Archive for September, 2010
“A symbol contains within itself a definite meaning, certain intellectual formula, while metaphor is an image.” – Andrei Tarkovsky
At the end of the summer, having seen no lotus in Echo Park’s famous lotus bed, sent me on a hunt. But where were they?
Lotusland in Santa Barbara was mentioned, but what about something closer to Los Angeles. I tried Descasno Garden’s. The feisty ticket lady took it as a rebuke that I had asked for a plant they did not have, and came back with a snide, “don’t they have them where ever it is you’re from?”, someone else added, “Echo park has lotus”.
But they are all long dead, we had watched the lotus bed bloom oddly, late and with gaps, the follow year worse, then in 2007 instead of the lush verdant robust and spectacular growth we had been treated to annually (some since the 1920s), a thin bank-hugging “John Waters mustache” wisp of lotus plants grew in a sad finale. Some blamed the turtles for eating them all, others the pollution in the lake, perhaps it was the end of their life cycle, global warming was mentioned, but on thing was clear, LA Recs and Parks made little attempt to find out, why bother with science when you can speculate.
As summer waned, we moved on to the Huntington Gardens and there, in two ponds were the remains of the summer blooms of both pink and yellow lotus flowers.
I took this cel phone snap two years ago today.
I was on my honeymoon staying in Manhattan and Brooklyn we were taking long walks through the city we knew well but had not visited in many years. I had been happily insulated in the frenzied planning in the months leading up to our wedding, and had not paid much attention to much news.
On this day, on Wall Street in 2008, some where in my view, the banking system was reeling from the now famous “72 hours when the money stopped flowing”. Lehman Brothers had been let to fall, and the giant bail outs would follow. There was no smoke, nor helicopters over lower Manhattan that day, but the disaster emanating from those distant towers would change the world and lives for ever.
I overheard a man telling another that he had dreamed that his photographic equipment was floating slightly offshore. The power to the packs and soft boxes appeared to be on, as the floated some 30 meters from the pebble beach. He waded out to retrieve the lighting but the suddenly large waves crashing on the shore pushed him back.
A former tutor of the man was sitting on the sand and said, “it’s the picture that’s important, not the equipment, You’ve got to get out of the forest”
Before the scene closed a tug boat suddenly appeared close to shore and the equipment was grabbed. “I was mugged by a tug”, the man said
Cindy came over yesterday and we compared the Nikon D300 with her new D300s, then took images of a ceramic Chinese leader and played with the settings on both cameras. While demonstrating the features that I was familiar with, I found one or two that I was not.
As locals know, in 2011, Echo Park Lake will undergo irrevocable changes. An $80million project will see the lake drained, many trees cut down and the banks rebuilt along with a host of other alterations.
We hope the renewal will be successful, however, one things is for sure, it will never be the same Echo Park Lake. I am offering this print as a memory of the park we have come to know and love it.
“Echo Park in winter” is printed on archival Fine Art paper with Ultra Chrome inks for rich accurate colors and a long life. Each print is signed on the reverse and titled on the front and measures 17 x 11 inches. A framed version is also available with free delivery within the 90026 zip code.
I have donated 10% of the profit on the sale of these prints to the non profit Echo Park Film Center, the rest of the income will go to a film I am planning about the park and life around it as we move toward the draining.
Please email me and I can arrange delivery/shipping and payment with you (paypal. check. visa etc). “Echo Park in winter” on special nostalgic sale in 1984 prices (the last time the lake was drained) – $120 for a Sgned limited edition print 17 x 11 print
In London I once heard the poem: “Your two lips, remind me of the tulips, but they’re not yellow”
Waiting eagerly for family to arrive, I notice the floor at Los Angeles International Airport
Bradbury Building cel phone pic: 1893 built architectural gem on Broadway and 3rd Street in Los Angeles. I was able to secure this location for the Doug Hill Master Class field trip. The students needed no encouragement as the interior of this building invited us to shoot every where. While the sun shifted overhead, the conditions changed dramatically throughout the day.