Welcome to our Blog

The Weekly Post

Read our Blog

Beat the Streets LA – First Annual Impact Report

As 2015 is just around the corner, the organization Beat the Streets Los Angeles, a youth development nonprofit I volunteer for has just published its first Annual Impact Report.  The booklet is an overview of current wrestling programs, participation numbers since inception, a summary of last season’s highlights and a splendid spread of graphics accompanied by photos of the youth which the organization serves.

This past summer I sat down with the Executive team for BTSLA and wrote a series of briefs for our organization’s marketing materials.  The goal was to create a collateral kit to enable our staff, fellow board members and other organizational advocates to communicate what Beat the Streets is, what are the goals and how we are making an impact pursuant of fundraising and growing both our resources and our community.  As Creative Director I wanted to ensure that the tone and style of this kit not only aligned with our organization’s identity but in fact could elevate it.

We commissioned Juliana Arboleda (my sister-in-law), a Junior Art Director who currently works for Ogilvy & Mather Colombia, to design the three part kit; marketing deck, brochure and the Annual Impact Report.  Juliana (Juli) had done work in the months prior with Beat the Streets including invitation designs for our Annual Benefit and an announcement for our Camp Scholarship fundraiser.  And whilst the collateral kit would prove to be our largest project for marketing, in my opinion it’s Juli’s finest work yet with our organization.  Having just mailed out hardcopies to our donors last week, we’re already getting a great response on the Impact Report.  We hope it inspires our community to continue to be a part of BTSLA and what’s more an advocate for youth development through sports.

A big thanks to Juli for the fantastic work!  If you’d like to see some of her other creative work head on over to her site Juli’sForest.

Be sure to flip through the digital copy of the Impact Report below.

‘Tis the Season – Holiday Greeting Card

Our family couldn’t decide on one Christmas photo so we made a movie instead.

Directed and Edited by Brian Guerrero.
Color Graded with VSCO Film.
Music from PremiumBeat.com – “Happy Christmas Time” by Lost Harmonies.
Many thanks to the kind people at Goodwill and UPS.

Happy Holidays from Kat, Brian and Emi

Beat the Streets LA, My Favorite Intersection

This month marked the start of the Third Season for Beat the Streets Los Angeles, a sports-based youth development non-profit that I volunteer for.  For me it’s been a convergence of two things that are very near and dear; the sport of wrestling and being a creative.  Perhaps two things that I never imagined would intersect in my personal life.

Walking away from the sport, as a competitor, in 1998 due to injury was very difficult for me.  In many ways it was more challenging than the injury itself.  Doing something day-in and day-out, year-around from age 8 to 19… it’s something that becomes part of your identity.

I was fortunate to find architecture, and transfer into it as a Major for college.  And in some sense get lost in it.  Becoming immersed in architecture, particularly architecture school isn’t something that happened overnight but slowly over a couple years began to shape me, not unlike my years wrestling.   As in sport, the outcomes planned are not always reached but what might be gained along the way are intangibles; resolve, adaptability, an open mind.  These traits that cultivate growth through sports also foster creativity.  It was the kind of transition I needed after wrestling.  Unbeknownst to me, it was also something that would bring me back to the sport.

After college I headed to the East Coast eventually landing in New York at an architectural facade consulting firm in Lower Manhattan.  Over the Thanksgiving weekend of 2007, my wife Kat and I drove up to Albany to have lunch with my cousin Eric who was coaching (Assistant Coach) his university’s wrestling team, Oklahoma State, at the Journeyman Duals.  Still a fan of the sport, but not an active member in the wrestling community, I’d occasionally meet up with Eric to watch his team compete live, but mainly it was to just visit with him, as cousins do.  During our visit that weekend I chatted briefly with the head coach, John Smith, who I had gotten to know over the years while Eric was competing for Oklahoma State.  John asked me about work, about living in New York City and asked “Are you staying involved in wrestling?” to which I hesitantly answered ‘no’.  Without pause he suggested I get involved with a youth wrestling program in the City. He gave me a name and urged me to call.  He said they needed coaches.  The program was Beat the Streets.

I eventually followed up.  I contacted the director and he invited me to come check out the program.  It so happened to be in the neighborhood of my office.  The biggest school district in America and arguably the largest market of architectural firms in the world, and this one little school gymnasium for Beat the Street’s headquarters and my then office were 3 blocks from each other!  Fortuitous?

