Through the Lens: photos from November

canyon-john

Oh November, we hardly knew you.

December marks the beginning of the end of a lot of things, including this semester. The homestretch!

Before we get into what December holds, let’s take one last look back at November in photos. Despite my sometimes frazzled state of mind, I did manage to get in a few breathers—including a hike through gorgeous Corral Canyon near the coast. We also camped for a night on a coastal bluff that overlooked the Pacific.

Processed with VSCOcam with g3 preset canyon-cave malibu

John and I also spent an entire Saturday walking around DTLA, particularly to check out the amazing architecture and awesome food. Just below is the famous Bradbury building, which has made cameos in tons of movies, including Blade Runner and 500 Days of Summer.

Processed with VSCOcam with hb2 preset bradbury-interior dtla-architecture dtla-sky grand-central-exterior grand-central-wide grand-central-counter

We also visited Grand Central Market (pictured above) for lunch. We had the best pastrami sandwich of all time at Wexler’s deli. So good.

inverted-clock-tower taco-house angels-flight descanso-trees Processed with VSCOcam with hb2 preset

Los Angeles, I’m yours.

This month, I’m focusing my energy on, oh just about everything. Final projects, employment for the spring, my upcoming trip home for Christmas (!) and… a few other things I’m forgetting.

What are you getting into in December? Are you already planning for the new year?

Through the Lens: photos from July

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 preset

Summer is flying by.

I know, who wants to hear that? But even though I’m a little sad July is coming to a close, I’m really looking forward to August. I’m flying home for the first time since Christmas, my BFF and college roomie is coming to L.A. for a visit, and then I kick off my second year of grad school. It’ll be a busy month for sure, and I plan to soak it up before another crazy semester begins.

But right now, let’s have one last look at July, shall we? There were quite a few highlights.

dockweiler-shore Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

I cannot get enough of the beach. Even though it’s often a stressful, longer-than-it-should-be drive to the coast, it’s always worth the effort of getting there. Sunsets on the beach are where it’s at.

And how did I manage to snap the following photo of Obama? Journalism has its perks…

obama

President Obama was in town for about 24 hours, and a handful of the Neon Tommy reporters got to cover his LAX arrival, a speech he gave at a college and his departure. I covered his departure, which meant getting cleared by the White House and sitting on the tarmac in the hot sun for hours. All in all, I spent an entire day mostly waiting around for a couple exciting minutes of helicopters flying the president in, him walking from the helicopter to Air Force One and giving us a little wave before taking off again. See for yourself.

helicopter-hovering helicopter-landing air-force-one AFO-closeup helicopters-planes obama-waving

(He’s looking right at me!)

Processed with VSCOcam with t1 preset Processed with VSCOcam with g3 preset breakfast Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Though a lighter picture-taking month overall, July was jam-packed. Even though I’ve been juggling a couple of jobs and a night class, I’ve managed to sneak in plenty of fun, too: watching tons of fireworks with a sweet view from the top of a hill, revisiting a couple of favorite neighborhood spots (it’s hard to be a regular anywhere in this town—too many options!), and celebrating our one-year anniversary of living in L.A.!

And the fun won’t end in August. In fact, I’ve got an open spot for August’s Beer with a Blogger. Who wants to grab a couple of pints with me?!

I loved July—how about you? And what do you have going on next month?

 

 

Through the Lens: Photos from May

VW camper

It seems like just yesterday half of my Facebook friends were sharing that tired old “It’s gonna be May” meme. (Just kidding. That grinning, curly-haired JT mug never gets old.)

Now, it’s almost time to officially kick off the summer months. Is anyone else as happy as I am when it’s 7:30 p.m. and still light outside?

It’s been a jam-packed past few weeks, and I’m looking forward to the month ahead. But first, here’s a look back at some of my favorite moments from May—photo roundup style.

wood

Joshua Tree plantlife

sunset

Ah, yes. More Joshua Tree pics. I was pretty snap-happy that weekend, and the landscape never disappointed. The wild plant life fascinated me as much as the impressive boulders did.

Also impressive? Rooftop bars, baby.

DTLA rooftop

Los Feliz home

Palermo Los Feliz

fire escape

Besides taking in the downtown skyline at night, I also spent a fair amount of time checking out Los Feliz, which is adjacent to my neighborhood. (In fact, I’m right on the border between Los Feliz and Silver Lake.) It has such a neighborhood-y feel—I love it.

Joshua Tree

mountains

And I can never get enough of those dreamy mountains.

