Hello, Los Angeles!
When I arrived here last May, I couldn’t wait to write my first official, “Hello LA,” blog. Now, more than eight months later, things have settled down a bit and I’ve had some time to begin writing days of blogs for you kind Gentle Readers again! So, a very belated, “Hello, Los Angeles!”
And even though it’s well past the traditional time for year-end-reviews, I’m going to do just that. Today and in the coming week or so, I’m going to be sharing and writing about some of my favorite images I’ve made since arriving on the Left Coast.
I’d been here less than a week when I made what has turned out to be one of my favorite photographs of all time. It’s not only that it’s a beautiful image of an LA actor. Or that it’s an image that captures the loveliness of one of my dearest new friends, the very talented Megan DeHart. It’s that the look of it goes back to my earliest days of finding my art in photography.
When I couldn’t afford the beautiful big coffee table photography books by master photographers, I would sit for hours in Barnes & Noble and study those books. My teachers. George Hurrell. Herb Ritts. Helmut Newton. And Hurrell in particular, being probably the greatest Old Hollywood photographer, I studied his lighting for ages while sitting on a small stool in the corner of the bookstore.
And when I look at this photograph of Megan, made some 25 years later, I realize I’ve come full circle. From back in the early 1990s, hoping that I wouldn’t get kicked out of Barnes & Noble for loitering and never buying, at least not until years later when I could finally afford to buy a $100 photography book. Being inspired and influenced by Hurrell’s images, and decades later, finding myself actually living here in LA, and walking the same streets he did in Culver City at the old MGM studios (now Sony). And after only days of arriving in the moving van last summer, at the urging of that same inspiring actor friend, with her, I made an image I love so much, it’s the lock screen on my iPhone. And it positively reeks of Hurrell. In the best way.
Thank you Megan. What an amazingly artistic way to arrive in my new city.