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.

Jessica de Oliveira | Photographer

I was 15 years old the first time I picked up a DSLR camera and I instantly fell in love. I took pictures of any and everything. I was in photography class in high school and shot on my schools yearbook. I entered my photos in contests and even won a few. I would take friends out on adventures for fun photo shoots regularly and even had the chance to shoot a few small weddings. I charged $150. To everyone. Literally. I think I charged like $300 for the wedding – yikes. I also took a black and white film class at Palm Beach State and even learned how to develop my own film. It was incredible- I lived In the dark room that semester! Read more>>

Tyler Boivin | Writer

Pursuing a creative career has never felt like a choice for me. I was born a creative and there is no escaping that reality. There was a time when I tried other paths and did not focus on writing for long periods of time, but it would always creep back up on me. There would be an urge – or a daring line that popped into my head as I watched a person saunter past me on the sidewalk – and I wouldn’t be able to ignore it’s gravity. I would end up writing, no matter what. I finally decided to quit ignoring my calling; I jumped straight in and let my passion consume me. Read more>>

Elisa Lopez | Photographer & Storyteller

Growing up, I never considered myself particularly artistic. Whatever I thought that word meant at the time. I grew up in a family of lawyers and business people; Quite honestly, I never thought of pursuing art as a career until much later in life. However, what I realized as I got older is that my parents were constantly exposing me to multiple mediums of art. Both film and music in particular were an integral part of my childhood, and continue to be very important to me today. Specifically, my dad is someone who has a great admiration for the arts, and I think that appreciation and awe definitely rubbed off on me. Read more>>

Juancho Rodriguez | Filmmaker & Actor

I do not ever remember a time when I was not dreaming about working in a creative field, especially in entertainment. Ever since I was very little I was completely taken by the allure of the performance arts and how artistic expression is feeding and restorative to the soul. What continues to intrigue me most, and what I continue workshopping in all of my current projects in development, is the power of story. Few people outside of the creative business might know this, but we as human beings are so attuned to the art of storytelling, and that is what drives me to continue creating in any capacity. Read more>>

Evian Joseph | Fashion Influencer and Teacher

I chose a creative career because being creative is apart of my purpose. It is the most, I feel, natural flow of my life. Being creative is a gift and I dare not waste it. I feel to be truly happy In this experience we have to fully operate in our gifts and the closer I get to be authentically me I realize there is no other path for me. Being creative fuels my desire to be a better me and hone my craft I’m the process. Read more>>