Artists and creatives face innumerable challenges given that their career path often doesn’t come with a playbook, a steady paycheck or any form of safety net. It’s definitely not easy and so we asked a few of the artists and creatives we admire to talk to us about why they chose to pursue an artistic or creative career.

Jane Shnatman | Dancer & Model

It was a no brainer from the start that I had to pursue something I fell in love with. From a young age I knew that I wanted to dance and model until my bones let out… and when I say ‘let out,’ I mean it. I was born to parents that had their 3rd and last kid fairly late – hi, that’s me! Every day, I saw how much having a dancer affected them. They weren’t always able to keep up with my active dream. They believed in me so much and went to every performance! But, when I asked if they could grand jete across the street, they would always decline “because of their age.” This made me realize that if I love what I do, I need to run after it until life doesn’t let me pursue it any longer. Read more>>

Jarielle Jones | CEO

Heavy hitter first question. I chose a creative career honestly because that’s how I express myself freely. I may not be able to find the words to say but let me cook you a meal. Hopefully you’ll feel my love my appreciation in every bite. Read more>>

Trey Diggs | Singer/Songwriter/Producer

Growing up listening to the music my parents played around the house I became obsessive in trying to understand how the music was being made. Whether it was the recording process or the sound selection, I was always fascinated with the “how” of music. Eventually leading me to The Recording Conservatory of Austin to study Audio Engineering/Music Production and later starting my own career in the Music Industry. Read more>>

Gracie Howard | Hairstylist/Hairdresser

Growing up I really struggled in school. Math and science and even reading were all very difficult for me. I never thought much of what I wanted to do when I would get older. (I was just hoping for something with not much math, science or reading!) Read more>>

Denzel Demby | Denzel Demby | Fashion Creative and Jewelry Designer

I’ve been creative since I was a little boy. I feel like my sensitive and intuitive nature made me feel connected to art, fashion, poetry, and photography. I’ve been designing jewelry since 2010 and styling since I was a teenager. I started selling my jewelry pieces in 2012 and opened my first website in 2015. I love making something out of nothing, and being creative sometimes you have to work with what you have. I enjoy creating different looks and designing new jewelry pieces. I love to sketch and transfer what I have in my mind onto paper. Read more>>

Kristen Burdick | Photographer & Graphic Designer

After growing up around a parent who would constantly bring their camera to almost every family function, I followed in the footsteps of experimenting with picture taking. As a sophomore in high school and with curiosity in mind, I decided to take my first photography class. I challenged myself to all different types of photography; however, no type of photography came close to giving me the feeling that portraits did. Two years later, I decided to take an AP Photography class my senior year. Read more>>

Jessie Gregory | Content Creator

There’s something about expressing yourself in what you like to do, that feels right. I love fashion, all aspects. I’m not a model, I don’t get on the runway, not my lane. But I love creating. Playing with effect on pictures, making videos and doing transitions are so cool. After adopting that aspect to weave into my fashion, it pushes my creative thinking as well in terms of what can I do next. It’s like a challenge for myself to never get comfortable. Read more>>

Surya Nycole | Author

Well, I have always felt as though writing pursued me. I have been a writer, story teller, and poet since I was very young, it was just something that I enjoyed doing. Over the last 15-20 years my writing has evolved with me from fictional and funny story telling into deep spiritual truth and mental healing. Being able to communicate the depths of my heart for myself and others through my writing and poetry has been a blessing I find hard to describe! We are all on this journey together and it is important that we stand with each other while we heal and grow. I love that I get to do that through my writing, that I get to walk with someone across the world in their journey and help plant seeds and nourish their healing and growth. Read more>>

Wyatt Coates | Singer/Songwriter

There are a lot of interests I could’ve seen myself pursuing but I knew that no matter what I picked my artistic nature would always be with me. I felt like I was born with it! It was never something that was over or under a list of priorities. For me, it exists thoroughly at a steady equilibrium, gliding with me, helping me comprehend life’s complex tendencies. Furthermore, that artistic nature comes with an important characteristic that I feel as a “creative”, we are called to listen to. Which is to share what we’ve learned with the rest of the world. Read more>>

Tony James | Singer/Songwriter, Actor, & Content Creator

I pursued a career in the Arts & Entertainment field, mostly because of my high school mentors. I originally wanted to be a journalist, but my mentors showed me otherwise. They exposed me to various sides of the Arts. Taking me to musicals, stage plays, recording studios, even NYC. They showed me that I could have an actual career in the creative world, by introducing me to others who had walked that path & had found success. Read more>>