From Teaching Art to Being Featured In Gary Vaynerchuk’s Crushing It!, Hear How Luis-Miguel Caraballo Is Accelerating His Goal Of Making Art History, Episode 13

Meet Luis-Miguel Caraballo. Prior to our interview, he had been going by the name “Louie Blaka.” Yet, from this moment forward, he wants the world to know him for who he is: an artist with Puerto Rican roots who is here to inspire and provide a roadmap for future full-time artists. You can see his epic art around the world including street art murals throughout cities in New Jersey, Miami, Brazil, and Croatia. Deeply influenced by his city roots in Elizabeth, NJ, and inspired by a personal friend he lost early in life – his artwork makes mention of the phrase “wake up and smell the roses.” A former teacher who at the peak of his career decided to create art as a full-time artist, Luis Miguel is currently on his journey towards making art history. His work has been featured in various galleries, exhibitions and publications including the New York Times Best Seller Crushing It! by Gary Vaynerchuk. Listeners and the world, for the first time publicly under his real name here is Luis-Miguel Caraballo.


Listen to Luis-Miguel’s thoughts on:

  • Why the artist formerly known as “Louie Blaka” wanted to conduct this interview using his actual government name for the very first time ever!
  • His inspiration behind his art including his new fascination with Post-It notes as vehicles of communication and how he manages his plethora of ideas overall.
  • How he has embraced his intuition to paint huge murals on building walls in North America, South America, and Europe. 
  • How he is debunking the myth of “a starving artist” by having elected to educate himself on business matters so he could retain ownership over his livelihood.
  • How he landed the opportunity to be featured in Gary Vaynerchuk’s book Crushing It! and how he could have missed this opportunity if he had listened to his inner doubts.
  • How his Latino family thought about his decision to become a full-time artist despite his reality of student debt and their questions around whether he could have a lucrative art career.
  • His future goals to make art history and how he wants to serve as an example to any young person who wants to see themselves ten or more years ahead as a successful artist

Stay tuned for how Luis-Miguel would tackle this important societal question pertaining to underrepresented minorities living in inner cities. I asked Jacques Slade in Episode 1 a similar question because he too was once a teacher. 

What do you specifically think it will take to lift kids in the inner city boys in particular to wake up and smell the roses when it comes to the sanctity and precious opportunity that is being alive?

Links below:

Louie Blaka @louieblaka on Instagram

Louie Blaka’s Website/Portfolio

Perth Amboy Distinction: See Artwork Behind Luis Miguel In This Post

Crushing It!, by Gary Vaynerchuk

Mel Robbins @melrobbins on Instagram


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Melissa Llarena

Melissa helps movers and shakers up to those in the corner office rediscover what makes them unique so that they can land their dream job in a forward-thinking company where their ideas are listened to, valued, and supported.

She brings insights from having worked in 16-business units (including Human Resources) in NY, Paris, and London. Additionally, in her former corporate career, she worked on billion-dollar brands for P&G and on IBM for Ogilvy & Mather. Later, as the founder and CEO of Career Outcomes Matter, Melissa created a 3-step “sellable strengths” process which has been the centerpiece of her clients' results.

Melissa applies this method consistently to support mid-level professionals up to the c-suite to get into Fortune Global 500 organizations and agencies. She studied Psychology at NYU and earned her MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.

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