Monday, February 20, 2023

Foo-tography: Long Beach & Venice Bike Paths


During my December (2022) holiday vacation from work, I spent the first week going on hikes and hitting up beach bike paths. Since I spent October and the early part of December cooped up working from home, while also feeling general laziness from the cold, so I made it a point to get some physical activities in, and homie, lemme tell you it was hella needed. Getting out there in the morning, and breathing in that fresh air does wonders for your mental health. Also got to spend some time riding with the homies, eating out, and catching up on life conversations, which was also needed. We hit up the bike path in Long Beach and Venice to switch things up since both are in different communities and distances. I definitely need to get back to planning rides like this on a regular basis. Took my camera with me on these rides and got some great pics. Riding your bike and taking pictures is definitely a skill that is honed with practice, so be safe out there. 

The homie waiting for me by the Queen Mary.

Love how this self-portrait came out. I set the camera on a bench with the timer. Definitely gotta remember to experiment a lot more with the different camera functions. 

The Long Beach bike path is hella chill. You don't get a big tourist crowd like you do Venice and other beaches on the Westside, just locals and people getting in their morning exercise. The ride on the path isn't long from end to end, but you still get a good ride in, and when you are stopping and going to take pics like me, you can appreciate the calmness of it. From architecture to people-watching, there's a lot to take in. 

ILFORD 400 is one of my favorite B/W films. 

Most folks don't know this, but my family lived out in Long Beach's Eastside for three years in the 90s, basically all of middle school. Shout out to Franklin MS. We lived within walking distance from where the Museum of Latin America Art, so it has been a trip to revisit and see how much things have changed. I loved the time I spent in the LBC, even though it wasn't the easiest. During the summer, we would hit up the beach regularly, especially for the fourth of July. We'd get there early to grab a good spot, and spend the day swimming, riding bikes, cooking up carne asada, and catching the fireworks show before calling it a day. 

A Venice Beach Xmas. 

The Venice Beach bike path is definitely longer than Long Beach and passing through the various sections gives you a great perspective on the different communities there. From tourists hanging out around Santa Monica to the folks that make the beach there their home. There's a lot going on and your best bet is to hit up the path with a chill vibe and don't be shy to say hi to others. For sure take precautions since there are more people on bikes, strollers, scooters, etc. that you are sharing space with, and a few points where people are crossing the path to get to the sand. When I stop to take pics, I let those I'm riding with know with a ring of my bell or cause they see me slowing down, stopping, and moving out of the way from the path so I don't potentially cause a collision. If I really wanna get a shot, getting off the bike and getting in position works best, again, you just have to be mindful of where you are leaving your bike for everyone's safety and so you don't get jacked. 

I was out riding with the homie on Christmas morning and it was dope to be out there before crowds started showing up by the early afternoon. We took our time and just took in what was a beautiful, sunny day before all the rain hit a few days later. Really happy with the way the pics came out, could have taken more, but I got caught up in the vibe of the ride and didn't wanna keep stopping and going. For sure I wanna go back to these two paths and others soon since I could definitely use the fresh air and exercise.  

The bike path along the Arroyo Seco is also a great ride. Not too long, rarely crowded, and easy to get to. For sure I wanna hit it up again with the homies who might not be familiar with it. While I can't remember the brand of color film I used, probably Cinestill, all the pics were taken with a Nikon F3 with a 50 mm. Since I got the Nikon, I've been feeling the itch to hit up pulgas to see if I can come up on something wider, like a 28 mm lens, we'll see.