We asked some of the city’s rising stars to reflect on what made a difference in their journey. We asked them to tell us about what they think the most important factor has been behind their success.

Abigail Mueller | Photographer

Though my business is still in its early days, I’d say that the most important factor behind my brand relates to how I present my clients through my images. When I’m working with bands, doing portrait sessions specifically, presenting the band’s essence through my photographs is very important. I make it a part of my process to learn about their art through listening to their music and asking them how they’d like to present themselves to their audience. Read more>>

Meghan Truman | Newborn & Motherhood Photographer

The most important factor behind the success of my brand is recognizing how big of a thief Father Time can be. As a mother I quickly realized that the tiny details fade all too fast. The little dimples in the fingers. The squishy thighs. The sleepy, milk drunk smiles. They’re there one day and gone the next! This is especially true for newborns, and little children, but the same concept still applies to senior year, or a young couples engagement. These are all momentous times of life, but are also all too fleeting. Read more>>

Eduardo Vildasol | Actor & Producer

Success is comprised of so many different elements, but one in particular I want to highlight is community. I remember when I signed with my current acting agent. It took three years of planning, training, networking, trying new things, making mistakes (too many to count), and even submitting a few times for representation before I finally got my ‘YES’. Throughout that time, I made connections and friendships with people involved in all different aspects of the industry who were also passionate about their craft. Read more>>

Pranav Ranganath | Photographer & Biomedical Engineering Student

The most important factor behind the success of my business is perseverance. In this context, perseverance doesn’t just mean working through hard times. The foundation of perseverance consists of dedication, consistency, and most importantly genuine passion in my work. Dedication is very straightforward. Time, energy, and resources have to be invested into anything you do. Read more>>

Keishlanis Echeverria | Makeup Artist

Staying true to myself, being open and honest to not only myself but my followers and all of those who support me. Read more>>

Dreux Wiltz | Lifestyle Influencer & Blogger

I would say the success of my brand is solely due to my candidness and authenticity. I take pride in keeping it real and not sugar coating anything with my audience. Growing up in South Louisiana, speaking your piece was encouraged. Showing up as myself and showcasing a woman can be strong in her feminine demeanor while having the career she wants, maintaining a healthy marriage, all while enjoying life gives others hope of the same lifestyle. Everyday I am thankful for my sisterhood and grateful to inspire women to be themselves while putting theirselves first. Read more>>

Lysette Morones | Powder Brow Artist

Being consistent and stepping out of my comfort zone has opened so many doors for me. My consistency and drive have given me lots of success in all things that I do! Stepping out of my comfort zone and pushing myself to do things that give me anxiety has also brought me great success! I try to be consistent with my social media, content and marketing. I never used to put myself out there. Read more>>

Chris Keuk | Photographer & System Engineer

Constructive Criticism (CC), humility, and the ability to grow and adapt. These are the key factors to my success. Whether it is professional or personal, it has helped me to become a better person than I was 2-3 years ago. The first two factors may sound negative but it depends on how you tackle the situation. Let’s tackle constructive criticism (CC). I do have a good story and it has stuck with me ever since, especially coming from someone close. I use to not care about CC and blow them off up until a few years ago. Read more>>

Emma Sitzman | Professional Photographer & Retoucher

The most important factor behind the success of my brand I would have to say is that I strive to keep my work unique and bold but also simplistic and natural. I work to make sure ever client feels special and comfortable in their own skin. I want to make sure they can leave from a shoot knowing they could be themselves. I would also another factor behind my success is that I am constantly pushing my self to create new work, finding new ways to improve my skills and also reaching out new people to create connections. Read more>>

Jaime Jaimes | Owner/Pitmaster

our belief of spreading the Smokin Dawgz experience wherever we go. So we take a piece of our backyard get togethers to every event or pop-up that we are apart of because nothing brings family and friends together like some delicious bbq! Our motto is making friends one bite at a time. We don’t believing in the word customer we make friends for life. Read more>>

Kahlyl McClain | Transformation Coach & Athlete

The most important factor behind my success is God. I’m nothing without my lord and savior Jesus Christ. I’m just like any other human being, I get nervous, catch anxiety, procrastinate on task, make mistakes, etc. The only difference between me and anybody else, is that I have a good God that supples limitless energy, ideas, and purpose when I stay in his presence. Read more>>

Ray Van Vleck | Chairman of the Board of Directors at Mutiny Theatre Company

Hard work is the most important element of success and fulfillment. I love being able to go home at the end of the day knowing that the commitment and passion I put into my projects have benefitted me, my future, and the lovely people around me. There are so many variables in the creative field, but your contribution to the project directly correlates to the success of the it. Having a clear outlook for the future and specific goals are motivators that I use to push me to work harder to achieve something great. Read more>>