Conquer_LA, grub Little Tokyo and a walk along 6th Street Bridge in Downtown Los Angeles

A bunch of us at IE Photo Rentals decided to check out the latest meet up with the @conquer_la guys this past weekend. Leonard Holland (, who is one our interns at IE Photo Rentals has been a part of these social media meet ups for some time. 

It was a great way for me to get out there and test shoot a new lens. Today I chose to shoot the newest Tamron 15-30mm 2.8 VC on the Canon 1dx body. All of the images below were shot on it, check it out at IE Photo Rentals Website.

Tamron 15-30mm 2.8 VC

Tamron 15-30mm 2.8 VC

This recent photo meet up was not a photo walk, but more of a gather and shoot event. Since most of us haven't attended an event like this prior, it would of been nice to been apart of a moving group to get a real feel for these type of events but I guess there is always next time. 

We all met up at the Echo Park Lake, which I remember to be a very sketchy area back back back in the day but apparently it has gone thru some serious gentrification probably from the help of some very hard working hipsters. 

The park summed up Los Angeles really well. You had all types of ethnic backgrounds, people of all ages, people hustlin' toys and food, hipsters and families. Although I didn't get any shots of them, the elote (corn man) and churro lady made the day at the park so much more memorable. The fact you can enjoy a day out and experience other cultures is always a win in my book. Look at how beautiful the sun was shiny between the trees....  yea it was a glorious day. 

You can see how happy Leonard is at these type of events. His whole face just lights up! My son Calvin was just happy to have gotten a Batman ice cream which he scarfed down in a few quick minutes. Left me none :(

Here is a shot of Pro with the Sony A7s and the Sigma 50mm 1.4 Art. That lens is no joke, probably the sharpest lens I have ever used. The crowd started to grow as it got darker. 

As the sun went down, the blues in the sky were glowing beautifully. All of these were snapped hand held at 2.8. With the help of the people in the crowd, light was abundant with the help of a few different handheld light sources. 

We hung out for a good 40 mins and decided to head out to Little Tokyo for dinner. We ended up at Spitz, which has amazing fries with gyro meat but I didn't snap any inside. My bad. 

Leonard had never been to Little Tokyo so we did a little tour of the area after dinner. Instead of taking photos of all the cool Japanese decor, we all stood there taking photos of each other. In this photo everyone is photographing me cause I might have flexed my guns or something awesome. lol

Last time I photographed this building, I had my older Canon 1ds Mark II and it's low light struggles quite a bit. With the Canon 1dx, it did a much nicer job picking up the shadow details. The images did have perspective adjusted in post due to the lens having very strong distortion at 15mm. 

The image below is a shot of a popular Japanese gift store. Just thought it was interesting with all of the Marilyn Monroe decor.

Chase bank had crazy blue neon lights going so we ran inside just to snap a quick portrait. 
Across the street, stairs led into an underground parking area. I loved the color and texture of it so I snapped for you guys to enjoy. 

A week prior to my boy's 6th birthday, he contemplates the journey of his life or perhaps he was thinking of ice cream again. :)

We ended up at the 6th St bridge shortly after walking around DTLA. Some of the guys we met at the meet up were meeting up here as well. Some guys climbed up the structure to get the higher perspective but it was a bit too nerve wracking for the most of us. Got some light streaks flowing thru...

Above is a landscape of the tracks that lead to the San Bernardino and Riverside lines. I think OC/SD lines are shown as well. 

We then decided to hike down to the LA River and under the 6th St bridge. It was a bit sketchy at 12am going into a pitch black tunnel but with 8 other friends and a flashlight, it was exciting. I didn't shoot inside the tunnel cause I was probably distracted. SMH

Below you can see the landscapes I took of under the bridge. It was so vast down there and we felt so small under these huge pillars. 

I wanted to check out California Donuts after but since it was close to 1am, most of the group was exhausted and we started to head home. 

Thanks to Leonard for inviting us out. We had a great time!

Til the next
Andrew Manley
Wandering Photographer

A weekend getaway to Parker, AZ (Part 2)

So on our 2nd day at Parker, we wasted no time getting pulled on the raft... which it seems fun until you get back there. Now I am not saying it was scary but it definitely made you feel nervous as we were on the edge of the waves many times. 

