Last weekend I visited the boardwalk in Asbury Park, New Jersey. This is one of my favorite shore spots and each year I discover new interesting spots. We went to see the Promenade of Mermaids, but I stumbled upon a pinup clothing shop, a pirate, and some vintage guitars.
Retro Model at Bettie’s Bombshells
Bettie’s Bombshells is a boardwalk boutique specializing in vintage inspired designer pinup couture. I picked up some sunglasses and a Bettie Page low cut t-shirt. I want to go back though to get a retro bathing suit.
We listened to the “Creepy Bard” (the name he goes by) play guitar on the boardwalk.
We found some amazing vintage guitar. Asbury Park is home to music venues and you can hear music almost every night of the week.
All of the photos in this post were taken with the Hipstmatic app on my iPhone. I used a combination of Tinto 1884 and Louis XIV infrared to get a dreamy, hyper real look.
This started out as a portrait of Sophia Loren but after it was done it reminded me of a retro Sofia Vergara. She plays one of my favorite characters on Modern Family. I used the Inkpad app and then used PicGrunger to give it an aged look. I wanted to give it the look of a vintage movie poster.
Last weekend we took a second visit to Asbury Park to see the Boardwalk and some other places that we missed on our first visit. Beach season was officially over but the boardwalk was still hopping with tourists, locals and street musicians. There were food stands in colorful shipping “containers” between the shops and restaurants. We had funnel cake and lemonade while listening to a trio dressed kind of like steampunk gypsies singing about vampires. We walked past a lot of the landmarks, like Madame Marie’s stand from Bruce’s song (yes, it really does exist), the Stone Pony, and The Convention Center. At the Wonder Bar they were having an outdoor Yappy Hour, where people brought their dogs. There were more Shepard Fairey murals beyond the main drag.
The Convention Center
The Convention Center is filled with little shops and bars
We could hear a musician playing guitar and singing a Door’s song here while walking on the beach
McLoone’s Asbury Grille, formerly a Howard Johnsons
Shepard Fairey murals
The Asbury Park Boardwalk is timeless, with architecture from several different eras standing side by side. Some of the buildings reminded me of Giorgio de Chirico’s isolated landscapes. Music is a big part of the Boardwalk and you can’t help but think of your favorite summer songs from when you were growing up.
We made our yearly trip to Cool Scoops ice cream parlor in Wildwood, New Jersey. This is one of our favorite places to go in Wildwood not only for the ice cream but for the walls of memorabilia. Cool Scoops is truly like a mini museum of pop-culture artifacts.
Every year that we go there are brand new things to look at. This year I was amazed by the decorations in the ladies room which included a hair dryer and a mystery date game. We also liked the Les Paul guitar that was hanging in one of the rooms. Each room has at least one item or photo that brings back happy childhood memories of toys, places or music we loved!
Open the Door to Your Mystery Date!
Les Paul guitar
The retro TV wall
Another view of the ladies room
Last weekend I visited Asbury Park for the first time in many years. Before going to Dr. Sketchy’s in the Passions Building I had a chance to take some pictures around the beach and boardwalk area.
There was a mixture of the old and new Asbury Park. The Casino building had street art inside and around it.
Shepard Fairey mural of Paul Simonon of the Clash
Mural inside of Casino Building
Philadelphia Toboggan Company Carousel Building (Carousel is no longer in the building)
Detail of artwork over the door
View of Boardwalk
I really want to visit Asbury Park again to visit more of it’s landmarks that I missed, like the Convention Center and the Stone Pony. It really is a unique part of the New Jersey shore.
I had a great time drawing at Dr. Sketchy’s featuring Burlesque performer and Pin Up model Go Go Amy. This was a real “old school” Dr. Sketchy’s session without any elaborate theme, but I always feel that I get better drawings at these types of sessions. I had not been able to go to Dr. Sketchy’s for the last couple of months and I really missed it.
This was one session where I wish I was able to take photos because Go Go Amy had beautifully colored costumes. Some of the short poses at the beginning featured her flaming pasties. Go Go Amy is part of a traveling Burlesque troupe called “Pretty Things Peep Show” that travels and performs around the country. They have a KickStarter going on until April 11th to raise money for a new tour bus. If you are interested in Burlesque you should definitely check it out because they have some pretty neat incentives.
Last weekend we went to the Bendix Diner in Hasbrouk Heights, New Jersey for breakfast. We usually judge a diner by how good the breakfast food and coffee is. The Bendix Diner has been around for 72 years and is probably one of the few diners in New Jersey that hasn’t been renovated to look more like a regular restaurant. It might be considered more of a truck stop or greasy spoon. I love the neon sign on top of the building which reads “good coffee” and the name of the diner in big block letters. From what I have read online it has been used for a lot of tv commercials and some movies, such as Jersey Girls and Boys on the side. It reminded me of a scene from Goodfellas, and as we left I noticed a picture of Robert Dinero behind the counter.
Growing up, did you:
Watch reruns of the 60’s Batman show and want to dress just like Catwoman or Batgirl?
Walk to the candy store to buy comic books?
Want to be like your favorite tv moms, Morticia and Lilly?
Spend Sunday afternoon watching old black and white movies? (The Bowery Boys, Abbott and Costello, Martin and Lewis to name a few)
Watch Saturday morning shows like Josie and the Pussycats, Scoobydoo and the Banana Splits?
Did you line up around the movie theater to see Star Wars?
Did you buy your favorite clothes at a thrift shop or Goodwill?
Did you eat Jiffy Pop, Pop Rocks or Pop Tarts?
Did you go to roadside amusement parks and county fairs?
Did you go on road trips listening to you favorite tapes? (8 tracks?)
Did you try to tape your favorite songs off the radio?
Did you visit record stores and spend hours looking at the album art?
Did you go to the Spencer’s at the mall to look at the day glo posters in the black light room?
Did you have paintings of children with big eyes in your basement?
What kind of things did you do or see as a child/teen that shaped your artistic vision? I find that my subject matter for my art always finds itself revisiting things that I was interested in during my youth.
This is a portrait of Arleen Whelan using Inkpad and PicGrunger on the iPad. I’m not really familiar with her as an actress but I saw a picture of her on Tumblr and love the combination of her red hair and her emerald green dress. On Tumblr I am following several people who post pictures of vintage movie stars or cheesecake models and I find that i am using Tumblr almost like an inspiration board. You can search tags like Vintage or Illustration to find some really wonderful artwork and photos.