Author Archives: fotoboy62
Do photos tell the truth? Or do they lie? Is photojournalism an art? Or a propaganda tool? Does the photographer manipulate his subject matter? Or does the viewer infer based on conjecture?
Though there is a time for theory and debate, ultimately being in the right place at the right time is what counts. Moreover, as a photographer “being there” is a result of “getting there” which is intrinsically dependent on bilateral respect.
It is our pleasure to unquestionably overcome challenging circumstances, executing above-and-beyond the call of duty, and actively pursuing the creation of kick-ass photos that benefit both artist and industry alike. Beholden to no one, Citizen LA and Ear Jelly celebrates the artist, revels in the prostitute, and endorses the product… well… as long as the drinks are flowin’.
A music festival created to inspire optimism & action around five important causes, GOODFest made its way to the Theater at Ace Hotel w/ performances from D∆WN, The Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Ensemble (featuring Bilal) and Jimmy LaValle of The Album Leaf.
Reaching the end of a “5 Shows / 5 Cities / 5 Causes” run, GOODFest delivered its final set of performances in Los Angeles for the last of its selected causes “LOVE”… of which proceeds go to support the Southern Poverty Law Center, an organization dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry.
Sharing the stage were other artists such as Butterscotch, Genevieve and Boogz, who, alongside headliners, demonstrated stunning artistry and delivered memorable performances. Additionally, live acts were supported by short films which reinforced the GOODFest festival arc, successfully bringing a sense of cohesion to the unique five-part series.
GOODFest kicked-off in NYC with Glass Animals, members of Gogol Bordello in New Orleans and in Seattle with D.R.A.M. Solange and Fantastic Negrito performed in Oakland on Friday. In five live-streamed shows, they brought together music, community, and technology to raise funds and connect people in the name of good.
Both Casey Caplowe (Co-Founder of GOOD Inc.) and Attorney James McElroy (SPLC Board Member) were present in Los Angeles to deliver poignant messages, encapsulating the overall mission-statement for the event and the associated charity. This while helpful volunteers were on hand to answer questions and accept donations in the spirit of the causes.
The festival was conceived by social impact company GOOD Worldwide and presented by PIXEL, phone by Google.
The Avalon nightclub was ground zero for an industry-only party announcing this year’s nominees for the 2017 AVN Awards. Hosted by Riley Reid and Aspen Rae, the star-studded Hollywood event ramped up from red carpet to red-light district in a matter of seconds and didn’t disappoint.
Nominees (and guests alike) were accommodating, gracious and accessible, granting us rare candid moments of an often tightly controlled persona. From fierce to submissive, and from silicon-cougar to girl-next-door, all our favorite candies were delightfully displayed and fabulously unwrapped.
Attendees included, Abella Danger, Romi Rain, Briana Banks, Kenzie Taylor, Jessa Rhodes, Bailey Brooke, Lily Adams, Norah Nova, Elsa Jean, Katrina Jade, Jojo Kiss, Gina Valentina, Uma Jolie, Melissa Moore, A.J. Applegate, Joanna Angel, Riley Nixon, Jasmine Webb, Ana Foxxx, Edyn Blair, Tia Cyrus, and more.
All hopefuls were present to celebrate a successful year in the industry while vying to take home an award in their respective areas of expertise which encompass movie production, web & technology, retail & distribution, and pleasure products. With far ranging categories such as “Best All-Girl Group Sex Scene”, “Best Big Butt Movie” and “Best Transsexual Series” there were plenty of opportunities to win and be honored in what is known as the “Oscars of Porn.”
The nomination party is simply a taste of what’s to come this January 2017 when AVN holds court in Las Vegas. Sponsored by MyFreeCams, and held at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, the annual AVN Awards Show is the premier gala of adult video recognizing titles, individuals, and companies for contributions to and excellence in the industry.
The beautifully restored Theatre at Ace Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles presented “Le Bal”; a theatrical extravaganza created by co-producers Cesar Hawas and Carly Usdin who bonded over their love of Drag.
An internationally renowned lineup hosted by Candis Cayne, including “RuPaul’s Drag Race” favorites Manila Luzon & Thorgy Thor, plus the “Queen of Orlando” Darcel Stevens, double-plus “The World’s Biggest Bitch” Jackie Beat, and YouTube Sensation Brendan Jordan graced the stage in this third installment of Le Bal, which finally made its way from Orlando to Los Angles. The flawless production not only demonstrated the fortitude of its creators in the wake of the Orlando shooting, but speaks volumes of the resilience of the Orlando LGBTQ community as a whole.