Later we realized that we needed to extend the rope out and get a bit further away from the waves that the boat was creating. This made it less nerve wracking and more enjoyable. 

As you can see my brother in law Billy is very much at home in these environments. 

So later in the day, I get a call from Billy that they dropped off my mother and father in law at the local casino. Then 20 mins later I get a call for a pick up. Looked like they weren't so lucky gambling the slots that day. They lost a good sum of money but them smiles... must of hurt bad lol.

I was burnt out most of the day because of yesterday's activities. So I do what I like to do best when I am chillin' at home, I cook! My mother in law grabbed some beautiful skirt flap meat at Costco the day before we left. This is one of my most favorite cuts of meats cause of its ability to absorb marinades and even more importantly, lime juice! 

I had some beautiful tomatoes, red onion and cilantro and made pico de gallo as a topping for our asada tacos. Only thing that was missing was some heat, habanero, serranos or my favorite, thai chilis. 

Loved watching the kids play a round of Monopoly... while the sounds of an old school movie played in the back. Now it was starting to feel like a vacation... 

Bishop was already back at fishing. He had caught a larger bass in the early morning and he was on the hunt for another. This boy loves fishing!

Took some landscapes of our view from the dock. You can see California across the river... the land where everything is expensive and taxes are high. It was nice to be on the AZ side.

At night, I decided to bring out the tripod and get some starscapes and various shots of the rocky terrain. The stars were shinny so bright that night. It was partly cloudy but more and more they started to dissipate. It gave me a chance to capture the stars and it was so dark outside, the stars really stood out.

As I noticed the Milky Way Galaxy above me and bummed that I didn't bring a lens wider than a 24mm, I only got smaller segments of the MWG. So instead I started to look for constellations. I was mainly looking for the Big Dipper because it has been so long since I have seen it. If you look at the photo above, you can see the Big Dipper if you look close enough. 

I photoshopped the lines above so it is easier to see the Big Dipper. It was so big above the horizon. I was blown away by its scale. One to remember for sure. 

Got a few shots of the house rental at night and one of the Milky Way and a shooting star blowing by. So cool...!

Next morning we started to pack up and then got together for a family portrait. Got one of the kids too... I already feel sad because I know they will look grow next year and we will look back at how small they were... ugh. :(

Found a local diner that served American Style Breakfast. I ordered the ham steak cause the waitress told me it was 1.5lbs. She wasn't kidding. The ham was super salty... but a good memory we had was when she came to check up on us later, she said, "The ham is really good. It is not salty or anything!". I nearly laughed my ass off when she said that but she was such a sweet old woman I left it as it is. Memories. lol.

On our way home, the Suburban got stopped. Needed to check and see if we weren't importing dangerous plants over from AZ. lol

There were so many beautiful clouds hanging around all day. The brown from the land and the blues form the skies were so harmonious. 

Then we found this... a place where people leave their shoes for some reason....? It smelt like a dingy old locker. So glad we stopped here. My life wouldn't have been complete without witnessing it. 

More landscapes and love's. Nuts and Iced Tea FTW.

Was a wonderful weekend to get away from the land of the crazy but glad to be back in action. 

I know a lot of you out there work a lot, don't work enough, wish you could travel more, etc. Stop making excuses in your life. Be the change you want to see. I know making change is not easy to do but with small steps, you can turn something mountainous and turn it into something you can handle on a day to day basis. 

Til the next,
Andrew Manley

A weekend getaway to Parker, AZ (Part 1)

Last weekend was Labor Day and as a majority of American's leave on their vacations, my family chills at home. Why you ask? Well because of the traffic, congestion and sheer number of frustrations that go on with a 3 day weekend. So we like to go vacay on an off weekend where the mood is more relaxed. We head off to Parker, AZ, where it is right on the border of the California and Arizona border, split by the Colorado River. West side of the river is California and East side is Arizona. So cool to be at two places at one time.


We woke up around 5:45am and started to get things ready for the trip... we did hit the snooze a handful of time but we still kept on schedule. 

