Photo credit : Aubrey Keating
Meet Dawn Bowery who moved to LA from Kingston Upon Thames three years ago to pursue her photography career.
Was there a particular reason you chose LA?
I chose LA because I had lived here before from 1998-2000 while I was working as a flame artist/compositor for Rhythm and Hues studios and loved it. After moving back to London I found that I really missed the Californian spirit and vowed to return.
What one thing do you miss from home?
I miss my family more than anything and it is a huge emotional pull. Most material things that I miss I can find in LA quite easily. My local Laurel Canyon Country Store has a British Section!
What do you find the biggest difference is living here versus the UK?
The biggest difference other than the sunny climate is that people seem to be more encouraging and supportive of others following their own dreams. In LA many people tend to wear several hats rather than in England where they tend to have one full time job. Here people tend to have part time jobs to fund their dream or a particular project. When I returned to LA in 2011 I was fascinated to hear the stories of my fellow Brits who had followed their own dreams to the City of Angels. This inspired me to combine my photography and curiosity and create my photography book “California Dreaming: Real life stories of Brits in LA” which features many Brits in LA members. Check outwww.britsinlabook.com. I am currently raising the funding to print this book on indiegogo.http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/california-dreaming-real-life-stories-of-brits-in-la
Do you have a hidden gem in LA that you want to share with us?
I am very lucky to live in Laurel Canyon and my hidden gem is my local “Lily’s Coffee” at the historic Laurel Canyon Country store. Lily not only serves delicious coffee and croissants but has created a friendly community which is hard to find in a big city like LA. One of my favourite things is to simply take a stroll up the road and have a chat over coffee with her and my fellow Laurel Canyonites. The place has such a creative vibe and is full of history. The Doors wrote songs about this place and Jim Morrison lived right here. Laurel Canyon is a great place to live – I am surrounded by trees and wonderful hiking trails yet I am just five minutes from Sunset Blvd and Hollywood Blvd.
What would you suggest to others who are thinking about making the move here?
For anyone thinking of moving here I would recommend that you make sure you have your work visa sorted out ahead of time. It’s tough setting up a new life 6000 miles away from home so don’t expect everything to fit into place immediately. It takes time. To help with the transition have some savings to see you through the first few months. If you don’t already have a network of friends here, I highly recommend you come along to Brits breakfast at Cecconi’s on Tuesday morning and meet some fellow Brits. We are a friendly bunch ready to welcome you to LA. If you are a BAFTA member I highly recommend coming along to the events and screenings. Surprisingly, there are more going on in LA than in London.
Lastly, how can we find you on the Internet ?