Donald Miralle

Donald Miralle

Photographer


I try to be true to the way I see things through my lens...That’s the hardest part, to not be influenced by the way other people see it or the way you think it should be seen.

Videos

Videos

By Roadtrip Nation

Donald Miralle

Highlight
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01:09
Donald Miralle HighlightInterview Highlight
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05:39
InterviewThe Interview
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02:14
Capturing The Perfect Moment In PhotographyWeb Exclusive
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02:06
Challenges Becoming A PhotographerWeb Exclusive
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02:41
Coping With The Loss Of A Loved OneWeb Exclusive
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02:27
Day In The Life Of A PhotographerWeb Exclusive
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00:46
Taking Advice From OthersWeb Exclusive
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01:24
Freelance vs. Staff PhotographyWeb Exclusive
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01:25
Priorities And SacrificeWeb Exclusive
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01:19
The Benefits Of Having MentorsWeb Exclusive
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02:00
Challenges Faced When Your Hobby Becomes Your CareerInterview Excerpt
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02:00
My Career PathInterview Excerpt
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01:39
I Wanted To Do What Was Going To Make Me HappyInterview Excerpt
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Milestones

Milestones

My road in life took a while to figure out.
Born and raised in Southern California.
Attended UCLA, where he started as a biology major with the intention of one day becoming a doctor in order to satisfy his parents’ wishes.
During his sophomore year, he realized that he didn’t really like biology and that his true passion was in art—ended up graduating with his degree in fine arts.
After graduating, he began working with different portrait photographers in Los Angeles, but this work wasn’t fully satisfying him.
He decided to answer a vague Los Angeles Times classified ad looking for photographers for a sports photography agency, and ended up getting a job as an photo editor instead.
Working for that company gave him the time and access to eventually start practicing his photography at sporting events.
He is now an award-winning photographer best known for photographing some of the world’s greatest athletes, biggest events, and most remote locations.
He is also the founder of Leucadia Photoworks, a full-service studio and photographer collective in North County San Diego, California.
Keep following my journey
Education

Education

highschool
High School
undergrad
Bachelor
Fine/Studio Arts, General
University of California-Los Angeles
Career

Career

Photographer

I am an award winning sport, landscape, and portrait photographer.

Career Roadmap

Roadmap
My work combines:
My work combines:
Art
Art
Entrepreneurship
Entrepreneurship
Being Creative
Being Creative

Day to Day

As a freelancer, I have to actively go out to find jobs and clients so that I can keep getting paid. I travel a lot because my jobs and clients take me all over the world. Every day and every job is different. A project usually starts by meeting with a client to go over the creative brief and establish what they are looking for and go over terms of our contract. The goal is to always do a great job so that they become a repeat client which makes business easy.

Skills & Qualities Beyond School

Hustle. Being a photographer can be really challenging. In order to make money, you have to know how to sell your skills and be constantly on the lookout for new clients. You have to make yourself easy to be found (create a website, send out your portfolio, etc.). Broaden your skill set so that you know the basics of portraiture, landscape, action, drone, film, etc. Know your value and what to charge for your skill set.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for high school students

Master the craft. Nowadays with the technology we have available, people have started calling themselves photographers even though they don't know how to manually expose or focus a camera. Learn the basic skills and understand the intricacies of a camera. Don't hesitate to reach out to people that you admire in your field of interest to get their advice and mentorship.

Hurdles

Hurdles

The Noise I Shed

From Parents:

"You have to be a doctor or a lawyer."

My mother immigrated to the U.S. from the Philippines and had set ideas about what I should be when I was older. I was encouraged to pursue being a doctor because if I make a lot of money then I'll be happy. My mom died when I was 16 and so the pressure to become a doctor lessened. It was still challenging to make the transition to art, but I knew it was what I wanted.

Challenges I Overcame

Changed Major
Changed Major

In college, I started as a biology major, but eventually discovered my passion was in art. When I switched my major, I lost a lot of credits (and money) and had to pretty much start all over again.

Financial
Financial

Photo equipment is expensive and when I was first starting out, it took time and a lot of money to get the materials I needed. I worked restaurant jobs to make money to pay off student loans, etc.

Work Stress
Work Stress

I get to go to exciting locations, but when I am working it is hard to fully enjoy it because you are usually uncomfortable and viewing everything through a hole. You have to be in the moment; if you aren't, then you won't get hired again.

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