We had the good fortune of connecting with Carole Kaboya and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Carole, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
The greatest thing to ever happen to me was getting let go for the first time in my life. I was in my early 20s, quite the over-achiever (that hasn’t changed much), and had a great paying job. The problem was, it wasn’t the job I wanted. At the time financial stability was more important to me than feeding my soul creatively. However, I didn’t expect the calm that came over me when I was told my job had been terminated due to downsizing. I realized at that moment that if they hadn’t let me go, I probably would still be working there today instead of having my own business. That day I decided two things: 1) I needed to do a job I actually LOVED and 2) no one would ever have that kind of financial power over my life. So, I picked up a camera, and thus CMK Photography was born. Then came a slew of other amazing producing and writing opportunities I’ve been fortunate to have which led me to become a Casting Associate for Warner Brothers and an Acting Coach and Industry Consultant.
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.
It’s hard to put in one word what my “job” is. I started out as an actress (I still am, you never fully retire) and now work full time as a Photographer, Producer, Acting Coach, and Casting Associate. I believe this unique blend of occupation allows me to provide different perspectives on any project I work on. If I’m coaching a client, my experience working in casting comes in handy when guiding my actors to reach their full potential. As a Producer, having a photography business helps me to visualize the bigger picture of the projects I work on. The journey to finding this blend was not easy. It took me years of planting seeds, networking (which as an introvert was the biggest challenge), and working hard (sometimes with little to no pay) just so I can make connections for future opportunities. The driving force was my passion for telling stories and my determination to only take jobs that I actually enjoyed doing. That was the biggest lesson I learned: find what you love and enjoy doing, then figure out how to make it the thing that pays the bills. And don’t give up. No matter the challenges, no matter the setbacks, keep going.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
The first thing we would do it go to Raging Burrito or Victory in downtown Decatur. Best food and drinks in town! Then we could go down to the beltline to explore the city and admire the street art. At night the Ponce City Market Skyline Park is the place to be! Or we can catch a show at the Alliance Theatre or see some comedy at Dad’s Garage.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to give a shout out to Viviana Chavez, a fellow industry professional here in Atlanta, Her work ethic is so impressive and her caring nature is unmatched. She has the ability to be both professional while providing opportunities to help others any way she can. As a Producer and Industry Consultant herself, her mission is to help connect others so we can all as a community work together to make our mark as an undeniable force in this industry. Her encouragement, understanding of the entertainment business, and resilience have played a major part in my own success story.