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

Hi Anika, what role has risk played in your life or career?
To me, risk is about taking chances in order to fulfill a dream. I went to school for Finance, and always knew a business degree would get me far, regardless of what specific industry I wanted to pursue. Growing up in the Bay Area, tech was always a natural path to take and it was easy to tell myself that finance in the tech world was a “safe” place to start. And it was, but I quickly realized there was something missing. Something creative, something that helped me express what makes me, me. I started to think of ways to feed that creative hunger, what was it that truly challenged that other side of my brain. It was Interior Design. Finding the beauty in the little things, whether it is through interiors, styling, or creating spaces that reflect a feel good moment. But how was I going to gain any real experience with a background in Finance? In the last few years, I have taken several risks to follow a passion turned potential career path in design. I decided I needed to start spending more time developing relationships in the design field, creating a platform via Instagram to truly understand what it means to be in this creative space. After a year of dabbling in design, photography, and other creative endeavors , I found myself craving even more tangible experience. The biggest risk of them all, a design internship, alongside by demanding current job, to really give myself that true understanding of what it means to be a stylist or a designer. It has been tough, but it is has been the most rewarding risk I have taken in my life. I have learned so much and I have really been able to immerse myself in a whole new industry I never imagined I could be a part of. As time goes on, I hope to continue to explore design, and fully take on a career in this space.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Pursuing a career path in interior design has taught me a whole lot about the creative world. It has challenged me to think on my feet and to be better at working with uncertainty. You learn a breadth of skills from client-facing expertise, to the attention of detail that goes into every project. I don’t think my story is unique. I think a lot of people feel “stuck” in a career they set out to pursue after college because it was the job that society told them was the best fit. I think where my story shifts, and can help someone in a similar place, is where I took the leap of faith to risk what I know, for something I didn’t. The biggest challenge is convincing yourself to make that jump — connect with people in the field, work for free, explore opportunities in your community that open up those doors for you. It all starts with a hobby that fills you up, that you then realize can be turned into a something more. I think what sets me apart is my heart and soul for what I do. Because I had to push myself to break into this industry, I don’t take any creative endeavor for granted. Every design or styling project I embark on, I put myself in a client’s shoes, as if it were my home, and whole-heartedly put everything I have into it.

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.
I would take you to wine country! Just an hour north of San Francisco, we would drive up to Sonoma, spend a week just wine tasting and enjoying the beautiful vineyard landscapes. I would start with dropping our bags off at MacArthur Place Hotel, and then head to some of my favorite wineries. In no particular order, on no particular day, we’d stop at Scribe, Gundlach Bundschu, Flowers, and Reeve. All these wineries have a special place in my heart. Their hospitality, views, and of course wines are all amazing. For places to eat, we would stop at Girl and the Fig, Valley Bar + Bottle, Bravas Tapas, or Barndiva. Everything about wine country is so magical. You could hang for hours in the Sonoma or Healdsburg squares, wine and dine, check out some of the amazing spas in the area, or simply relax among the vines with a book and glass in hand.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’d love to dedicate this shoutout to the designer who took a chance on me, Katie Monkhouse. She is such a wonderful mentor. It has been such an amazing experience being able to work alongside her and her team, to learn and absorb everything and anything in the design world. Also would like to thank all the small and big designers I have been able to connect with these last few years. Each and every one has provided some inspiration and influence on my style and drive to be a part of the creative space.

Instagram: @theeclecticdiary

Image Credits
Anika Murthy

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.