We had the good fortune of connecting with Mark Mendoza and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mark, what matters most to you?
This is a question that I don’t think I ever really thought about seriously. Nor, do I believe I had a real answer for in the past. However, at this stage in my life, I would have to say, integrity.
Integrity is a filter I use for everything I do in my life, my photography, my art, and my personal relationships. I’m always one to say yes to a lot of things, but if it’s not true to who I am, then I can’t do it.
Integrity helps me say, no, to a lot of things. In moments where I may want to be a part of something, integrity helps me stand my ground in who I am.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’m known for my photography and I am extremely proud of the work I’ve done thus far. The incredible people that I’ve gotten to photograph and all the special moments that I’ve been privileged to capture. My photography is ever-evolving as it should be, and we’ll see where it goes.
Since Covid, I’ve delved into other creative outlets like painting and writing. My art and writing have evolved so much already from where I started a year ago. I have a vision of what I want to do with it, and how to incorporate my photography, but for now, it’s hush-hush. I just want to focus on creating and evolving.
The biggest lesson I’ve learned is that art has no rules; it is not one thing. There’s no endpoint, and it is fine to change your mind and go in a different direction. The important part of art is that you are creating from your truth. Which is harder than one might think. There’s a lot of noise in the world we live in.
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.
My favorite spots in a city or area are the hidden gems. I love the spots that are only well known to the locals. I also don’t really like to plan a visit. I prefer doing what I feel in the moment and exploring from there. For example, if I want some coffee, I’ll google a place off the beaten path and take the longest way there. That helps me discover more and usually leads to those hidden gems.
For the sake of this question, here are some of my favorite places in the LA area.
1: Old Town, Pasadena
2: Neptunes Net restaurant in Malibu
3: Daikokuya Ramen in Little Tokyo
4: Retro Row in Long Beach
5: Hiking trails in Altadena
6: Saint & Second in Long Beach
That’s it for now, I can’t give away all my gems.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Without a doubt, I would not be who I am or be where I am without the undying support of my Mom and my Sister. Both are incredible at encouraging me no matter what I am pursuing, despite whatever opposing opinion they may have.