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Check Out Brandon Almengo’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to Brandon Almengo.

Hi Brandon, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I started photography around 2015. I found a family camera in my hometown where I was raised in Paterson, NJ and began testing with people I knew at the time. At first, it started as a hobby then it grew into a passion. Getting people to feel empowered and confident is a very beautiful feeling for me. I never went to school for photography so everything I’ve learned was self-taught. It was a lot of trial and error at first but I’m so grateful for the journey I’ve had because I was able to not only learn new things but experience new things as well.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
I don’t think any success story has a smooth road. My story definitely has its up and downs especially me being of color in this industry. I’m still fighting for a seat at the table in terms of equal pay and overall getting casted for these big jobs. I’ve most definitely come a long way but still have so much more work to do. At first, I wasn’t strong enough to overcome my struggles until I started to switch my way of thinking to embrace my struggles and to enjoy the journey and all of the lessons that come with the struggle. Now I’m a firm believer in embracing all my highs and lows because I’ve had so many doors closed in my face so many people tell me no to were that motivated and fueled me to get better and do better. So today, I’m grateful for all of the No’s & all of the struggle I’ve been through from being homeless at one point to not knowing what direction I wanted my work to go & from collaborating for over two years and not getting paid. All of these trials and errors made me who I am today. Without the rain, we would never feel thankful for the sun.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
I’m a creative director/photographer. I wouldn’t say I specialize in something because I don’t ever want to box in my work. I love shooting well-produced fashion editorials. I love creative directing. I love shooting edgy, fun, out the box, maybe even a little weird stuff, lol. Anything from a fashion or artistic side I’m going to love. I love landscape photography and I also love lifestyle photography as well. I would say I’m known for my versatility, you just never know what you might get from me. From shooting album/single covers to shooting global campaigns to shooting magazine covers to even working with musicians & actors/actresses to athletes and even designers. You name it, I’ve shot it and I put my own touch to it. I could get hired for day to day with a client and make it look like we’re covering a fashion story for a magazine. Most thing I’m definitely proud of is becoming a father this year to my baby girl Maliya whose six months now. Second thing I’m mostly proud of is me becoming the first Afro Latino to shoot the cover of Maxim magazine. I never like to compare myself to others but I do think what sets me apart from others is my way to put my own spin on things and my work ethic.

Are there any important lessons you’ve learned that you can share with us?
To always believe in yourself no matter who doesn’t. Always trust your gut. I feel like I was always looking for validation from something or someone. Once I stopped seeking validation and believed in myself, you can see the shift not only within myself but my work. It was like I was set free. I was born again to this new perspective/confidence I didn’t know I had in me. I now know I’m not only great but I’m a force to be reckoned with. My faith & belief is what keeps me here. All the struggle I been through taught me to love my self my work and my people. I was very close-minded when I started this journey and now I’m so open-minded. I now understand the power of my mind and the power of manifestation.

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