We had the good fortune of connecting with Carlos Loza and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Carlos, let’s start by talking about what inspires you?
Since I was a child, I have been very curious and have looked for inspiration in many places: in sports, in music (I love playing the guitar) or when traveling around the world. Each of these places have influenced who I am today and what I wanted about life, but in recent years there is something that I have found what is my true inspiration when I start any project: People.

Throughout my career I have met many people who have inspired me both personally and professionally. What inspire me about them? Knowing their stories, their true skills, their ideas, their way of seeing the world and of course, knowing what inspires them as well.

I strongly believe that the only missing thing for people to start a project that they have been leaving behind for so long is passion, and inspiration. Working with people and for the people, trying to help to each other, this is my motto.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
My current project is Azul Mejicano, a company dedicated to helping artisans in Oaxaca, Mexico by exporting their products to the United States, having California as our main market, and giving them the value they deserve.

Azul Mejicano arises from the need of empowering Mexican artisans and designers so that their products and effort cross borders; to recognize their day-to-day, to give value to the artisanal products they create with their hands every day and to help them improve their quality of life.

We know about our artisans talent and we know they just need support to bring Mexican traditions and products to the world’s attention. We want to give them the credit, recognition and economic remuneration they deserve.

An important part of our work is that you know the history behind the product you are buying, knowing the story of our artisans, their communities, and the hours of work and preparation they have been learning through the years as part of their heritage.

Azul Mejicano is a “for-profit” company, and we are proud to give back more to the local communities in Mexico by donating a percentage of our sales to a charity in Mexico called “ProCasa hogar del Niño, A.C.”, where twenty children live in this home in a very difficult economic situation, and in a state of vulnerability. We help them by providing their basic needs, such as blankets, shoes, and even for them to have a better place to grow up.

This is my work. We are very proud to be able to offer high quality products and also to be able to help the community of Oaxaca Mexico to have a better quality of life by helping them sell their products far away from their home.

You can learn more about Azul Mejicano, buy their products and also donate at www.azulmejicano.com

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
As a born and raised Mexican, in Mexico City, I have always being passionate about big cities, and LA is definitely one of the most vibrating cities in the world.

For a complete itinerary, I would include a combination of different areas, including beach cities and the more downtown area and the west side.

For a full day, you always need to start with a powerful breakfast at Redondo Beach pier for some fresh sea food, and a lobster roll with a local IPA beer. Then heading up to enjoy Hermosa Beach to walk down the pier and walk all the path to Manhattan Beach. Lunch time! MB Post will definitely need to be included on this day to have American fusion cuisine with a Mezcal cocktail. Next, have a relaxing walk on Abbott Kinney and support local businesses, learn from their stories and their local design to make art in a way of apparels, jewelry and food. Finish up with a fun night at a local neighborhood bar, The Lincoln for good drinks and live music.

Difficult to choose a favorite spot in LA, as in one hand, you have all the beach cities such as Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach and Malibu, each of them with their different vibes, ideal for a relaxing time close by the beach, or for having a crazy time in one of their amazing bars and restaurants.

In the other hand, the multicultural and big skyscrapers in Downtown LA and Culver City, where you can find amazing rooftops or even an underground speakeasy bar to have a local cocktail. And of course, Arts District, full of street art and local breweries to enjoy time with friends.

I would say that my favorite spot will always include a combination of food, people and local hidden gems around the city.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Without a doubt, at this point in my career, I have to dedicate this shoutout to the people who make Azul Mejicano possible, my latest project, to become it from an idea to a reality. Sara, Marcela, Wendy and Alicia are talented women artisans from Oaxaca, Mexico who deserve all the recognition.

Everyday, their talented hands create incredible Mexican handmade bags made of palm and recycled plastic (PET) that they have learned throughout years of tradition. The shootout is also because this helps them and their families to have a better quality of life in such difficult times for Mexican people.

Traveling to Oaxaca, meeting with these artisans and their communities and hearing their stories is something that inspired me to continue with this movement by telling to the world who they are and show them their work.

Website: www.azulmejicano.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/carloslozap/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/carlosperazaloza/

Image Credits
Lucia Elizalde Breckon: @luciaebphotography Jorge Rougés: @_yonosoy Karina Daumas: @kdaumas

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.