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Meet Sol Morales

Today we’d like to introduce you to Sol Morales.

Sol, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Once upon a time, my dream was to be a successful musician, singer, songwriter. I pursued that for many years and had gotten very close to fulfilling my dream as a recording artist, but I was distracted by many other things happening in my life. Unfortunately, I had to make some hard life decisions and get a regular 9-5 to sustain a living.

I started working for Liberty Mutual Insurance selling commercial insurance for a number of years. My job was to sell big-ticket insurance policies throughout the North East region of the U.S. I did ok and sometimes much more than ok. Sometimes great! I was the number two producer in my region for a while. The problem was the culture. I was the only person that looked like me in my job capacity and felt it. I worked with nothing but conservatives and weekend hockey players and I knew that I was sort of just that token guy.

Around the time that the markets crashed in 2008-2009, I was flying off to the home office in Dover, New Hampshire, when suddenly, the plane hit severe turbulence. I was using the restroom when suddenly I was thrown from my feet! I hit the top of the ceiling, then can down hard on my shoulder when I landed. I literary had to crawl back to my seat. I give thanks that I’m alive. I had torn my rotators cuff. I then immediately when out on worker’s compensation. After being out for a couple of months, I had returned to work only to find out that 599 other employees and I were being laid off. I had received a severance check and never looked back.

In May of 2009, I decided to start New York Lens (Photography and Video). I didn’t know much about photography but I wanted to learn. I want to learn filmmaking as well. I wanted to do something in the creative arts. That’s just how my brain has always been wired. There was a lot of trial and error and growing pains along the way. The growing pains still exist. You just never stop learning and I love it!

I love the idea of bringing people’s visions to life. At least for the most part. In doing what I do, I sometimes work on shoots that I can’t really relate to. If it’s a project about, bring peace, love, justice and making the world a better place, then I’m all about it! Unfortunately, I have to think about paying the bills and often times that limit my aspirations. But in time, in time…

Has it been a smooth road?
Challenges as an independent business owner always exist. You have to wear many, many different hats and at times, it can all be in vain for reasons beyond your control. It takes a lot of focus and somedays you just feel like throwing in the towel. But, if you truly love what you do, you’ll realize that there is really no other way. So you just press on.

We’d love to hear more about your work.
I’m proud to be an independent business owner. It’s not easy but, I’d rather do this and grind it out than to work in an occupation that there are very little rewards in terms of self-gratification. What sets me apart is always wanting to think outside of the box. Wanting to create from a perspective of “Art” in oppose to just snapping a photo or approaching a film project as a just task to get paid. I take great pride in what I do. Simply put, I care. I’m most proud of making my clients proud. Hearing accolades from my clients is ALWAYS a WIN for me!

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Atlanta is a much different market from New York, which is where I’m from. The culture is very different and the money is different. I’ve been here for three years and am still trying to figure it out. Once I figure it out, I will, I’ll be happy to share…

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