Yesterday evening, Lomography opened a new location in Los Angeles: Lomography Santa Monica. The store, which is located just off of the Promenade, is a really cool, intimate space that spreads the brand further down Santa Monica Blvd. We took a tour of the shop and spoke with Melissa Chavez, the LA Shop Manager, as well as Maia Anderson, the Lomography Santa Monica Lead, on what to expect from the new store.
How does it feel to have the second Los Angeles store and fourth Lomography store in the United States opening in Santa Monica? What do you guys want to bring to the neighborhood? What do you hope to get from the neighborhood?
We’re so excited to be expanding in the West Coast! The Lomography Gallery Store Santa Monica, located merely feet away from the bustling Third Street Promenade, will bridge the gap between two of the most culturally and historically pivotal areas of Los Angeles– Hollywood and Santa Monica. Although the main social criticism of Los Angeles as a city is that it has no true culture or history, we at Lomography know that in Los Angeles, we make our own culture and history. Santa Monica holds so much beauty to be captured on film and we can’t wait to get out there and get our analog hands on it.
The West Hollywood location is home to many cool events, even a Thursday night hang out of sorts. What do we have to look forward to at the Santa Monica location?
Considering the location and our surroundings, we’re able to do some workshops that don’t necessarily work in our Los Angeles location. With the Santa Monica Pier and its rides not too far away we plan to make that a feature attraction in some of our upcoming workshops like light painting. Otherwise, the Santa Monica location will mostly concentrate on Lomo Walks in which we will definitely take advantage of the neighborhood but for the most part, workshops and events will continue to be held at our West Hollywood location. You’ll have to sign up for our weekly newsletter or check out our “Upcoming Events” section on our website to get the full scoop for all our exclusive releases and events before they happen.
West Hollywood Lomo : LomoWall :: Santa Monica Lomo : __________. Are there any other items unique to the store that patrons should be excited for?
Lomowall paper! It would not be a Lomography Store without a jawdropping Lomowall of sorts, considering the size of the space we adapted our usual Lomowall to adhere to the location.
What in Santa Monica are you guys most excited to photograph? What about Santa Monica is so enchanting in relation to photography? The beach? The people? The weather? The lighting?
The early-morning haze in Santa Monica actually makes for the perfect natural light-box; it’s moody, soft, natural-looking portraits are perfect to shoot by the bluffs overlooking PCH. Stick around Ocean Boulevard until the evening and watch the most awe-inspiring sunsets you will ever see! Do I even have to mention all the iconically stellar shooting locations in and around Santa Monica too? Ok, if you insist: The Santa Monica Pier, 3rd street (always excellent people watching!), Muscle Beach off of the Venice Beach Boardwalk, the Santa Monica Airport (at night it’s an awesome place to photograph!), the delicious food and pony-rides at the Main Street Farmer’s Market, beach volleyball, cycling, and even bikini competitions all-year round courtesy of our gorgeous weather and fitness culture.
Are there any cameras or products that the Santa Monica location will be carrying that are exclusive to the store? If not, is there any a store special or souvenir unique to the store that Lomo fans should be on the lookout for?
We’re always releasing new and special editions of our cameras, but our Santa Monica Lomography Embassy bags will have our neat-o Lomography Gallery Store Santa Monica crest on them and are only available at the Santa Monica location! You’re the first to know but our store mascot for this location is the Pelican!
Any cool historical facts about the building, insight into picking the spot, and hopes for the future?
We always knew we were going to be opening another location so it was just a matter of trying to find one that fit. Our current location is completely different than what the Santa Monica location will be and we think that was important. So after months of research, were actually moving into an old candy shop! Like its predecessor, we’re bright, colorful and have 100+ different flavors for you to choose from and enjoy. Opening a location in such a high traffic, high tourist landmark is definitely exciting! We’re looking forward to converting Santa Monica-ers to join in on our analog community.