We asked some of the city’s rising stars to reflect on what made a difference in their journey. We asked them to tell us about what they think the most important factor has been behind their success.

Julie Bonner | Artist

There are a few habits that have helped me succeed: Off the Computer: I am a big believer in sketching things out from pencil to paper first. Jumping on the computer first limits you and you can easily get distracted. Grab a sketchbook and start drawing….this is how many of my concepts came to fruition. Planning and Time Management: Once I sketched out my idea to create the Desert Dwellers Flash Cards, I came up with a plan. Each day during my son’s naptime I would paint one of the animals. I worked my way alphabetically through the 26 of them. Read more>>

Danny Neumann | Action Figure Anthropologist

When it comes to staying productive, especially with creative projects that just invite procrastination, I find making lists is essential. My art involves sequential storytelling, so getting outlines hammered out in my notebook is as big a part of the creative process as is staging the photos. Those outlines are accompanied by lists of items I’ll need in order to create the scene. With a clear list of necessary props I can then go about sourcing or creating those items in a structured and organized way. Always having current list of things to accomplish for a specific project (or projects themselves) keeps me from having too much of that downtime where I’m just hamstrung by insecurity or lack of ideas. Read more>>

Cheryl Sosnowski | Metaphysical Reverend, Meditation teacher, Artist & Sound Healer

The ONE habit that I know has helped me succeed is the habit of awareness – mindfulness. Having practiced mindfulness for many years now, it has become a way I AM in the world instead of something I practice…most of the time! In staying in the present moment, I can make choices in the moment that lead me toward my goals. Most people think that it’s the big choices that have the greatest impact on their lives, but really it’s the hundreds of small choices you make when you are all alone with no one watching you that have the greatest impact on your life – your health, your mental wellbeing, your integrity, and definitely your business. Staying present has cultivated the wise use of time and the ability to respond instead of re-act out of mindless, bad habits. Read more>>

Ashley Wise | Photographer

A couple of habits that have helped me succeed so far include not comparing myself to other photographers and writing out goals that I have for myself each season. When it comes to the photography world, comparison is our own enemy and is what causes many great setbacks. I believe that everyone creates differently and that supporting one another and building eachother up is the only way we can succeed. When a new season arrives, I like to write out a list of goals that I try to achieve. Some may include posting on my social media more often or spending more time shooting senior sessions in place of some family session. I have found that this habit allows me to have balance in my work flow. Read more>>

Kayla Jackson | Photographer & Videographer

The biggest habit that has helped me succeed is being consistent in my process. I go into every creative idea or concept with the same mindset. I am continuously pushing myself beyond my comfort zone and challenging myself, setting goals to expand my expertise. Another important habit that I have is maintaining positive energy. I do a lot of self-reflection and I am mindful of the energies around me; it is important for me to be surrounded by positivity. Read more>>

Eric Shilling | Graphic Designer | Photographer | Videographer | Sound Designer | Athlete

There are a few habits I feel that I possess that have helped me succeed in my career/life thus far, and those would be relentlessness, consistency, loyalty, respect, passion, willingness to learn & understand others, maintaining a positive mindset, and ultimately, just believing in myself, my craft, and my creative ability first and foremost. Read more>>

Randy O’Brien | Ceramic Artist

I love being in my pottery studio. My goal early in my career was not so much as to make a living as a potter, but to be able to spend every possible hour in my pottery studio. The first couple decades I worked 12-16 hours a day. I barely made enough to survive, but I was able to spend all my time working in clay. There were numerous setbacks throughout the years, but I did not give myself an alternative to being a potter. That and luck. Read more>>