Lens-Artists Challenge: Trees

The Trees of Los Angeles

1. Jacarandas – There are lots of Jacaranda trees in L.A. Most of them are Jacaranda mimosifolia, one of 49 different types of flowering jacaranda trees. The Mimosifolia is a sub-tropical tree native to south-central South America. They can be found all over Los Angeles and typically bloom in May/June.

2. The Coastal Coral tree is the official tree of the city of Los Angeles, California. This tree is a tropical that has a spreading multiple trunk habit that often spans or exceeds its height, which may reach fifty feet. The tree is prized in gardens for its beautiful orange summer flowers.

3. Australian Moreton Fig trees can be found all over Los Angeles. The huge fig tree in the photo below is in a central location in Beverly Hills. It was planted by an Australian in the 19th century.

4. Tipuana Tipu, also known as Tipa, Rosewood and Pride of Bolivia, is a South American tree found all around Los Angeles. They can grow as high as 50 to 70 feet tall by over 100 feet wide. Our very own Tipa (below) is a good example of that, completely dwarfing our house. It is close to 100-years-old.

5. Eucaliptus Trees are indigenous to Tasmania and southeastern Australia, but are very common in Los Angeles. California is best acquainted with Eucalyptus Globulus, also known as the blue gum. The tree is instantly recognizable by its minty scent.

6. Palm Trees – Last but certainly not least, Palm Trees are the quintessential symbols of Los Angeles.. California’s eighteenth century Franciscan missionaries were the first to plant palms ornamentally. But it was not until Southern California’s turn-of-the-twentieth-century gardening craze that the region’s leisure class introduced the palm as the region’s preeminent decorative plant. Providing neither shade nor marketable fruit, the palm was entirely ornamental. They are both loved and hated by the locals.

In response to Lens-Artists photo challenge: Trees 

Lens-Artists Challenge: History

I’ve visited quite a few historic sites in my travels, but as impressive and important as they were, none spoke to me with quite the intensity expected. I must confess I’m not a big history buff so my excitement is somewhat limited. So I’ve decided to focus on something closer to home and to the issues of the day. I am sharing photos I took at the National Museum of African American History and Culture, in Washington, D.C. The museum opened in September of 2016, several years after we left D.C. to Los Angeles. But we got to visit it in 2017 during our first visit to D.C. since moving. Everybody had been raving about it and it lived up to all the built up expectations. It’s not only an architectural wonder, the exhibitions are impressive and all done with such sensitivity and good taste! Their photo and video collections are out of this world. You start your self-guided tour on the ground level and work your way through history, floor by floor. I’m only sharing photos of the historic part of the museum, which looks at African American history from slavery to the struggles of the civil rights movement and more recent events. The images are very powerful and beautiful. This part of American history is still especially relevant now, given the racial divide Americans have been witnessing in the past couple of years.

For Patti Moed’s Lens-Artists Challenge: History

Lens-Artists Challenge: Around the Neighborhood

Los Angeles is a sprawling city, with numerous districts and neighborhoods. I live on the so-called Westside area, which includes Brentwood, West LA, West Hollywood, Westwood, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Bel Air, Venice, Pacific Palisades, and Century City among several other neighborhoods. We live in Brentwood but Santa Monica, Westwood, Venice and Century City are part of what I would call my extended neighborhood. Almost everything I do is in these neighborhoods, especially Santa Monica, which happens to be right next to Brentwood. Here are some of my favorite places in my neck of the woods.

Santa Monica Beach and downtown Santa Monica.

Santa Monica Pier.

Santa Monica residential street.

Santa Monica bluffs, the California Incline, the Pacific Coast Highway and Santa Monica Beach.

Third Street Promenade, Santa Monica.

UCLA Campus, in Westwood.

UCLA Campus, Westwood.

Westwood Street, with blooming Jacarandas.

Venice Beach.

Venice Beach Boardwalk.

Venice Canals Historic District. This is a residential area with beautiful homes and several man-made canals, originally built in 1905.

The Getty Center in Brentwood is one of the best museums in LA. It’s a short 10-minute drive from my house.

View of Century City from the Getty Center. The infamous 405 Freeway during the beginning of rush hour is seen below.

For Tina Shell’s Lens-Artists Challenge #36 – Around the Neighborhood

Lens-Artists: Architecture

National Congress, Brasilia, Brazil. Architect: Oscar Niemeyer

The National Museum of African American History and Culture, Washington D.C. Collaboratively designed by Freelon Group, Adjaye Associates and Davis Brody Bond.

Chicago Architecture.

National Gallery of Art, East Building Atrium. Architect: I. M. Pei

“Oculus,” the new World Trade Center Transportation Hub, New York City. Architect: Santiago Calatrava

The Broad Museum, Los Angeles, CA. Named for philanthropist Eli Broad, who financed the $140 million building to house his art collections. Architects: Architectural firm Diller Scofidio + Renfro

Walt Disney Concert Hall, home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Los Angeles, CA. Architect: Frank Gehry

The Roman Colosseum, the largest amphitheater ever built. Rome, Italy.

Temple of Jupiter, Pompeii, Italy.

For Lens-Artists Photo Challenge #35: Architecture