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I got out of downtown today and somehow ended up at the old Los Angeles Zoo in Griffith Park. It is a fascinating place. The enclosures were built by the WPA in the 1930s and housed bears, lions, elephants, etc. They were abandoned when the new zoo was built a couple of miles away from this site. The enclosures have been left mostly intact and it is possible to hang out where the bears slept and see the door mechanisms by which keepers directed them from sleeping quarters to display areas.

The thing I like about this shot is that without external reference, it is hard to tell how large this area is. It looks almost like some abandoned castle when, in fact, these doors are only about three feet high. I took my pictures using the natural light that came in through skylights and doors.

Life as a bear in the zoo cannot have been too happy. You can see they spent the many boring hours locked up by painting the walls with graffiti!

Comments

platscha June 23, 2009 @ 6:44 p.m.

Looks very interesting,does look very large as well. I read another blog page from you, are you a professional photographer or just wandering around town taking photos? It is indeed very sad to think of that this was a bears home vs. the wide open forest, the bears there were certainly artistic.

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downtownphotoguy June 23, 2009 @ 8:25 p.m.

Your username looks familiar. Are you sure I don't know you? I teach digital photography workshops in locations around town. That's often what gets me out and about.

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