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.

Paris Lovette | Photographer

Being a photographer is actually my second job; I’m a Science teacher full-time, which is a lot of creativity in itself! I’ve always had a camera but did not take it seriously until the pandemic began and my full-time job was halted. I picked up the camera again and thought seriously about how I could learn how to use my camera. I adore human emotions and interactions and strive to capture that whether it’s weddings, families, school children, pets, etc. Read more>>

Ariana Dority | Profesional Makeup Artist

I’ve always been such a girly girl. I’m the oldest and only girl of all my siblings and I always felt good trying different looks on myself whether it be hairstyles, nails, or makeup. Of all the things I dabbled in, makeup just stuck with me the most. I fell in love with the process and being able to create and transform myself with different makeup looks. I used to spend my time at night trying crazy and colorful looks on myself and somewhere along the line, I got comfortable enough to post the finished results online. Read more>>

Keedra Keeley | Personal Chef and Caterer

I didn’t pursue an artistic or creative career, it pursued me. In college, I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I started about 4 or 5 majors, between nursing and computer science, but never finished any of them. What I did know though, was that I loved to eat, cook, and invite my friends over to eat what I cooked. So when I was shuffling through a bunch of different majors, one of my homegirls suggested I try Hotel and Restaurant Management, and that’s what I did. Once I got in the major, I found out I could go around the corner to the community college, enroll in their Culinary Arts program, and receive credit for it toward my major. Read more>>

Diego Pacheco | Makeup Artist

I’ve always been artistically inclined, as I grew up in a creative family with an Artist Mother and Architect Father. I was exposed to the Art World at a very young age. I found my passion and creativity over the years and learned to develop my skill through courses and practice. When I was attending University for Visual Arts I became interested in Body Painting and Makeup because my good friend was an up and coming Makeup Artist at the time. Read more>>

Kenjah | Singer, Songwriter & Actress

I pursued an artistic career in the entertainment industry because from a young age, the arts excited me. The more I was influenced by famous amazing artists and creators like Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Anita Baker, Brandy, Will Smith, Jamie Fox and many others, the more I grew a strong passion for singing, story-telling and creating art to inspire and entertain. I fell in love with the process and results of externalizing my creative ideas. Over time I realized that if I can’t express myself creatively everyday, I wasn’t living a fulfilling life. Knowing that sharing my talents with the world inspires and entertains others makes me feel like I’m truly living. Read more>>

Deanna Beckett | Nail Technician

I chose to pursue an artistic and creative career because its it really who I am, artistic and creative. The beauty of being a nail tech is that it has both an artistic and creative career. Ever since I was a little girl, I have loved anything artistic. Art has always been my life, and I see it everywhere. So, by becoming a nail technician, I can explore both my creative and artistic sides. From nail art to just a simple nail color, you can achieve so much art. I consider my client’s nails as my mini blank canvas. Hey, I always believed in my past life; Read more>>

Haley Johnson | Stylist

Pursuing a more creative career was not my first option. I thought of becoming a psychiatrist, which I still feel like I am in my profession. I wanted to be able to express myself but, also make people feel wonderful about themselves at the same time. Read more>>

Stephanie Rose | Senior Brand Specialist & Solutionary

Performing & the creative arts have always been apart of who I am. As a child growing up in foster homes, I always turned to music, singing, dancing, drawing and acting to kind of escape from my harsh reality. By the time I became an adult, I interned for a multi-media company where I was surrounded around creatives developing and telling the stories of other creatives through visual arts. At that point, I realized that I had a gift of telling stories through images & videos while enhancing one’s brand appearance. Read more>>