Meet photographer Carlos Muñoz, a.k.a. Cali

📸 Photo courtesy of Carlos Muñoz

Hi Carlos. Who are you? What do you do?

I am 37 years old and I am a photographer. I was born in Caracas, Venezuela to Colombian parents and have been living in South Florida since 2015.

I have always had a deep curiosity about art and its various forms of expression, with photography being the form that most caught my attention due to its power to communicate reality. The camera has become my way of connecting with other people’s stories and creating real connections and friendships. Through photography, I have engaged in intimate conversations with strangers about joy, fear, sadness, worries, and intimacy, while simultaneously documenting those stories for eternity.

How does Miami help you do what you do or influence your work?

In Miami, I had the opportunity to reconnect with photography through the Roberto Mata School of Photography, where I continue to study. In school, I began to develop documentary projects. Through these projects, I was able to connect with different cultures, people, and stories. This made me realize that Miami is more than just the beaches, the weather, the restaurants, etc., and that I had an opportunity to share that reality through my camera, achieving the purpose of a photographer, which is to communicate.

What brings you most alive about the 305?

Its people, many from various countries, create a city with cultural diversity. Miami has become a way to experience multiple places from around the world in one city and it’s all thanks to the people.

What’s your favorite Miami memory?

It was earlier this year when I won the HistoryMiami Museum Photography Fellowship 2023 to continue a project I began developing in the Homestead community. This excites me greatly because it’s an opportunity to bring visibility to stories that we don’t always see on social media or television.

If you could eat only one meal from a local restaurant for the rest of your life, what would it be?

I would order the brisket at Hometown Barbecue. You have to go early because it sells out quickly.

Outside of the obvious stop above, share your other top three destinations for where you’d go on your perfect Miami day.

Early morning jogging by the sea on the William Powell Bridge on Key Biscayne before swimming in the sea, going to the Perez Art Museum, and going to an Inter Miami FC game in the evening. And post-game we could add going to El Maní to dance salsa.

What’s your favorite local social media account and why?

I may be biased, but @robertomataschoolofphotography is a great place to see what some local photographers are doing and to learn when photography events are held in the city.

If you could give any one piece of advice to locals, what would it be?

Dare to explore Miami; go to a different place you’ve never been to at least once a week. Take advantage of being in a cosmopolitan city to discover new flavors, cultures, and people.

If there was one thing you could change, address, etc. about Miami, what would it be?

I would like to see more promotion of culture and the arts. I think there is incredible potential and many people who are doing wonderful things.

What are you looking forward to in 2023?

To continue growing and training myself in my great passion, photography. Exploring more places and meeting more wonderful people.

That’s a wrap on this week’s Locals to Know. Know someone who ought to be featured or would like to be featured yourself? Reach out by sending an email to [email protected] with the subject line “TNT Locals to Know 2023.” If chosen, you might just see yourself or a friend in a future newsletter.