L.A. Street


Photo by Luis Torres

I’ve been thinking a lot about Street Photography lately, about what it means to me personally (see my rant post about that on my blog here) and the direction its moving in as a medium. All of this contemplation has also got me thinking about what street photography in my home town of Los Angeles looks like. What unique characteristics of the city and it’s residents should be emphasized in a street photo from the city of angels?

Photograph by Erwin Recinos

Photograph by Erwin Recinos

Inskeep Avenue South Central, LA by Nery Madrid

Photo by Nery Madrid

Visually, street photography often depicts bustling urban environments tightly crammed with people going about their lives.
What’s often lacking is a tangible sense of space or scale, two elements that I believe are crucial in depicting the city. Although there are places in LA that you can frequent to replicate that aesthetic (i.e. Downtown Los Angeles), is that really the best representation of the city? Los Angeles is a city unlike any other on earth. The vast, expansive landscape is as much a part of it’s identity as the people that inhabit it. The rhythm of neighborhood life is a lot less condensed and slower in many ways than other major cities.

Truly representative L.A. street photography is filled with liquor stores and food trucks, street vendors and bus stops, surrounded by desolate urban sprawl lined with palm trees.


Photo by Kwasi Boyd-Bouldin

There is so much to explore about street life in LA, let’s stop trying to make it look like a scene from Manhattan and focus on making it look like the incredible place it is.