“Meet Juan Carlos Silva”
Where are you originally from? I was born and raised in Barquisimeto, Venezuela – South America.
How long have you lived in the U.S.? For a year and a half now.
Did you move here with any family? Yes, I moved here with my mother, my sister and my step-father. My daughter, Barbara Valentina, stayed in Venezuela. She is almost 6 years old. It is a new beginning to live in another country, where I didn’t know anybody and where I had to begin my career from ground zero. I had to meet new people, make new friends and start from scratch with advertising my photography work.
Did you move here primarily to pursue photography? Yes, one of my main goals is to re-launch my career because in my country, I have a good reputation. Now, I have to rebuild it from the ground up. My experience is a huge advantage.
What were some of the major barriers you faced when relocating? My biggest obstacle was that nobody knew me…my biggest fear was to face that reality. Not knowing about the photography world in the U.S.A.; I was a stranger, new in the city, trying to get into this giant world.
What sparked your passion for photography? It began about 8 years ago when I had the opportunity to work for other photographers, restoring and editing their pictures. This sparked my curiosity for photography and my passion grew after I graduated as a Graphic Designer. Having my first camera and not knowing anything about photography, I started to take pictures and at that moment, I felt I could express myself in a better way through my pictures. I wanted to show people what I was able to transmit.
What types of photography do you do? My expression of this art is not limited by a type or title. The vast majority of my pictures come from dreams…experiences that can be captured in a photograph.
Do you have a favorite kind of photo shoot? Yes, my favorite sessions are those in which I can capture my ideas; where I am free to create the image. I love to seek what I want and then materialize it.
How do you keep yourself motivated when you hit frustrating points in your career? My greatest motivator is Barbara – my daughter. She is my engine, my life, I can face all obstacles knowing that her smile will see me through. That is what encourages me. Also, my family and their support. Family is everything.
When you decided to start your business, what were the first steps you took? I started my business about 4 years ago after I graduated from college. A friend of mine needed a wedding photographer and asked me for help. After, I realized I could do it on my own. The first step I took was working for other photographers. I was able to learn from them.
Do have any financial advice for someone looking to invest in a business such as photography that requires equipment, printing photos, etc…? The only advice I could give a photographer wanting to invest in the business is to know purpose of their photography. Investing a large amount of money on equipment won’t guarantee high quality photography. Study photography and study the market where you want to compete.
Do you have any advice for someone looking to relocate to chase a dream? Persevere and continue dreaming. Never stop following what you want. It’s never too late…never say never.
To learn more about Juan and/or to check out his amazing photography, visit JuanCarlosPhotographer.com. You can also connect with him on Facebook!