Jump to content


Photo

where should I live in southern ca?


  • Please log in to reply
42 replies to this topic

#1 giap vu

giap vu
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 42 posts
  • Gaffer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 23 August 2008 - 02:13 PM

Hi Everyone,
So, I just graduated from UNLV with an emphasis in cinematography and have decided to take the plunge and move to LA LA land and was hoping if anyone out there can give some advise on a good sensible location to rent an apartment - I want to be able to jump and be ready to jam when I get the call and with traffic I hear that a ten mile trip can turn into an hour ordeal. I PA gripped on a feature in Pasadena over the summer and it seemed like a nice place, although a little slow. What do you guys and gals think?

Thx,

Giap Vu
  • 0

#2 Andrew Koch

Andrew Koch
  • Sustaining Members
  • 243 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Burbank, California

Posted 23 August 2008 - 02:51 PM

Pasadena is a very nice city, but in my opinion it is a bit too far from the action. It is also pretty expensive. When you get here, you will probably start out by working on a lot of low budget independent shows. These are filmed all over the place and there is no single area that will place you near all of them. You will sometimes have to do a bit of a commute. That said, there are certain areas that are closer than others. Price is also an issue. Convenient places that are nice to live in will cost. Los Feliz and Echo Park areas are fairly close to Hollywood and Downtown. Los Feliz is pretty expensive, although I do know some who have found semi-reasonable priced apartments. Echo park has some nice areas and some not so nice areas, so make sure you check out the area. I live in Burbank which right next to Warner Bros. and Universal Studios. I like living here because it is close to Hollywood and not too far from Downtown. It is not the most happening town and rent is totally killing me right now, but I still like it a lot. Of course you could live in Hollywood, but I personally am not the biggest fan of that area. It is very busy and some parts of it are kind of creepy at night (I apologize to all of my friends who live in Hollywood, I must sound like such a snob right now). Glendale is near Burbank, but is a little cheaper.

Hope this helps. I have only lived in Southern California for 6 years, so those of you out there that know more about this please chime in.
  • 0

#3 Alessandro Machi

Alessandro Machi
  • Sustaining Members
  • 3318 posts
  • Other
  • California

Posted 23 August 2008 - 04:43 PM

North Hollywood is a pretty central area. Both the Ventura and Hollywood freeway run through it, and the Golden State Freeway and 405 are not that far away either.

Studio City adjoins North Hollywood, and is considered a bit more upscale if you can afford it.

The Oakwood Apartments are off of Barham Blvd, just north of Cahuenga (the part of Cahuenga that links the San Fernando Valley to Hollywood) and is just east of studio city. The Oakwood Apartments are known for harboring all kinds of visitors from other states aiming to work in Hollywood.
  • 0

#4 Phil Rhodes

Phil Rhodes
  • Sustaining Members
  • 11939 posts
  • Other

Posted 23 August 2008 - 07:04 PM

I've never lived in LA, but a friend of mine (with whom I've stayed) lives in Koreatown and it seems to be about as central as it's possible to get in a place with no centre and not cripplingly expensive.

Others will know more than me about the desirability of the place but it seems OK to me.

P
  • 0

#5 Chris Keth

Chris Keth
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4427 posts
  • 1st Assistant Camera
  • Los Angeles

Posted 23 August 2008 - 09:08 PM

I just moved to Glendale and like it a lot. It's nice and quiet and is close to Burbank and fairly close to Hollywood. Everything that I usually go to is within a mile of my place so I save on gas compared to my old place in Koreatown. If you're moving here alone, I have noticed that Glendale has cheaper studios than other areas nearby because it is more of a family town. It's not the place for you if you want lots of clubs or bars nearby. It's a quiet place that feels like a much smaller town rather than part of LA.
  • 0

#6 James Steven Beverly

James Steven Beverly
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4199 posts
  • Director
  • El Paso, Texas

Posted 24 August 2008 - 02:42 AM

You want to live in the Valley, Studio City if you can afford it. ;)
  • 0

#7 David Rakoczy

David Rakoczy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1579 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • USA

Posted 24 August 2008 - 07:06 AM

I started in No. Hollywwod, went to Canoga Park, Lake Sherwood, Westlake Village then bought first home in West Hills. The longer I lived in LA (22+ yrs) the more I tried to find and live in places that weren't (like) LA. It is true, that Features and Commercials are shot everywhere so it really doesn't matter where you live, most of your gigs will be a commute.. it always seems that way. For me, anywhere that gives me access to to the $2.99 weekend Breakfast Specials at my good friend's mexican restaurant ERNIE'S TACO HOUSE and easy access to my brother's Blues Club COZY'S BAR & GRILLE in Sherman Oaks... works for me... not to mention runs to LOS TOROS and KUSHI-YU!!!!!!

If anyone is interested, I could put together a Cinematography.com Night at COZY'S... you know, No Cover Charge... There is a great show playing Aug 30th....

www.CozyBlues.com

Now that I live in Florida, the only thing I miss about LA is the Food.. and Entertainment! other than that.. not a THING!!!!! B)

Edited by David Rakoczy, 24 August 2008 - 07:06 AM.