What started as ‘maybe I’ll stop by from time to time and help their coaches with the kids’ turned into two years as the Volunteer Coach for their training center, traveling to competitions throughout New York, Pennsylvania, Georgia and North Dakota.  That time with Beat the Streets New York, the original program in this now nationwide grassroots wrestling movement had a profound impact on me.  It was a chance to give back to the sport that gave so much to me.  And in 2010, when a job opportunity came around that would relocate Kat and I to Los Angeles, it was one of the hardest parts about leaving New York.  I was leaving behind friends and coaching relationships forged in the fire of the sport.  I felt, reservedly, like I was leaving wrestling again.

About eight months after arriving in LA, I was contacted by Andy Barth, a business man and former wrestler whose supported wrestling from the Youth to Olympic level across the country.  Andy was planning to launch a Beat the Streets program in Los Angeles, and was looking for ardent like-minded people to help bring the program to fruition.  I was in.

Today, three and a half years later, I feel honored to be part of such an outstanding organization and was blessed to have been there for it’s genesis in LA.  Who would have known that the lessons learned about the creative process in school would have fostered an appetite for photography and storytelling?  What’s more, who would have known that I’d be able to apply it to wrestling?

If you’d like to learn more about Beat the Streets Los Angeles and our mission visit our website.  And to see the full coverage with more photos of the Season Kickoff check out the article HERE.

BTSLA wrestlers warmup during the first tournament of the season.

BTSLA wrestlers warmup during the first tournament of the season.

Wrestlers from San Fernando and San Pedro hop through their warmup drills.

Wrestlers from San Fernando and San Pedro hop through their warmup drills.

BTSLA Board Member Tyler Baier gives a technique clinic to kickoff the Season Opener.

BTSLA Board Member Tyler Baier gives a technique clinic to kickoff the Season Opener.

Bright Star student Nathaniel Botello begins his 3rd Season with Beat the Streets LA.

Bright Star student Nathaniel Botello begins his 3rd Season with BTSLA.

Attack Bandz match between two rookie Beat the Streets LA wrestlers.

Attack Bandz match between two rookie BTSLA wrestlers.

Newest members of the San Pedro BTSLA program enjoy their first wrestling tournament.

Newest members of the San Pedro BTSLA program enjoy their first wrestling tournament.


Handmade, by Grandma

My wife and I feel so blessed to have a daughter who is healthy and happy.  We find as much joy and laughter out on the road taking our daughter to explore new places as we do at home in her room watching her learn…umm some from us and other lessons from her surroundings.

Part of what makes her surroundings so rich, not in dollar, but in depth is what we’ve filled her room and our home with.  Personal treasures handed down through family from parents to us, and us to our daughter. And what’s more, in the 17 some months since she was born, the prize personal pieces with which her grandparents have made for her.

She sleeps in a poplar and maple wood bed, handmade by her grandpa (my dad), accompanied by a wall mounted frame and headboard of restored pine boards which were recovered from my late grandmother’s home and once part of an early 20th Century rail yard. (Hint: future article on my dad)

And just this week, the newest arrival from the hands of her grandma Alba (my wife’s mother), two pairs of rag dolls inspired by designer Jess Brown.  My mother-in-law, Alba, started with three Japanese kimono mannequin for dolls my wife found at the Rose Bowl flea market some years back, and then in an afternoon converted the headless cotton-canvas straw filled miniature bodies which undeniably looked like teeth, into these delightful pieces of craftsmanship that you see here.  Brought to life with imagination, my mother-in-law stitched together a full set of appendages and clothed the dolls in my daughter’s outgrown clothes, picked and paired together by my wife.

Watching our daughter pay such focused attention to detail in these pieces are some of life’s often overlooked rewards.

One dreams that imagination and a passion for making will continue to pass down from generation to generation.


Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Alba at work converting the original Japanese doll kimono mannequin.

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

A mix of Emi’s old clothes and found patterns.

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Original Stamp from early 20th Century Japan.

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Emmersed in the details.

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Taking the rag doll for a test run.

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Photo by Brian Guerrero_kabriDWL

Emi’s new collection of Japanese and Jess Brown inspired rag dolls, handmade by Grandma.

The Wall Street Journal’s article about marathoner Hernan Barreneche

Yesterday the Wall Street Journal published an article on my wife’s uncle and godfather Hernan Barreneche, 1968 and 1972 Olympian who will compete this Sunday in the great New York City Marathon.

Accompanying the article were two of my photos of Hernan, included in this post.

Check out the WSJ article by Matthew Futterman HERE.

