Yes, I am going to be ghetto like that. It’s late, my mind is fried, and I just don’t have the capability to come up with a clever name. So, Hood it is :)
When I was visiting L.A this past April, my brother and I decided to take a walk through Uptown Whittier and do a night shoot. I grew up in Whittier and have seen the many changes (both good and bad) that the city has gone through. Never in a million years did I think that I would be photographing a Cartoonist in an alley, or a Mother and Daughter in a barber shop, or walking the streets until midnight.. practicing and shooting just about anything. But that is exactly what I did…and LOVED it! It was so fun walking by some old shops that have been around for years, restaurants that I use to hang out at after football games, and new stores that have recently opened that I wish were around while I was living there…like Starbucks. I have a bazillion stories that I could share with you about this cute little street, like my first group “date” when I was in 6th grade at Rocky Cola Cafe, the botched haircut I got from Marinello’s Beauty school, the Uptown Whittier Parade held every December that I marched in when I was in band (yes, I was in band, for 4 years baby, so don’t hate), and some other stories that would only be funny to me and my friends who were there at the time…like Erika, Jenn, Jill, TK or Jordan…yes…you ‘member!
To me, this is home, this is where I grew up and have so many fond memories of, where I still love to visit, go to the Wednesday night Farmers Market…get a funnel cake and a nice juicy hot dog, meet my childhood friends at Starbucks, buy my “Doyers” shirt, watch movies when I don’t feel like driving to an AMC, and yes, occasionally eat at Rocky Cola….just so I can reminisce about the good old days. Everyone has a place they call home and this is mine.
The owner was kind enough to let us in to take pictures of his shop, even though they were closed. I will definitely come back and do some wine tasting! If you are a lover of wine, you’ll have to join me! The shirt I wore to Travis’ first baseball game. Go “Doyers!”We always tease my dad that this could be his mother. They have the SAME exact unibrow and features….it could definitely be his mum! Why weren’t you around 10 years ago? For those of you who are local Whittier-ites, I am sure that you too have MANY stories to share about the good times at Rocky Cola. Friday night football, first dates, awesome milkshakes, the jukebox…and all the fun drama of being a teenager. Good times. This use to be a roach coach complex, but sheesh, they really turned this place around! Raise your hand if you made out in this Theatre? (My hand is raised) My partner in crime….David. Love you lil bro! Thanks for staying up WAY past your bedtime just to take pictures with me!
And to all my fellow photographers, if you are looking for a cool place to shoot with LOTS of character, check out Uptown Whittier. It’s easily accessible off the 605 freeway near Whittier Blvd or Beverly Blvd. And please, send me an email so that I can view your pictures! Happy Shooting!