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Meet Carlos Gauna of

Today we’d like to introduce you to Carlos Gauna.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
In college I became the photo editor for my university newspaper. Digital cameras were just coming into the market and not many students knew how to use them. I volunteered to shoot a few basketball games and assignments to test out the new cameras. I was hooked. Eventually, I bought my own camera, people started to offer to pay me to do what I loved. So I did it! In 2014, I married my wife Andi, she has joined me for every photo session since.

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’s been somewhat of a tough road relatively speaking. I spent a few years working in Oklahoma for a large studio after I graduated college. I also spent a lot of that time traveling around Oklahoma and Texas photographing school portraits. It was a very tough job, and a tough time for me as a photographer. Photographing kids, high school students, and teachers most certainly was tough, mainly because I needed to be very patient, but most of all it did not allow me to be creative because everything was process driven. I found my outlet by storm chasing and working freelance in news and journalism photography. Eventually, I started my career in wedding photography because it allowed me to be creative and use my journalistic and creative abilities.

Please tell us about
It is called CG Photography, but most folks know us simply as TheMalibuArtists (.com) because we are a husband and wife wedding, portrait, commercial photography team. We travel extensively throughout the year. Our social media accounts are mainly based on travel photography @theMalibuArtist and @TheMalibuAristWife are the handles we use across all social media platforms with Instagram as our most used platform. Every year we travel to Iceland for a couple weeks to chase the northern lights. We absolutely love the northern lights and chase them to the most northern parts of the world. Many of our northern lights photos have been featured in such publications as Astronomy Now and by The European Space Agency. In 2016, we shot in northern Canada in -40 degree temperatures for four nights straight while chasing the northern lights. We just returned from photographing the big cats and elephants of Kenya in June 2017. In July 2018, we plan to lead a Photo Safari Tour in the Masai Mara in Kenya.

I believe what sets us apart is our use of scale in our portraits. We love landscape photography, so many of our clients book us for wedding and portraits because they want to be a subject within a large landscape photo. Most often, we plan large landscape photos in areas with vistas to capture our clients within the frame. Whether it’s Yosemite or a sunset in Malibu, we incorporate that large scale format to create a memorable image. Additionally, we make use of artificial light and natural light in a very strategic fashion in order to expose images correctly. This is why we don’t have an abundance of “white skies” in our portfolio. As we tell our clients, “the sky is not white so it shouldn’t be white in every photo”. It should be exposed correctly and exposed white when needed for creative reasons. At least that’s how we feel.

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
My favorite childhood memory is probably camping in the mountains of Northern New Mexico with my dad and brothers every single summer. We learned how to fish, hike, and explore the forest. But most importantly, these trips really taught me at a young age to respect and appreciate the natural world. Spending time with Dad near a mountain stream, learning about his past, and eating marshmallows near the fire is about as good a childhood memory as it gets. I know it’s cliché but it’s totally true.


  • We are affordable. Full day weddings start at $2350 for our husband/wife team.
  • All proceeds of any elephant photo ordered is a 100% donation to the The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Carlos Gauna

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