You are looking at a night photo of what is rumored to be the infamous Corvair Driven by Bruce Davis. He was the “right hand man” of Charles Manson. Bruce Davis eventually turned himself in and was convicted of murder and robbery, eventually becoming a preacher in the prison chapel in San Luis Obispo, where he is still serving out his sentence.

There is also a popular myth that Bruce Davis was involved in the Zodiac killing. Although this was never established, some now call this car the Zodiac Car. However, it was never called that in the late 1960s.

The Manson family lived in Spahn Ranch, an old Western town movie set, in the late ’60s. Spahn Ranch burned down due to a wildfire in September 1970. The horrific Manson family murders left an indelible mark on Southern California, and movies such as “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” show that they will not be forgotten.

Midnight hike

The car rests in the mountains above where Spahn Ranch used to be. To get here, I hiked for approximately almost a mile. The area is beautiful, with hills and craggy rocks overlooking the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles, CA.

The moon was bright enough in parts that I was able to hike without a flashlight or head lamp, drinking quite a lot of water due to the high temperature. My mind raced back to when I was a kid; we used to explore the hills south of here, wondering if Charles Manson or his followers ever hid back there.

Illuminating the car

I illuminated the car from several different angles with a handheld ProtoMachines LED2 light painting device during the exposure. To get the red light inside, I simply stuck the ProtoMachines inside and reflected it off several surfaces and moved my wrist back and forth so there would be no “hot spots,” and everything inside would be evenly lit.

I also “grazed” the exterior of the car with a warm white light, trying to have some of it come from above to illicit a very claustrophobic, creepy sort of feel.

On the way back, I discovered another car, making me wonder how many other secrets these hills hold.