We met up with the rest of the family where we switched cars and followed my bro/sis in law along with their new boat. 

The kids were so excited... you can see how tired Bishop was still.

Since we all ran out of the house this morning, no one had time for a proper breakfast. So we stopped by Yum Yum Donuts for a filler until we got to Parker. Donuts, croissants, bagels, muffins, juice.. we loaded as much as we could!

It wasn't until we got to Palm Springs where we had a more interesting landscape to photograph. In combination with the Marumi 82mm circular polarizer, the blues in the sky became rich and contrasty and made for a more dramatic scene. All the windmills were standing still so I guess there was a lack of wind that day. Did a roller of a Chevy Suburban and a boat on a trailer. The longest vehicle I ever did a roller on. Had to shoot 4 lanes over in the fast lane while they were in the slow lane. 

We made our only pit stop in Coachella Valley at this Shell Gas Station. I guess I knew I was in the hot desert when I was welcomed by these cacti. 

Now anyone who knows me knows that I am a freak for fried chicken. I love trying all types of fried chicken but still broasted chicken is still the best. They are getting harder and harder to find. Found this Chester Fried and you know I had to get a few pieces. 

Right under the heating lamp laid my snack. Now if you have been following along my blog, you would know that I started a "diet" where I eat what I want but all I do is portion my meal. I used to eat until I was full or 110% full which led to the constant stretching of my stomach. So now I try to eat only up to 70% of capacity. In the past week, I feel better and less bloated. Two dark meat with a biscuit came out to just under $5. Ain't cheap but even worse was that it wasn't anything special. Not that I was expecting much but I love it when life throws me a curve ball. 

My mother in law loves to play her chances on scratches and Lotto. Today she won $15 but only broke even cause she bought a few extra scratchers. So it was a win but not a win situation.

So as we hit the road again, we were faced with more dirt, rocks and sky. I used slow shutter speeds to give the images a bit more character. Shot them between 1/15 and 1/60th of a second. The shot of the of the road, we ended up pulling over for it but the road had a lot of peaks and valleys so it didn't end up looking like what I wanted it for and finally we got to Parker, AZ. 

Made a panoramic of the area we were staying at.

We ended up renting out a house, got our own garage and security gate as well. It was only a 100 degrees when we got there but it got hotter as the day went on.

We started to unload and walk towards the house. This was the first part of the waterfront we saw and the dock where the boat goes. It was pretty sweet alright.

The unit had three bedrooms with a secret bedroom which had another two beds. Could have invited some more people but oh well... lol... Loved the kitchen as it was spacious and allowed for all of us to have enough room to eat and move around. 

By brother in law Billy didn't waste anytime getting the boat on the water and getting ready for a test run on the Colorado. This is where his heart is and where he wants to dwell, perhaps one day brotha. We all jumped in for a quick tour of the land and water.

We eventually came back and went out again with the whole crew and in our bathing suits. We were ready to jump in the water... oh cause you know, it was burning like hell. lol... Plenty of mansion styled homes for sale. Set you back a million+ lol.

We headed up river and eventually docked by a mini market to get some goods and jumped in the Colorado. 

The water was warm but it cooled us off nicely... here is a nice snapshot of how the next hour went. My niece Jasmyn loved the shot above. It is pretty cool that exact moment, the moment where we were just happy to be...

Photos of the happy crew... minus me of course... photogaphers always get shun'd. 

We were told by sold locals to go a bit more upstream to check out the Parker Dam. So we headed out and this is what we saw. Then we decided to go for a dip in cooler waters. 

Got some fun snaps of the kids jumping in.

Once we headed we rested a bit and the kids started fishing. I loved watching the kids be with each other. The way they played, fought, searched for each other. Watching them enjoy life in it's purist form. To be one with the land and bond with each other. I pray that their bond will always be this tight. I love you kiddos.  

We brought along some baby back pork ribs and I started to smoke them ribs... here is a shot of them closer to the finished product.

It was a pleasant first day, we got to enjoy the water and had some great family moments. 

Bishop was so determined to catch a fish and an hour in, he grabbed himself a tiny Bass! Way to go buddy!

