"I truly believe that by being YOURSELF you become your BEST asset!" ~Citi Medina
Following the exciting launch of Citi Medina's website for his brand (www.citimedina.com), I had the opportunity to discuss his vision for his company, his inspiration and what keeps him constantly evolving. Citi Medina is so full of inspiration and motivation that any creative entrepreneur can learn from.
Citi Medina: I am so over the moon that you love it! The new site citimedina.com was definitely an ever-evolving entity. When I began this separate brand, it was to separate my speaking engagements and provide resources to other entrepreneurs and also convey my expertise in creative strategies from MEDINA = CITI which was my design haus. I wanted to share the realities of owning a business and what inspires me with others and the response has been phenomenal. I believe individual style and personality are your best assets in being successful. Citimedina.com is my offering of everything that I can to everyone. It’s all about sharing my passions.
MEDINA = CITI Design Haus (www.medinaciti.com), is my NJ-based design haus which has and always will be my first love. Crafting custom visuals and forming creative strategies with my team is everything to me. We have such a diverse client base and every day is new and exciting. In 2014, we have so many new projects and growing the company out even more.
LOTA-N-C: What drives you? We see the luxe living, fun times with your loved ones, and ambition...what would you like your legacy to be once it’s all said and done?
Citi Medina: This is a great question that I have to answer in two parts.
What drives me has always been a deep-rooted need to be successful on my own terms, for my talent and my work. I began my journey with humble means and I have a determination that has always carried me through life. I’ve always felt the need to be creative in all facets of my life; that I have to express my point of view. It is as essential to me as air.
What I want my legacy to be in the end is that I set out to create something that would stand the test of time. My new platform www.citimedina is an outlet to show others they can do it. It provides resources for success and gives a behind the scenes look past the glamour, parties and luxe appointments. I want it to grow into a brand that people can go to for inspiration and support. MEDINA = CITI, I hope, will connect a city of creativity, tech and forward thinkers. My design haus will be an institution that continues to grow and be helmed by a MEDINA to continue the legacy.
LOTA-N-C: After reading your blog post, "You Can't Do It," it appears to come from such an honest place. But because you are full of self-acceptance, achievements and inspiration, I wonder have you ever experienced anyone trying to convince you that you wouldn't/couldn't be as successful as you are? And if so, how did you overcome it?
Citi Medina: I think in the early onset of starting my design haus MEDINA = CITI, there were many negative comments about a young, minority Creative Director. I didn’t listen to them. I wanted to merge tech and style together to create a Design agency that would really bond with clients and create a high-end experience through the whole process. Many people whom I’ve worked with or for me were completely not supportive of the initiative.
In the end you have to sit with yourself. I constantly say this to aspiring entrepreneurs and professionals. No matter the supporters that this dream and this road will be walked on by you alone, by your passion and commitment. The blood sweat and tears start and end with you, so your support system will be inspired by how hard you are working and your positive results will be directly reflected by your efforts.
LOTA-N-C: You have worked with fashion brands I know and love. Is the fashion world your primary focus? What qualities embody the ideal CitiMedina client?
Citi Medina: I’d love to clarify the two brands. CITI MEDINA is a lifestyle brand based entirely on me. People can go to citimedina.com for resources, inspiration and behind the scenes access to my world. I show you my passions and life for the first time.
Citi Medina was crafted to show the world who I am. So many times I am asked about my clothing style, my musical loves and what my everyday looks like. I am often booked by SBA, Rutgers or corporations to give workshops and speak on entrepreneurship, social media, technology and design. With the growth of interest, I wanted to relaunch citimedina.com to be the “go to” platform for my audience.
MEDINA = CITI Design Haus was formed in 2008 to craft custom visual solutions for discerning brands. We offer everything in Creative and Web development, to Digital Marketing and Social Media strategies. My team crafts Video Productions and Photography shoots as well. I am charged with leading creative strategies whether campaigns, crisis moments or creative production.
I work in fashion and entertainment, which was essentially my background when I started as a designer some time ago. However, our primary focus is clients and companies who want to push the envelope and are willing to commit to the process. We have worked with so many different industry clients (corporate communications, fashion, technology firms, not for profit, etc.) we only require that they trust in us and allow the process to build a great relationship and ultimately a beautiful end result.
LOTA-N-C: What words of encouragement can you give an aspiring creative wanting to make it in this field,
but has no personal role model(s) to emulate?
Citi Medina: "Keep your passion alive." I cannot stress this enough. I believe that this can carry you through it all. In this age of internet access, ignorance is a choice, so stay passionate, read on it, plan, day dream it and act on it! Passion can fuel you when you are sacrificing. Passion can give you focus. I know it is the driving force in my life, so I can definitely relate to the sentiment.
Learn more from this brilliant, creative mind at CitiMedina.com.