Last weekend I escaped to the city of angels–that wonderfully mesmerizing microcosm and equally atrocious lattice of freeways and crush of people called Los Angeles. Specifically, I was back downtown with my friend Brian, who is always up for adventures. And by adventures I mean stuffing our faces with delicious food from Eggslut and then proceeding to stagger all over the streets in egg coma.

The day started off innocuously enough at Grand Central Market, where I reunited with my forever love, the Avo Burger, and the infamous Slut:

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Slut: a coddled organic egg on top of a smooth potato puree, poached in a glass jar and served with toasty crostini.

The brioche bun on that burger is really good. I’d happily eat it on its own.

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The top of the US Bank tower peeks between two brick walls in Los Angeles.

I saw this while walking around post-lunch. I like the reflections of windows onto the left building wall.

It’s been a while since I’ve been to the Last Bookstore, so down Spring Street we went to peruse this lovely trove of books.

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View from the second floor. There’s a stage for performances toward the left of this picture (unseen.) The bookstore is very cozy and fairly quiet. It’s very relaxing to walk down the aisles and curl up next to a shelf with a book.

On the second floor exists the sci-fi/fantasy genre, international/other language books and media, and a whole corridor of discounted $1 books.

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The infamous book arch and portal are on the second floor. This is probably when my Instagram portrait was shot.
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There were sections of the second floor that were arranged solely by color.

It was a nice day to be out–75F and balmy. I was surprised I was comfortable in just a plain tee! I’m usually bundled and layered to the nth degree.

After browsing the bookstore we headed into the Arts District to take some portraits.

Outfit: Target Mossimo black v-neck tee, Uniqlo Ultra Stretch denim, Ray-Ban Clubmaster II prescription sunglasses, old Nike Lunarglide 4+

I really like the simplicity of an all-monochrome scheme. Granted if I were standing out in the sun with no breeze all day in dark colors, I might not be such a happy gal. But this was comfortable and simple and I felt confident andΒ soignΓ©e as Kali would put it.

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The Arts District is colorful and inspiring, with many murals featuring artists’ work all over building walls. This one is outside a gallery. I thought Brian’s shirt fit well with the pinks and purples of this mural.

Just about a mile away from the Arts District is Little Tokyo. There is a lot of great Japanese food and wares in this area. Unfortunately we didn’t have any more room for snacks that day, but I did spot some lovely blossoms on the trees lining the street.

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You can’t go wrong shooting anything in LA. There’s always something new to see at every corner; though I wonder if that’s just my excitement at a new place rather than anything truly photographically compelling.

It’s always fun to get out of the ordinary and see something new. I greatly enjoy these little day trips just so I can reset my creativity and be inspired for the upcoming week. What do you do to recharge yourself mentally?

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12 thoughts on “Downtown redux

  1. Very nice pictures indeed! I remember being quite negatively impressed by Downtown LA when I went there last year. All these streets full of decaying walls and stores were far from the idea we have about LA from media. But after a few days there strolling around (although there wasn’t that much time for strolling in the middle of E3), you can see a particular charm to this part of the city. Your pictures capture it very well, I’d love to get the address of that bookstore by the way, if it’s not too far from the convention center I might go take a look there this year.

    And yes, I find that your outfit is very soignΓ©e indeed. Simple can do wonders. This pair of denim is really great, I think I’ll keep a tab on them for the next time I need a replacement (since I wear jeans almost every day I go through them quite quickly unfortunately. No matter the price point I never found a pair lasting more than 2 years, and the ones that lasted 2 years were among the cheapest!)

    1. Tossed you an email re: bookstore.

      I’ve almost always outgrown (read: gotten too large) for my pairs of jeans, so I’ve never had any fail on me! I’m hoping I can keep my size for a long while. Does Comptoir des Cotonniers sell jeans?

      1. Thanks for the e-mail, I’ll check it out πŸ˜‰

        Yes, Comptoir des Cotonniers does sell jeans. They have a quite wide range of pants every year, from the most basic denim kind to the more seasonal, “fashionable” kind in specific fabrics and colours. I have owned a few, still have one in shape. The style is quite nice, especially the colours they offer each year – usually quite muted, mineral. However, I find the quality quite disappointing compared to the price. And, in my small case at least, unless I get a “7/8th” length, I have to get 15cm removed from the pair… I think Comptoir’s denim, if you find a colour you like, are a good deal on sale though.

    1. I know Jane I can’t stop, that burger is worth the drive! πŸ˜€

      The Last Bookstore is both library, store, and art gallery. They did a really great job with the massive space! I should have taken more interior shots, but here’s some from when I first went last year:

      Even the light switch gets a disguise!

    1. Target Mossimo has some OK ones in black that I was considering–but too much of my closet is black already!

      The cherry blossoms must be coming in to DC. Can’t wait for your shots!

  2. i really enjoy your walking tour type posts, you seem to have a bit different perspective which resonates with me as i’m a bit of a nerd/bookworm/art person haha. i already knew LA was a cool place but it’s nice to see more intimate portraits of it. that portal looks way cool and i can’t imagine a bookstore having anything arranged by colour.. way cool! as a former librarian in high school i think most people who have ever had to arrange things might have a mild conniption trying to find anything – it’s rad that an actual commercial place is doing so πŸ˜‰ i personally have my shelf colour coded too, but as they’re mostly food books (and only about 100 books) it hasn’t been too hard to find something!

    1. I was wondering about the color-arranged shelves–how would you find anything??? But I guess it solves the “it was a red book” question that some librarians/booksellers might get. Well, here you go–all the red books we carry! Have at it. I didn’t look at the titles or authors to check if they were alphabetized; I should do that sometime.

      I’m glad you enjoy the tour posts! (it’s sort of what I love to do!) There will be more of those, with outfit shots sprinkled in πŸ˜›

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