We had the good fortune of connecting with Maddie Parks and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Maddie, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I knew from a very young age that I was a very artsy and loved to express that. I was always interested in beauty, but also into creating and drawing/painting things! For the longest time, I wanted to be a teacher. I thought it would be so awesome to be able to help and teach young children. In middle school, that changed for me. I knew I wanted to be a cosmetologist, because I could have artistic freedom to create different hair styles, colors and also help people feel their best.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Being a hairdresser is one of the greatest things I’ve ever done for myself. I get to get up in the morning, go to work and create all day long. It was not the easiest journey to get to where I am today, but I am so proud of myself for where I am! There’s lots of challenges of trial and error, and cutting a straight line is way harder than you think! However, you have to keep your mind open, remain teachable and get up to try again. I’ve had amazing people to teach me in my career and I give all of them props for believing in me and helping me be the best I strive to be. I love what I do so much, and I want people to always feel welcomed, beautiful and comfortable when they sit in my chair!

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
There are so many cool spots to hit up in the city! I think L5P is a great place to experience, you can find some great food spots and some neat stores to go shopping at. Ponce City Market and the Beltline is a fun place for shopping and photo ops! It’s basic, but the Skyview Ferris Wheel is awesome at night and has a great view of the city.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would love to dedicate my first shoutout to the first hair mentor I ever had, Liza Goodwin. She gave me my first job at her salon, The Wild Orchid, at the age of 17. To this day, I still work there (now for her daughter) and am now a hairdresser! I started out as her assistant helping her to shampoo and blow dry her clients. It was amazing to get such great hands-on experience at such a young age-I was still in high school! I never thought I would be diving head first into my career that way. I’m so grateful for the opportunity she gave me. Once I graduated, I attended the Toni & Guy Hairdressing Academy in Atlanta. While there, I learned so many awesome techniques and met so many people that I became very close friends with! One of my instructors, Moe, really inspired me to be the best colorist I can be and made me realize my passion for it. She was always there to lend a hand when needed and gave great color advice from her own experiences. I definitely have to give lots of credit to her! She taught me almost everything I know about color, especially the importance of knowing the color wheel like the back of my hand. I feel that my parents, grandparents and boyfriend also all deserve a shoutout for always having so much faith in me for following my dreams and all the love they continue to shower me with. I have a great support system without a doubt.

Instagram: @madisennichollehair