We had the good fortune of connecting with Stevey Canales-Blackmon and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Stevey, why did you pursue a creative career?
It’s funny. When I tell people I graduated school for Surgical Technology and left it behind for baking, they think it’s such a wild jump. But I think, as people get to know me, they realize that a creative field was where I was always meant to be.
I definitely think that being detail oriented is something I carried over from Surgical Tech to my dessert business. But I feel like maybe that’s where the similarities stop. Unless, of course, you take into consideration all the dirty dishes/instruments that are left over after the work is done. That’s also the same.
However, I never felt creatively free in that field. I always felt like I could express my creativity in ways that could benefit my community and those around me. I wanted to make people happy with sweets that leave good memories.
I think that making the jump of switching to an artistic career was finally allowing myself to be me. It felt overdue. And now, I can really appreciate the journey I took to get here.
What should our readers know about your business?
Beary Boxes was created during the pandemic, when I was graduating college, and had just gotten married a few days before. So playing it safe was never something I thought of. Opening a business is scary and unpredictable, but it is also a representation of ourselves.
Beary Boxes is the kind of business I want to go to every day and order something from. It’s the result of daydreams and hardwork. It is unique in the way that every person is unique; it has a different story, personality, and part to play in our community. I created Beary Boxes regardless of what the outcome might be because I knew there was a place for it here, where it would make people happy.
Even though making something for others to see is extremely intimidating, life is too short not to allow your work to be seen. It can make a difference, even if that just means allowing yourself to do something self indulgent. Beary Boxes is that, for me.
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.
First stop: milk tea. Even though every city has their own boba shop, I like to think Tucson has the best. Not only is it great tea, but the memories you can create at these warm, inviting, little shops are incredible. I had my first date with my future husband at Bing’s! And we’re also regulars at Ni Hao Tea. We even had a Beary Boxes popup there!
A must visit is downtown where you can get great ice cream from Hub, the best gifts from El Be, and some yummy pho from Miss Saigon.
And of course we would have to make a stop at The Loft Cinema. I have these free passes I won (from a Moulin Rouge costume contest held there) that I haven’t been able to use for years. They play all the great stuff, from cult classics to indie darlings. And that popcorn! Oooh yes.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My mother, Anita, taught me how to bake when I was very young. I don’t remember when she originally taught me, but I remember the majority of her teaching was when I was in high school. She took me along to her cake decorating classes and helped me make cake pops for school fundraising. I didn’t appreciate it fully at the time, but now I’m more grateful than ever. I didn’t just get the technique of baking from her (or the perfectionist mentality), but also the drive to do better. To make people happy with your treats, to make lasting memories for them.
My husband, Alex, is the love of my life and soulmate I had always been searching for. He pushed me to find the best parts of myself, and supported me every step of the way in creating Beary Boxes. He taught me to trust in myself more, and shows me that I can do great things. He’s at every popup and every delivery. But he’s also there on every bad day, and every tough hurdle. Alex is every bit responsible for Beary Boxes’ growth as I am, and I will always love him more everyday because of the support he gives me.
He also taste tests all the new treats. Even the bad ones.
Official Photo AZ