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

Hi Celia, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
I grew up in a rough-neck, dead-end neighborhood located in a small town outside of Seattle. The sound of racing muscle cars was a daily shenanigan and the rivalry between friends pushed us to our limitations. As a teen and young adult, risk taking evolved into an irrational form of invincibility. I was rebellious, angry, and worked against every grain that came my way. Like fingernails on a chalkboard. Charmed, I’m sure. Today, I still get bored easily but I have been tamed by a few hard knocks to the head. I get a rush experiencing the new and unchartered territories in my profession, physically, and culinarily. If invited, enticed, or lured, I will almost assuredly say “yes.” For my 80th birthday, I’m buying back my ’71 Camaro.   

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
The home I grew up in was somewhat of an art museum full of my Dad’s work as an innovator of found objects art. Basically, “found objects” means repurposing other people’s junk and sometimes trash found on the side of the freeway. He was known to pull over if something caught his eye. His paintings, sculptures, ceramics, and furniture spilled out into the yard and made its way into private collections, homes, and public spaces all over the Pacific NW. My Dad’s influence lives on in my expression as a designer and digital artist. I am not afraid to take design risks or present ideas to clients that have never been explored, but hold big returns. Re-branding is about turning ashes to beauty, and a long-term successful brand needs to be unique and target their market. In my younger days as a designer I would pull back and go the direction of the client. Today if I’m met with trepidation, I understand that clients may still need further assurance supported by statistics in overcoming their fear of the new and unexpected.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
If my bestie visited and had never been to San Diego, I would take her to our world-renowned zoo. I can feel confident that the animals are truly cared for and the flora and fauna is one-of-a-kind. Next would be Balboa Park with its stunning architecture and culture-rich museums. And what’s San Diego without the beach and waves? I prefer a relaxed, local hang out and good body-surfing waves such as Wind and Sea, Scripps, and Dog Beach. Off to the desert! The ginormous dueling scorpion and grasshopper sculptures at Galleta Meadows Estate. San Diego has a rich entertainment and stage culture that I love. Any live music in a small venue such as the Belly Up Tavern or Casbah, is great fun. Even if I’ve never heard of the artist, I can pretty much appreciate an artist who is polished in their craft. Food? I like the tucked away places and try to always support small business: • El Puerto Taco Shop in Spring Valley- best California Burritos of all time (that do not exist anywhere else in the U.S.) • Chef China in Casa de Oro- not really authentic, but huge portions and 25 years later, still the best Salt and Pepper Chicken. Ever. • Ono Grinds in North Park- I’m a big Spam Fan • RakiRaki Ramen off Convoy- Vegetarian Miso Ramen • Swami’s La Mesa- hands down, best Acai Bowls …and yes, I could go on.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Steve Briggs was my manager at the San Diego Union-Tribune advertising department. He used to get up on his desk and dance a jig, laughed at himself and us. He kept the work culture happy, eager to please, and appreciative. An inspiration of what leadership should look like. My 2 big sisters. There was a 10 year difference between us growing up, but looking back, I can see how influential they were. A part of the woman’s movement, they became vegetarians, wore men’s Levi’s, and listened to Joni Mitchell. I still love Joni Mitchell, but in typical fashion I “rebelled against the rebellion” and wore makeup, a rabbit fur coat, and tight jeans. Saint Teresa of Calcutta- (Mother Teresa). So many of today’s problems would be solved if we each spent a month volunteering in the slums of Calcutta. Including all the heads of government, Hollywood moneymakers, and media executives.

Website: https://www.straightfiremarketing.com/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/straightfire_dm/
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/celiacreek/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/findyofire/

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