YOUNG JEFE  

noun || yəNG ˈhefā

Cary Fagan is a Photographer and Creative Director based in Texas.

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CARY FAGAN

YJ: What’s your current hustle?

CF: So right now — I don’t have a current hustle. I’ve told myself recently that my new full-time job is photography. And I’ll learn ways to make an income working as a photographer. On the side — I’m looking to find a job to support the dream I’m having. 

Part-time job to sustain my reality. 

YJ: Has what you’re doing now been a life-long interest?

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CF: When I was younger — photography wasn’t my interest. In fact, I saw myself as a professional soccer player. (I still play). Back then that's where my attention was.

I picked up photography because my Dad started it as a hobby with a few DSL cameras he had. His side hustle was taking pictures of junior league sports in our neighborhood. Watching him overtime made me want to try it. I started practicing using his camera and eventually learned on my own. 

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YJ: Where do you find inspiration, when needing it?

CF: I’m learning that I don’t exactly need inspiration. I’m learning more about myself and my expressions — that has been my inspiration. 

Last year — I learned a lot about myself. Expressing is beautiful.  

Music is inspiring to me. I play the same songs everyday. So music is a thing, old films, and simple conversations are inspiring to carry out throughout the day. A nice walk outside. 

You need the simple things to live. 

YJ: If you could tell your younger self one thing about life, what would it be?

CF: I just tweeted “I wish I knew myself more when I was younger, not a regret, just a critical thought.” 

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Fear is just an illusion. All the things I’m doing now I was afraid of back then. It’s crazy to see what fear looks like, to know it’s not real and to overcome is power. 

I’d say to be more confident — outspoken and honest. 

YJ: What are you still looking to achieve?

CF: I still want to get to know myself more and what I’m capable of because I still don’t know. Currently I’m living in the unknown. I have a studio I opened Oct 1st 2017 — it’s the biggest risk I’ve ever taken in my life. 

Owning property and space is a big deal. And I’m learning/achieving to be more comfortable in that space.

CF Film Studios

YJ: What would you say to someone who may think that their talent is not an ideal career path?

CF: There are a lot of people that live with that fear of thinking that what they’re doing isn’t good enough. I am a victim of that — for years I listened to what people said about my photography, art, and everything as a whole. I thought, "Am I wasting time?" "Am I doing the right thing?" Fear was asking that. Fear is asking that question. 

I’m living in the unknown. I’m doing this as a full-time job. I’m happy. I’m not suffering. I’m not stressed out. A lot of people don’t have time to be happy. 

YJ: If you could make a bumper sticker what would it say? 

CF: “Hmm.” 

— Strangers and people make the weirdest decisions. And I look and think “Hmm.” And wish they would wake up and make smarter decisions. 

YJ: What music do you listen to for motivation? 

CF: "Awaken, My Love!" by Childish Gambino

YJ: As an art director, what do you immediately look for during a shoot? 

CF: The detail — I love the detail of on every shoot. Things that people are missing. Things that people don’t see.  I love figuring out why or what. Or the color. I love team work as well — it’s very important. Not just 1 person knows all the answers.

It’s nice to know there are people better than you doing things. But to collaborate and create something people can like and enjoy. 

YJ: What advice would you give someone looking to grow their following on Social Media, without compromising their art? 

CF: Numbers don’t matter. They stress you out. They slowly take away from your artistry. A lot of people don’t realize that. Because of what instant gratification can do. I don’t care — I used to. I used to have a system/way of doing things. And I threw it all away. I literally do things on my own. Whoever likes it at the time or does it, that’s great. 

YJ: What does it mean to you to have a solo exhibition — Home — celebrating black history month as a Black Man? 

CF: The question itself made me smile. It’s an honor — the timing is perfect. 

Pheonix, Arizona is where I was born. I haven’t been back since I left, It’s been 20 years. Going back and the selection and the time I put into the show — I’m honored. I appreciate the gallery, The Onyx Gallery, for giving me the opportunity. The selection is honest and intimate. I want to present an intimate show for those who come and visit. It’s the first biggest local show that I’m going to have. I have 2 images of my Grandma — I’m showing. 

Our last name the Fagan family — has a legacy — just to have them there to see this portrait they haven’t seen — is important. My grandma is a hero — in my eyes. The moment itself. It’s going to be rewarding and reminiscent. I’m really excited.

For more of Cary, follow him here.

*The featured images were shot by Cary Fagan.