  • 0

#8 giap vu

giap vu
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 42 posts
  • Gaffer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 24 August 2008 - 04:50 PM

Hello and thx for all the enlightening replies! Now, would anyone like or be willing to reflect on their experiences, what they went through or how long it took to land their first paying gig? I'm hoping that I'll be able to support myself financially as soon as possible - not rich but have an overflowing reservoir of passion.

Also, is the Hollywood (downtown?) a dangerous urban nightmare crawling with artistic eclectic types? Because, if this is the case then i think I've found home. Only is it expensive relatively speaking?

thx again

Giap Vu
  • 0

#9 David Rakoczy

David Rakoczy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1579 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • USA

Posted 24 August 2008 - 04:57 PM

Also, is the Hollywood (downtown?) a dangerous urban nightmare crawling with artistic eclectic types? Because, if this is the case then i think I've found home. - Giap Vu

Rent a crash pad on Franklin Giap... you'll fit right in... ;)
  • 0

#10 James Steven Beverly

James Steven Beverly
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 4199 posts
  • Director
  • El Paso, Texas

Posted 24 August 2008 - 08:44 PM

Hello and thx for all the enlightening replies! Now, would anyone like or be willing to reflect on their experiences, what they went through or how long it took to land their first paying gig? I'm hoping that I'll be able to support myself financially as soon as possible - not rich but have an overflowing reservoir of passion.

Also, is the Hollywood (downtown?) a dangerous urban nightmare crawling with artistic eclectic types? Because, if this is the case then i think I've found home. Only is it expensive relatively speaking?

thx again

Giap Vu


I lived in Hollywood first at the Montecito Hotel up of of Highland then on Las Palmes in a duplex between Santa Monica and Hollywood Blvds when I first moved to LA. It was a little seedy then, the park near my house was nicknamed "needle park" cause of the druggies. But honestly, it wasn't dangerous at all. I heard they've cleaned up Hollywood a lot sence then and that there was a renovation effort during the mid 90s so it's probably a lot better AND much more expensive.

In LA, if you go looking for trouble, it'll find you, so just use common sense. The worst thing about LA is it is ridiculously expensive to live there. You HAVE to have a car and traffic is a nightmare and there are a LOT of users and things to take your attention off your goals. I'm one of the few people that really do actually LOVE LA. I lived there from the late 70s to the early 90s and it was terrific, great weather, beautiful girls, lots of things to do. I eventually only left because it WAS so horribly expensive. The real estate boom of the mid 80s made housing stupidly expensive, and my family needed me here so I came back. I do think about LA a lot and miss it BUT because I'm an indy filmmaker, I can do things here I NEVER could have afforded to do in LA so it's working out better for me. I do go back though every chance I get. Your biggest problem will be surviving until you can get gigs. You'll probably work a lot for free to start with to build up your experience and make contact which means you'll need a good job with flexible hours basically just to make ends meet. BUT a lot of guys have made it so there's no reason to think you won't. B)
  • 0

#11 Evan Pierre

Evan Pierre
  • Guests

Posted 24 August 2008 - 09:27 PM

Culver City, CA

Stuck between Santa Monica and West Los Angeles. Home to Sony and Culver studios.
  • 0

#12 Brian Dzyak

Brian Dzyak
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1517 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • Encino, California USA

Posted 25 August 2008 - 08:27 AM

Where's best to live? That's a tough question because so much of that answer depends upon your budget and your personal tastes.

In general, you don't want to live too far away from the "hubs" of production. The major studios are in Burbank, Hollywood, and Century City. That said, production can and does take place anywhere. But the majority of production will happen in Burbank, Hollywood, or on the Westside (in and around the 405 freeway near Santa Monica).

So, DON'T move to far away to places like Palmdale to the north or Long Beach to the south. Aim for "the Valley" (which is anyplace like Woodland Hills, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Studio City, Van Nuys, North Hollywood, Burbank) or Hollywood and adjacent or the Santa Monica area. Pretty much anything relatively close to the 101 freeway or the 405 will keep you freeway close to getting in and around where most of the shoots will happen.

As far as personal taste in location goes, if you don't mind dirty gritty city, then Hollywood is an option. If you prefer lots of "stuff" to do and beach access, then go for the westside near Santa Monica. If you prefer something a bit more "suburban" and not as crowded as the westside or Hollywood, then aim for the San Fernando Valley, somewhere near the 101 or 170 freeway.

Calltimes range all over the clock, but most of the time, they will be in early mornings. Traffic flow may be important to you so know that the 405 south starts backing up as early as 5am and the 101 east through the Valley starts around 6 or 7am. Traffic backups start reversing around 3 or 4pm.

