We had the good fortune of connecting with Clara Toro and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Clara, how does your business help the community?
I am a Colombian photographer and visual storyteller living in Miami for the past 30 years. The goal with my projects is to create a visual registry of neighborhoods that are rapidly changing or disappearing, particularly during the past couple of years. I am interested in telling the stories of immigrants that have come from The Caribbean and Latin America, looking for a better future and have built the city in the past decades. These are stories of resilience, pride and hard work.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My photography days are filled with excitement. . I am very grateful for the people that give me their time and share stories with me. It is very rewarding to know that I am creating a visual registry of the homes and families that are part of the identity of this city. Getting access and gaining the trust of the people I want to photograph is always a challenge. Fortunately I have found supporters that believe in this project and help me find the families that are willing to participate.

The most important aspect about this process is the understanding that this is about the people and their stories. Being a good listener is key in this type of work.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Miami has beautiful, traditional neighborhoods inhabited by friendly people. Walking around with any camera is a great way to see the city. Historic Overtown has a great restaurant: Red Rooster. Little Haiti is one of my favorite neighborhoods and Fiorito is another great place to eat. Allapatah, Little Havana and Coconut Grove are filled with history and worth spending time walking around.

Visiting The Everglades National Park and renting a bike is a great, peaceful way to spend the day.

Alright, so let’s jump right in! The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there a person, group, organization, book, etc. that you want to dedicate your shoutout to? Who else deserves a little credit and recognition in your story?  
I have a degree in Documentary Practice and Visual Journalism from the International Center of Photography in New York. I am very grateful for that experience.

Website: www.claratorophoto.com

Instagram: @claratorophoto – @claratoro

Linkedin: Clara Toro

Twitter: @claritalondono

Facebook: Clara Toro

Image Credits
Black and white portrait: photo by Victor Jaramillo Color portrait: photo by Pedro Wazzan

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutMiami is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.