given to him by the former head of production at 20th Century Fox. The images from the poster have been engrained in my mind since childhood and it was interesting to finally see the symbolism come to life onscreen.

On Sunday, Jess & I decided to go back to our childhood roots and visit Disneyland. Each time that I come back, I realize something new about the park, the people, the experience. And, despite being 18-years-old (an adult by society's standards), the magic feeling still exists.


  1. looks like so much fun... i've realized that i might be going to cali for a little bit this summer and this has made me excited

  2. cool photos, you are very lucky to be in california, enjoy.

  3. awesome pictures. california looks so good.
    have a nice day (:

  4. these are wonderful photos ,your'e really talented. hope you check out my blog xx