January 30, 2010

Polished stainless steel waves, frozen in time before they can crash to the ground of South Grand in downtown Los Angeles. I’m, of course, referring to Frank Gehry’s breathtaking Disney Hall. Seeing his masterpiece for the first time was a kind of religious experience, and yet, until tonight I had never taken a single photograph. A big part of the reason is that I don’t like to create common images, particularly of landmarks so often photographed.

Tonight I had planned to shoot in Chinatown, but without finding my mark, continued driving, and ended up in front of Disney Hall. I started at the structures North side, breaking it into pieces, and spent some time blending the hall’s surrounding organics and steel, eventually finding a combination I was happy with. Readying myself to leave, there was a feeling that I hadn’t tried hard enough, so I decided to investigate further. Finding my way to the back, or West side of the building, I came upon a small path where you can actually go between some of the “waves”. It was here that the magic began, and this is exactly what I saw. Other than increasing the blacks, no Photoshop was used in this photograph. It’s as if the building is actually breathing. Steel gills drawing in the light, and releasing winged apparitions into the night. Looking at those walls tonight, so much beauty surrounding me, I was almost brought to tears.

The Birth of Night Birds – Disney Hall – No. 1 of a planned series
ISO 800, 24-70 @ 32mm, f/2.8 @ 1/6 sec – handheld – available light

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