We had the good fortune of connecting with Cheyenne Pajardo and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Cheyenne, have you ever found yourself in a spot where you had to decide whether to give up or keep going? How did you make the choice?
I think about this question so often. As an artist, it’s sometimes hard to know if what you’re doing is going to propel you into a career or if it’s just something that you love to do. There are so many factors that play into it–your friends’ and family’s opinions, the influence of social media, critics, etc, but the biggest factor is actually you.
What I’ve found is that while we are the best person for ourselves, we are also the worst. We become our own worst enemy and critic, which often translates to negative talk, criticism, and doubt. We have to learn to get out of our own way and to silence the voices that aren’t championing us toward elevation.
There’s no clear cut answer on how to know whether or not to keep going or to give up. But, I do believe that you have to trust your gut instinct. If something is important to you, if it keeps you up at night because you want to improve it and you’re plotting on how to make it better, if it’s constantly on your brain…chances are it matters, and you’re sitting on something great. You’ll know you need to keep going because it becomes something you focus heavily on–both consciously and subconsciously. The only time you should give up is if you cannot see it from any other point of view or angle and if you’ve gone through every possible door that’s been presented and that you’ve created. The only real thing that is in your way is you.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My art is writing. I’m a 3 time published poet, currently working on a novel and a collection of short stories. I’ve had a love for words and stories since the 2nd grade and I’ve continued exploring that love into the present. Writing for me has always been a way for me to express my creativity in a form others could relate to. It gave me the space to explore my imagination and travel into realms beyond the current one we exist in. I studied English and writing in undergrad–highly encouraged by my professors and mentors to pursue it more seriously. To be honest, it was something that I brushed off and just nodded my head to. I believed in my work, but not how they did. I truly never imagined publishing my work and having it in the public for all to see. But, I’m glad that I eventually listened to them and got it out there! Through my poetry collections, I’ve been able to connect with other artists and learn from them, while also being able to connect with an audience I didn’t know existed. It’s been an amazing journey seeing my book in people’s hands and hearing about my words resonating with them. I look forward to sharing and creating stories with characters that people can relate to, as well!
Aside from writing, I’m also a bit of an entertainer. I’m a professional dancer and a content creator. I share weekly videos on YouTube where I learn new skills from people, share my reviews on clothes, talk about Mental Health, and much, much more! I used to YouTube when I was younger…way back when YouTube was just starting and it wasn’t as big. It’s been really fun getting back into it and creating videos for people to have a good time. My favorite part about YouTubing is being able to be myself and to display that for people who don’t know me personally. I’m such a goofy person who loves love and connecting with humans. While I’m not a huge YouTuber (yet!) I am loving the journey. I would say the biggest challenge with being a creative in this realm is staying original, true to yourself, and not selling yourself short. Trends are trends, but they’re ever changing. It’s so important to know who you are as a person and to keep that energy. Don’t change because it gets you more views and likes–stay you and create the things that you love!
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
TACO. TRUCKS. First and foremost, we have to visit Taco Trucks! My favorite taco truck is located on Sepulveda Blvd, but there are many, many, many more worth trying.
Our next stop would obviously be to a donut shop…you don’t know donuts until you’ve had one in LA! A favorite class of mine is Astro Doughnuts and Fried Chicken, but I also love Yum Yum Donuts and Randy’s.
After all the eating, it’s time for us to visit some fun places. This is what’s on the agenda:
1. Iguana Vintage Clothing
2. Shops on Melrose
3. Melrose Trading Post
4. Japanese Garden
5. Zuma Beach
7. The Getty
8. Griffith Observatory
9. Santa Monica Pier
10. Dance classes at Edge
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would have to shoutout my siblings. As a middle child, I have the advantage of seeing what things work and don’t work from the older and being able to better those things to help the younger. My siblings are two of the most inspiring humans I know. They have a resilience within them that keeps them pushing even when it makes sense to pause and take a step back. They are a huge motivation for me when I’m feeling uninspired and wanting to quit–they believe in me in ways I didn’t know that I needed. And the best thing about them is that they’re my friends. They tell you like it is, no sugarcoating, and they’re quick to tell you to get it together because there’s work to be done.
I don’t think I’d have the success or be as far along as I am if it weren’t for them. Siblings are incredible beings and I’m the luckiest to have two who support, push, and encourage me the way they do.