Last weekend, the Mister and I took a creative play day on Sunday to visit the Museum of Neon Art in Glendale, California. I had known about the museum for years when it was in a former location and I had been dying to visit MONA once they moved, but you know how it is … busy, busy, busy. But we finally got the chance to go and we made an art inspiration day out of it! We got to the Museum of Neon Art and I was surprised by all of the outdoor neon. A diving lady greets you atop the building and a sign for Clayton Plumbers is over the walkway. Then we finished our coffees and went inside where we were greeted by Manny, Moe, and Jack! It was amazing how much neon was available to see even BEFORE paying for our entrance tickets! As we went inside, we passed by their electrical repair shop. And then you turn the corner and boom: lots and lots of neon! The first thing I saw was a worker installing the former Sun Lake Drugs sign. I had always meant to photograph that sign on Sunset Blvd while it was still a drugstore and I never got around to it. And I know better! Everyone is so quick to demolish or close the old shops and restaurants, so I know that if I want to see something or shoot something, I have to do it NOW! But I was happy to see Sun Lake Drugs saved and soon to be lit up in the MONA with a million other neat neon signs! It was fun to watch all of the other visitors snapping photos and interacting with the vintage neons! The older visitors took photos of the neon signs and the younger visitors took selfies WITH the neon signs. And I loved all the #SIGNGEEKS art hanging around the museum and saw several of my Instagram friends’ photos. I was totally inspired to get some of my Route 66 photos printed on canvas to hang in our new house. I realized that I really like to photograph neon signs outside and in their element and not inside a museum, but since this was a creative art challenge day, I thought I would try playing with my camera and taking some different types of photos for me: close ups! And then it was really cool to see my husband drawing the neon. At one point, a couple teenagers stood in front of him and one of them apologized and said something like, “Oh hey, let’s move, he’s drawing the sign.” And so my husband of course jokingly replied, “Oh, no, don’t worry, I drew you into the sketch!” All in all, a fun and creative day! And now I can’t wait to hit the road again and photograph more vintage neon signs on the side of the road!
If you want to see more neon in the wild, I highly recommend a road trip to Tucumcari or Albuquerque, NM!
P.S.: My favorite neon sign in the Museum of Neon Art … is in the ladies bathroom! Be sure to look up! It’s on the ceiling!
Check out the Museum of Neon Art if you’re into old neon signs! The museum also offers classes where you can learn how to bend glass and work with neon as well as several Neon Cruises throughout the year on a double decker bus through the streets of Los Angeles!
Wednesday 19th of April 2017
Definitely adding this to my list of California must-sees. The one in Vegas is great, but I love that these ones are actually lit up!
Friday 22nd of July 2016
I had no idea there was a Neon Museum in Glendale. We've been to the one in Vegas and it was awesome. This is going on our list of must-see places. #client
Friday 22nd of July 2016
Oh I LOVE the one in Vegas, too! But this one is air-conditioned! ;)