The Photography of Rick Rodney

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Rick Rodney is a Los Angeles native who grew up in the Valley and toured the world as the frontman of hardcore band STRIFE. He began documenting the moshpits, stages, and people he met on his travels and back home in Los Angeles. The quality of his compositions and his ability to find something special everywhere he looked led to photography taking over his life and becoming both his passion and his job. We’ve long admired his work for its tenderness, attention to detail, and no-compromise style no matter who he’s shooting for.  Plus it’s always a lot of fun to see the madness and brotherhood of a really good mosh pit. Please enjoy this interview along with a selection of recent works. 

Favorite taco spot?
I love the homie Steven Arroyo’s spot Esquela for the restaurant vibe. His food is insane, authentic Angeleno, and he has the best taste aesthetically. And the refried beans are the best I’ve ever had… Seriously. There used to be a truck called Tacos Tamix right by my building near Macarthur Park that make my favorite Al Pastor but they had to split (I think they’re down near Pico/Union now).

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Sikhs of Los Angeles ~ Photography by Meet Frankie C.

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Photographer Frankie C. is an L.A. native with a deep appreciation for the city and its residents from every culture, neighborhood, and lifestyle. He was recently invited to the Sikh Gurdwara Temple in North Hollywood to observe and document the rituals and community there, and make portraits of some of the temple’s members. Please read his statement on the project, and then enjoy the images he created.

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We Need to Do Something About Eric Andre

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Eric André is one of the funniest people on television and regularly delights us with his absurd, sometimes straight up insane comedy. His talk show is the last talk show that ever needs to be created as he pretty much demolishes the entire genre. Literally.
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The Photography of Gregory Bojorquez

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Gregory Bojorquez first came to our attention four years ago, when his photograph of a shooting in Hollywood made the front page of the L.A. Times. It was the first photograph shot on film that made the front page in over a decade. But we were late… Gregory has been making indelible images long before that, and has continued to document life in Los Angeles with a unique style, a sense of playfulness, and a depth that can only come from personal experience. His photos are remarkable because you can sense the love he has for his subjects but also feel his need to create art, to define a moment. To cast the neighborhood of his youth and his present in bronze and say that this, right here, matters. Boyle Heights is lucky to have someone like Gregory roaming her streets and meeting people, talking with friends, eating, and taking pictures. Please enjoy this selection of brand new scans from the photographer’s recent work, along with a Q&A.
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The Paper Pranks of Obvious Plant

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Jeff Wysaski is a comedian in L.A. who recently started Obvious Plant. What is obvious plant? It’s a series of pranks including fakes signs, brochures, and other printed matter which are placed around town just for the lulz. His most recent prank is the most extravagant yet, and involves full color brochures placed in Hollywood Blvd. tourist kiosks for a mythical “Dadland” amusement park which promises naps, grilling, and discounts on sandals. Let’s take a tour of the paper-based pranks Obvious Plant has been putting around L.A. in 2015…

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Interview with Piper Kaplan of L.A. Band Puro Instinct

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Puro Instinct is native Angeleño sisters Piper and Skylar Kaplan. Rather than describe their music you should just give it a listen (SoundCloud embeds below). Puro Instinct will open up for Blackbird Blackbird on Wednesday January 28th, as part of Red Bull Sound Select Presents: Los Angeles. The show is only $3 if you RSVP here.

What’s your favorite taco spot in LA?

Hmm.. that’s tough! Probably Tacos Azteca on Verdugo Rd in Glendale..

Did you grow up in Los Angeles? Which part? Best childhood memory of LA in those days?
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VBCA ~ A Short Film by Max Kitaev

Anyone who’s spent time in Venice Beach knows the magic of certain foggy days, when everything is wrapped in grey mystery. You walk towards a light you think might be the sun, but it’s a motorcycle headlight and suddenly a kid on a skateboard comes out of nowhere and makes almost crashing into you look like a work of art. In the distance you can see other shapes, but you give up guessing what they are and just enjoy the scene.

Filmmaker Max Kitaev has captured the Venice fog beautifully in his video VBCA. He pairs it with an excerpt from a poem, which we’ll include below as well.

the clouds forming a ceiling that caps a feeling of grey.
greyness at the birth of the day…the sun wanting to play,
wanting so much to play, like a child at a locked gate.
waiting for the moment when the pin is slipped.

from “6am on the beach in Venice” by William F. DeVault

People I’ve Shot in L.A. ~ Photographs by Ef Be

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Ef Be, who you’ll remember from last year’s “Personal History: Documenting Gang Graffiti in Los Angeles“, now shares some of his street photography along with handwritten captions. You can view more of his photography here, or check out his screenprints and music here.

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Tell Your True Tale – East Los Angeles Presents “In the Company of Memories” by Eric Franco Aguilar

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Author and Journalist Sam Quinones left the Los Angeles Times last year and has since been doing some of the best work of his career. Besides writing for the New York Times and other outlets, he also finds time to mentor aspiring authors and storytellers in Los Angeles through his Tell Your True Tale series of talks and workshops. The release of Tell Your True Tale Vol 2 is this Saturday from 3-4pm at the East L.A. Library, where the workshop was born. 4837 E. 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90022. Please enjoy one of the stories from the book below…

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L.A. Artist Ilma Gore Will Tattoo Your Name on her Body for $10

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An interesting Kickstarter project brought to us by KTLA5 is Mission to tattoo my whole body! by Illma Gore. The Australian-born artist just hit the $6,000 she needs to complete the Kickstarter, but still has lots of room on her legs for your name ($10) or design ($100).

Here’s what she says about the idea:

I want to be a singular tattoo for my latest art exhibition, and I want it to be your names. This is going to be an art exhibition in LA featuring my body and your names. I think the tattoo on my forehead says it best ‘Life is art’. There is something absurd & beautiful about having an accumulation of absolute strangers names draped over my pale goth skin, even if half of them are ‘Penis Butt’. Why? you might ask, simply because I can, I know what I’m about son, and I am my own ultimate canvas. Like my art exhibitions and murals this is a social and artistic experiment! Each persons name to me represents YOU the main protagonist in your own story. I will be covered in a hundred tiny stories.

She provides helpful diagrams to let you see where the current tattoos are, and where your name or design will go.

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Q&A with Randy Wyner, Founder of Chronic Tacos

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In our long-running quest to give you, our dear readers, insight into the grand pageant that is the taco lifestyle, we seek out individuals who can teach us about their business success in the taco game. One such person is Randy Wyner. At age 26 he founded Chronic Tacos, which now has 30 locations in North America, with a plan to get to 100. He has brought the taco lifestyle to Canada in a big way, with several locations in British Columbia. Let’s chat with Randy about what makes a great taco and what the taco life means to him…

What’s your all-time favorite taco that isn’t served at Chronic Tacos?
I’ve had some amazing Lobster tacos in Mexico.

What do you order at Chronic Tacos?
I always order the beer-battered fish taco, Baja style and the Al Pastor taco with a side of rice and beans.

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