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.

Cole Higgins | Previs Artist and Director

I come from a family of artists. From a young age I found so much joy in making movies and drawing. Being creative is pivotal to my well being and I plan on nurturing that for the rest of my life. Read more>>

Erin Lassahn | Lifestyle Family Photographer

I don’t think it ever occurred to me NOT to pursue a creative career. My career dreams and ideas have morphed since I was a kid, but whether it was wanting to be a baker decorating fabulous cakes (one of my earliest career dreams) or an interior designer (what I thought about in high school) or a fashion designer (what I actually went to college for) or a the photographer I am now, it just seemed natural that it would be in the arts. Even my side interests all throughout childhood to present day have been artistic in nature; playing the cello and flute, singing in various groups and venues, years and years doing ballet and a love for fine arts too. A life without the creative pursuits, I think, would be rather dull and colorless, and therefore I can’t imagine my career being void of creativity either. I’ve never been able to fit myself into standard corporate career boxes and the very few times I have, it hasn’t lasted long. Read more>>

Olive Moya | Artist

As a angsty teenager I scoffed at the idea of making art my career; I didn’t want anyone telling me how to create. Luckily for my stubborn young self, my parents knew I was wrong. They brought me to check out an art school, and a switch flipped for me. I knew there was nothing else that could give me that particular sense of purpose and joy. I think creativity is what sets our species apart from animals. Art can change people. It has the ability to invoke stories and emotions, educate and make people think. Physically using my hands to make something that intellectually and emotionally stimulates me is a gift. I’ve always wanted to spend the majority of my time doing it and (at least for this moment in time), I’m able to. Read more>>

Clare Aaker | Madeira Creative Photography

I grew up in a creative family. We were always doing various arts & crafts as kids, from painting or making jewelry to building fairy houses and building forts outside in the woods. My parents homeschooled us so we had a lot of time to pursue the things we were interested in and the creative subjects always came naturally to me. When I was choosing my major in college, I chose Mass Communications by looking through the course catalog and circling all the classes that sounded interesting. Most of them wound up being in the Mass Comm department, so that’s the path I took. Those classes I picked out wound up being things like graphic and web design, news writing, advertising, and photo/video. By the time I got to college, I had already taught myself how to use a digital camera and had played around in Photoshop, attempting to create fine art images. I never really planned to be a photographer until I realized how much I liked the idea of being my own boss. But I always knew I’d end up doing something creative since it was a part of my life since the beginning. Read more>>

Emily Skeels | Videographer and Content Creator

I started creating videos because of all the amazing stories I was encountering every day. Whether it was the barista making my morning coffee or the streets of a new city I was visiting – I was seeing these amazing stories and wanted to share them with my community. I started Skeels Creative so that I could creatively tell the stories of incredible people doing incredible things. It’s been so fun to help tell their stories. Read more>>

Leah Diament | Artist

To be frank I never wanted to be an artist, It was at the bottom of my list of things to do with my life. I knew that being an artist meant being broke because what phrase is more prominent than “starving artist” when you think of a career in the arts? Fortunately, fate and the complete inability to sit still led me to the Denver arts scene and the many wonderful artists and gallery’s within it. At first it was terrifying to show my work to strangers and then exhilarating as many wonderful people in our community showed me the ropes. Walker Fine Arts and Colorado Photographic Arts Center were both integral to my creative career. Although art is not my full time job it is my after work activity, my hobby, my community, and the thing that get my rate up and my mind sparking. Read more>>