Thursday, March 28, 2013

Traveling the town...

Waaaay back in early January, my wife, some good friends, and I went up to Los Angeles to celebrate a one of the friends birthday. The first stop on our outing was the Los Angeles rail museum, Travel Town, in Griffith Park.
Some of us had never been to Travel Town, and those who had, hadn't been there since childhood.

Travel Town main line. ©Mike Vega 2013
1985 Canon AE-1 100asa B/W film

Travel Town is located on the "backside" of Griffith Park. There are locomotives and rail cars from eras long past, reaching back nearly 100 years. Some of these are undergoing restoration, and the "inventory" changes with donations and trading with other railway museums.

Vintage Pullman car. ©Mike Vega 2013
1985 Canon AE-1 100asa B/W film

We wandered the park like grounds for a couple of hours, imagining the era when rail travel was the primary method of long distance travel... Chatting about the experience of traveling by train and its very tactile qualities. The motion, the sounds, the amenities... Sleeping cars, dining cars, observation cars, train stations, bridges...

Inside the belly of the beast... ©Mike Vega 2013
1985 Canon AE-1 100asa B/W film

The size of the trains cannot be easily ignored, the textures of the materials, iron, steel, wood, have all the character of a persons face who has lived life.
It is easy here to let your mind wander into what lives were like, for the rail men, engineers, conductors, and passengers of these times when you are standing in or next to these wonderful time capsules.

Style to spare... ©Mike Vega 2013
1985 Canon AE-1 100asa B/W film

Some of the cars have so much personality, it's almost as if they can talk. Many of the cars have biographies presented, some just have dates of operation. Pullman cars like this likely transported would be stars and starlets west to Los Angeles and Hollywood seeking fame, fortune and stardom. Many likely found ordinary lives or...

Locomotion. ©Mike Vega
1950 Tower 120 200asa film

These machines moved countless numbers of people, tons upon tons of freight and goods and helped to build this country, literally from the ground up. Trains are ingrained in our collective memories as characters from books, and films, as sources of inspiration, gateways to freedom and so much more. 
Thankfully, there are people who love trains and volunteer their time and efforts to keep them alive for future generations to enjoy.


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Eat Your Art Out!

Recently the Angel City Derby Girls of Los Angeles, CA. held the 6th iteration of their annual fundraiser, Eat Your Art Out, with this years theme of "Creature Feature at the Drive-In".
A couple of friends and I headed out there, by way of Hermosa Beach, to support the team, see the art, eat the food, drink the beer and enjoy the night.
Of course I couldn't go without a camera, so I loaded my 1965 Canon Canonet with B/W film, and grabbed my Canolite flash unit.

Gourmet Hot Dogs, unique Ice-cream sandwich creations and gourmet burgers from mobile kitchens... ©Mike Vega 2013

Revelers, reveling... ©Mike Vega 2013

Giant 3-D "Space Invader". ©Mike Vega

The event was a great night out, if a lil' chilly. A good crowd, and lots of interesting things to look at and or bid on in the silent auction.

GeneviEvil of L.A.D.D. and Black Star Heroine of A.C.D.G. ©Mike Vega 2013

Live painting, that was auctioned off at the nights end... ©Mike Vega 2013

The packed main room of the event. ©Mike Vega 2013

A.C.D.G. Scarlets in damsel in distress mode, meeting and greeting the attendees... ©Mike Vega 2013

Ouija. ©Mike Vega 2013

Among the very cool pieces up for auction, were several "breast-casts" formed from Angel City skaters and decorated by various artists. The proceeds from these unique pieces went to the Keep a Breast Foundation.

Ambiance? "buzzzz-off buddy"... ©Mike Vega 2013

Sadly the one art piece that I was really into surpassed my self-imposed bid limit by half-way through the night... I came home empty handed, but others picked up some unique art and supported great causes while doing so.

BlackStar in distress? Say it ain't so! ©Mike Vega 2013

Dishing up the saltiest popcorn in all the land... and looking dapper all the while. ©Mike Vega 2013

Featured Creatures... ©Mike Vega 2013

"BROBOT". ©Mike Vega 2013

A costume so good, that not even her teammates recognized her. ©Mike Vega 2013

A.C.D.G. even thought to have a themed "photo-booth"! ©Mike Vega 2013

All in all, it was a terrific night and I am looking forward to the next event.