Our lives should be spent more with our loved ones building memories. Love is the master recipe to life's success. Love something, someone, God, community, family... it never fails. I know life is never easy... we are always faced with tough decisions... sometimes circumstances make us make bad decisions but when you have something to live for... the decision is always an easy one. 

I will have more on tomorrow's blog so make sure to check it out when I announce it on Instagram.


A cruise down to San Diego for Big Socal Euro Meet

Life is an adventure... go out there and meet new people, seek new lands and make fond memories that you can talk about on your death bed. It's so hard to break away from the norm and when you do get away, its hard to ease your mind of all the work you have to do when you get back... you  know what I'm talking about right? Makes it worse since I am Korean and Koreans are workaholics. I try not to be but it's in my blood. 

This past weekend was Labor Day... trying to take it easy on Labor Day seems unproductive so I had to find a way to relax but get some work done at the same time. Where does one begin to do that? 

Apparently there was a big car meet in San Diego on Sunday hosted by a Purist member. Open to Euro enthusiasts, I asked a few Euro people if they were going to check out the meet. Sure enough Darren (@creaminz_official) and a whole crew of Porsche and BMW boys were down to roll so I cleared my Sunday to check it out. 

Darren hangs out with some really cool dudes... and since all of these guys ball so hard, I had to get my #mbn (must be nice) hashtags ready to hand out. Here you go, and here you go.... thank you, must be nice sir... lol but as hard as they all ball, they are very gracious and humble dudes. Pleasure meeting the group, their significant others and their sons.... James and Rob both have one boy so Calvin felt right at home with it. 

There was definitely traffic heading down to SD from OC but a majority of the traffic came from people rubbernecking on the 5 freeway when the Marines at Camp Pendleton area were taking their hovercrafts from the dirt to the sea. It was super badass, sorry no photo, we were just mesmerized. 

The rollers below were shot by me while I was driving. Left the Canon 24-70mm 2.8 Mark II on 24mm, center focus and I shot over my shoulder. I have a pretty good idea of what the lens sees so I was able to get some shots this way. 

Stopped by our 2nd Shell Gas Station in SD where we refueled, snacked on packaged goods and waited for Rob from Crooks and Castles

Rob's Lamborghini Aventador in white and HRE's made quite the entrance with his wife sporting the murdered out Merc AMG G Wagon. 

I never attend car shows even though I love cars... not sure why... probably cause of the crowds, the commitment and the heat are at the top of the list. A lot of respect to those that run the circuit of shows... definitely a lot of work. My 964 ended up getting into the show cause the boys know everybody they need to know to get people in. There were two other air cooled Porsches out there, a 930 turbo and a Carrera RS in beautiful RS green. 

This Audi with the Volk ZE's was one of my favorites from the day.... even comes with a stack of firewood. How nice.

I didn't shoot too much on this trip for a few reasons: 1. I was driving 2. Phil (@handsomeandphilthy) jacked my Canon 24-70mm 2.8 Mark II cause he brought a broken lens to the show 3. I actually wanted to be a spectator and not a working photographer.... so you get what you get. lol

Ordered some Thai basil and chili chicken over rice and a Thai Ice Tea. I was let down by the use of breast meat... so dry... ugh. Our pick up sign was "Havoc".

We ended the night with some chicken wings at Wing N' Things and some spirited driving back up the 15N around 10pm. We took some photos... Kevin with the Polaroid and sticking his body out half way around 85mph was fun!

Photo Credit: Kevin McDonnell (@himynameskevin) shot on iPhone

Photo Credit: Kevin McDonnell (@himynameskevin) shot on iPhone

Awesome day with some great people... I hope all of you had a great weekend!

All the images were shot on Canon 1dx and Canon 24-70mm 2.8 Mark II with a Marumi 82mm Circular Polarizer unless otherwise stated. All items can be found at IE Photo Rentals

Til the next,
Andrew Manley

Last minute NSX cruise from La Canada Flintridge to Lake Arrowhead

It's been awhile since I have participated on a drive/cruise and was informed of the Angeles Crest to Lake Arrowhead cruise at midnight the same day of the drive! Usually the meet up is pretty early but since I had to drive out to La Canada Flintridge, a buddy and I had to wake up at 5am and head out the door by 6 but you know how it is on a Saturday night... sleep late and waking up early is very difficult. So I think in reality we woke up at 6am and left at 6:30am but made it on time.... yay for procrastination!

