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Meet Jonathan Maldonado Gil

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jonathan Maldonado Gil.

Jonathan, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
It all began back in buffalo when I received my very first camera one Christmas morning. I was so mesmerized by the idea of capturing someone’s story through a photograph. I was very fortunate to have family members who enjoyed having their pictures were taken, which was very helpful because it led me to improving my craft. I started creating content and capturing the moment while in school. I was taking photos for weddings and other festive events. I wasn’t lucky in the aspect of having a family that could afford to pay for my college tuition so I had to find ways to do it for myself. Eventually, I graduated college with an engineering degree, worked in the Buffalo NY area where I am from originally for a year. Found myself visiting a friend in California and I fell in love. I then decided to take a risk and move out here.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It hasn’t been a smooth ride for me, it has been difficult at times. There are a lot of creative people out here, and I sometimes find myself comparing myself and thinking that I am not good enough. It has been difficult finding clients, I was fortunate enough to have known many people back in buffalo and the best way I was able to capture gigs was through word of mouth. Here I only had one friend and things were difficult. I had enough saved to get me through for a while but I knew it wasn’t going to last. I got a serving gig for a while but I was barely making it. I then decided on giving my photography a break and focusing on finding a steady income. I was able to use my degree to find a job after a month or two of searching. The job I had at the moment wasn’t the best, but I was making money and was able to pay my bills.

We’d love to hear more about your work.
I am now just focusing on creating content for a smaller business, I have worked with a variety of companies. Shooting lifestyle photograph and product photography. I wouldn’t say I am thriving at the moment because I make most of my income from my full-time job. But I love being creative and I get to keep this part alive, by reaching out to brands and collaborating with them. I started working in front of the camera as well, I started to challenge myself and get the idea the I wasn’t good enough out of my head. I think what sets me apart is my personality, I am very relaxed and easy to get along with. I think no matter what business you are working in, being kind and having a great personality is very important.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Honesty, kindness and being true to myself. I find that people can be fake in LA. I told my self not to let the idea of success and money get to my head. I think the fact that I am humble is a great quality and my experiences growing up is what helped me be this way.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
BnW photo was from Sarah Garbin , everything else was capture by me.

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