A Thursday Night w/ Alyssa Aragon

A Thursday Night w/ Alyssa Aragon
Nicole Smith

Alyssa Aragon may have an early start to the local street-, nightlife-, and event-photography game, but her skills behind the lens have been seasoned by years involved with the local hip hop scene.

Aragon started taking photos three years ago for a friend's custom car shop, Kreepin Kustumz, and caught the shutter bug while photographing artists, DJs, and plenty of locals at the Blunt Club's hip hop nights throughout town.

New.Era.Gone is Aragon's latest photography venture. She says it's an evolved version of Street Light Photography, her former photo business, which mainly featured pictures from Blunt Club. And while Aragon ventures into new territories like portrait and video, we have a strange feeling she'll continue to keep things real as a local lady photog ... and our first lady wingmanwoman.

Aragon and friend will.i.am.
Aragon and friend will.i.am.
Nicole Smith

The Meet Up: Last Thursday marked Blunt Club's 9-year anniversary -- a perfect opportunity to catch up with Aragon while she took part in the fun and the photo opts.

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We arrived at Yucca Tap Room around 11:30 p.m.. Aragon says its her first time attending Blunt Club since it moved from its old spot Red Owl more than a year ago. The venue was jam packed with "B Club" veterans, newbies and a few more photographers than Blunt 's earlier years.

Aragon's quick to note there's not much of a rivalry between photographers in the same room -- especially at Blunt Club.

Note: Don't let the backwards cap fool you, Aragon might look like a hard ass when really she's a full blown sweetheart who's incredibly humble and down to earth.

She constantly credits the work of others, especially Thomas Koppinger of IrieAZ, Ian Sanders of AZXCLUSIVE, and Aaron (A Wall) Wallace.

Aragon says Koppinger's photos were one of her first inspirations, and A Wall is always eager to lend her sound advice and encouragement.

(from left) Blunt veterans Dumperfoo, Jeremy Arviso, and Geoff Gardner
(from left) Blunt veterans Dumperfoo, Jeremy Arviso, and Geoff Gardner
Nicole Smith

The Company: Alyssa's buddy Will or "will.i.am" and a few friends from Kreepin Kustumz, along with a handful of familiar "wingman" faces including JB Snyder, A Wall, and Mark "Ellery" Leach.

Of course, The Blunt Club OGs were in full swing; Dumperfoo, Reuben Martinez, Dusty "Pickster One" Hickman, Jonas Hurst, and Logan "Element" Howard, to name a few.

Favorite Spots: Alyssa lives in Chandler, but she frequents her downtown faves on certain nights of the week. Bar Smith is standard on Wednesdays for The Scenerio and Friday for Sticky Fingers, and you can probably guess which spot owns Alyssa's Thursday night.

We decided to end our night around the eighth time we lost each other in the mass amounts of the hip hop lovin' local elite.

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