The photo below was one that I captured just as Hernan headed to the starting line at the 2011 World Masters Athletic Championships.  I vividly recall the moment of quiet intensity.  It was an uncharacteristically brisk morning in July just off the banks of Sacramento’s American River.  Hernan was fighting a cold which heightened his nerves.  Even with this presumable hindrance, his training and mental toughness prevailed as he we went on to win his fourth consecutive World Championships in a time of 3 hrs 17 min 17 seconds.

To learn more about Hernan and his storied running career check out his official site, built by my wife Kat: My Life the Runner.

If you’re in NYC on Sunday, be sure to score a nice spot along the race route, the NYC Marathon is one of sports greatest spectacles.

Go Hernan!!!

Brian Guerrero - kabriDWL

Hernan at the World Masters Athletics Championships in Sacramento, Calif., in 2011.

Interior Photo for October’s Mix Magazine

My interior shot of the award winning Hybrid Studios project by my wife’s firm Delta H Design (DHDI) was included as an ad’ in October’s issue of Mix Magazine.

Photo herein displays the Orange County studio’s live room for music recordings.

To learn more about the revolutionary ZR Products line and what innovative solutions DHDI brought to Hybrid Studios visit here.


The original Photo below.

Hybrid Studios - DHDI Sample Rate panels - photo by Brian Guerrero - kabriDWL

Short Film ‘Move Your Feet’ wraps on production

Filming Day 1 Wrap with director Shawn Frederick, writer and producer Brian Guerrero and the cast of Beat the Streets LA wrestlers.

52 days after sitting down for the first pre-production meeting on the branded short for Beat the Streets Los Angeles (BTSLA) we wrapped filming yesterday.

The project Move Your Feet is a short about an adolescent girl, played by Beat the Streets LA youth wrestler Mercedes Rodriguez, whose life is transcended by the sport of wrestling.

As Creative Director for BTSLA, I had the honor of writing the screenplay for our non-profit org and produce the short.  The story is inspired by BTSLA’s mission to cultivate youth development in Los Angeles communities through quality wrestling programs.

The production was led by veteran director Shawn Frederick and his fantastic crew who consisted of Richard Wright (Director of Photography, Tyler Swain (Camera Operator), Dave Nagel (Camera Operator), Sean Lampon (Sound Recordist), Cal Bingham (Digitech/Script Supervisor), and Cole Bingham (PA/Grip).

The eight week whirlwind experience was for me both rewarding as much as it was a learning experience.  To witness so many creatives and communities come together for one purpose was inspiring.

Stay tuned for more details including advertisements and a release date which is slated for sometime around the holidays.


Interior Photo for Mix Magazine

Kat’s interior shot of the Glaus Haus Studio project by her firm Delta H Design (DHDI) was included in September’s issue of Mix Magazine.

Photo herein displays the mid century home’s living room which doubles as a Live Room for music recordings.

To learn more about the revolutionary ZR Products line and what innovative solutions DHDI brought to the Glaus Haus visit here.


Kat’s original Photo below.

Photo by Katalina Arboleda-Guerrero


Hybrid Studios wins AIA Orange County Award

And the winner is … Hybrid Studios for AIA Orange County Chapter Commercial Interiors Citation!

A big congrats to our dear friend Jonathan Lopez who received the Award last Thursday, September 18.  Thanks to Jonathan for bringing us in to photograph the fantastic spaces.

Photo herein displays  the Studio’s Live Room with a hybrid of ZR Products “strategically placed for maximum  acoustic clarity and aesthetic value” according to the acoustics specialist Delta H Design.

To learn more about the revolutionary ZR Products line by Delta H Design (DHDI) visit here.

Hybrid Studios in the running for an AIA Award

Last month we had the pleasure of photographing the recently opened Hybrid Studios for a dear friend.  This week the AIA Orange County Chapter will announce their 2014 Design Award Winners and we are really pulling for our friend to take home the Commercial Interiors Award!  We’re keeping the architectural design team anonymous for now while the AIA OC Jury deliberates.

The studio’s design is described by the architect as “a choreographed experience achieved through manipulation of the vertical surfaces. Sculpted MDF fins create the sensation of sound waves rhythmically moving as people pass by.”

We’re crossing our fingers… Award Ceremony on Thursday!

Learn more about Hybrid Studios by visiting their website here.

Hybrid Studios 5

Hybrid Studios 4

Hybrid Studios 1

Hybrid Studios 2

Hybrid Studios 3

Hybrid Studios 6


We tell stories for people, brands and causes.