Artistic and creative careers are among the most rewarding, but they also come with unique challenges. We asked some of the city’s best creatives to tell us why they choose to pursue a creative career.

Serena Cajas | Electric Eats

I pursued this creative career because I have always been passionate about two things: producing art and helping others. I usually work with small businesses and restaurant owners, which I connect with personally because my dad, Ronnie, is a chef and business owner. Working alongside him by managing his social media not only showed me the hustle of owning a restaurant but also opened up a new world of creating digital content. Read more>>

Ken Toki | Painter

From earliest memory I was attracted to the beauty of all nature, plants, fish, insects, animals. My father took me to museums as a child. I never forgot these works of art. I slowly realized that I could also create art by myself. I received some art awards as a child at school. I could not make much art while I pursued my career, but upon my retirement I went to an art shop and asked for the necessary materials to begin making fine art. Read more>>


I always loved all forms of art since I was a kid. I wanted to be a painter, writer, film director, musician, dancer, rapper, basically everything! When I was young I didn’t have many people to teach me strength, independence or confidence, I was able to learn it through music thankfully. When I was 16 years old I decided I wanted to dedicate the rest of my life to making music I love in hopes to connect with other people and give them confidence to move forward in whatever they are doing. Read more>>

Gran Larson | Music Artist

I knew sports wasn’t going to work out for me. I always saw myself as a decent writer but I knew I could elevate that. Back in high school is when I started writing along with a few of my homies. Everyday we would have cyphers so you had to make sure your handle was nice. That and along with writing poetry helped create the storytelling aspect of what I like to create. I not much of an “open” person or vocal in most cases. Super introvert but music helps me express myself better than I could in regular conversation. Mad weird I know but don’t trip I’m cool in real life and I feel my music relates that. Read more>>

Deborah Johnson | Cookbook Author

I didn’t feel like I had a choice. There’s a great quote by Parker Palmer that perfectly describes how I felt about pursuing the dream of writing: “Vocation at its deepest level is, “This is something I can’t not do, for reasons I’m unable to explain to anyone else and don’t fully understand myself but that are nonetheless compelling.” Read more>>