We had the good fortune of connecting with William Carnahan and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi William, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
At the root of it was pursuing something that I enjoyed doing. I learned very early in my life from a teacher in highschool that I would have a much better life if I spent my “work” time doing something I actually enjoyed doing. So it eventually spawned into needed to start my own business.
With photography it was a no brainer, you sort of have to run your own business. With film and production, my business partner and I were tired of being on productions that didn’t always have the best intrest of the people they hired at heart. We wanted to gain control of all aspects of the film making process, but more importantly the “how” it was done, taking pride in your work, doing it right, treating the people you work with like equals, and having fun.
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.
My art has been more of a passthrough and collaboration with other artists. It takes on a different process style and progression in the main three things that I do; photography, cinematography, and teaching.
Photography is the at the base for everything that I do in the art world. I am a photographer before everything else at this point and it informs all my other art forms. My favorite part of my style and what I am most proud of is how quiet and subtle I can create calmness in my images. I think that comes from the ability to to literally freeze time with a photo, but have the mind to visually express my own thoughts in that moment. Its something we all have in us and maybe do without thinking in our own art form, but professionally its taking time, practice, and hundreds of thousands of failures in imagery. Just like social media, we curate our best work or moments, no one really sees all the out of focus shots, the missed frames, or mistaken settings.
Over time ive learned that it takes just that, time. It takes practice and patience, and it gets to a point where as long as you can put yourself in the right situation with the tools and experience form that past then its not that hard. The hard part comes from pushing your self to be consistent and not being complacent. Art and creativity are living breathing things that change, evolve, and fight back – you have to ride that wave and keep up with them if you want your art to stay meaningful and representative of yourself and life.
So if anything, I would want people to know that my brand and story are not things that just showed up one day. It takes legitimate effort to keep up with it. I have been lucky enough that I grew up with an overwhelming amount of privilege and security in my life that gave me an edge in keeping up with a creative lifestyle which has pushed me to not squander the opportunity to stay in it.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I grew up pretty close to the beach so the beach is a must. Windows down is important, or I would grab them a helmet and we’d jump on the Harley.
We would have to get up a little early and start south!! Start with an early surf session in South Bay (we might do this every day) and then breakfast burritos at Phanny’s in Redondo Beach (best breakfast burrito in LA). Stick close to the beach and check out one of the piers making our way up to the Santa Monica Pier for a day, stopping for a cold beer in Venice at The Whaler. When the beach day was over we would for sure hit up Playa Provisions for a night cap.
The rest of the week we would take time to head up the coast to Neptune’s Net on motorcycles. Take a short cruise down sunset, stopping for the touristy things along the way, get an invite for the Magic Castle from some friends, you know do all the Hollywood things. Then we could visit Downtown at some point, MUST get a french dip at Phillipes and hang around the arts district for an afternoon and The Row.
And before they headed home we would need to take an afternoon walking tour of all the brewery’s in Torrance like The Dudes, Absolution, Smog city, Munkish, just to name a few.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
There are so many people I can attribute my journey and my story to, that being said I think something we do not recognize enough are all those people as a collective. My close network of fellow creatives, artists, entrepreneurs, and motivated friends keep my drive and fire to succeed stoked. I can feel a direct impact in my motivation and my want and desire to succeed when I am surrounded by similar energy, we all feed off each other. In each creative community I think we all push and support each other to in so many ways. So I dedicate my shoutout to my close network and collaborators; the dreamers, the believers, and my friends.