Imagine it is 3 a.m. in downtown Los Angeles. Just steps away from Skid Row, the parking is full, cars are flying in and out, people are trading. Amid a silent city, something grows. The ancient (95 years old) Original Los Angeles Flower Market comes to life when the rest of the city is sleeping. At 55,000 square feet, the flower market is the largest in the country. You'll find orchids, air plants, succulents, money trees, topiaries, gardenias and roses. Lots and lots of roses.
We visited the Flower Market and surrounding district to get the lowdown on the smelly truth.
Orchids: At the Orchid Affair you find not just living orchids but exquisite silk paper orchids, fairies and a couple of cats guarding the merchandise. The only vendor to grow their own orchids, at the farm located in Montclair, the Orchid Depot is on the higher end of price, but in exchange you get American-grown rare species that you can brag to your friends about.
Roses: Vincent at Wall Street Floral is right at the main entrance to the mall, displaying nice fresh buds. Two dozen roses can cost you anywhere from $5.75 to $18, depending on color and size, but most are in the $7.75 range.
Dried flowers and specialty: Villa Flowers, in the Southern California Flower Market, sells dried wreaths and wall art in addition to roses and baby's breath.
Plants: We couldn't choose between Rudy's Plants and HM Wholesale Plants. Both have healthy plants for a fraction of the cost at Home Depot. Both are in the Southern California Flower Market. Plus both have air plants, which are having a moment.
Something different: ZCallas has seasonal flowers, moss and wood, and honey shipped in from Oregon.
Arrangements: Go outside the OLAFM and the SCFM and you will find dozens of shops, spreading out in all directions, six blocks from San Pedro Street west to Maple Street and Seventh Street south to Ninth Street. These little businesses cater to any flower-arrangement needs: funerals, victory wreaths, weddings. Inside the California Flower Mall, we found one of our favorite arrangers at El Poblano Flowers.
Parking: Park in the structure off of San Julian for $4 for the day.
Restrooms: The only restrooms are inside the Original Los Angeles Flower market, and they are clean and free.
All photos by Star Foreman
Imagine Guillermo del Toro invited you over to his home, known as Bleak House, for a quick tour. He would show you all his "beautiful monsters," and you'd be able to flick through his notebooks and wind his automatons. Co-organized/co-curated by Britt Salvesen at LACMA, Jim Shedden at AGO, and Matthew Welch at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, "Guillermo del Toro: At Home With Monsters" runs through Nov. 27 in LACMA's Art of the Americas Building, plaza level. The exhibition has eight themed sections, including Death and the Afterlife, Victoriana, and Freaks and Monsters. Each room explores another facet of Del Toro and his work, with all of the artwork chosen from the private collection of the director of Pan's Labyrinth, Hellboy and Crimson Peak. Throughout the exhibition LACMA will offer screenings of Del Toro's work as well as films he has selected, as well as artist walkthroughs of the exhibit. The exhibit will travel to Minneapolis and Ontario, Canada, after its run in L.A. All photos by Star Foreman.
Death Valley National Park — the hottest, driest and lowest land area in North America — is experiencing a "super bloom" as a result of the recent El Niño weather. The rare event blankets the usually barren desert with swaths of colorful wildflowers, which attract tourists from around the world. These photographs were shot March 7 and 8. All photos by Brian Feinzimer.
The Pretty Things Peepshow finished its Valentine's tour at the Bob Baker Marionette theater on Friday night. A sexy mix of variety entertainment called Broadville, the show (brainchild of go-go Amy) has been on the road since 2009. Friday night's cast consisted of Rachel Renegade, Charlie Atlas, Rasputin's Marionettes and, of course, go-go Amy, with a special appearance by Jack Dagger and opening entertainment by Deven Green.
Once again, the eccentric Morgan clan showed how a real New Year's Eve bash should be. Packed to the rafters, with a healthy supply of Red Bull and vodka, the annual private party rung in the New Year — and kept going until 8 a.m the next morning. All photos by Star Foreman
Hidden in Hancock Park is a little theater in a giant house called Brookledge. Brookledge Theater (called so because a stream runs through the property) is one of the most extraordinary places in Los Angeles.
It is currently owned by the Larsen family, the same family who created the Magic Castle in Hollywood. After sitting (mostly) empty for decades, Brookledge Theater was brought back to life several years ago with the launch of the Brookledge Follies. We received an exclusive invitation to photograph the theater and grounds, and who better to photograph than world famous opera diva Prince Poppycock in his very own rococo apocalypse. Starring Price Poppycock, Kelli Kickham (who was also the casting director,) Anya Krivenko, Gabrielle Salinger, Minerva Mendez and Christina Mott. Models make-up and hair by Madison Reeves. Photos by Star Foreman