We asked some of the city’s leading artists and creatives to tell us about how they decided to pursue an artistic or creative career. We’ve shared some highlights below.

Sheilava | Producer, Director, Actress, Singer/Songwriter, Model, & Master Flautist

I tossed around the idea of becoming a veterinarian, going to nursing school, pursuing a career in sales, and joining the military. But I’ve always had so much going on in my mind, so many things to say, and so many ways to say them… it was only natural that I pursue a creative career and I believe the ability to create is one of the greatest gifts life has to offer. Whether you’re an artist, actor, filmmaker, songwriter, musician, writer, etc,. you have the opportunity to inspire someone each and every day. Whether you create for work, fun, pleasure, or as an outlet, you have the chance to unleash your wildest dreams, your deepest thoughts, or depict yourself and others in whatever way you choose. Read more>>

Miles Becken | Tattoo Artist

One of the main reasons I pursued tattooing as a career is because of how liberating and free it is. I feel it is one of the last forms of artistic expression that has few to little guidelines. It also is something you have to earn. You have to obtain an apprenticeship and only by hard work and dedication will you succeed. You receive only what you put in. It is also one of the most rewarding and humbling forms of art. I have many forms of artistic expressions that I rely on for my outlet of creativity and tattooing is one of my favorites. When I was a kid I read a quote that still till this day vibrates with my whole experience of life and art. “If art is to nourish the roots of our culture then society must set the artist free to follow his dream wherever it my take them” -JFK. Read more>>

Jordan Henderson | Lead Vocalist/Lyricist The High Moons

My sister and I have a bond through music, especially since we are 11 years apart. I was going through a divorce and a custody battle when I wrote my first song, I sent the lyrics to Hannah and said, “hey can you write some guitar music to this?”. The rest is history. That became the spark that lead to The High Moons. Now we are a full band with our other sister Eden on bass and an incredible drummer named James. Music is an outlet for many, I am no different. I have written my triumphs, my fears, my love, my hurts, my regrets and my pain in every song I’ve written. When I sing our originals, I mean them. Every word is from something real that has happened to myself or someone I love. Music is my outlet and helps me cope with things as well as helps me remember the good times. Read more>>

Andrew Vandekop | Silversmith & Water Finder

I have been a creator my entire life. I received my first of four US patents when I was 22 years old. However, I was only able to become a full-time creative and make it my career when I began sharing my work with the public. Silversmithing was an art form I originally learned from my grandfather when I was a teenager but I didn’t really utilize that skill until about 5 years ago. My wife and I began sharing my first jewelry creations at art fairs and festivals in the DFW area and people were always asking me how I made certain pieces. We realized that maybe people would enjoy seeing the creative process in real time and so we decided to transition from my backyard to a workshop that people could visit. People can see how the jewelry is made and support the art by purchasing my pieces on-site. Visitors can also see the progress of another project that I’m working on with my parents – a system that can map the depth of groundwater under a property. Read more>>

Logan Mulligan | Filmmaker

I’ve been artistic and interested in the arts from a very young age. Regular jobs just don’t feel right for me. It’s hard to explain it, because a lot of it is internal dialogue with myself. I don’t knock “regular” office jobs or 9-5’s for other people. I’m on my own path, and to me, those types of jobs aren’t creatively fulfilling. Once I figured out that a creative career path was possible for me, I wanted to grind so hard to become successful at it, in all aspects. I’m still on that grind and anticipate to be hard at work on that grind for the next 10+ years. Read more>>

Erin Marie Garrett | Actress

I’ve been an entertainer since I was 7 years imd when I acted in my first play. My creative side consumes me. Nothing makes me feel as alive as performing. Read more>>

Jenn Sanchez | Independent Artist & Designer

I’ve loved the arts since I can remember. I’m an only child and growing up I had to find a way to keep myself occupied – art was it for me. I started off with simple things like crazy scissors and scrapbooking, and then I moved onto computer graphics in middle school. I took as many art classes in high school and college as possible, but it wasn’t until I was in my second year of college that I realized I could make a living off of it. Shout out to my Advertising 101 professor at SMU. She showed me the way. Read more>>

Darby Scebold | Designer & Illustrator

My dad was an oil painter and he had a lot of influence over me when I was younger. I really loved to watch him draw and paint. He taught me how to draw and would encourage me in learning how to draw from real life. We would sit together in church and I loved to draw all of the foods that I wanted to eat after the service was over and my drawings ended up looking like some crazy Thanksgiving feasts. My dream was to become a children’s storybook artist because I also loved creative writing. Read more>>