Artists and creatives face innumerable challenges given that their career path often doesn’t come with a playbook, a steady paycheck or any form of safety net. It’s definitely not easy and so we asked a few of the artists and creatives we admire to talk to us about why they chose to pursue an artistic or creative career.

Daniel Cheek | Photographer & Gallerist

Art is important. It is very hard to quantify how it is important and is so easily relegated to mere decoration or self-indulgence. Art appreciation is a long game and seems so unvital in times of hardship. It does not alleviate hunger or sickness, so seems like something we can push away for the short term. What art does though, is teach us about ourselves and our humanity. Art and craft puts on display the things and feelings that make us who we are at this time in history. Art teaches us who we are and what we value. I work as an artist and in the arts field because I am interested in what it means to be human in the world at this time in history. A career in the arts is a frustrating and humbling pursuit, but like most hard paths, an artistic career is life-affirming, intellectually stimulating, joyful, and culturally important. Read more>>

Kevin Antol | Welder/Photographer

I’ve always loved the freedom that’s attributed to art. I’m a welder by trade and a photographer by passion. So, after my 40 hours a week creating art in metal form, I live it up on the weekends by photographing my outdoor adventures. It’s the editing process that I really enjoy. Turning a scene I photographed into how I envisioned it, procuring a feeling with that image is what does it for me. I wouldn’t say I’ve pursued a career out of art or photography, but I’ve definitely been taking more serious the last couple of years. Always working on new techniques, or taking a photo in a different perspective than it’s been seen before. For now, it’s all about having fun and the freedom to create. Read more>>

McKenna Schrimpf | Owner and creative behind Handmade By McKenna

Creativity has always been in my blood! As a child I was always crafting, coloring or creating something. I am an entrepreneur at heart and began my first business around the age of 11 making and selling duct tape wallets. This engrained in me the idea of a future creative career! Creating is something I have always done so turning it into a business and getting to do it everyday is truly one of my biggest passions! Read more>>

Jeanette Fletcher | Pastry chef & cake artist

I pursued a creative career mostly by chance actually, as bizarre as that sounds! I had already completed two hopeless years at a local university, miserably I might add. Every semester wondering when I would feel excited about what I was learning or when I would feel a pull in a certain direction. My current career is pastry, an activity I would say I enjoyed in high school but never something I could dream of making my job. I begged my parents to let me drop out of university to try culinary school. They begrudgingly agreed if I would finish two years strongly. That’s all I needed to hear. I studied hard and when I completed my last semester, my father and I went to check out the Institute of Culinary Education the next month. I was signed up for that September to start my pastry & baking education. 10 months later, with a 2 month externship working for free in a local bakery and my career was off and running. Read more>>

Michelle Pugh | Artist

I’ve always been creative and spent my childhood crocheting clothes for my dolls, making jewelry and painting. During my teens I spent every summer in Laguna Beach, California surrounded by art and artists. My creative career didn’t begin until I was in my forties, when I took a mosaic class. That was the start of becoming an artist for me. It became my therapy during a rough time in my life. Art makes me happy and when I can make others feel something too that’s the best feeling in the world. Read more>>

Mo Van | Artist and Wonderer

When I was a young girl I always loved how creating art made me feel. I would draw, build, create all sorts of things from random materials around the house and our yard. My mother always reminds me to this day that I said, “I want to be an artist when I get older.” So here we are, decades later, and my LOVE for ART has only grown! Throughout my years I have experienced many forms of ART and the ways they can be expressed. For over 2 decades I worked in the Interior Design Field, Construction Sales, and even an Art teacher at a few community centers in the valley! Read more>>

Stells di Rossi | Artist, Musician, Humanitarian and Model

For me music, creativity and art are an important part of life, humanity and society. Being creative be it modeling, composing, painting or even cooking is what makes the spice of life. Artists are the dream weavers, story tellers and dream weavers that connect many walks of life in society. We recreate what feelings look, sound and feel like based on moments of inspiration that we immortalize. Read more>>