July 2018

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July has been quite eventful for us.  On July 2nd, we started off the month with our 2nd shoot.  We have a new member of family, Nikita and off we went to Venice Beach.  Just like our 1st shoot, it was just Brett, Mike, Nikita, and me in my small Prius.  

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It was early Monday morning and I'd served the team a cup of Cappuccino.  They all finished their cups somehow. I tried mine & it was so horrendously terrible.  I couldn't & didn't finish mine. These guys are too kind.  =)

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Off to Venice beach we went.  The sun was up, wasn't too hot & right amount of sea breeze.... It was such a glorious day & Nikita made us all laugh with her humor & energy. 

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It has been so long since I've been to Venice & I was completely unaware of this beautiful gem called, "Venice Canal".  It reminded me somewhat of "Amsterdam".  It was so far so good! 

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After the Canal, we ran into a big problem.   We wanted to get a few shots of our Denim Travel sets on boats and thought we could easily accomplish the look at Marina Del Rey...only to find out the access was completely limited to boat owners.  At the last minute, a place came to our mind and we've decided to go check it out.  And Of course, it worked out beautifully as you can see from this shot of Christopher Denim. 

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Because of the change in location, our shoot took a lot longer than anticipated.  By the time we got back to our Studio, we were tired & fatigued. And then I'd suddenly realized that we forgot about Morpheus Denim.  "No problem", Brett said & he took a walk around the Studio.  I simply don't know how else to explain this photo other than..... we were truly lucky.  The Orange Brick wall, off-white steel door, Mike's Khaki, shoes, and Morpheus Denim... The color coordination seems just about perfect! 

It is simply amazing what can be achieved when you work with a group of good friends & people.  We feel so lucky to have Brett, Mike, and Nikita as our family & please stay tuned for our next 3rd shoot in Yosemite National Park!!  It will be exciting!  =)

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I am not your typical hardcore fan of Soccer or "Football", but there is quite nothing like The World Cup. The emotion, drama, and inspiring stories....  I have no affiliation except the fact that as a creative director myself, I may be the biggest admirer of its flag, "UnionJack".  So I've been rooting for Team England in this World Cup since The US has failed to make it this year.

And I thought it would make a special story & It really did have a great chance at it.
Yet, Croatia & its players earned a huge fan in me.....  The Heart & Grit it showed was truly inspiring. 

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Leo is a Welder and he has just become a member of "UA Local 78"... Welding union or Family he always wanted to be a part of...., and to celebrate the occasion, he had asked me to make him a special new helmet.  A helmet with lots of character.  This is coming along very nicely and in a few weeks, we plan to show you the final result / Helmet. 

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Brett has become a member of Sandast family and been in charge of last 2 campaigns we did.  Funny how life works & how our path cross.  One day, he walked into our Studio accidentally & we started talking.  Next thing we know, he has been wanting to make a cool camera strap and the rest is history. 

He has been using his prototype for past few months and now we are only a few days away from introducing the final version to the world.  Stay Tuned! 

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Last week, a gentleman came to see me in our Studio & he brought his favorite shoes.  He wanted to see if we could restore or repair the color on the left shoe.  This is what happened in his own words.

"There was a shoe shop that didn’t really make an attempt to fix the original stain. Then my mom tried using a little bit of soap and water and that didn’t work. A few compounded errors but it is what it is."

Patina or Color work would have been simple & easy.. but by trying to lighten the color, a grievous error was made.  Its top grain was literally skinned & permanently damaged.  We are doing some intensive care on this once beautiful shoes and will post the result in our "Restoration" page.  

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After 6 long months, we are very happy to Welcome London Petit into our collection.  We would like to thank Christine for her continuous support & more importantly..... for her patience.  It took a lot longer than we originally thought, but throughout the entire process, she was generously understanding, patient, and had a faith in our Team.  

Thank you & we now proudly introduce London Petit... 
https://www.sandast.com/shop/london-petit

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Brett has come to try his 1st Camera Strap today & He was one happy man going home that night! 

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Mike has become one of my best friend in past 6 years or so.  We knew each other long before that, but never really got to know each other.  He came to my life when I was struggling the most.  "A True friend is one who hangs around when you are down"..... Well, that is Mike.  We became close friends and started to hang out.  For some unknown reason, it always happened to be on Wednesday nights.  His Obsession is Coffee & I happened to have small space available in our Studio.  So We've decided to open a Cafe together & I had promised him to make the best looking Apron for the Master Barista. 

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Looking & hearing the stories behind the Murals in our Studio, a friend told me my paintings are in a form of "Self Manifestation".  Wasn't aware of its concept & certainly my motive wasn't it.  Yet, I did see her points.  "Painting" has become one of my passion & a tool or a method for me to find an inner peace from the daily ordeals. 

Been working on this (titled "Blossom2018") for a while now & would like to share its work in progress. 

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I believe I am a "Leather Enthusiast", but these hardcore leather enthusiasts never fail to amaze & amuse me as was the case with my friend, Bobet.  He couldn't get his hands on the new Gregory Travel set fast enough...he flew all the way from Manila, Philipines.  He wanted his leather to be extra "Vintage" & He got his wish as you can tell from the smile on his face. 

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It was a big mess this morning, but a good party does have its aftermath.  The food served by Chef Damon (@chefdamongordon) & Chef Daniel (@chefsalsizzle) was incredibly delicious in Home Cooking style.... Big thanks to Toni & Teresa for being wonderful co-hosts.... & everyone (Robert, Michael, Brett, Nikita, Mike, Joan,  Casey, MacKenzie, Kay, David, Nicole, Deborah, Carla, Alicia, Leo, Oscar, Kaye, Dr.Lee, & Namjoo... I hope I am not forgetting anyone) who came & made last night a beautiful night!  

Photos Below! 

 Big "Thanks" to the Chefs! Chef Damon who believes in....

Big "Thanks" to the Chefs!
Chef Damon who believes in....

 "British Precision" in Cooking. 

"British Precision" in Cooking. 

 & Chef Daniel who told me when we first met.... 

& Chef Daniel who told me when we first met.... 

 "Smoked BBQ.. That is my thing"...

"Smoked BBQ.. That is my thing"...

It was indeed a beautiful night with....

 "Family"

"Family"

 "Friends"

"Friends"

 & Of course.....  

& Of course.....  

 SouthPark Ladies....  

SouthPark Ladies....  

 Cholla Cactus Garden

Cholla Cactus Garden

We were invited to a friend's vacation home in Palm Springs.   It was extremely hot around 115 degree, but it was quite relaxing & pleasurable to see kids play in the pool while we were sipping margaritas & etc.  I'd asked if anyone would like to tag along for a trip to Joshua Tree National Park...... and they all looked at me funny and asked... "In this Heat"? 

I'd been to Joshua Tree National Park a long time ago.. but it was more like "I had browsed through here" than I had really been here.  It was only an hour away & so I went. 

 View from Ryan Mountain Hike Trail. 

View from Ryan Mountain Hike Trail. 

It was about 8 in the morning when I entered the Park & it was already getting hot.  I thought perhaps my friends were right for a split second or two, but it was too late & the fact that I may be one of the few who's been in the park in its hottest day was quite appealing in its dumb way.  =)   Read the Full Story!