A little backstory... last year in August, I blew the motor on my 2002 NSX while jammin' down ACH.... it sucked and it was expensive. It took about 7 months to get the car back and then there was the break-in period which I just barely made it over. The valves still have to get their final adjustments and such so driving the car hard wasn't an option for me. I wish I could say that I was sad to think about the unfortunate incident last year but I think I am over it as I wasn't really affected much by the thought. 


I keep my gas intentionally low in most of my cars since I do not drive them as often as someone drives a commuter. So I have to fuel up almost everytime I drive her.... just so the gas inside doesn't get too old. I love shooting at Chevron gas stations because they always have nice clean light.

Odometer is just over 78,000... check engine light due to test pipes... hopefully my builder will have a fix for that. 

Had to fuel the body after refueling the car... so headed to this McDonald's.... I knew that the food was gonna be terrible when I saw the large vinyl print they had of some guacamole burger... looked like some 3rd grader who learned how to use photoshop last month did the photoshoot and editing. Terrible. Perhaps I can lend my services to this franchise owner. BTW the sausage was over-cooked and dry. SMH 

When we got to the meeting spot, 6 others have gotten there before us and then we were met by another 8 cars I believe. Mixed crowd of young and older NSX owners. 

Since I was driving and not able to shoot, my buddy Frank was handed my Canon 1ds Mark II and I had him knock out some images with the Canon 35mm 1.4 L. Frank did a good job getting the feels for the drive. 

After an hour long drive, we stopped off at location #2 where we re-grouped and gave the cars some rest. After 30 mins, we hopped back on the road thru Silverwood Lake on Highway 138 straight to Lake Arrowhead. I was just at Lake Arrowhead last Sunday but life clusters so once again a revist to a nice little place.


Do not text and drive people... but wait... is SnapChatting ok?

VIP parking is always nice.... star treatment!

Lunch at a local Pizza joint... I guess I should have photographed some of it but I was distracted. My apologies... The thing with documentary photography is that you have to take photos of everything! You start talking to friends and this is the end result. No photos.

No need to talk to each other anymore... we have smartphones... just text/chat/message/snap each other instead. It's the only way


Well that was my Sunday.... I hope you guys had a good one. Keep chasing your passions and work your ass off during the week so that you can party during the week and work on the weekends... wait what? So confusing. 

Andrew Manley

Day trip to San Bernardino Mountains: Lake Arrowhead

Sometimes you dream about being in other places in a far away land but sometimes where you are may have places undiscovered. Today is not one of those days but a re-visit to a place visited long ago was pretty nice. 

Got a text from our sister-in-law Marlene about heading up to Big Bear since my mother-in-law was gonna watch our kids. Basically a free Sunday without the kids bearing down on us... so we decided a little day trip to the mountains was a perfect idea. We were really going to scout for a home to rent for the winter time but a relaxing and slow paced day was really needed.

My brother-in-law Billy is a big fan of Harley Davidson's and as an enthusiast of any motor vehicle, finding that special moment to take out your "baby" can only lead to good times, right? They ended up getting a head start on us since we still had to get ready. Had the grandparents come pick up my boy and then we hopped in my Honda S2000 with the hardtop removed and the soft top down. It's probably been 3 years since I had the top removed but today was a perfect reason to roll top down. Stopped by IEPR to grab the Sony A7s, generic EF to E-mount adapter and a Canon 24-70mm 2.8 Mark II. Because I didn't have the Metabones available, the generic one didn't allow for aperture control so everything was shot wide open. 

Filled up at a Chevron in Claremont off the 10fwy. Took this with an iPhone since the A7s was packed away in the trunk. My wife is not familiar with using the new system so most of the way up was shot on my iPhone 6. Fancy I know...

S2000 is still a baby with only 23,857 miles for an 06. 