Le Bal is an exquisitely crafted production that successfully elevates Drag beyond simple entertainment and redefines this wonderful art form.
The photo/video game changes once again with the release of the new visuals app Hyperspektiv. Citizen LA was granted access to a beta release for a test drive… it proved to be one hell of a mind trip.
I quickly noticed that Justin Boreta of The Glitch Mob was associated with this project. Hmm… interesting. So, I immediately popped open a brewski, pulled out my junior forensics kit, downloaded the app from the Apple store, and was off and running.
On the surface, Hyperspektiv seemed like a well-designed app; user friendly, easy to navigate, and polished. The development team at Phantom Force went to great lengths to create a slick fluid UX environment. But once I pointed the camera at my subject (in this case my shoe), I knew my seat-back and tray-table better be in their upright and locked position.
As I scrolled from one setting to another the anticipation crept in, not unlike coming on to a good roll and realizing that you’ll be leaving reality for a bit.
My fingers swiped through an amazing landscape of filters. With names such as Aura-Detector, Mezcal, Bat Country, Tripsauce, and Afterparty, I had no choice but to crank-up my stereo and let myself go.
I drifted through vortices and wormholes and brightly colored kaleidoscopic patterns. There were out-of-phase 3D images and rolling video that resembled damaged BetaMax tape or scrambled porn on 70’s cable TV.
I was in, I was lost, and I hadn’t even panned-up from my shoes!
Dare I do it? Do I point this thing at my face? What kind of selfie will it show me? I flipped the phone’s camera, adjusted this-and-that and added the other… and there I was/was-not, my true self: a psychedelic satyr staring back at me. I had to grab it quick before it dissipated into the electronic ether!
Hyperspektiv, shows the user its version of the world in real time, always moving, shifting, oscillating and undulating like an exotic Vegas dancer bathed in benjies. Unlike Las Vegas, you are allowed to take a snapshot in this seductive continuum, or record it as video, but you must do it in real time, NO GOING BACK.
The Hyperspektiv app definitely deserved a baptism-by-fire test drive. So, I packed a bag, took a bong rip and headed into downtown LA to continue this odyssey.
Upon entering the train station I was met with a delicious stream of stroked shadows in negative noir tones. In the rail car, I tweaked colors and textures, hinting at pop-art compositions, taking me from the realm of mechanical structures into the microscopic world of organic geometry. The visuals were intoxicating; I really didn’t want to put the camera down, nor even look away.
I snapped back into reality for a disappointing second to move beyond the Union Station concourse, but dove right back-in for a pan across the architecture of the city. Here, I visited the far side of the sun, where luminous creatures floated past me doused in auras of pink and blue, and buildings melted into swaths of quicksilver or converged into complex, lace-like patterns.
Further into the evening I wandered into a buddy’s art show, high on my app. There, my fascination spread across the room like a virus. One by one people were spellbound as they peered into the phone and saw what was REALLY out there; kinda like the sunglasses worn in the movie “They Live”, which allowed the user to see beyond the veneer of alien hosts. As the DJ spun, amazing images were being produced in real-time undoubtedly lending itself perfectly to any club or party environment. Needless to say, this app was a big hit.
Continuing deep into the night, at the afterparty, a few fans of Hyperspektiv sat on the couch with me to relive the journey. With the photos and videos safely stored on the phone, and in the cloud, we had the opportunity to tweet and insta some really unique stuff.
Hyperspektiv brings the power of complex visual effects right into your pocket, allowing the user to take an artistic journey as limitless as the their imagination. Best of all, when you get back from your trip, you’ll be able to share the experience.
The official last night of ‘Bar 107′ was Sunday, May 31, 2015. Ten fucking years in business. Life, motherfuckers. Fuckin’ life! 10 years! Thump, thump, thumping away!
At first known to me as a local artists’ gathering spot, especially after art walks, and various resident art shows. Cheap booze. Even cheaper artists. Classic dive bar situation. Olympia in a can. House Whiskey & Coke for $5. Healthy pours too. None of this measuring cup crap. Fuck no. Manly pours. Drinker’s pours. Their unofficial motto should have been, ‘Fuck you, be nice, handle your shit, or get the fuck out. In the mean time you’ll be taken care of’. A fuckin’ bar-bar, brother!
The decor a mishmash of 1970s kitsch and your cool uncle’s bedroom who still lived with his mom well after the age of 30. They even had full on cum-shot-porn blasting away on the TVs for a while. Yeah, baby! Along, with, of course, the Cartoon Network.
