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There’s another side of Las Vegas, beyond the slot machines and the free cocktails and the intoxicated stampede of tourists on the strip. It’s a perspective you don’t usually get, because—if you’re in Las Vegas to begin with—you’re too often part of that herd. So what do you do when you’re just 19 years old and aren’t old enough to participate in a city built for the 21+ club? You document it from afar.
Hawaiian-born, Vegas-raised photographer Marcus Saad (better known as @UpScaleShooter) has been stalking the landlocked city, taking pictures of its empty cement corridors, its empty yellowed hallways, its lights and walls of glass with the nuance of an insider who’s still stuck on the outside for the next two years.
ISAORA talks to Marcus about getting busted on rooftops, the best time to see the city, and where he wants to go next.
Describe your city in three words:
Casinos. Neon lights. Drunk people.
What’s the worst thing about your city?
Worst thing about my city is how hard it is to get up on rooftops because security is always on you. They have cameras everywhere!
What’s the best thing about it?
Best thing about my city is all the colorful lights we have, which makes for colorful pictures.
Describe a typical Monday:
A typical Monday is work in the morning ‘til afternoon. After work, grab my camera, meet some friends, and explore the city and shoot.
Ever get busted shooting somewhere you shouldn’t have been?
Yes, once! Me and a few friends took some stairs in a casino to reach the roof of it. I think we made it too obvious and casino security caught us within five minutes of being on the roof.
What’s your favorite time of day to shoot?
Favorite time is night. The city lights are nice and colorful.
Best place in the city to shoot:
Place called “City Center.” It’s pretty new. It has a lot of architecture and there’s a rooftop view with a pretty stunning sight.
Any places you haven’t traveled yet but have to get to?
New York, of course!
All photos courtesy of UpScaleShooter.