In the Studio.002

Ed Mangus has big plans for his photography students.

Mangus – a Los Angeles native who has taught a wide variety of photography courses at SMC Community Ed since 2006 – is currently working with program administrators on two major proposals. The first is to create a 2017 Community Ed calendar featuring student images. The second is to do a book featuring photos taken by intermediate and advanced students in his “On the Street With Your Camera” class. To do this, each student would be assigned to a six-month project to create a broad portfolio of images.

And he has no doubt the resulting publications will be top-notch. “I tell my students there is no reason why you can not produce images that are as good or better than my images,” he says. “And you know what? They do. They produce beautiful images.”

Mangus, an award-winning photographer and instructor, has more than 35 years of professional experience working in all aspects of photography and in college-level photography and laboratory instruction.

His freelance work specializes in ad campaign photography, documentaries, environmental portraiture, and production still photography. His personal work is photographing people in their environment.

“One of my key skills is to communicate well with people, individually and as a group,” he says. “It has always been gratifying to me to provide instruction to students to enhance their technical and artistic development in photography.

Over the years he has taught, or co-taught with Craig Mohr, a wide variety of Community Ed classes, including Basic and Beyond Basic Photography, Photo Walking Malibu, After Dark: Shooting Like the Pros, Digital Monochrome, Outdoor Lighting Techniques, and Flash Photography. His next class, “On the Street With Your Camera,” begins April 23. (He has also been an adjunct photography professor in SMC’s academic program since 2007.)

In the Studio.001

Tell us a little about your students.

I’ve had an amazing diversity of students, of all ethnic backgrounds and ranging in age from 14 to 75, including actors, entertainment industry executives, doctors, attorneys, retired professors and more. At least three students that I know of went from Community Ed to our academic program, graduated and were placed in outstanding corporate photography jobs.

Which photographers do you admire and/or draw inspiration from?

Keith Carter (who has probably had the most significant influence on my work), Richard Avedon, Irving Penn, Henri Cartier-Bresson, W. Eugene Smith and Gordon Parks.

What is your idea of a perfect day?

Beautiful lighting.

Mangus 12-15 crpd-Photo by Luis Herrera

What book do you currently have on your nightstand?

The books that are within arm’s reach that I am currently reading or using for visual reference are Art & Fear by David Bayles & Ted Orlan, Steal Like an Artist by Austin Kleon, The Sixties by Richard Avedon, Portraits by Irving Penn, The Decisive Moment by Henri Cartier-Bresson, and Fireflies by Keith Carter.

What is the most meaningful image you’ve created?

A picture of my Calabrese mother with a rolling pin. She was making ravioli and I wanted to capture that. The image said everything about my mom, and it’s the only photo of mine I have on the walls of my house.

What do you like most about teaching at SMC Community Ed?

The diversity of the students, not only their ages and professions, but particularly the rich mix of cultural backgrounds. Our common bond is a love for photography. The beauty of photography is you can go anywhere in the world and you don’t need to speak the language because we all speak the language of what it takes to create an image.

Ed Mangus’ next class, “On the Street With Your Camera,” begins April 23.

  1. Jill Dodd says:

    Hello, Ed Are you the son of Ed Mangus the photographer from Hollywood in the 70’s? If so, can you help me get permission to use a photo he did of me for my memoir I am writing? My name was Jill Peck. Now I am Jill Dodd.


  2. Steve Gabel says:

    For some reason, sitting here at the computer I thought of marvelous days at Pierce Community College and Ed, working with the students in the photolab. That was 20 years ago. Those were great days for me. I hope they were for you. I miss Ed and the photolab and the fellow students. Great days.

  3. Judy says:

    I would like to reach Ed Mangus. I have a lot of cameras left by a deceased relative and don’t know what to do with them. I thought maybe he might be interested in them.

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