I was there when many of you weren’t. I was there on New Year’s Eves in my big dumb hats. Cinco de Mayos in my big dumb hats. 4th of July’s in my other big dumb hats. Had taken/introduced hundreds of friends to Bar 107. Met dozens of women there (yeah, baby). Had some of the best times of my life in the Downtown LA drinking community there. I’ve written heavily about it. Praised it. The number of photos Mini-Beast Rick Mendoza has taken I can’t even begin to count.
The music. Kick-ass Djs cranking the 80s & 90s KROQ-type indie hits. Incredible sound system. Sometimes I went there to sit and drink and listen and in my mind watch the memories that each of these songs brings back. Most are recalled fondly. Some create tears. Other memories bring on the fear. But the bartenders always took care of you. The hot fucking bartenders. Christ. Got to know a lot of good people in that joint. Just about polished off the free pizza at the happy hours too.
hey you dirtbags… GONG SHOW KARAOKE tonight!!! Just remember, if you feel like a loser, its because you probably are.
— BAR 107 (@BAR107) February 25, 2010
I went to Bar 107 to celebrate. I went Bar 107 to cry. Went there to think. Went there for company. Went there just to simply drink. Went there and I was the only one on a late afternoon, or on a rainy night. I’ve been going once or twice a week for the past decade. I put in my time, boy. The-classiest-fucking-dive-bar in the city. I miss the smoking patio they used to have out back. Goddamn, so much is changing and disappearing in Downtown LA lately, quite suddenly, and mostly for the bad because its soul is being raped out of existence. A passion is no longer there. A life that once was. Yeah, yeah, you got this chef-inspired crap going on here, that cocktail lounge/craft beer infused bullshit going on there. Big-fucking-deal. That ain’t downtown anymore. It’s marketing now for the blank-generation. You know, the millennials. And run by robots who live on the Westside. Written about and chided by snobbish-cunts who won’t even walk the streets at night. Anyway, for all the good that Bar 107 has done for me thank you. Thank you, kids for giving it life. I will miss the hell out of you. I will never forget…
TONIGHT – Devil's Night!!! Come join us… IN HELL!!!
— BAR 107 (@BAR107) August 23, 2009
Now, I never, ever go out on Sundays. It’s a rule of mine. People know this about me. The Lord rests on Sundays does He not? So I went at the last possible second. Almost 11pm. Taking the #18 bus in from East L.A. No money in my pocket. Hoping I could rely on the kindness of strangers. I was flabbergasted at how much kindness was thrown my way. I thought I’d be heading out in 30 minutes with one dollar left in my wallet, barely enough for bus fare home. How pleasantly surprised I was. I had dozens of people asking me to go all day, I kept saying, no, no, no, I have no cash, I just can’t. I’m sorry. Thank you for asking. I was already there Thursday night after my reading at Art Share for “The Anna Broome Room’”in the arts district, figure that was it.
Fire breathers, baby! A man strutting the bar, he taking the fuel, me lifting the candle to his side, his finger tickling the flame, then, the explosions. Screams of bedazzlement. Shock. My god. Booze sprayed everywhere, on everybody man enough to hug the bar for dear life. For that’s what it fast became. A life raft with the rats clinging to, on, and over, sucking, imbibing, swallowing, snorting. the alcohol. People dancing on the bar. Shots flowing. Friends coming out of the woodwork putting drinks in my hands. Hell, dudes standing next to me, tripping on The Beast, buying me shots for the love of god.
The air pulsing. Throbbing. Grinding. Fucking. Sweltering. Packed. Champagne lapped off of bare breasts! People crying. Dogs howling. Clothing removed. Smelly sex in the bathrooms. The music cranked as loud as I’ve ever heard it before. And then when Vee Delgadillo got up on bar (LATINA OWNERSHIP AND THE TRUE POWER IN THIS FUCKING CITY), and the announcements were made that the kids were gonna stay and file in the courts to stay on, to fight the baffling eviction by the overlords, oops, I mean, landlords, well, then, my fucking god the place erupted, ejaculated with cum for all. It was an amazing experience. Something to behold. You could not breathe.
That night, in that atmosphere, that is exactly what happens for 30-consecutive-fucking-days at the bars when you go to a men’s soccer World Cup tournament in person. That was Paris for me again. Seoul, South Korea. Osaka, Japan. Cologne & Berlin Germany. Hell, even Old Town Pasadena way back for the ’94 cup when Brazil won and the pigs let us dance in the streets, hundreds of thousands of us running rampant up and down Colorado Blvd. Yeah, motherfuckers. Truly, it is good to be The Beast.
And so here’s to ya. I raise a glass of whiskey. Long Live Bar 107! May She Reina On…