Deciding to pursue an artistic or creative career path isn’t for the faint of heart.  Challenges will abound, but so many of the artists we speak with couldn’t be happier with their choice.  So, we asked them about how they made the decision in the first place.

Maddie Cole | Hairstylist

Growing up, I was constantly asked what I wanted to do with my life. Physical therapist, psychiatrist and neonatal nurse were my go-to responses to that question. Above all, I wanted to help people. From a very young age I understood that life is messy, and sometimes it’s really difficult. My dream was to make a living out of the desire to help anyone and everyone that I possibly could. I never in a million years thought that I would be a hairstylist, but yet here I am making a career out of helping people feel beautiful and confident, while having fun simultaneously. Read more>>

cesar galvez | Chef

I’ve always been a day dreamer. I was in my head more times than not and I felt like I had all these great things I wanted to accomplish. The restaurant industry and in particular cooking always drew my attention, but the only money in the industry is in management so I went that route. Well, after a few years I felt burnt out and sometime in my mid 20’s, I decided then that I was going to bet on myself and bring one of these ideas to life. And here we are now. Read more>>

Caleb Reid | Multidisciplinary Creative

The reason why I pursued a creative career is that I love expressing past or current emotions through art. You know I feel that photography is just my main niche, it is so many other parts to me that I haven’t discovered yet! It’s the journey for me! Read more>>

Keyona McCarthy | Recording Artist & Songwriter

Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve had an extremely strong connection to all things ART. Whether it be painting, Dance, acting you name it I’ve practiced at one point in my life. Singing was for sure “my thing.” My great grandmother used ask me to perform for her at the age of three. My mom will still tell me till this day that I’d try to “I’m Going Down” just like Mary J. Blidge. All throughout school I participated in school plays or was a member of the drama club. I was apart of so many talent shows. Anything that allowed me to express how different I was. Read more>>

Tyler McConner | Master Loctician and Natural Hair Specialist

I have been very artistic and creative since birth. I’ll never forget one of my first abstract paintings that my mom framed and placed on my wall. From painting, to writing, singing/rapping, making beats and doing hair were things that came to me naturally growing up. Watching my parents and grandparents go to work everyday, even with great jobs that they enjoyed, I knew that wasn’t a life for me. I knew that if I ever wanted to be happy in life, my career would have to come from my own creations. Read more>>

Manny Voices | Rapper & Voice Over Professional

I have always been a creative person since I was a child. First it was drawing, then it became poetry, then rapping and doing voice overs. I spent a decade without indulging in any of those endeavors as an adult, and the absence of a creative outlet definitely took its toll on me while pursuing a doctoral degree and chasing my other professional aspirations. I realized that I had nothing for myself – everything I was doing was either a) in reference to others or b) chasing a goal I’d set. Nothing was just for pure “fun” or the sake of my own personal joy. So I’d say that I decided to lean into my creative side over the last couple of years because, frankly, it’s my life. It’s what I naturally do and I decided I’d repressed it for far too long. Read more>>

Herok | Fine artist & Illustrator

This question is something I’ve been asking myself recently. Artists frequently ask themselves ‘Why am I making art? Should I really be doing this?’ because it can be a struggle sometimes. To put it simply the process of making art is gratifying and I enjoy connecting with others through my art. Art is how I am able to express my voice and what goes on inside of me. I also really enjoy many different forms of art and constantly surround myself with it. Read more>>

Dannieka Cuttino | Producer, Videographer , Photographer

I decided to pursue an artistic /creative career because I believe that it is my purpose. As an adolescent, I would always use my artistic ability to create something like designing clothes, taking pictures, editing videos and doing DIY’s. While matriculating through college and switching my major from Sports Management to Mass Communication and working in the TV Department, I realized that I could turn my artistic ability as a photographer and turn it into a career. While working as a creative I then realized how many people I inspire and motivate through my work of art and that continues to push me to do what I love. Read more>>

Jade Gibson | Owner of Jade Gibson Realty & Gibby Girl Productions (Realtor, Photographer, Stylist & Soccer Coach)

I didn’t grow up in a traditional home with a traditional lifestyle. I moved around a lot. I lived in very eclectic homes and was exposed to a life that wasn’t exactly considered “normal” As a young girl; I moved out to California to be with my dad. He was a young entrepreneur himself. He was a street kid with very little schooling, but one of the smartest men I have ever met. His work ethic was unlike any I had ever seen. I watched him build amazing things out of nothing and I tagged along for the ride. Read more>>

REAL | Artist & Creative

I decided to pursue an artistic or creative career because through art I am able to express myself, I am able to show people who I truly am, and I’m able to connect with others simply with my different sides of creativity. I make music, I model, and I act; and, each one of these bring out a different artistic side of me. A side that resonates with someone, a side that’s relatable, a side that’s REAL. Read more>>

Angie Danielle | PaintBae • Artist

I’ve been sketching and drawing since I was an adolescent. I also took a couple of art classes In 2014, I painted for the first time when I went to a Sip and Paint facility called Sip n Strokes in Atlanta and I loved it. It was so calming. I started painting at home most nights solo with my wine and the feeling I felt was amazing. Read more>>