Artists and creatives face innumerable challenges given that their career path often doesn’t come with a playbook, a steady paycheck or any form of safety net. It’s definitely not easy and so we asked a few of the artists and creatives we admire to talk to us about why they chose to pursue an artistic or creative career.

Gabriel Rhenals | Award-Winning Filmmaker

I’ve been active in visual art since I was very young so this career choice was somewhat inevitable. But as I matured, I realized that an artistic or creative career is one in which you can continue to grow and be productive without having to worry about your vulnerability in an economic system. There’s always room for art, even if you have to support yourself with employment in someone else’s company. Art gives you the freedom to be your own industry and chart your own path, whatever the circumstances. Read more>>

Amanda Cil | Owner & Photographer at Amanda Cil Photos

I was just recently talking about this with my mom. Since I was a little girl my family has been very art-inclined. I remember taking painting and acting lessons when I was 4 years old. By the age of 10, I was dancing and that lasted 6 years. My life has revolved around almost all forms of art, even writing. I have a few, non-published, fiction stories of my own. So, photography was definitely down my alley; I just gravitated towards it. Why did I pursue an artistic career? I believe that art is the ultimate way to express one’s feelings. I also love to create, and photography makes it very easy. I can’t describe the feeling I get every time I see something that I had in my head translated into real life. Art, in general, for me is passion and it makes me feel successful and fulfilled. I think that if you’re passionate enough about something you just do it, obstacles aside. I didn’t choose photography, photography chose me. Read more>>

Siren | Singer Songwriter

We are all born with the ability to create and a desire to do so. As a child, I viewed myself as an up-and-coming singer destined for greatness. Over time, however, life guided me further and further away from my purpose. In 2017, I accepted that singing is what really brings me true happiness. It’s funny to think that I knew my purpose all along, yet I still took so much time trying to discover another one. Music moves us, connects us, and makes us feel seen. I wanted to share my voice and through this my true self with others. Art is magical, as it explores our infinite ability to create something new or to repurpose something that already existed. It is where I feel truly free, and it drives me to continue giving myself to this art every day. Read more>>

Reginald Dunlap | Interior Designer

Interior design was not on my radar until I went to college. Being from a small town in Texas, near Dallas, I wasn’t aware that interior design was a profitable profession. During my freshmen year in the dorms at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, I had the opportunity to see many of my classmates arriving with designers to decorate their dorms rooms. Meanwhile, I was using my childhood bedding and had nothing for the walls to even consider, let alone drapery or a coordinating color palette. This peaked my attention, but I didn’t address my love of interior design until I was already in the business world and had the opportunity to restructure a failing interior design firm. From this, I decided to dive more into the industry and learn from some amazing mentors. After a few years of this, I went back to school and received my degree in Interior Design. Read more>>

Lauren Kunkel | Singer-Songwriter & Artist

Becoming a musical artist was never the plan–it wasn’t even on my radar until the end of high school. However, looking back now, all the hints were there, and the honest reason I pursued a creative career was because I couldn’t not pursue it. It was the natural choice, the gut feeling that I couldn’t ignore. Growing up, I didn’t come from a musical family. But music was a part of my being that showed itself constantly. For instance, I was famous at my church as the six-year-old who belted psalms loud enough that people across the building could pick me out. It wasn’t until performing for the first time in the sixth grade talent show that I fell in love with being on stage and decided to start taking voice and piano lessons. Still, this was only a hobby. While I liked music, I was just as much of a STEAM whiz, fascinated by chemistry, physics, and calculus, and I valued the technical side of my brain as much as the artistic. Read more>>

Sayuri Tsukahara | Boho Bela Etsy Shop Owner

Boho Bela comes from a very raw and experimental place. At that time, I was a mother of two girls, loving every second I spent at home raising them but I also had a need to create something that could provide for the family and allow me to keep that valuable time at home. One day the idea just comes to mind, after trying to find a Bow Holder I liked to hang all the bows we had all around the house, I decided I was going to make one of my own. After making it and a few friends liking it and asking me to make one for them, the Etsy Shop for Boho Bela opens its doors in 2018. Since little, I have always liked to create things, from poetry to drawings, I love to do crafts and artsy things. I find it a great method to relax and distract myself. If people could describe me with one word, they would probably say “creative”, I have never been good at sports or math or many other things for that matter, but I do think Im good at creating things. Having the opportunity to follow a career that allows me to express this creativity from the comfort of my home and the close company of my family is just a blessing I count twice everyday. Read more>>

