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LAist Interview: Mark 'The Cobrasnake' Hunter

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Readers of the LA Weekly may already be familiar with the party photographs taken by Mark Hunter AKA Mark The Cobrasnake. Mark seems to frequent all the spaces where the young like to frolic and documents their fun on his website thecobrasnake.com. Click through his site, you may see someone you know doing something they shouldn't...

This week, Mark brings his unique perspective to the LAist Interview:

Age and Occupation:

Under 21 and a photographer of sorts

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How long have you lived in Los Angeles, and which neighborhood do you live in?

I have lived in Los Angeles my whole life -- born and raised. Now I live near the La Brea Bakery and Tar Pits.

Let's talk about the website. Why the name change from The Polaroid Scene?

After nine long and hard months of developing the name, Polaroid lawyers contacted me and they were claiming all this bullshit about defaming the name Polaroid. We all know that Polaroids are infamous in the drug, immigrant and kiddie porn rings, so they were saying that my photos were ruining their image. Fuck that.

How do you think Polaroid's lawyers found you?

I can only guess someone gets paid minimum wage to find out about stuff like this.

What inspired you to launch the site in the first place? Do you take all the pictures or a group of photogs do it?

I decided to launch the site because I got too lazy emailing all my friends photos I had taken of them... at first this was just a place for me to share with my friends and now it the world... I don't know what comes next but I'm sure its going to be fucking awesome. And yes all photos are taken by me. Except like 10 or something.

strong>How often do you go out?

Almost every night.

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Do people object to your taking their pictures; do you have them sign releases?

No, but I really should start because then I could be more successful... people often don't want me to take their photo... but that's why I'm the snake... I'm good at getting what I want to be sexy and stuff...

What is Adventure Team and how does it work? Has anyone won a prize yet?

Adventure team is a new addition to thecobrasnake.com. At first on polaroidscene I would randomly post groups of photos I would take of interesting/disenfranchised people, calling it the adventure team. I got some emails asking to join the team. So on the new site the idea is that you can send in similar photos to the ones in the archives and they can be presented in the new trash section for everyone to see.

Hell yes. The prize is like a t-shirt and some pins and like everything you ever wanted... one winner each month. I think his name is Jack or Jake. He sent me like 10 emails all with great photos. Thanks Jake or Jack.

What's the wildest picture you've ever received?

I've received pictures of fully naked girls; those are cool. But nothing I haven't seen before.

Is there any picture you won't publish on cobrasnake.com?

Not really -- nothing is too hot for TV.

What's your preferred mode of transportation?

Bike

What's your favorite movie(s) or TV show(s) that are based in LA?

"Cops," "Curb Your Enthusiasm"

It's 9:30 PM on Thursday. Where are you coming from and where are you going?

Thursday I go to Beauty Bar and arrive around 11 PM. I usually take a nap prior so I'm nice and rested and ready for hot action.

If you could live in LA during any era, when would it be?

The 70's. I heard it was great fun back then.

What's your beach of choice?

Malibu just cause I used to ride my bike up there every weekend...

What is the "center" of LA to you?

Living near La Brea is pretty central for me. I like being between the ocean and downtown...

If you were forced to live in a neighboring county, which would you choose? Ventura County is a wussy answer.

I would totally live in Orange County and have a different life all together... spending my time doing nothing very exciting.

If you could live in any neighborhood or specific house in LA, where/which would you choose?

Right now I really like Hancock Park its really nice and quiet and a good change of pace from my current life style... it's also still close to stuff. If I had a car I would live in the Hollywood Hills.

Los Angeles is often stereotyped as a hard place to find personal connections and make friends. Do you agree with that assessment? Do find it challenging to make new friends here?

You have to make the most with what you are given. I was given a mustache and a camera and I would like to think I have made lots of nice friends. I would rather say that it is harder to meet good ladies for long term relationships.

Drinking, driving. They mix poorly, and yet they're inexorably linked. How do you handle this conflict?

Drinking and bike riding is my solution. If I fuck up at least I can't really hurt anybody but me.