S2000 is still a baby with only 23,857 miles for an 06. 

It's been a long time since I have driven the S2000 up into the mountains. Seems like every time I am in the mountains, I am driving some slow commuter car so today was a real treat, at least for me... the wifey was getting sick. Sorry babe.

One of the best parts about driving up to Lake Arrowhead are the double lanes. No need to worry about getting caught behind a family in a mini van driving the speed limit. I ain't got no time for that. Life is a race, need to get to the top fast!

Look at these roads... beautiful... anyone with any kind of sport vehicle needs to come up here frequently. 

After we climbed most of the mountain, pulled over to snap the landscape and let the S cool down for a minute. I have to say that I still have to get used to the focus peaking on the A7 series... the camera definitely showed the car in focus but when I got home, the bushes are in focus. Had to put the soft top on cause I was getting burnt up!


The generic EF to E mount adapter showed some significant vignetting and since I could only shoot wide open, it was what it was.... adds to the mood of the sky. Look at all that LA smog! Breathe it in folks, breathe it in... lol 

Leather brown Chuck Taylors

Leather brown Chuck Taylors

Setting the camera up, test subject... my trusty old leather Chucks

MBN (must be nice) to have a view like this in your backyard. I am guessing that is one of the perks of living all the way up here

Look at that smile... gazing out into the the world... next stop, Lake Arrowhead 6 miles away. 

If you look close enough, the wifey spotted a rock climber. Yup, some guy decided that right over there would be a nice rock to climb. Maybe one day I will understand the fascination of climbing rocks.... maybe... lol

When we finally got to the village, we got super lucky finding parking right away. It wasn't until after we started to walk towards the businesses how many people were driving around looking for a place to park. Life is always about timing... Met up with the bro and sis. I was starving and without jumping on my phone to look for a place to eat on Yelp, I just walked into McDonald's and grabbed a double meal combo. Double cheeseburger and small fries for $2.50? Sold. Yes @manleyeats will occasionally eat fast foods... it's ok, its fast and hits the spot... don't judge me.


After the fuel up, we were people watching by the dock and noticed something hilarious. I have to admit that dogs that live up here have lives better than most elsewhere. I want to be a dog like this in my next lifetime. You ready for it?

Without hesitation, Marlene was rushing me to get a photo of these dogs. The owners were real cool about it... but look at these dogs... they have sunglasses! I'm pretty sure they were more expensive than my Chilli Bean glasses. Will you just look at how happy they are?!

People were doing all sorts of happy things.... I need to be doing what they are doing... it's on the list of things I need to do. 


So one of the things I do best is critique shit... this drives some people crazy while some people like that about me. For me, it's what I do. If you don't like that, try talking to the tree at your nearest park, you might get a better response. jk #sorrybutnotsorry. The other thing is eating... I love to eat but I usually can't eat without doing the thing I do best, which is critique.... so I am kind of an asshole when it comes to food. At least that is what everyone thinks but in reality I just have a set of standards that needs to be met. That's why people get confused when I can enjoy a meal at McDonald's and a steak at Vic and Anthony's. You see, it is like this, you can take the same french fry from McDonald's, throw them in the fryer, fry until golden brown, remove them from oil, salt and serve. If you eat those fries within 3 mins, they will be amazing. Let them sit for 10 mins, game over. Just throw them away. I don't need to eat no 10 min fry. Timing is everything as I mentioned before. Of course freshness, balance, flavor, butter and salt are a must. Yes I can just do butter and salt as a meal lol.

They had a some interesting stores if you had a need to spend money... i.e.: a dinosaur store, dog desserts only, knickknack store but I was quickly drawn by the beef jerky woman. I mean all commercial beef jerky is so nasty in terms of flavor and texture. When I find a small business where they actually care about the quality of their product, I support. 

Sky Ranch Specialties has all sorts of high quality beef jerky for your desired palette. Since I enjoy things that are spicy, salty and vinegary, I opted for the Peppered jerky since that is my favorite. I bought a bag and when I chewed into them, I had to get another bag. What I didn't take a photo of is their Southwest BBQ Jerky... the semi-sweet but hickory smoked flavor got me... and this is coming from someone who doesn't like any sweets in my meats. Killed two bags before the end of the day. Get some!

