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.

Duncan Senkumba | Animator and Illustrator

Art has always been a passion of mine since a young age. I used to replicate Images from my favourite comics. But at 17 years old I decided I wanted to focus on Art in my education and took on a diploma in Art and Design. That was probably one of the best decisions I made because it opened my eyes to the possibilities and my knowledge in Art. Looking back, I think it was meant to be, I wasn’t the best artist but I always did things my way and that kind of sums up creativity, being yourself. Read more>>

Andrew Ricci | Founder of Luna Shade

Luna Shade began when I decided to change my way of living and be the best person I could be, although its still a work in progress.. 6 years ago I was in a pretty “dark” place, mentally and physically. The party needed to stop and I needed to give myself the love I deserved. After my stint living in the Caribbean I was evacuated after the 2017 hurricanes and when I was re located back to Fort Collins I vowed to never go down the path I had been on again. It was time to make dreams a reality. life is too short. Read more>>

Katrina Blair | Educator / Director of non-profit

I saw a need in our society that was not being fulfilled so I wanted to help manifest a solution. I fell in love with all plants as a child and noticed that some plants were being discriminated against. The “weeds” were considered noxious and were being eradicated with herbicides. As an earth steward, I see this as a problem to the water, the soil, the birds, kids and all of life. Our mission with Turtle Lake Refuge is to celebrate the connection between personal health and wild lands. We have a wild foods cafe where we integrate the edible weeds like dandelions and thistles into the meals. Read more>>

Constance Harris | Dancer & Choreographer

I pursued an artistic career because it is the only thing that feels right and true. I enjoy adventure and constantly being in a mindset of “what’s next?”. I don’t want my life to ever become mundane and predictable and going down this path has granted me that privilege. Read more>>

Hannah Mooney | Muralist & Painter

Long before I had taken my first breath, the provision of my life had already been designed by the first creative known to man. My mother tells the story of me as a little girl asking if God would let me paint rainbows in heaven. Even though I haven’t been hired for the job yet (nor had an interview), I have been called to create in the world we live in now. Throughout my existence of creating; the pinnacle is reflecting who the Messiah is in myself. Read more>>

Sean Minikin | Photographer

Honestly, I am pursuing photography as a way to share the beauty in life that others may not get a chance to see due to their life circumstances. I love photography, its so therapeutic and for me helps keep me centered. But, it all comes down to sharing those moments with people. Read more>>

Aileen Passalaqua | Professional Cake Decorator/Baker/Creator/Pastry

I chose this career because growing up in a family having a background in art and being creative as a child I loved to watch them make and create things. My uncle was a professional artist and my mom was very good at art too. I knew at a very young age that art was instilled in me. When I was young I would look at the “Wilton” Yearbook which was a cake decorating book my mom bought. I was always looking at the book thinking I wanted to make and decorate cakes when I was older by putting my artistic ability to work in frosting. Read more>>

Kelsey Stoddard | Artist & Mama

There’s never been any doubt in my mind since I was very, very small that I needed to create. I have always felt an intense pull toward creating with my hands. As for making a career out of it, I am not sure there would have been many other paths that would have filled me up and brought me immense joy like creating does. It really ignites my spirit and brings me deeper to the true meaning of existing. Read more>>