Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Mt Wilson Burn

A small brush fire burned on top of Mt. Wilson near the community of Altadena. Quick response from fire crews and no wind made for unusually quick work of the fire.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
Water drop by an Air-Crane.

Friday, October 13, 2017

LA Death Star

The Renzo Piano Building is under construction at Fairfax near Wilshire Blvd. It will house a new theatre for the Academy of Motion Picture and Sciences Complex at that location. The new building resembles a "Death Star" from the film Star Wars, not sure how intentional that was.
Will be a truly fascinating structure when completed, hopefully Darth will be pleased.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
Alderaan beware.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Indigenous Peoples Day

The City of Los Angeles has officially eliminated Columbus Day and replaced it with Indigenous Peoples Day. The first Indigenous People Day will officially take place on the second Monday of October 2019. Today's was celebrated in the spirit of.
No word yet if the statue of Christopher Columbus will be removed from the L.A. County Courthouse grounds. For now there is a cyclone fence placed around it.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
In 2107 Los Angeles changed it.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Coldplay Angel

Coldplay held their "A Head Full of Dreams" concert last Friday at the Pasadena Rose Bowl. A giant cloud shaped like an angel floated over the arena as the band performed in to the night.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
A head full of dreams.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Happy 127th Yosemite

Happy 127th birthday to the Yosemite National Park.
The park was established by an act of congress on October 1, 1890.
Shot this image at Tunnel View as a moon started to rise over half dome in a cloudy sky.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2015
Moonrise over Tunnel View.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Helms Bakery Noir

The famous Helms Bakery sign on Venice Blvd in Los Angeles.
The Helms Bakery is now defunct and the building serves as a group of home furnishing stores and outlets.
The Helmsman statue was also moved to Marina Del Rey's Burton Chase Park. The Helmsman also became the part of the logo for the local beach cities paper, The Argonaut. The logo was removed from the paper a couple years back, but is still used for their online edition.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
Helms Olympic Bread.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Take A Knee

Demonstrators hold a "take a knee" and hold a "die in" at Donald Trump's star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame. The "die in" was a protest against war with North Korea and the "take a knee" was in support of athletes right to free speech.

Photos by Ted Soqui © 2017
Dead roach on Donald Trump star.

Taking a knee.

Die in.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Happy Birthday Tommy

Happy Birthday to Los Angeles Dodger Great, Tommy Lasorda.
He celebrated his 90th birthday on the same day as the Dodgers win their NL West divisional title for the fifth strait year.
Congratulations to both Tommy and the Dodgers.

Took this image of Tommy during practice at Dodger stadium back in 1994.
He definitely had some good speed on those pitches.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 1994
Throwing some heat.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

México '85

32 years ago on this date, I was on a plane to cover a giant earthquake near México City. Had a bag full of black and white film and two Nikon film cameras.
Was amazing to watch and photograph people put their lives together after such a terrible earthquake.
Photographed this woman carrying some wood for fuel to cook with. Most of the homes in her colonia were made of adobe, they crumbled and were destroyed in the quake.

Sadly another catastrophic quake struck on the same date 32 years later.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 1985
'85 quake.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

LA Weekly Cover

An image I photographed of a street vender is featured on the cover of LA Weekly. 
The story is about how street vending is not legal in Los Angeles, one of the largest cities in the world that does not allow street vending. 
All that may change with new city regulations and licensing laws in the works. 
In the meantime, street vendors like the Guatemalan woman in the photo, will continued to be ticketed, harassed,  and have their possessions confiscated by law enforcement.

Photo by Ted Soqui for the LA Weekly © 2017
Vending in LA.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Thousands March in Support of DACA

Thousands of "Dreamers" and supporters of the DACA act march through downtown Los Angeles. The Trump administration rescinded the DACA act earlier in the day leaving 800,000 recipients in limbo until congress decides what to do with their status.
The march started at Olvera Street and ended at LA City Hall.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017

Monday, September 4, 2017

Pro DACA March in Los Angeles

Hundreds of pro-DACA supporters and "Dreamers" marched to keep the DACA program in place. Trump is planning to overturn and end the act by executive order within six months. There are approximately 800,000 recipients of the DACA program, many of them living in the Los Angeles area, which allows them to work, serve in the military,  and go to school legally without fear of deportation.
LA Weekly slideshow click here.

