Terminal 8 Studios - Neon Lamborghini Diablo GT

One of the things that I love the most is when a community of people come together to synergize and build new relationships in a world where competition is considered

2 years ago

Latest Post Sunday at Leen Customs by Drew Manley public

One of the things that I love the most is when a community of people come together to synergize and build new relationships in a world where competition is considered fierce and divided. Being a content creator is hard and has a slew of challenges that one may not have anticipated from the start. That is why so many creators find themselves conflicted and questioning their life decisions frequently. If you are a creator, you know exactly what I am talking about.

That is why as a creative, it is so important to build a community of other creatives that you trust and want to see you win and vice versa, however that is much easier said than done almost every time. Problem is, most don't want you to win... they want to see you struggle, give up and throw in the towel just like they did and doom and gloom of reality settles in. Like all great things, great things take time to build and must be protected so that it doesn't just fade away in the abyss of nothingness when you end up taking it for granted.

In the event that a perfect storm of amazingness happens, they happen in stages and over a period of time, and there is no denying how incredible it is and the possibilities of even more greatness that will ensue. It is always hard to explain these types of things but just know that we all came together under the right guidance and love so everything has been nothing shy of a blessing.

I met John, the owner of Terminal 8 studios in the summer of 2020 when I was invited to come and shoot there by my buddy Erich, whom I met at Race Service when we put on a Cooled Collective Rise n Shine Event the year prior pre-covid. You see what I did there? Connect the dots... networking... it is amazing how that works. As they say, half the job is just showing up... for those who wonder why you never get your big break, well maybe you just need to get out there more.... perhaps? Meet more people who fuck with what you do and you fuck with them and then make some magic together. That is the recipe! Simple but lots of sophistication there. Figure it out.

At our first event, Erich managed to bring together a handful of creators and it was a glorious day of shooting and hanging out. The vibes were incredible and a very supportive group of creators coming together to create.... imagine that! Also, the way John had set everything up, it was an automotive oasis where no one would even suspect. None of us had a clue... it was just one of those magic moments when I look back at it and I was blessed to have be a part of it.

One of the creators I met that day was Chazzy, a young and an enthusiastic photographer from the IE. Chazzy has been blowing up and has an army of people who love his 80s color haze style of vintage cars. You cannot forget a guy like Chazzy because he always has the biggest smile on his face and he is just so genuinely happy to be present where there are exotics around. He ended up coming with another buddy of mine, Ace, who owns a well known and well driven Murci all around Socal.

Then I met a young married couple who are the sweetest.... Hailey and Blake. Literally producing videos and photos for all of their followers as a husband and wife couple. Pretty tough to beat when your significant other loves cars and creating content just as much as you do.

Then I met Kyle... who is a wizard with video transitions and those super smooth slow mo grabs. Love Kyle's vibes.... super chill and happy to be trying new things. Quiet and focused, Kyle like many other talented artists, is calculating his next move and putting in major work behind the scenes.

Then that leads me back to Erich, the guy who put all of this together. Erich will probably be the first to admit to you that he is still trying to figure it out but the way he makes up for is by putting into action the things that really excite him. Remember when I said earlier, half the battle is just showing up??? So even though he is just figuring it out, he made all of this happen twice already and started something so genuine with such a small group of us that has become very special. For that, I cannot thank you enough Erich and it has been wonderful to see how much you have grown as a producer and cameraman in such a short time.

By the time I arrived on this day, I was about 90 mins behind the scheduled meet up time so things were already in session and rocking and rolling. Seemed like Chazzy already had something in mind, so I walked into the fog machine being blown into the Diablo GT and Aputure LED lights being gelled for that ultra 80s smoke vibe. It definitely had Chazzy written all over it. So I spent most of the time just documenting the things going on. I have been on vacation mode for a few weeks at this point so I was definitely not focused on producing anything interesting.

I witnessed Marti aka 6tiff putting in some serious work making sure the Diablo GT was underlit, backlit, accented, gelled properly in order to give all of the vibes. Very meticulously he worked in trying to set things up so that they hit the aesthetics that were trying to be met. Always amazing to see skilled technicians in their zone and doing what they do best.

Marti in the camo hoodie
A set of 8 Astera LED lights.... these things are badass and now I want a few of them but at $1000 a light.... that is some big ballin' lights

As you can see, it had a music shoot vibe without the hoards of rappers, their posse and females to fill the space. Terminal 8 is a gorgeous space and filled with all of the vintage toys along with race car toys and beyond. John has quite the exquisite taste in fine quality things. Rare Lambos aren't just a car thing, it is a lifestyle thing but the best part of it all is that John is family man and a gentleman.

Met another diligent and hardworking guy this second time around, Damian who was walking around with a vintage DV camcorder and what ended up catching my eye was an external recorder attached to the camcorder through RCA jacks. I thought to myself, if that is what I think it is, it is super cool to see a device like that repurposing old cameras for a new era and consider how young he looked, I knew he was genuinely interested in vintage things because they were just cool.

After a few hours in the studio, our original plan was to go shoot rollers and some environmental shots of the Diablos on the hillside but plans quickly changed when John had to be somewhere and we ended up just calling it for another day. I ended up staying behind with Chazzy and Damian for a bit and then got to see Damian get a ride along in one of the modern Lambos as a birthday gift. A gift that he would never forget.... Chazzy did you a solid homie!

Also managed to grab some stills of everyone just hanging out and connecting with one another.

So good to catch up with the crew and meeting new faces as well. I really enjoyed hanging out and documenting the day at Terminal 8. Remember for those who have it this far... relationships don't happen overnight.... most of the time that is but when they hit, sometimes they hit real hard. Lately I would say that I have blessed with many new friendship in such a short period and have been having a lot of fun with all of it. Get out there, meet new people and make magic. Magic doesn't just happen, you have to make it happen. Go out there and find your people.

Thanks for following along.... share this blog post with your friends, following and dog... yea your dog cares, you just have to present it well to your dog lol.

Drew Manley

Some random shows of John's White Ferrari Testarossa looking like it has been discarded in the field but made for super vibey portraits.

Drew Manley

Published 2 years ago


Leave us your opinion.