Artistic and creative careers are among the most rewarding, but they also come with unique challenges. We asked some of the city’s best creatives to tell us why they choose to pursue a creative career.

Tasha Buckner | Hair Artist, Salon Owner & Hair Loss Practitioner

I chose an artistic/creative career because it’s so exciting to see what I imagine in my mind come to life on my clients head. The reaction I get from a clients when they look in the mirror and see the change is so satisfying. I get to enhance their beauty and the smile afterwards is so priceless! Read more>>

GQ $moove | UnAveRich Ent. Artist, Fashion Model & Stylist

I pursued a creative career in music and modeling for the simple fact that It brings me the purest form of happiness. music allows me to release all my emotions in very various ways whether happy or sad. music has always been my main outlet to escape the world and look deep inside myself to find my true essence of who I am. modeling gave a platform to express my self love and confidence in a very organic way along with helping me breakout of my comfort zone. Read more>>

Taylor, Ashley Gutierrez & Martin | Hair and Makeup Artist & Owners

For us, it was kind of a no brainer that we would end up pursing a career based on creativity and expression. As sisters growing up in a family of musicians and writers, our love of artistry was nurtured and we’ve always been encouraged to explore our creative sides. From an early age we both have had a love of creating looks through hair and makeup. The combination of that and the desire to make people feel like the best version of themselves is the reason we feel we were lead into this industry. Read more>>

Emilio Cole Harrington | Singer-Songwriter, Producer & Multi-Instrumentalist

Growing up, you always hear “make sure you do what you love for a living, never settle for less!” so growing up, once I discovered that music was my passion, that quote had always stuck with me. Music is not only my passion but also a therapeutic outage for myself, so why not pursue something you love? Big risk, big rewards, 10% skill, 90% luck. Read more>>

Nancy Correa | Atlanta Family Photographer

In high school I join a Photography Club and learned the basics of photography. However, I didn’t pursue it once I graduated. When I finally decided to become a Dental Assistant, after a couple of years of being gin the dental field, I got bored just not doing anything and the re-sparked interest in photography.I really enjoyed working with a camera again. Photography became a constant in most of my creative projects. I want people to know I’ve have grown and I could do it. I buy my Canon D6 Mark ii. I decided to focus on photography as a career and use my skills to further enhance my work. I can’t imagine not having photography a part of my life, it’s something I eat, breathe and sleep. Read more>>

Josh SAME | Motion Designer, Cinematographer & Director

Finding a way to make a living off of something you’re passionate about is critical to long-term success. Winning takes a lot of late nights and failed ventures. You have to have a well of strength to draw from when the going gets hard and the creative industry provides the versatility and support to do that. As a missionary kid, I grew up seeing my parents invest their time in trying to help others. They gave me the gift of being able to pull my inner strength from making a positive impact on others and that’s something that will always stay with me. I grew up traveling and seeing the disproportionate variety of wealth and poverty within the world. Being involved in some larger than life initiatives set me up to have an appetite for doing things that matter. A creative career encourages self-innovation and expression. Read more>>

Mandy Garcia | Entrepreneur & Artist

From a young age I enjoyed making things and the creativity hasn’t stop. I grew up in a small town and there wasn’t always a lot to do. My mom would always keep my siblings and I occupied by doing craft projects to fill our time after school or during the summers. I always felt that art came so much easier to me than math or science. When I started college, I thought I wanted to be a lawyer and studied criminal justice. I took art classes art for fun and was hooked. I thought art was a better fit for me and planned to be a high school art teacher. After college, I worked as an art teacher but then decided to go to graduate school for Higher Education. While in graduate school I worked as a Curator and loved it. I have changed careers a couple of times, but I always come back to art. Read more>>

Sumhr Giboney | Custom Sign Maker

My full-time career is in sales and operations for a construction company and I wanted to use my free time creating art that allowed me to be colorful and creative. I eventually discovered the creative community in Atlanta and I was excited to do what I love while connecting with other female entrepreneurs in the city. Read more>>

Dusty Mitchell | Filmmaker

It’s the only thing that I’ve really ever gravitated toward. It was the film “Hook” that first really got me interested in movies. I remember seeing it in when I was a kid and being taken away with the imaginative world that was created. I remember thinking how fascinating the story was and how you could take people on a journey having them believe what was presented in frame. Looking back now the film is still impactful because I see it as a story of identity. Peter has to rediscover his identity, who he really is, he must relearn the child like faith that he once had, imagination, he finds his courage, his true self. I didn’t know exactly that film would be where I would end up, but I did latch onto the storytelling aspect at young age. Writing, telling stories, creating characters, drawing comic books, designing, creating in general. Read more>>

Get Taped! | Audition Tapings, Classes & Workshops

We were both born with some sort of artistic tendency. Brooke had the performer gene from day 1, and I (Matt) discovered a talent for drawing as early as kindergarten. Then life tries to teach you to become responsible adults, but we both continued to cultivate our artistic talents. Brooke went to school for drama, and then spent time in New York and Orlando before settling in Atlanta in 2005. I decided to pick up a Masters Degree in Engineering at Georgia Tech, which is what brought me here in 2000. However, after graduation I quickly transitioned to the life of an actor. By the time Brooke and I started dating in 2007, we were both pursuing this craft full time. Then in 2010 when we got married, we started our audition-taping service, Get Taped, which has now grown to a point where we offer classes, workshops, and career counseling. Read more>>

Nathan Brown | Artist & Stage Manager

Because art makes me feel good and I assume it does the same for others. Being involved in the arts means I get to be around it as well as help spread it. Read more>>

A. Shiree | Cosmetologist, CEO & Creative Director

I have always been a creative, free spirit…taking things once/already made and changing them. Reinventing to make it my own, unique rather. I absolutely hated corporate America and definitely wasn’t about that cubicle life. It was draining my spirit and repetitive. I’ve always enjoyed variety and wanted to do something more fulfilling, you know, achieve my own dreams and aspirations; Build my own empire instead of putting blood, sweat and tears into building someone else’s. Then on top of that I’m a mom and need to be flexible. Keeping all of that in mind lead me to current career endeavors. Design and art has always been a positive outlet for me and being a licensed Cosmetologist and running my companies have allowed me to do just that. I am an artist in my own lane with creativity that reaches beyond the stars so you never know what I’m going to come up with next. Read more>>

Stormi Melder | Artist & Teacher

This may sound kind of odd, but having an artistic career was less of a choice and more of something I really needed to do. At first, I made art because— like many artists— it felt like if I did anything else, I would be betraying myself. It’s sort of strange when you say it out loud, but being an artist is who I am and I can’t stop being who I am. As my artistic career went on, I began to realize that as much as I loved the late nights drawing until my hand got sore and the countless hours of living in the worlds I have created in my head, art is so much more than that. It’s beyond *my* vision of who *I* am; it’s a love language that has the potential to connect and support people. Read more>>

Ben Bayani | Cartoonist

I wanted to be a cartoonist because I love telling stories through sequential art. Comic books are a medium that brings my stories and characters to life. This gives me the ability to express my artistic vision through my imagination and creativity. I’d like to show my comics to the world for people to share it with their friends and family. My goal in making comics is to immerse the audience into the world I created with compelling stories and relatable characters. Read more>>