San Diego Creatives :: Rico and Rachel

Rico’s an architect, Rachel an artist.

When we sat down for dinner with them last week to wrap this feature at the new Vegan/Gluten Free restaurant Casa De Luz on University, Rico took the reigns of the detailed stories, the ones you can smell and touch. Drawing an exact picture, word for word of the day the two of them met. It’s a cute story from their college days at Cal Poly. Meanwhile there sits Rachel, rolling her eyes cooly, letting him continue. She would sum the same story up with a couple words and let your imagination color in the rest.

That same pattern follows them into their work. Rico analyzing structure and lines and Rachel seeing the movement and emotion of the subjects. And what a powerful story can be written when these unique attributes melt into an incredible set of images.

Rico and Rachel make perfect neighbors. Lucky us, we’re right down the road. If you just need someone to be around they’ll have a cold beer for you when you walk in the door and serve you pretty vegetables and maybe some vegan cashew cheese from their decked out kitchen (Kelsey’s jealous). Just like their photography, they’ve created a living space that is a reflection of who they are and what they’re about. Subtle colors, vintage 70′s decor, friendly cats, and an air of coolness and contentment. There’s an authenticity and warmth to everything they surround themselves with and put their hearts into.

When it comes to the job, they want their clients to know it’s not about finding a photographer that takes great pictures, it’s about hanging out. Rico and Rachel know that part of the beauty in their art comes from the trust established between the people behind the camera and the client. First meetings involve no equipment. Just conversation, laughter, and a few exchanges of embarrassing moments passed. Because story is such an important element in their art, it’s the fun details, the personal insights that matter in bringing authentic emotion to the surface when it’s time to shoot. As Rachel says, intimacy is important, “we become friends with our clients so we can accurately tell their story.”

Rico and Rachel bring a new word to the San Diego Creatives series table that we’ve been needing: Community. You can live anyplace in the world, but without friendship, fellowship, and sharing connection, you have nothing. They add a level of depth and care to San Diego that makes it such a beautiful and welcoming place to live.

Thank you, Studio Castillero, for creating beautiful things and and sharing them with the world. We think you two are pretty nifty.

Huge shout out to Rico and Rachel for making STUDIO CASTILLERO stop number three on our journey to share the coolest, most inspiring folks in this creative town.

Also, big thanks to Jenna and Josh for letting me crash their engagement sesh, check out how it turned out here! Legit.

* Directed, Shot, and Edited by Shaun Boyte. **Article written by Shaun Boyte and edited by KELSEY BROWN. ***Many thanks to Angus & Julia Stone for use of music in video portion of project.



  • Cody Small - Got hand it to you Shaun, another amazing piece. You captured the core of the Castillero’s style, philosophy, and personalties. Well done!ReplyCancel

  • Matt - Rachel and Rico are the most down to earth, authentic, and passionate people I know. They live inspired lives, and they allow that to overflow into their photography.ReplyCancel

  • Nelly - Great interview! Rico and Rachel are the nicest people I can say I have met and who I hope to become great friends! Their personality and creativity comes out in their photgraphy style that I think is truely inspiration!ReplyCancel

  • Chris - Great piece on two very talented yet humble people…to God be the glory!!ReplyCancel

  • Daisy - Truly loved hearing these two speak from such a sincere place about what they love and why they love it.ReplyCancel

  • nata - a perfect description of them…ReplyCancel

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