We had the good fortune of connecting with Alexis Tia Diller and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Alexis Tia, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
There are a few reasons that I pursue an artistic and creative career. I believe that within me is a strong pull to express myself through sharing music and photography — it’s always been this way since I was little. I didn’t think it was something I could viably do as a career when I was younger, however, I knew what I was doing was having a positive impact on others. There was a slow, constant pull in the creative direction as I pursued my master’s degree and worked as a Marketing Manager for 5 years. It was like this creative sleeper part of me that was not truly being fulfilled realized everything else was taking energy away. When I parted from my 9 to 5 job, not only was I able to expand my thinking but also possibilities and opportunities opened up proving that I could make a living putting out my creativity while also helping others share their vision as well. Put simply, I love it, it’s fun, I thrive when I do it, and I help others feel better, ease their pains, and express themselves.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m a singer-songwriter and lifestyle and product photographer. As an independent singer-songwriter known for a unique contemporary voice and folky, funky, melodious slap-style acoustic and electric guitar sounds, I put my distinctive style and unconventional vocal phrasing to good use in the studio and playing at local spots in San Diego. If you enjoy listening to artists such as John Mayer, Ani DiFranco, Jason Mraz, and Norah Jones, chances are you’d vibe with my sound too. I’m part owner of a product photography company called Pro Pix Studios that specializes in white background and lifestyle product photography for Amazon, small businesses, and multiple e-commerce platforms. On the opposite side of the coin, my personal photography work is greatly influenced by film, black and white, candids, double exposures, and self-portraits. I think the biggest challenge to going full-time freelance was fear of failure. One of my current challenges is adapting and sourcing new business. When Covid-19 hit this year, I lost all of my paying music gigs, which was a decent drop in income. However, I’ve been able to lean on more product photography and marketing work as more people flock online for purchasing and staying inside. People describe my work and style as professional, dependable, flexible, resourceful, creative, organized, and just plain “getting it”.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
There’s so much to do in San Diego! If my best friend was visiting for a week, it would probably look something like this: Day 1: Take a ride on the Coaster up to Seaborne Coffee Co. in Oceanside, walk the strip, check out the beach, take the coaster to Solana Beach and check out Cedros Design District, hopefully when the farmers market is happening. Dinner at Ki’s Restaurant in Cardiff. Day 2: Hike around Torrey Pines Glider port and Ho Chi Minh trail. Head to La Jolla for a bite at The Cottage and then explore around La Jolla. Tacos and beer at City Tacos in Pacific Beach. Walk around PB at night. Day 3: Pack a snack and hang out in Balboa Park, head to Little Italy and explore the shops, lunch at RoVino Rotisserie + Wine, head to the waterfront and check out the view, Star of India, Midway, Seaport Village, etc. Day 4: Kayaking in Mission Bay where you can see tons of seals and garibaldi, beers at Mike Hess Brewing in Ocean Beach, check out downtown OB and the pier, grab a bite at Pizza Port Day 5: bike ride ride around Coronado, grabbing to go sandos at the deli, chilling around dog beach to watch the military planes pass overhead and a great view of Cabrillo National Monument. Dinner at Peohe’s. Day 6: Checking out breweries in North Park area like Mike Hess Brewing, Pariah, Tiger!Tiger!, North Park Beer Co., Modern Times, end night checking out night life at Rabbit Hole, Blind Lady Alehouse, and sycamore den Day 7: Check out Belmont park in Mission Beach. Tacos at Tacos El Gordo and Salud in Barrio Logan. Wine at Vin de syrah
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My shoutout is dedicated to my parents who bought me my first guitar and camera and my mom who told me, “Do what makes you happy.” Honorable mentions go to all the friends and family that keep showing up and keep asking me to show up.
Other: Music website: www.alexistiamusic.com
All photos by me with the exception of live music show photo, which was shot by Darci Fontenot.