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Meet Erick Mendoza of Xicano Photos in Downey

Today we’d like to introduce you to Erick Mendoza.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Erick. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
My passion for photography started a little over a year ago when I studied abroad. I bought a simple DSLR camera to take photos of my adventures while I was in Madrid, Spain. Being over there, I fell in love with taking photos and capturing magical moments. Over the course of those five months, I developed the skills to be a better photographer. Once I came back to the States, I wanted to keep developing my skills and even further them. I met Albert Tom, another photographer through my little brother’s high school, who helped me start being a freelance photographer.

Through him, he taught me the ins and outs of event photography and how to take better photographs. After working with him for a year, he sends clients my way and I do the event solo. At the same time, I took classes at East LA College to learn about black and white film, how to develop it and print, and even how to take portrait photographs in a studio which has been very beneficial. I plan to now start my own business through it, Xicano Photography, and eventually do more portraits and more event photography on my own.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
It definitely hasn’t been a smooth ride. It was a lot of independent learning and hours of teaching myself the basics. Most of my beginning was a lot of trial and error, trying to see what works and what doesn’t, understanding the basics of what my camera and I were both capable of. Once I started working with Albert, event photography had a slight learning curve because he has a specific way of how he likes the photos, so it hasn’t really allowed me to explore my photography style. The photo classes have helped me, though, to realize more of what my style of photography really is.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Xicano Photos story. Tell us more about the business.
Xicano Photography is barely starting up, but I want to focus more so on events, studio, and concert photos. I’m most proud about the fact that I’m starting it on my own and that I have support from family and friends who are willing to be models, makeup artists, stylists, or even staff to help create the perfect photograph. What sets us apart is that Xicano Photography is focused on making art of each shoot that’s done. We don’t want to take typical photographs, we want to create unique photos that are beautiful and capture the moment.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Oh, luck has been amazing in this. It was pure luck having met Albert. He gave me my start and has been instrumental in me learning more about the photography business.


  • Events $75/hr
  • Concerts $50

Contact Info:

Image Credit:

Chicano Batman

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