Photos by Ted Soqui © 2017



Not the only one.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Twilight Fire Fighting Ops @ La Tuna Fire

As day turns in to night, the water dropping helicopters of LA City, LA County, and Erickson continue in to the evening. New night time flying technology has extended the flight hours of fire fighting capabilities in to night. It's amazing to watch these giant choppers fly and drop water at night on the La Tuna fire, which is officially the largest fire in LA City history.

Photos by Ted Soqui © 2017
Erickson Air-Crane flying over the moon.

Fire fighter spotting water drops in Sun Valley.

Night drop.

LA County Fire Hawk.

Erickson Air-Crane doing a night drop.

Night burn.

Monday, August 28, 2017

The Hotel Rosslyn

Early morning view of the downtown Los Angeles Hotel Rosslyn from Skid Row. The hotel was built in 1923 and was owed by the Hart brothers who incorporated a heart sign on top of the building.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
Popular Prices.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The Great American Eclipse

Four months ago I started to seriously plan for photographing the Great American Solar Eclipse. I wanted to be one of the first terrestrial Americans to see the amazing event, so Oregon would be the place to be. 

I downloaded several maps and searched the line of totality for any points of interest that looked interesting. Nothing really stood out except for Mt. Jefferson, a giant strato volcano. Next I used the photographer's ephemeris to search where, when, how high the sun would be during totality. I found a point deep in the Willamette Forest accessible by a tiny fire road and 4 mile hike. That would be the spot for me. 2 weeks before E-day a giant forest fire took over much of the Mt. Jefferson area filling it with smoke and fire. The forest service shut off all access to the area. There went all my planning up in smoke.

Plan B was to be somewhere on the Oregon coast. Searching through weather reports for the last 4 years showed in August cloud cover would be highly likely. Recent future weather reposts gave the coastal city Lincoln City a 50/50 chance of cloud cover. Many eclipse chasers would make plans to avoid the area and head to the desert area town of Madras instead. 50/50 seemed like good odds to me, way better than any Vegas odds for sure. 

I landed in Portland a day before, every flight was completely full, and the airport was at capacity. I had fears that my car reservation would be cancelled or not honored after hearing news reports of Hertz Rent a Car cancelling reservations and re-booking at astronomical rates. Rental rates a week before started at $1000 per day, if you could get one.

Things started to look up at the Enterprise Car Rental booth. The company planned for the eclipse surge by adding more cars and workers. They had my booking and even upgraded me to a new Dodge Ram 4x4 SLT with a 400 hp Hemi engine, 8 speed transmission, and a full tank of gas.

I drove down to to coast on E-day via the 5 freeway early in the morning, traffic was light due to everyone was heading to eastern Oregon and the city of Madras to avoid any cloud cover. I saw the night sky was clear with stars, so far my luck was good. Got down to the coast line and started to see a bit of fog hugging the coast. I didn't unpack and set up incase I needed to move and find a cloudless sky. Figured being on the actual coast would be too risky and drove inland about a mile where it was all crystal clear blue Oregon sky. There was a beautiful empty field where I used the 4x4 to drive on to and set up with 30 mins to set up. The good thing is that I have been drilling setting up quickly months before hand.

The eclipse started slowly. Over the next hour the temperature would drop by at least 15-20 degrees as the sky grew darker. It also became quieter. Five minutes before the eclipse I checked battery and memory card capacity. All was good. The solar filter I made was working well and I began to loosen it for removal during totality. 

With all of the preparation, including several books read, photos studied, videos watched, nothing can really prepare you for totality. It is very different and difficult to fully describe how truly amazing it is.

