There are two places I return to again and again in Santa Monica. The first being the 3rd Street Promenade with its shopping experience so well tailored and manicured that you completely forget you’re anywhere near the beach. It’s as if a quaint Oceanside town woke up one day to find itself turned into a mall. The second being the pier, with its crush of tourists, locals, family style restaurants and packs of roaming teenagers. I will always be where the people travel in packs. As a photographer seeking out the suburban drama, the edge of Santa Monica has become a mecca for me. This is a place where I can witness the vulnerability of the beachgoer alongside the sort of hunger that fuels a daylong shopping spree. And it’s hard work documenting the two because hunger and vulnerability don’t want to be photographed. I always leave it feeling a bit beat up, but pleased with the colors and the geometry of the bodies. “Next time,” I say to myself, “next time I’ll bring my towel and do what the others do,” but I always bring my camera instead.