We had the good fortune of connecting with Josh Miller and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Josh, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I believe that art has the power to change and impact the spaces and cultures we touch and are a part of. I’ve seen time and time again what can happen when artists are part of a team creating an initiative, facilitating community engagement through art, and leading inclusion and belonging efforts. Art can transcend outdated mental models, shift perspectives and help us see and show up in the world differently. I own a small business – Josh Miller Ventures – that leverages my photography, fashion design and storytelling to support clients that have included healthcare accelerators and The Advocate and to create Wearable Photos – chiffon and silk pieces featuring photos from when I run, hike, and cycle that allow you to create an art installation every time you wear them. I also co-founded a nonprofit – IDEAS xLab – that uses art to create public health messaging with community members and to fuel collaborations like (Un)Known Project to honor the names and tell the stories of enslaved people through public art installations and experiences.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My company Josh Miller Ventures builds on more than a decade combining experimental photography with running, hiking and cycling explorations from Louisville to Paris and Senegal and work as an Associate Editor. My practice further evolved through collaborations with designers including Gunnar Deatherage who showed me just how powerful it is to have pieces in your wardrobe that embody your creativity and courage.

Vian Sora, an artist in Louisville, KY reflected on my photos saying, “His image posts – specifically since the beginning of pandemic – played a vital role in reminding us of our freedoms and humanity.” Her reflection really encapsulated what I believe my photography and storytelling can do.

I was one of the people that saw the disruption of COVID-19 as a time to really push the boundaries of how I show up in the world. What we wear is such an expression of who we are, and that lead me to create Wearable Photos by transforming photographs from my ventures outdoors into chiffon and silk pieces that can be worn by anyone regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. I believe that no matter what background you come from or what identity(s) you hold, your lived experience has value. And, you should be able to embody that as you step into the world each day. Throughout my life I’ve been underestimated as a queer person and an artist, and it has been the recognition that not everyone will be able to see the value you bring, or what you’re capable of that has kept me pushing forward to shift their understanding of what is possible.

My Fall 2021 Wearable Photos collection launches in October featuring photos from throughout Colorado and Kentucky as silk and chiffon pieces ranging from 16″x16″ – 50×50″ prints and kimonos. There are 12+ ways to wear them, so I have a tutorial on my website for those wanting inspiration!

Wholesale pricing for retailers, private collection previews and exclusive, custom Wearable Photos are available upon request. Email connect@joshmiller.ventures

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I don’t think they’d ever get a break! We’d venture up Lookout Mountain, my go-to spot for trail running and cycling in the front range followed by brunch at Leven Deli. A day of art at Denver Art Museum and MCA Denver before a visit to Larimer Square and dinner at Rioja. Rent a cabin and head out to Estes Park and Rocky Mountain National Park for the weekend to hike and explore, stopping in Boulder on the way home to visit BMoCA. We’d walk Cherry Creek Trail, checkout the latest exhibits at Leon Gallery and Black Cube, and spend a morning in the Westwood Creative District for a meal at Kahlo’s and visit to artist Arturo Garcia’s studio. And, of course – delving into the collections of Denver-based designers including Steve Sells, Matilda Marginal, Mona Lucero and Darkm0th Industry would be a must.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My shoutout is dedicated to multiple people.

My husband Theo Edmonds who expanded my understanding of what artists and creatives can do in the world and the power of cross-sector collaboration. He recently stepped into the role of Associate Dean of Transdiciplinary Research & Innovation at University of Colorado Denver’s College of Arts & Media which brought us to Denver from Louisville, KY.

My dear friend, team member and artist Hannah Drake who says in one of her poems, “There is someone waiting for you to be all that you can be, so that they can be all they were destined to be.” That mindset permeates our relationship and ongoing work to create change through art and how we show up in the world everyday. We lead IDEAS xLab together, the nonprofit Theo and co-founded over eight years ago that champions inclusion and belonging through creativity, art, and action.

Both Theo and Hannah have supported my growth as a leader and personal artistic endeavors through Josh Miller Ventures as I evolve as a person and continuously challenge traditional gender norms as a queer man who presents androgynous and gender fluid.

My siblings, close friends and family have all impacted my journey – nothing is done completely solo.

Website: https://joshmiller.ventures/

Instagram: https://instagram.com/joshmillerventures

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jmventures

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/joshmillerventures

Image Credits
Spring 2021 Collection triptych and Creative Process Photos by Halima Ahmed and Josh Miller All others photos: By Josh Miller, courtesy of Josh Miller Ventures

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