Christopher Peña | Freelance Artist

The reason why I decided to pursue an artistic career was because I knew It would be the right choice for me. One of my earliest memories was picking up a pencil and drawing on any piece of paper I could find, as well as memorizing how to draw my favorite cartoon characters from TV and film. It eventually led me to attend an art college to better hone in on, and improve, my artistic skills. Attending art school ended up being one of the best decisions of my life. It also set up the trajectory on the kind of art career I really want to work in. Even though my “dream job” hasn’t happened yet, the current COVID situation hasn’t put the brakes on my dreams and aspirations. If anything, I am more determined and resilient than ever before and I know I am on my way to my next adventure. Read more>>

Girain Andrews-Davis | Artist

As cliche as it sounds, I have been drawing since I was little. It’s something that has always followed me no matter what. Whenever I thought of career choices for the future, being an artist was the only thing that ever crossed my mind. I love how flexible being an artist is, as there isn’t one set way to get there. Fortunately for me art is a career path that doesn’t require a degree, which is great as I really could care less for the unnecessary courses one has to take to get to where they want to go. Read more>>

Aaron Abelto | Film Director

Did you ever think you were destined for something special? Would you love to compete for an Oscar? Well for me it was pursuing a career as a creative. I have always been attracted to the arts. As a child I would always use my imagination and bring them to life. For instance I would pretend that I was Indiana Jones and had to save the world from E.T. I would act out all the different scenarios and make up different endings. That in turn is what drew me to becoming an actor. As an actor I had such a creative imagination, it helped me become better at my craft because I was able to become the character of whomever I was playing. One instance was in the Amazon movie “I Before Thee”, I had to channel my inner self to play a character that was depressed because of his torrid past. This then led me to become director. As a director, I was able to use all of my experiences to further my career. Read more>>

Anna Gibson | Fine Artist

Growing up I always enjoyed drawing and crafting at every chance, so it was a natural progression of interest throughout my primary to tertiary school experience. As I learnt more about the concepts and history surrounding art, I became more compelled to present my thoughts and ideas based on my own experiences and perspectives. Read more>>

Brigitte Schambon-Kiser | Photographer, Designer, Florist in The Making

I decided to pursue an artistic & creative career because I never saw myself or was actually interested in doing anything outside of the arts. I grew up painting with watercolor, taking pictures and videos, staring at flowers, styling my family members, doing my friends make-up, and re-arranging or painting my bedroom since childhood to name a few… So being creative has always been natural for me. How could one live without imagination or not be present with their senses and creativity? I will never know, lol! So having an artistic career means everything to me and I am so thankful for this gift God has blessed me with and all the opportunities that have come my way 🙂. Read more>>

Mabel Rodriguez | Footwear Designer & Craft Maker

I don’t think I chose to go into a creative career. Being creative is just something you’re born with and choose you. When I was 3 years old, I had fashion shows with my dolls and stuffed animals. As I grew older, I always knew I wanted to be in the fashion industry somehow. I grew up watching my grandmother sew couture dresses from scratch without ever having a formal education. I lived and breathed fashion, creativity, crafting. When I went to college, for a brief moment, I thought I could be a child psychologist (lol!). I was good at it and I fell into the self doubts and other people’s voices in my head telling me I’d never make enough money in a creative field. I tried for one semester and quickly realized that you can’t force a creative person to do something they don’t love, just like you can’t teach someone to be creative, they just are! So I go my degree in fashion and somehow ended up as a footwear designer, which I absolutely love. Read more>>

Angie Guppy | Model, Blogger and Makeup Artist

I have always been passionate about the arts. Expressing myself creatively has been an outlet for me, so sharing it and making a career out of it only makes it more enjoyable for me now. Read more>>

Cleo J’Adore | Singer, Songwriter, & Rapper

I pursued an artistic career because it is where I am most fulfilled. Creating art is a powerful form of expression. I discovered how much change I can affect with my voice and have been cultivating a brand derived from that fact alone. Read more>>

Its TKO | Rapper,Singer/Songwriter and Father

Artistry and creativity to me are the purest form of self expression.I feel that expressing your creativity and artistry helps you to peel back the veil that we wear when dealing with societal constraints, emotional issues, etc. The best part is that you get to be YOU. Good, bad , or indifferent So long story long that’s why I chose to pursue an artistic/creative career. Read more>>

Carolina Sardi | Artist, Metal Sculptor

I always say that being an artist is something that you don’t choose, being an artist is a career that choses you. I will not be happy doing anything else. I studied art since I was a child and I couldn’t envision myself doing anything else. Read more>>