You'll need a car. Don't count on public transportation in any way.
  • 0

#13 John Sprung

John Sprung
  • Sustaining Members
  • 4635 posts
  • Other

Posted 25 August 2008 - 01:13 PM

For convenience and affordability, I'd look near the 101 freeway between the 170 and 405. Work happens everywhere, so quick access to a freeway is the thing to look for.




-- J.S.
  • 0

#14 Bruce Taylor

Bruce Taylor
  • Sustaining Members
  • 482 posts
  • Other
  • Los Angeles

Posted 25 August 2008 - 07:39 PM

Also, is the Hollywood (downtown?) a dangerous urban nightmare crawling with artistic eclectic types? Because, if this is the case then i think I've found home. Only is it expensive relatively speaking?


Giap,

Of course you have to come here and look around to see where you fit in. Personally, I never cared too much for the Valley, but many millions do. If you're looking for urban, could-be-dangerous, artistic types, I still love Echo Park. It's starting to get gentrified, but it isn't too bad yet. It sits right between the 5 and 101 freeways just northeast of downtown, which is going way upscale these days. Check out the Echo Park Film Center too, Paolo and Lisa are wonderful! After 22 years in Echo Park I recently moved close to Glendale. As Chris states, a nice town, but I still miss the excitement happening over in EP.

Bruce Taylor
www,Indi35.com
  • 0

#15 Bruce Taylor

Bruce Taylor
  • Sustaining Members
  • 482 posts
  • Other
  • Los Angeles

Posted 25 August 2008 - 07:43 PM

BTW, if you're looking for housing prices, just look on craigslist.org. It will have all you want to know concerning costs.

Bruce
  • 0

#16 giap vu

giap vu
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 42 posts
  • Gaffer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 27 August 2008 - 11:56 AM

So, while browsing craigslist I found a cheap temp place for two weeks while I look for something decent. What I found is pretty run down, the elderly land lady has a maid and about ten dogs and cats running around her house while I'll be in a private studio room with my dog enjoying the puppy and kitty aroma emanating through the Victorian walls. It's in koreatown - although there aren't any Koreans on my block or down the street - about five miles from Sunset & La Brea. She's a character and the neighborhood will be good fodder for some creative tinkering.
  • 0

#17 Bruce Taylor

Bruce Taylor
  • Sustaining Members
  • 482 posts
  • Other
  • Los Angeles

Posted 27 August 2008 - 04:57 PM

Ah, the pungent aroma of cat pee in an old house. Enjoy!

Bruce
  • 0

#18 David Rakoczy

David Rakoczy
  • Basic Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 1579 posts
  • Cinematographer
  • USA

Posted 27 August 2008 - 06:16 PM

Well.. due to the absolute 'LACK' of any response to the Cinematography.com party at Cozy's Bar & Grille, this event has been cancelled... or never planned..
Soooooo.. Giap.. I will put you and 5 friends on the guest list when you are ready... just let me know if/ when you want to go... look at this as the Welcome Wagon ;)

www.CozysBlues.com

Welcome to LA LA Land!!!!!

Best of luck... keep your nose clean... get out as soon as you can!!!!

Edited by David Rakoczy, 27 August 2008 - 06:18 PM.

  • 0

#19 giap vu

giap vu
  • Basic Members
  • PipPip
  • 42 posts
  • Gaffer
  • Los Angeles

Posted 28 August 2008 - 11:28 AM

Well.. due to the absolute 'LACK' of any response to the Cinematography.com party at Cozy's Bar & Grille, this event has been cancelled... or never planned..
Soooooo.. Giap.. I will put you and 5 friends on the guest list when you are ready... just let me know if/ when you want to go... look at this as the Welcome Wagon ;)

www.CozysBlues.com

Welcome to LA LA Land!!!!!

Best of luck... keep your nose clean... get out as soon as you can!!!!


Thanks for the offer big D - didn't know if you were serious and still don't but if you are then will be happy to take u up on it; but as for keeping my nose clean, that shouldn't be a problem. Did my fatalistic partying earlier in life. Now, I see myself as an objective lens weaving his way through the canopy, occasionally partaking in something communal - yabba dabba doo...

thx,
Giap Vu
  • 0

#20 Paul Bruening

Paul Bruening

    (deceased)

  • Sustaining Members
  • 2858 posts
  • Producer
  • Oxford, Mississippi

Posted 28 August 2008 - 02:04 PM

I keep hearing about some place in LA called, Compton. What's that place like?
  • 0


Abel Cine

Rig Wheels Passport

Glidecam

Technodolly

CineTape

FJS International, LLC

Opal

Wooden Camera

Ritter Battery

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Visual Products

rebotnix Technologies

CineLab

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Willys Widgets

Aerial Filmworks

Tai Audio

The Slider

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Metropolis Post

Paralinx LLC

Metropolis Post

rebotnix Technologies

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Opal

Tai Audio

Ritter Battery

The Slider

Glidecam

CineLab

Aerial Filmworks

Paralinx LLC

Willys Widgets

CineTape

Abel Cine

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Wooden Camera

Technodolly

Visual Products

FJS International, LLC

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Rig Wheels Passport