Deciding to pursue an artistic or creative career path isn’t for the faint of heart. Challenges will abound, but so many of the artists we speak with couldn’t be happier with their choice. So, we asked them about how they made the decision in the first place.

Sylvie Abecassis | Artist and Graphic Designer/Illustrator

I’ve been creative for as long as I can remember. My parents moved around a lot and I didn’t have many opportunities to create. In high school though, the art teacher would have us find a photograph and replicate it as a painting. Read more>>

tom finke | artist, author, educator

Greetings: I spoke to Nick Ramirez and mentioned to him that I felt all three of the questions I have answered here go together and could I answer all three. He said ye, but to make sure I indicated which questions they were. I have labeled each of them. If you have nay questions, please feel free to contact me. Read more>>

Rachel Franklin | Photographer

As a young high schooler, our school often had the students take ‘career tests’ to help us navigate what our life would look like after we graduated. I matched with quite a wide variety of possible career fields and the idea to commit to just one became overwhelming very quickly. Read more>>

 John Lintott | Landscape Painter

When I was in college at C.S.U. I did not know what direction I wanted to pursue my study. Because of this, my motivation, and classwork suffered. After about a year, I took time off to just work and to try to figure out what I wanted to do. Read more>>

Keller Northcutt | Freelance Writer

It’s a little bit like the Talking Heads lyric, “Did I find you or you find me?” I am not sure if I am pursuing writing, or if it just found a body in which to reside. Writing fulfills me like nothing else. Read more>>

Tony Meade | Singer-songwriter & Recording Artist

I think that there’s a distinction between why people start a creative career and why they continue to pursue it, People (including me) usually start for social reasons – they want to look cool, or get approval, or stand out from the crowd, etc. Read more>>

Sam Reichman | Writer, artist, editor, and educator

I’ve drawn, painted, and written since I was a kid, but I always thought pursuing the arts full-time was impractical or selfish, so I didn’t pursue an artistic career right away. I started studying Arabic and geopolitics in high school, got my undergrad in Middle Eastern studies, and worked with a nonprofit that helped scholar-refugees after I graduated from college. Read more>>

Amanda Van Orden | Maternity, Newborn, & Baby Photographer

I’ve had a lot of office jobs that left me feeling like an empty shell of a human. It might sound cliche – but I pursued a creative career because it makes me happy! I’m a creative person, and I need to express that somehow. Not only is photography a great creative outlet, but I get to connect with the most amazing people. Read more>>

Melanin Dragon | Performance Artists & Content Creator

Ever since I was young I had a wild imagination that would force me to see the world differently. I would wonder the details of peoples lives and how you can show off everyone’s uniqueness in a way that was both impressing and imperishable. Read more>>

Bella Bond | Documentary Film Photographer

I’ve always loved art and photography, but I mostly admired it from afar. I never had extra money, let alone for a camera so I just never got into photography. Read more>>

Susie Drucker | Oil and Watercolor Artist

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been driven to create beauty, and bring laughter and joy to others. Creative experimentation has been a constant part of my life; photography, drawing, making jewelry, and painting with watercolors and oils. Read more>>

Bo Richardson | DJ

I chose this creative path somewhat by luck and the passion I have for music. I love the energy and joy that music gives to everyone. I love being able to look at the dance floor and say “WOW…….I helped create that energy and joy!!” Read more>>

Jason LaBella | Photographer

Overtime I have learned that staying in an artistic or creative headspace, no matter the industry, keeps me feeling balanced, accomplished, and motivated. Read more>>

KINOKOCURRY | Clothing and Graphic designer

When I first met my husband, an artist, I thought art was something that other people did. Then he and I decided to stay in Thailand for a while and since I couldn’t work there, I decided to start designing T-shirts when I thought about what I could do online. Read more>>

Alie Olivia Wettstein | Plant Shop Owner

I am pursuing this creative career because I enjoy making and sharing things that people discover for the first time. New, natural, and beautiful things that solely bring excitement and awe into peoples lives. Read more>>

Kelly Miller | Photographer

Growing up we were always encouraged to create – to draw, paint, and take photos. A lot of my memories as a kid are the adventures, travels and creative moments. It has been something that has been a part of life for as long as I can remember. In high school, I applied to be a part of an integrated school of arts. Read more>>