We had the good fortune of connecting with Carla Cedeño and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Carla, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Since I was younger, I have always had a passion for photography. When that passion started to grow, I did not intend for it to become a business. However, it did, it was the beginning of my story. I have been an immigrant since 2014. I lived for three years in Charlotte, North Carolina and then, moved to Miami. While living in Miami I started to take photography seriously and thought of it as a career for life. I came across photography when I was younger. When my parents saw that I was really into it, they bought me my first camera, a Sony camera, first one I had. It was easy to use and carry. My father has a bit of an artistic side, I remember our first interview that I said I did not know how I got that profound passion for photography. Before the business was even an idea, I took my time to learn about photography a while during my two years living in Miami, and I was absolutely into it. I learned, met and was part of an amazing group of creators back in Miami. I was part of a big community of creators that happened to do meetups to go shoot a specific theme every month. It was only after I realized how amazing was to choose photography as a career that I started to think of it as a business although I had no experience in the photography business. I wanted to expand my horizons, so I decided to move to Madrid, Spain to do a Masters in Fashion Photography at EFTI. Here I have been improving and discovering new techniques and abilities. My experience in fashion photography has been with the editorial markets of Madrid that is where I am currently at, focusing on local and international clothing. Here in Madrid the editorial fashion market is big, which makes the search for clients easier. I market directly to fashion and luxury products like clothes, jewelry, makeup, etc. My way to show my personal work to the market is to create personal fashion work that is something the clients can aspire to. I have been promoting my work through Instagram and has brought me some potential clients for future work I have been thinking of for next year. Also, doing some research and discovering clients who could use my style of imagery. I use several different mediums to find these clients, such as Agency Access and Instagram. My goal is to portray my style that will be in constant change as we, people and trends around us evolve. Also, I want to transmit tranquility and confidence to make my brand more attractive to possible clients in the future. I am still learning and step by step I am making my brand, Carlulens a business.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
What distinguishes me from others is that I am true to myself as a person. I recognize that I am not perfect and that I have my fears and concerns, my values, as well as what moves me, what motivates me and what I am passionate about. I am most proud of or excited about is my improvement since I started my photography journey. I am where I am today professionally by working hard, learning, practicing, and going out of my comfort zone. It wasn’t an easy journey. I overcame the challenges by making great efforts. I’ve learned so many lessons along the way, such as hands-on learning, always. Community is a catalyst for rapid learning. Been part of a community that made networking events, to connect you with the right people, and a group of creators with whom I could talk about photography, bounce ideas around, and give feedback. Other lesson I have learned is to stop listening people’s opinions of my work. I will create work that I want to do and show the world because it makes me happy. Also, I have leaned the photography language and has been a difficult lesson to learn. I want the world to know that this is just the beginning of my story.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If my best friend were visiting Madrid and I wanted to show them the best time ever I would take them first to El Retiro is the most famous park here in Madrid. Recently, I had a photoshoot with a model and went to wonderful park called El Capricho. I would take my best friend to eat in La Tagliatella, drink in 100 Montaditos, visit museums, and hangout in a terrace. Some of the most fun, interesting, exciting people, places or things to check out are museums, parks and sitting on a terrace with friends and listening to a music group.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Carlulens wouldn’t be what it is today without the support and guidance of many others. I’m grateful for the opportunity to give a shout-out, because I sincerely appreciate these people every step of the way! Though multiple people come to mind for a shout-out – namely my family mom, dad, and sisters. Also, Felipe Vidal and my best friend and colleage Mauricio Andres, who’s also a photographer based in Miami. I’ll dedicate this shout-out to these people who has been there through every stage of this business, right from the start. When I started this business, all I had was the desire to share the what captured my attention, and the idea to do that through photography. After having bought my first camera and started taking pictures of what caught my attention I started to notice that this was my passion and decided to do a basic course in digital photography in my home town Venezuela and started to learn the technical part about photography. I finished my course and decided to do pregnancy photos for my cousin. Also, I took some pictures of one of my sisters. I then, moved to Charlotte, North Carolina and I left aside my passion for photography. I did took my camera when I went outside and visited parks and famous places. However, I had to move to Miami to finish my career, when I met my best friend and colleage Mauricio Andres who introduced me to other key people, and has been a valued mentor since the very beginning. He definitely deserves a shout-out!
Facebook: Carla Cedeño