All posts tagged: nathaniel stephens

How to Save The Smell

written by Nathaniel Stephens This past couple of weeks have been quite the upset for the punk community of the Los Angeles area. Jim Smith, owner of DTLA venue The Smell, released a notice stating that the property owners were planning to demolish the building sometime in the future. The response was huge, everyone in the scene reached out and gave their remorse. A petition manifested encouraging the stay of the building; already, over 8,000 signatures have been received. I have fond memories of this place and the scene there. My heart goes out to Jim and everyone affected. The Smell was established in 1998. The all-ages drug free environment is dedicated to artistic expression, creative ingenuity and individual liberty. It has become a safe haven for those who just couldn’t seem to find a niche in today’s society, who faced rejection after rejection until they decided to settle at The Smell, making it for most a home away from home.   The Smell prides itself on being a community-oriented, not-for-profit organization, built on the foundation of D.I.Y. …

A digestion of Blue Clouds

Blue Clouds is a slice of unending leisure. Each song on the EP is laced with longing references to a “you.” Yet, the true subject of this love letter doesn’t seem to be a person as much as it is the languor of youth, the potential of an upcoming weekend, the somehow satisfying melancholy of being in love. At certain points, Nathaniel Stephens’ deep, almost guttural vocals coast into a delicate tremor, a tenderness saved for looking into a blue sky with the best people you know. The EP’s six tracks are carefully arranged, beginning with a short “Interlude” that could act as an overview of Stephens’ unhurried “paradise” and a love that belongs “amongst the stars.” This first track introduces a stripped guitar style and raw choppiness that continues for the rest of the EP. The next two tracks embody a melancholic balance between deep appreciation for “harmony” and a lovesick helping of the blues. Stephens’ lyrics seesaw between a sense of awareness for the vast life ahead and a very specific dynamic between two people. The fourth track, “Lady Killer,” kills me (Stephens …

Fruits of life: ode to 2015

Words and photographs by Nathaniel Stephens – The year of 2015 (although not over) was quite the experience for me. Filled with times of maturing, meeting new people, loving, punk shows, birthday parties, lit weekends, photo-shoots, op houses, big bear, dating, family, school friends, stress, bands, insecurities, gateway drugs, & too many cigarettes. 2015 taught me to embrace myself, so I wrote an ode for it. – An Ode to 2015 Days have never been spent in such pleasure. I never fathomed such type of leisure. For I never knew what the fruits of life could offer. To be young, lively & curious? What else could life possibly proffer? –   Nathaniel Stephens is part of Tunnel’s list of artists in residency. To follow Tunnel’s integral theme of development + change over time, we regularly feature this list of artists, so we can see how they develop/change over time. See more of Nathaniel’s work on Tunnel here.

Nigh the thought of slake: Nathaniel Part II

Photography and text by Nathaniel Stephens. Formatting by Somi Jun. These are my recent photographs in which I experiment with the fundamental photography technique: perspective. Dabbling and toying with the common compositional tools of photography (pattern, symmetry, texture, depth of field etc.) it turned out to be quite the endeavor. I realized, quickly, how visually perplexing a photo can be, without of course, losing the content of the photo and using a bit of your innate imagination. This experiment was inspired by a mister Charlie Rouse (a fantastic saxophonist with many accolades, one including being a brilliant member of Thelonious Monk’s Quartet for eleven years.) I wondered if I would be able to put as much creatively intricate art, ominous and confound as it seems, yet its reflective symbolism so plain in sight. To generate art that evokes the human spirit [is] to produce an emotion so full of essence you’re overwhelmed by its purity. Whether obdurate adequate filled with elation, or mournful sorrowful struck with realization, and a small step toward sweet sweet self …

pangs, bits, and pieces: Nathaniel Stephens

BEGINNING On weekends and/or breaks and vacations from school, I would walk the streets of Glendale, Downtown L.A., Chinatown and Highland Park. I would take shots of people, friends, or an empty corner in a friend’s house. I saw bits and pieces of me in these photographs, pieces of me I never knew existed within myself, which made me go out and shoot more the next day. NOW I began to focus a lot more on portraits and sceneries that are simple yet dramatic in lines, colors, mood, repetition, and etc. By doing this I felt as though I reached a new level in my photographic journey by applying these compositional skills in a more artistic and simplified way, rather than in my before photographs where I shot on instinct and emotion. About Nathaniel Stephens: “I am going to start my senior year at Daily High school in Glendale, California in the beginning of August 2015. I have become enthralled with photography as of recently (September of this year will be my one year anniversary as …