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CITY ARTS : Getting the Picture

April 18, 1993|JAKE DOHERTY

One day in February, 30 high school students fanned out across Los Angeles, cameras in hand, to document the world around them. What they captured on film will be featured in "A Day in the Life of Los Angeles Teens," an exhibit opening Monday at the Los Angeles City Hall Bridge Gallery.

The pictures may be surprising, said Donna C. Myrow, executive director of Youth News Service L.A. Bureau, a journalism education organization that offered the five-week photography workshop in which the students learned their craft.

"We didn't tell them to look for certain things," Myrow said. "Everyone's image of Los Angeles is of a city filled with gangbangers. But we wanted them to just tell us a story about a day in their life and not just the sexy, nitty-gritty part of the city that the media focuses on."

In one of the exhibit's 42 black-and-white photos, a young woman wearing a leather jacket tries on a traditional wedding veil. In another, members of a track team demonstrate teamwork during a relay race. Another features a pregnant teen-ager seated in a classroom; the caption notes that she intends to graduate.

"I wanted to express more of the good things that people don't know about," said Charlton Jordan, 17, a senior at Washington Prep High. "We have to ask teen-agers, 'Do you like the way you're being portrayed? If not, what are you going to do about it?' "

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"A Day in the Life of Los Angeles Teens," Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., through May 7 at the Los Angeles City Hall Bridge Gallery, 201 N. Main St., third-floor pedestrian bridge. Free. An opening reception will be Wednesday from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Information: (213) 237-1373.

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