Finally, a round black disk that was the Moon moved very slowly in front of the Sun, completely blocking out the Sun and turning day in to night. It was epic. I removed my solar filter and began to shoot totality for the next 2 minutes. Here are the results. 

It was a Great American Eclipse.
Great American Eclipse.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Day of Diversity March in Venice Beach

Hundreds of LA area people march in a day of diversity march. The march started in Venice Beach and made they way down the boardwalk, and then to Google headquarters in Santa Monica. After a short rally, they did a long 30 block march to HBO offices in Santa Monica to demonstrate against a new show about the confederacy.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
Hey hey, ho ho....

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Dodger Stadium

This is what a sell-out crowd at Dodger Stadium looks like.
The Dodgers hosted the Padres at Union Night last night.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
Go Blue!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Eclipse Test

Began testing on the Sun and Moon in anticipation of the Great American Eclipse on August 21.
The Sun and Moon both appear about the same size in our skies above earth, the moon is actually 400 times smaller, yet 400 times close to Earth. Those two calculations make the Moon and Sun appear to be the same size in the sky, that's what gives us the total eclipse effect.
Photographed these two images from my porch in Los Angeles.

Photos by Ted Soqui © 2017
The Sun with sunspot.

The moon with jet aircraft.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Monsoon Season

Ginormous clouds build over the afternoon skies of Los Angeles. The monsoons have arrived.
This view is from the United Methodist Church on Wilshire Blvd.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
Afternoon delight.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Adam West Tribute at LA City Hall

The City of Los Angeles gave tribute to the Batman, Adam West, last night.
Mayor Garcetti and Chief Beck lit the Bat signal against city hall, as thousands of Angelenos watched as it glow against city hall.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
LA does it right.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Echo Park Lake Lotus Super Bloom

The famed lotuses of Echo Park Lake have already started to bloom and it may be one of the most bountiful bloom events in recent history. Traditionally the lotuses enjoy warmer weather to start their bloom event, but conditions are premium for an earlier bloom. The colorful flowers should last through late July. Go see and enjoy them now, if you are taking photos leave your tripod at home.

Photos by Ted Soqui © 2017
First bloom.

Tandem beauties.


Thursday, June 1, 2017

Angeli Breaks Through

A 1000 ton 40 foot long tunnel boring machine named "Angeli" breaks through at Grand Ave Arts/Bunker Hill subway station in downtown this morning.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
Break through.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Memorial Day 2017

The removal of the colors on Venice Beach.

Photo by Ted Soqui © 2017
Venice Pride.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Marciano Art Foundation Now Open

The Marciano Art Foundation Gallery is now open to the public.
Visited the museum today, it was quite amazing.
Sign up online and bring your walking shoes, this museum is huge and there is plenty to see.
Hopefully the cafe will open soon.

Photos by Ted Soqui © 2017
Two Suns by Adrian Villar Rojas

Ground floor entrance.

Ground floor exhibit of hellscapes.

Millard Sheets mosaic detail. 
Top floor exhibits.

Murakami exhibit.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Venice Beach Freakshow RIP

The famous Venice Beach Freakshow located right on the Venice boardwalk is now closed. They have been quickly forced out by their landlords. Local rents for businesses have sky rocketed due to high demand from wealthy tech companies that have moved on over the last few years. Snapchat LLC has been on a land gobble all over Venice forcing out many locals out along with the Venice way of life. Many Venice locals have seen funky Venice turn in to Beverly Hills by the Sea. The Freakshow is the latest victim of a sea change in the area. The new tenant for the former Freakshow building has not been announced, many have speculated it would house more Snapchat offices. Snapchat LLC recently denied that they had a lease with the building's owner.

Photos by Ted Soqui for The Argonaut © 2017
Bearded lady.

Morgue with a steel hook in his face.

The smallest man.

Live turtle with two-heads.

The cast and owners of the Venice Freakshow.

Wolf Boy.