Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Urban Trip: Tehachapi, Pasadena & Glendale

Morning Coffee - Tehachapi, California
This last Sunday my wife and I left the kids with a sitter and traveled from our home in the central California Tehachapi Mountains, across the Mojave Desert, and down towards Los Angeles to a large flea market in Pasadena.

We got up early and, before heading out of town, we stopped at our local Starbucks for some coffee. I brought my camera--a Sony RX100 II--inside with me because you never know when photographic opportunities will present themselves. And soon enough they did.

I pointed my camera at a picture on the wall, focusing on the reflection in the glass, and captured Morning Coffee. The camera is small and extraordinarily silent, and I don't think anyone even noticed that I captured the image. Immediately after that I captured Love.
Love - Tehachapi, California
We hit the road out of Tehachapi and two hours later arrived in Pasadena at the flea market. Pasadena is known for its elaborate flea markets, which have even been featured on television, and the one at the Rose Bowl is the most well known. We went to that flea market back in July. This time we went to the flea market at the community college (which is still very extensive).

Early on I captured two photographs. Shoots & Ladder was a visual barrier between a sidewalk and some unsightly utility pipes. I was drawn to the angular shadows, the repeated shapes, and the contrast between the shoots and the metal surface behind. There's even a little optical illusion going on in that image.

Directly behind me from Shoots & Ladder was the scene seen in Well Can. I was drawn to the simplicity of two cans against a door with repeated lines. The bright "W" draws the eyes in. When you are capturing an image you should always look around to see if there are other potential photographs nearby.
Shoots & Ladder - Pasadena, California
On our way to the flea market we passed a restaurant called Pie 'N Burger. We commented that it sounded like a good place to eat. Well, sure enough, Pie 'N Burger had a food truck at the flea market. So that's where we ate lunch--it was every bit as good as we thought it would be. I captured Order To Go while waiting for our food to cook.

While walking through the flea market I saw these three bright reddish-orange suitcases for sale. I wasn't interested in buying them, but I thought they might make an interesting photograph, so I captured them and created Three Suitcases. As I look at the image, the well-known Robert Capa phrase comes to my mind: "If your pictures aren't good enough, you're not close enough." That's not to say that the photograph is good, but moving in closer certainly made for a more interesting image than a distant point-of-view.

After we finished at the flea market, before going home, we headed to Glendale to the Americana mall. There's a Coffee Bean there and we stopped in to get a drink. While waiting I snapped The Five Senses, which features a man using all five of his senses--touch, taste, smell (it's a coffee shop), sight and sound. With the silent camera he had no idea that I captured this image. I think there is some commentary in it, as well, since the lady outside the window, engrossed in her cell phone, is unaware of the man watching her. After this we drove back to our home in the country, leaving the urban scenes behind.
Well Can - Pasadena, California
Order To Go - Pasadena, California
Three Suitcases - Pasadena, California
The Five Senses - Glendale, California

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