How do you know when you should keep going versus when it makes sense to cut your losses and try something new? It’s a difficult decision most entrepreneurs and creatives have faced along their journey and so we asked some brilliant folks from the community to share their thoughts.

Ashley Matelski | Artist

There has been many times throughout my life where I have questioned my decision, wondered if I should give up or change directions, wondered if I was doing what was right for me. I have never felt that way with my artwork. It has always been clear to me that art is a part of who I am. I often turn to art when trying to “find myself”, only to learn that I am becoming more myself every time I pick up a brush. This love for what I do, what I enjoy doing, is what has kept me going. Like most people, I have dreamt for so long of being able to support myself with what I am passionate about. Read more>>

Logan Greene | Executive Director, Groundworks

Groundworks was in an interesting position at the dawn of COVID and lockdowns in Tucson back in March. We are a relatively new nonprofit and we had some good momentum in acquiring a facility within the first year of operation. The community around us was excited about the potential of the type of arts programming that we were going to provide and everything was on track for a grand opening in April. But, when we were forced to cancel everything, we ended up in a bit of a pickle as to whether or not to continue the organization at all considering our ENTIRE business model was upended. Read more>>

AC Rigz | Singer/Songwriter

You know to keep going when there is passion remaining. If the passion is gone, its time to find something else to be passionate about but you never give up. Read more>>

Brittany Lorraine | Photographer

Several times over the past couple years, I have allowed the thought of leaving photography behind, creep in. Sometimes I lose motivation, or even feel inadequate compared to other photographers I’ve seen online. What keeps me going, is knowing that being behind the camera truly makes me happy. I have even stopped during a photoshoot (like when the model is changing or when we are waiting on a prop) to just look around and think to myself, “I’m at work right now. This is actually my job.” I couldn’t be happier. If what you are doing every day makes you happy, then that is something you can never give up. Read more>>

Marco Arviso | Jewelry Designer

Sometimes I ask myself this every few months. And Ive learned through the years that in making any kind of choice I always go back to something ive heard and followed. “You have to know what you stand for.” So I sat down one day and wrote all my “core Values”. Some are: Treat people how you would want to be treated. Sharing our Native Traditions and Teachings Honoring our Mother Earth Ending Sexism, Homophobia and Transphobia Awareness of T’e’e’i (Poverty) Working to Promote and Empower other Native Businesses among others. And I look at this list and think, well if I am living by my core values and not compromising myself, then I am living My American Dream. so the choice, any choice becomes easier to make. Read more>>

Mary Bruns | Fine Artist in Oil Painting

You never know when to keep going or to just give up. My realism is a newer concept in realism and I am simply going to stick with it. Throughout history, money has never been the pivotal choice of quitting or continuing. It is something deep within that spurs you on. I grew up in an isolated rural community with only one other person in my grade. Everyone was pretty much on the same economic level. So I never really thought too much about how much I was going to have to make. The art just came naturally like a dream. So I stay the course. Read more>>