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

Hi Jose, do you have some perspective or insight you can share with us on the question of when someone should give up versus when they should keep going?
Answering this question is about as easy as trying to simplify time travel, but i’m going to try. I believe you know when it’s time to give up based on the feeling you get from the thought of parting ways with a dream.

If you’re passionate about something no matter what, no matter how long it takes, you’ll make it happen the same way you make date night, or happy hour happen.

But on the flip-side, after the effort, if you don’t start to see success, it might be safe to say it’s time to call it quits, not always the goal but often the approach.

I think the trick is to know the difference between being delusional and being a dreamer, because while dreams can come true, they don’t always make sense.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My art comes from what i experience, Much like music an experience can inspire a scene. Sometimes it’s just a stand alone sequence of Images that silently tell a story to music. But mostly my art consists of moments in my life.

Outside of our experiences i can’t say what separates me from others, but i will say i’m most proud of my longevity in the artist realm. It’s a good feeling to wake up inspired even when things turn to crap.

The inspiration is the drug that keeps me going, it’s how i overcome things, and it’s helped me learn along the way that it’s not always so clear in the beginning but once you start to do, wheels turn, and things happen.

If the world should know anything about me, it’s that i’m doing, and the story is ongoing.

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.
As a New Yorker turned LA transplant Pizza is a must for any of my friends. I’d definitely recommend “Gracies Pizza” on Melrose and North Heliotrope.

If you’re outdoorsy like me “Paddle house” on the international boardwalk at Redondo beach is a great place to paddle board, it’s a pretty chill harbour, seals swim under and around you, there’s a gorgeous view of the coastline and after the workout having the option to grab seafood is clutch.

If you can make it early enough to get a parking spot “Solstice canyon” in Malibu is a beautiful hike.

“Coldwater Canyon” Is a cool one too if you’re down to hang in the valley,

The best and only spot for Puerto Rican food in town is also in the Valley at one of my favs “Mofongos”.

When Museums are a thing again LACMA would be a must, and if you’re looking for a unique night there’s a cool Burlesque show that takes place on Saturdays called “The Toledo Show” at the west Hollywood rooftop hotel “Petit Ermitage”

Anytime There’s an art show taking place i would also Recommend “Helmel Studios and Gallery” Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’m truly nothing without these folks

First my family Margarita Melendez my mom, Aida Melendez my grandmother, Matthew Rivera my brother, my Aunt Alexandra Melendez , Humberto Rivera, Enrique Melendez, Raul Melendez, Malik Dreher, Edgar Galarza, Christian Santiago, Londyn, Anthony peña, Robert peña, Destiny Santiago, Cassandra Marie, Krystal Rodriguez, Michelle Melendez, Gloriana Collazo, Yvette Evie.

Without their encouragement it would be hard to dream this big, their support is everything about this journey.

To my creative homies/extended Fam

Jimmy Alvarez, Sean Fitzharris, Diana Keeler, Rj Lucci, Margarita Karaghiozakis, Jerii Aquino, Roosevelt Mercado, Kate Reynolds, Tarik Smith, Aoksner, Amelia Leanna, Ryan Hall, Brian Antezana, Jai pellerin, Sarah Larsen, Argot Murelius, Ranen Lawe, Ryan Binse, Emilee Smith, Beaureguard Von Hoffman, Fred Shahadi, Jason Maxim, Martinique Watson, Joshua Ghost, Jillian burnett, Samantha Ramos, Quincy Perez, Cameron Nino, Kimmarie Johnson, Charisse Holder, for your inspiration and for being just as crazy as me.

A very special shoutout to Helmel studios, Cartel T.V. , Inner city Shakespeare ensemble.

Steven Meyer, Brad Koepenick, Val Kilmer, Leo Scott, and Dr. Melanie Andrews for believing in my work and allowing me the room to play and create.

Website: www.jose-pena.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/pena_vision/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/feed/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tomato.pena

Image Credits
Von Hoffman, Diana Keeler, Tarik Smith

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