Vince Caldera's Neighborhood Mural

Vince Caldera Mural
Vince Caldera Mural

The NELA Riverfront Youth Voices student producers created digital murals of their neighborhood and the places that are meaningful to them. Each mural contains 3 to 4 hot spots and a brief description below of these places and their significance to themselves and their community.

I selected each hotspot for their personal significance to me. Each hotspot has helped me understand more of what the community has to offer. These hotspots also opened a door to things I tend to overlook, but have shown me an appreciation for these things in the process.

The comic book store in Eagle Rock , Comics VS Toys, has shown me that I should support local businesses and it has also created a positive environment full of equally positive people introducing me to a wide range of great and fascinating stories. These people are not solely interested in getting a sale, but building a relationship with their customers to give them a truly unique experience that you can rarely find with any other comic book store. It`s no surprise, that for the very same reason of great vibes and attitudes, I have been a regular at Comics VS Toys for 3 years. They truly set the bar for what a comic bookstore should be. Every visit is not a shopping trip, but an experience.

The Glass Studio in Highland Park is truly an amazing place, from the finely crafted glass work mounted on the shelves to the dazzling pieces in the display case. Even the very enthusiastic store owner make a visit to the Glass Studio an experience that you won`t forget. The Glass Studio is also a place where you can learn to create a fine array of different items, from glass pendants to glass business cards you can take a class and learn to do so. I however, took a different path, I was intrigued enough to volunteer my time to work on a project. I helped with a very great project, I helped cut glass that would be a part of the first parklet in Los Angeles. After, and a little before, I became interested in being more involved in the community, so I began helping with an organization that the owner of the Glass Studio herself was associated with; NELA art. I now help promote events, write for their newspaper, and perform at some events. This has opened a myriad of possibilities, opportunities, and experiences for me and could potential happen to you, all you have to do is visit.

The Echo Park Film Center is perhaps one of the most interesting places you will ever come across. A beautiful little gem of a place located in Echo Park, the Film Center offers incredible hands on learning experiences for fans of cinema and is such a welcoming and inviting place. The Film Center hosts screenings on a weekly basis inviting people from all around the community to gather and enjoy a great piece of film shot by locals or people from across the country. Once you walk on through the door of the Film Center you can get a sudden feeling of nostalgia seeing countless Super 8, Bolex, Scoopic , and other cameras accompanied by a wide assortment of film reels. If you`re an experience filmmaker, a beginner trying to learn the ropes, or just a fan of film, the Echo Park Film Center is for you. With classes offered for adults and kids, at little to no cost, this makes it a truly extraordinary place. The teachers are more than helpful, supportive, and kind, they exceed you`re expectations. I say this from experience, having been a former student , I learned to shoot , edit , splice, process, load , and work with a camera in a matter of weeks. I was also able to develop a nice relationship with Film Center and learned to appreciate all the hard work that goes into filming that often goes overlooked and that`s something you don`t get every day.

I have discovered a new world that is being offered to me and my fellow community members that I never knew existed. By becoming involved and exploring my community, what I thought was just a bland and boring place, now I see as blossoming with countless opportunities, to not only better myself, but others around me. I feel lucky to live in the community that I do. That is something that I can now take pride in saying.

My favorite part of my mural is very easily Comics VS Toys since I`ve been going there most of all. That place has really grown on me.

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