Archive for the ‘Feature’ Category

The Green Rush: California’s budding pot industry

Business leaders are scrambling to take a claim in California’s budding marijuana industry, banking on the November passage of Proposition 19, the Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010, as well as the City of Oakland’s decision to offer business permits for up to four marijuana factories.

A few weeks ago I covered the different segments of the growing marijuana industry surrounding Oakland, California, and I’ve included some of the photos from the assignment below.

Ricky Silver, Oakland Team Coordinator for Proposition 19, operates a calling center out of the campaign headquarters in downtown Oakland.
Ricky Silver, Prop 19

Oaksterdam University offers weekend and semester-long classes in everything from the business of marijuana to home cultivation to glass-blowing for smoking pipes.
Making pipes

Steve DeAngelo, Executive Director of Harborside Health Center, a non-profit medical marijuana dispensary in Oakland, believes marijuana sales should remain in the hands of non-profit institutions rather than profit-driven businesses.
Steve DeAngelo, Harborside Health Center

Neil Kotoski, a patient at Harborside Health Center, chooses a young marijuana plant to grow in his home. Current medical marijuana regulations allow patients up to six flowering plants.
Neil Kotoski, Harborside Health Center

Dhar Mann, who currently operates weGrow, a hydroponics supply company out of Oakland, is one of the many businessmen submitting proposals for one of Oakland’s four marijuana factory permits. weGrow hopes to build a 60,000 square-foot marijuana cultivation facility near the Oakland airport.
Dhar Mann, WeGrow

Jeff Wilcox, another businessman vying for Oakland’s permits, plans on turning his existing real estate investments, including this 60,000 square-foot warehouse, into state-of-the-art marijuana production facilities.
Jeff Wilcox, AgraMed

Some events in the area, such as the International Cannabis & Hemp Expo in San Francisco, allow patients and enthusiasts to not only purchase marijuana related merchandise, but consume the drug in public under Proposition 215.
Doing Double: International Cannabis & Hemp Expo

Whether on the street or purchased from a medical marijuana dispensary, cultivated marijuana currently retails around $30/gram. With marijuana nearly worth its weight in gold, it’s easy to see why business people are jumping at the idea of a legalized industry.
Oaksterdam University: Marijuana

See the whole gallery on California’s growing marijuana industry.

Norwegian Hollywood Wives (Norske Hollywoodfruer)

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I shot these photos back in late January for Norwegian television station TV3 as PR handout photos for their new documentary/reality show featuring four successful Norwegian housewives around Los Angeles.

After a bit of early press in February, they finally aired the show in April. I ran across the web episodes last night, so I decided to post my favorites. View all of the photos here.

Beatrice Prochazka at Bizzy B’s, her lingerie store in Hollywood, California:

Beatrice Prochazka

Siv Cotton with her husband at her home in Bell Canyon, California:

Siv Cotton

Kristine Dorow with her dog “Frenchie” in Santa Monica, California:

Kristine Dorow

Antoinette Kristensen in a recording studio in North Hollywood, California:

Antoinette Kristensen


All of these photos were lit with up to four portable speedlights (Nikon SB-24, SB-600, & SB-800) and triggered with Pocketwizards. The key was fired through an umbrella and the rim lights, if not the sun, were snooted.

No photoshop other than minor toning and color correction.

L.A. Gang Tours

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I tend to shoot a lot of bus tours for the Norwegian newspaper Dagens Næringsliv.

This last one was started in Los Angeles just recently by Alfred Lomas. An ex-gang member himself, Lomas leads the bus tour past some of Los Angeles’ most notorious neighborhoods and famous gang-related landmarks.

The tour itself is well-designed and highly informative. A number of ex-gang members from some of the largest gangs in Los Angeles also ride the bus, giving tourists the unique opportunity to discuss and to learn about what gang life has been like for them.

Chinese tourists and Melvin Johnson - L.A. Gang Tours
L.A. Gang Tours
Eileen Hohmath-Lomonick, Big Charles - L.A. Gang Tours
Jen Walsh and Lenore Fischer, Graff Lab - L.A. Gang Tours

Anyone interested can book a tour at the L.A. Gang Tours website.

View more photos of the L.A. Gang Tours here.