Next stop was The Grapevine Store which was a very nice stop to cool down with some beer and wine. We ended up getting a sampler of their hard ciders. Two of the four tasted like candy.... on our way out, we ended up grabbing two bottles of their sweet beer later to find out we got the wrong one. We ordered Doc's Draft when it was really the Rekorderlig Berry we wanted. But no fret, we still handled it.

Look at how the ladies smile with glee when presented with cold elixir of a very sweet caliber. In combination with the beef jerky, all was good.

After the beer consumption, we headed out to the deck to check out the sights. Not sure why I posted a photo of the red umbrella... Red is my favorite color and I like the tones of this one I guess lol. 

As stated before, I am not a fan of sweets usually but I am a sucker for toffee... perhaps its the butter and sugar combination but that tickles my fancy. I am all about it. So walked into Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory for a bit of a sample. 


Next on the list was a short cruise over to our dinner spot. So we jumped into our cars and bike and had a beautiful scenic drive over. 

Did a quick photoshoot of my bro and sis chillin' by his Harley. Didn't go for a dramatic photo, just something to remember the day by. 

For dinner, we check out a restaurant on Yelp rated with a 4.5 star review called Stone Creek Bistro. Very hipster-ish restaurant, small but cozy, lots of wood decor and a nice and easy vibe. Our waitress was pretty funny, with her sassy spirit... made it a nice enjoyable evening. Billy ordered the New York Steak (it was funny to see the waitress' face when he asked for A1 lol), Marlene got the Pork Chops, Methuse got the Carbonara and I got the appetizer BLT. 

After dinner, there was still some daylight left. We walked out to this beautiful landscape.

We were debating about heading to Temecula Wineries but we started to get tired. Got home, put my head on my LoveSac to get a little nap in at 8:30pm and then woke up at 8:30am. LOL... it was a great day.

Andrew Manley

Star gazing at Leo Carillo Beach, CA with the Sony A7s & A7r II

Leonard Holland, one of our guys at IE Photo Rentals loves doing landscapes and he has been talking about shooting with the group for some time. He came into the shop one day to show me a photo of his last trip to Leo Carillo Beach, CA. I was blown away with the ideal of laying out at the beach and looking at the stars. He told me that he wanted to go again to try and get a better shot since he wasn't happy with his last encounter.

I figured it was a great time to take a short trip out with the team and take photographs as a group. We agreed to meet there at 10pm but we actually met closer to 10:30pm or so. Our group ran late cause we got caught up in the Santa Monica 3rd Street Promenade traffic, Pro was coming from the "hood" and Leonard's group was about 5 mins behind my group. Hector and Nancy made it there 20 mins before anyone but Hector started to get a bit of anxiety cause it was so dark. Our group originally planned to eat a nice meal in Santa Monica but cause we were running late, we ended up eating Jack in the Box. Felt like I was in high school again... in a car packed with people eating Jumbo Jacks with their famous buttermilk sauce. Good times. Below is a map of where Leo Carillo Beach is.

As soon as we arrived, I could already see the stars shinning brighter than they have ever in my entire life. I could even see traces of the Milky Way Galaxy... that was all a big trip for me. Part of why the stars were so bright, no ambient light pollution. I am guessing light pollution is about 3 stops of light brighter than the stars way above. When our eyes adjust for street lamps and such, the weaker light of the stars recede. 

It was pitch black out there so in an effort to keep the photos representing the feel out there, I left the images mainly untouched. We ended up shooting for 2.5 hours or so but people started to get cold and sleepy as we were getting closer to 3am. I felt like I could shoot another 2 hours. 


I didn't like the composition of the shot where the Milky Way was so instead, I probably did a big no-no and ended up making my own composition. I stacked a shot of the Milky way into a landscape that I liked better. I know a lot of you Purist would probably scoff at me but hey, it's what I do. It took me about 40 mins to properly blend it in but I got it to where I was happy.

Definitely worth a trip out there.

©2015 Copyright Andrew Manley

©2015 Copyright Andrew Manley