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.

Scarlett Santamaria | Founder and Creative Director

Because I know that this is what I was born to do! I have been involved in entertainment, music, dance, and the arts my whole life. I couldn’t imagine doing anything else that wasn’t in the creative field. It’s what makes me feel the most passionate and alive. From performing in crazy costumes at music festivals to editing short videos for my YouTube channel. I’m the happiest when I have multiple outlets to express my creativity and provide unforgettable experiences for my audience. Read more>>

Aaron David Roberts | President, Rising Tides Creative (Line 1) Producer, Director, Writer (Line 2)

For as long as I can remember knowing about what an ‘office job’ or ‘day job’ was, I knew that it was not something that would fulfill when I was an adult. During my kindergarten graduation I declared I was going to be a baseball player. Then somewhere in high school I was determined to be a musician. Then a director. Then back to a musician. And now, I run a full service creative media agency and do everything from write, direct, produce, edit, graphic design and yes; still play music when I find the time. Read more>>

Carly Plemons | Writer & Editor

Even as a kid I was a very creative individual. I’ve always felt a little out of place seeing people so sure of what they wanted to pursue, because I’ve always loved so many aspects included in the umbrella of the creative fields. I think that I have come to terms the fact that I am a multifaceted creative and setting on a single outlet just doesn’t do it for me. I’ve found that I am my happiest and produce my best work when I am given the creative freedom to do so. I am so grateful to work with brands that have that trust to let you do your thing and then get to see such a beautiful results. Read more>>

Nikky T | Singer, Songwriter & Dancer

The biggest takeaway I have ever learned in life is to “love what you do.” The one thing that sets me apart from others is my passion – it drives me forward every single day. To me, passion is like a burning candle that never dims nor burns out, it stays lit purely for the satisfaction of its lifespan. With that being said, I chose my career as a creative in music because I love being surrounded by my passion. I love waking up with lyrics in my head, a melody on my tongue, and a heart beating of joy. Read more>>

Kara Adams | Photographer and Nonprofit Professional

The short answer to this question was that when I was in high school I did not find much joy in any of the my courses until I started taking english courses that challenged me and photography courses that helped me utilize the creative energy that I had but had very few outlets to use it. The long answer to this question includes that fact but also showcases the difficulty of art school, the struggles that many artists face when trying to figure out what to do with their career and their passion. Read more>>

Carla Steele | Artist

Because I am passionate about creating weird and fun images. It’s like a never ending quest to make sense of chaos, a challenge you can’t retire from. It’s fun! Read more>>

Leel Michelle | Artist, Designer, & Entreprenuer

Pursuing an Artistic career was always intentional. To an Artist creating is much like needing food to nourish or oxygen to breath; it is a neccesity. People have different gifts and mine is to see life through a different set of lenses and create to inspire joy and beauty. I am also gifted with ambition which allows me to turn my love of creating into different business opportunities to fund my lifestyle and eventually become a philanthropist to inspire others to live their dreams. Read more>>

Jess Wang | DJ/Producer

Funny thing is, none of my family members are in any sort of artistic or creative career. I got really interested in music or art because I used it as a gateway of my emotions and coping mechanism to deal with negativities in Undergrad. It will lead me to a place where I can forget about all the problems and immerse in a spiritual environment, just spacing out and enjoying the moment. That is also the kind of goal I wanna achieve when creating music, I want to bring people positivities that help them to deal with hard things in life, just like what music did to me. If it can resonate with listeners, it is good music and I want to be able to do that. Read more>>

Paula Hathaway | Tattooer and small business owner

I knew at a very young age that I would never be happy working a normal 9-5 job and I really wanted to do something with my artistic abilities. Being able to create is so freeing. Read more>>

Alyssa Zabala | Marketing Agency Owner, Musician, Yoga Instructor

I pursued an artistic and creative career because I believe that infusing passion into your work can make such a big impact on the world. One of my favorite quotes “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” Art, creativity, purpose, and passion are what makes me come alive. Whether it’s a song, a design, or a marketing campaign I’m working on—my purpose is to help others feel that spark of life and light, which in turn allows us all to make a bigger impact on the world. Read more>>

Kristina Ponomarenko | Fine Artist

I don’t think I decided to become an artist. It kind of just happened as life happened. Ever since I was young I’ve always enjoyed art, drawing and creating things. I never thought I’d be able to sell anything. When I started showing my paintings to my friends, they were asking if they could buy it. Inspired by people loving what I do, little by little art took over my life. Now it’s a full time job. I enjoy creating things and always have and always will. It is just part of me, who I am. If I could not Create art, I do not know what life would be like for me. Read more>>