So that’s my May in a nutshell! Now, I’m ready to kick off June with a day at the beach. (Tomorrow’s gonna be a hot one.)

What are you looking forward to in June?

Through the lens: photos from April

LACMA

In case you hadn’t noticed, a third of 2014 has already flown by.

I know. I’m wondering where time went, too. But as usual, I’ve documented the past several weeks so I can remember where the heck I’ve been and what I’ve been up to. As usual, it was a busy month!

Silver Lake art

Red Lion Tavern

My second semester and first year of grad school wrapped up yesterday—all that’s left is turning in final projects. (I better stop procrastinating.) I did some much-needed bonding with a few of my classmates who have become really good friends over the past few months. I’m so lucky to have met all these talented, wonderful people. Above is a shot from the Red Lion Tavern here in Silver Lake, which I’ve been wanting to visit since I moved here. The beer garden was awesome.

Venice beach boardwalk

Venice beach boardwalk

Venice beach boardwalk

Venice Beach

Above, a super windy day at Venice Beach. Below, the old and long-defunct Griffith Park Zoo (those cages were straight-up animal prisons).

Old Griffith Park Zoo caution tape Old Griffith Park Zoo Griffith Park

baby rattlesnake

While exploring Griffith Park and jumping from rock to rock, I almost stepped on this baby rattlesnake. Cute, right?

Calabasas

DTLA arts district DTLA arts district

And I fell a little more in love with the Arts District downtown when Rachel and I met up for the latest edition of Beer with a Blogger.

Now that it’s May, I’m looking forward to finding out how the rest of my summer is going to pan out. I have a few job prospects up in the air, plus I’m taking a summer class and hoping to do a little traveling when I can. (A weekend camping trip to Joshua Tree National Park is in the works!)

What were your April highlights? And what are you looking forward to in May?

Beer with a Blogger: Angel City Brewery in DTLA

There’s something very special about blog-friends-turned-real-life-friends.

When you’ve been following each other’s blogs for months (or even years!) and finally meet for the first time, it can be so surreal, because even though you’ve exchanged dozens of comments, read about their most personal experiences and seen plenty of pictures of them, it’s still strange at first that they’re actual people with voices and stuff. It’s also bizarre how totally normal it is to meet them and, like with old friends, have a million things to talk about.

Which is exactly what it was like meeting Rachel for the first time last summer.

Rachel of Existation

THE BLOGGER

Rachel Jackson, the photographer, writer and adventurer behind Existation. This Minnesota lady moved to Los Angeles in 2011 to pursue her California dream (something that instantly attracted me to her blog, since I had dreams and plans of doing the very same). Now, she and her boyfriend Toby live in West Hollywood and explore the great state of California whenever they get the chance. (Check out her photos of Joshua Tree and June Lake, and you’ll want to move out here, too.) What I love about Rachel is how warm, inviting and open she is. Must be that Midwestern charm. Follow Rachel on Instagram and Twitter.

Angel City Brewery

THE BAR

Angel City Brewery in the Arts District of downtown Los Angeles. This might just be my new favorite spot. The vibe is very industrial/casual/chic in this bowling alley-sized warehouse, where dogs are welcome and the bartenders are friendly. Angel City opened up almost a year ago exactly and doesn’t serve food, but it regularly welcomes food trucks to its parking lot. Live music, darts and regular run + yoga + beer events make it the perfect neighborhood spot, and quite frankly, I’m a bit jealous of everyone who lives within walking distance of this place. (There are so many other great spots in this part of downtown, too.)

THE BEER

An Angeleno IPA for me and a Mexican Cola Beer for Rachel—this one seemed to be a hit among the other patrons, too. All imbibed beverages brewed in-house, of course.

Angel City Brewery Angel City Brewerygerman shepherd puppy

Every time Rachel and I get together, the conversation flows naturally, and we end up chatting about so many different things. Namely, all the adventures we want to take, our anxieties and excitement about the future, creative outlets and inspiration, and the paths that have led us to where we are now. It always makes for good, much-needed girl talk.

Oh, and the brewery is just around the corner from the building where Jess and the boys from New Girl live, so of course we had to get a picture.

New Girl building

Real-life friend status even further solidified and a love for Angel City Brewery established. Good times.

Cassie and Rachel

Are you a blogger living in (or visiting!) L.A.? Do you like beer? Shoot me an email at wittycassiehere (at) gmail (dot) com, and let’s go to happy hour!