I don’t necessarily have a favorite color, although I’ve gone back and forth between the colors that tend to represent my mood and personality. For this specific event hosted by Ray-Ban, your color became the inspiration behind #Campaign4Change.
ExpressYourColor, was an event showing individual identity through the colors and art of a persons visions. On a daily basis, we’ve all seen the graffiti tagging and signatures throughout the city, which typically represent gang territory. While I have absolutely no respect for that type of hooligan acts that play a part in vandalism and ignorance, we tend to dismiss the sense of artwork on the walls portraying murals that bring about definitions of passion and inspiration. Like most, we either see it as another art form that wasn’t good enough for a pompous art gallery, or a troubled juvenile trying to have their voice heard. With this event, it didn’t matter where you came from or what your story was, your expressions, without words, said it all.
When I received the invitation from my friend Dave, all I saw was Ray-Ban and Colors, as if they were highlighted neon. Ray-Ban, known for their popular eye wear, I assumed the event to primarily focus on the sunglasses, and who knows, I might have been able to walk out with a pair. The caption on the invite stated ExpressYourColor. Well, okay, I go by many colors, so I advised Efrem to do the same.
Well not so much
Again, I don’t know what it is with these secluded events in “kidnap” alley, running past the heart of skid row and into the darkness of the longest alley ways.
Parking sucked as always even though they had valet, but I’m extremely particular with having anyone in my car that I don’t know. We noticed that the line was long with a lot of Street and Urban types of individuals. Once we parked, we only stood in line for a few minutes, had our bags and body checked, really is it that serious? , and gave our names for the guest list.
I don’t think I’ve ever been frisked at an event, it’s a little concerning.
Inside, the building looked like a warehouse decorated in neon colors of graffiti type drawings. The walls surrounding the Dj, had their very own color theme from what some of the events staff and guest contributed.
It was recommended that each guest take their visions and or ideas and doodle them on the walls without using forms of words. It was interesting to see some of the talents behind the markers. Efrem was even ordered to add his personal touch to the wall, and he made it a sentimental one. Even though the rules clearly said, “No words”
The Dj, whom everyone had seemed to be familiar with, rocked out in the middle of the building with a surrounding crowd. I chose to walk around and admire each and individual drawing. Outside, there were two guys making their own significant identities with a bottle of spray cans. Their very own interpretation of a mural. Two bars and a food truck were packed with long lines of people ready to dive in for some free food and drinks. Now lets talk about this food truck. For the love of God! have samples of Listerine and gum. As much as I love street tacos, there are some foods that you just shouldn’t have at a social event when you are clearly socializing. The smell on some peoples breath was down right appalling from the acid smell of onions and red sauce. I was mad at myself though for not grabbing some on my way out for the road.
Efrem and I met some pretty lively characters, that also tried following the statement of “Express Your Color” when it was apparently only metaphorical. Dressed like a bag of skittles and not knowing what color to choose from, we were the only ones who really took the memo quite literal.
As the crowd grew, we made our rounds and alongside the colorful walls to admire the creative sides of Downtown LA’s finest. One of the staff members that had reprimanded Efrem for not taking part earlier, thrived off the talents of others. In fact, he was the only one I found to engage as well as adding his own personal touch with his sharpie.
He was absolutely adorable with his two pigtails. Not only did he show an interest in the creativity of others, he was also deeply informed of the social experiment that brought all of Downtown LA’s hipsters, trendsetters and creators together. Everyone who added their own touch, seemed as if they’ve been the people behind the designs on printed fabrics of clothing that tend to be the trend. I myself, just allowed my marker to move without thought. I didn’t know what the hell I was doing, but I continued doodling.
When we made our way up the stairs, we found the photo area. A section set up with a 1 2 3 GO photographer. You had to make sure you knew every pose you were about to do, as quick as she was to snap your picture. It took us a couple of tries, but we got it after the fourth. Antsy party goers took up more time sending themselves their shots in every possible social media outlet to share with their friends through hash tags and memes.
There wasn’t too much more to do throughout the evening, so we cut it short and headed to another event at the Mondrian. Unfortunately, we were better off staying with the street tacos and Crayola art doodles.