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

Hi Cinthia, what role has risk played in your life or career?
Risks are an act of courage. It’s hard to be brave sometimes. But the best outcome from that is that you can be the happiest you’ve ever been. It can have an amazing payoff. My greatest risk was not having any other form of income besides my business.

I started Criatura Organics mid pandemic when I had nothing else. I’ve taken many risks as someone that’s mainly been working in acquiring experience. I’ve tried many different roles and the belief in myself is what’s allowed me to be successful in them. I think one of the biggest jumps you can take is believing that you can push through and making something work because there’s no plan b. Doing things outside of your comfort zone is a practice and the more we implement that into our lives the more fruitful we can be.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I began Criatura Organics, an e-commerce plant marketplace that is built on ethical practices during the pandemic. It came from my desire to build something for myself. It really was as simple as thinking, “I go above and beyond in working for others so why can’t I do that for me?”. I’d like to think that what sets me apart is that I’m authentic to myself. Being yourself is what makes you different so I’ve done my best to embrace that. I think authenticity is something that we shouldn’t take for granted. I don’t pretend to know everything and I think that being open to learning and being taught can only help you be a better person and do great things.

I’m still in the early stages of building my brand and business but, I have a clear vision for where I want it to go so it’s just about continuing the work. I’m most proud of myself for deciding that this was something I wanted to commit to and I’m very excited knowing that I can help highlight the agriculture industry. It is by no means easy but having family that has been in this industry for over 30 years and having my uncle Juan as my mentor has been the greatest gift I could ask for.

What I would like for the world to know about me and Criatura Organics is that plants are a form of therapy. The process of nurturing a plant reminds you to be more patient with yourself and with your life. It reminds me to be kinder and gentle which I think is a beautiful and radical act. Criatura Organics is a business built out of radicalization. I am here to help contribute to ethical practices within the agriculture industry and I can’t imagine not highlighting the good and bad of something I am involved in.

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.
Although I grew up in LA (Koreatown specifically), I’m more of an introvert and enjoy being at home. But, if I had to take anyone out it would probably be to Griffith Park. I have tons of memories as a kid there from birthday parties, horseback riding, the creepy and old school carousel, the old zoo, the train, and picnics as an adult. I also think that Covid has rid me of wanting to be in crowded bars and places and looking to doing more museums and botanical gardens instead. A day at the Arboretum in Arcadia, The Getty, The Huntington, etc. would be ideal for me so, I’d love to share that with a friend. A farmer’s market would be great too given that it’s become a part of my business and it just makes you feel good to support local farmers and creatives. A movie would be the perfect way to end the day and I will always push people to support their local BIPOC business including local street vendors (eloteros, paleteros, flowers, etc.) when they see them. They are entrepreneurs after all. There is never a shortage of things to do but, if you’re about that home life like me, I love having my home as a sanctuary so I will always support someone doing some self-care at home.

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 don’t think we are anything without the community we have around us. I can be the lone wolf type while having the mindset of a community builder. But as I got older, I realized that asking for help has been one of my greatest life lessons. How can I build a community without putting myself out there and building those relationships?

My mother and partner have been my strongest supporters along with a handful of friends. They have seen me through the overwhelming moments of doubt and the times where I didn’t know where to start. Even though I have a major belief in myself, I have discouraging moments like everybody else and they have helped me work though that. My mother Yoli who has an immigrant story but has never pushed traditional roles on me has granted me the gift of being able to be myself and to pursue what makes me happy. I think that for someone who’s First Gen like myself, that can be rare. My partner Cory has allowed me a safe space to grow and experiment with my creativity and he believes in my abilities. Having that type of support can really change a person.

Website: Criaturaorganics.com

Instagram: @criaturaorganics

Twitter: @criaturaorganic

Image Credits
Cinthia Artiaga

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