We had the good fortune of connecting with Sidney Howard and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sidney, what habits do you feel play an important role in your life?
As I’m sure it did for most people, the pandemic changed many aspects of my daily life nearly overnight. I got laid off from my job of 4 years. I missed my friends and family. I moved from New York back to my home state of Florida and now finally in Los Angeles, where I’ve always dreamed of living. Through all those transitions, I realized that I let my mental health take the backseat for far too long and have since committed to making it a priority for the rest of my life. I went to therapy for the first time, starting listening to spiritual books on audio, and started journaling and meditating. These habits of mindfulness are the most important tools I have to be successful, which to be means staying present, being grateful for the opportunities that come my way, and focusing on my unique path rather than comparing myself to others.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My art is inspired by the magic you can find in the everyday if you take the time to look for it. Life is truly magical if you take the time to disconnect from the digital and reconnect with your surroundings, nature and the people around you. Whenever I take walks around my neighborhood I notice new interesting things to be inspired by even if the route is the same. California has some of the coolest plants I’ve ever seen and is full of color. I like to explore new mediums regularly so I don’t become complacent, some recent favorites are Posca markers, gouache paint, and mixing in a textural sand-like medium with acrylic paint. I think I got to where I am today from making genuine connections with like-minded people, pushing myself creatively by trying different styles and mediums, and growing from experiences outside my comfort zone. I’ve learned that to get paid what you are worth, you need to ask for more than you want because that’s how you negotiate – each party feels they are getting a “deal” if you let them work your original offer down to your actual number you wanted in the first place. I’ve learned that it’s not necessarily the most talented people that get the most jobs or get paid the most, it’s the ones who advocate for what they are worth and the ones that make the most connections. I’ve learned that people can tell when you are genuine and passionate about a project or not, so you need to put the energy out that you want to receive.
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.
The first thing most people want to do when they visit California is get some weed, so I’d take them to The Pottery for some pre-rolls. Then we’d do a casual walk/hike through Elysian Park winding through some hills and eventually making our way down to the flatter part where we could appreciate the palm tree lined strip with amazing classic cars that are always parked there on the weekends. Then we’d get tacos at Guisado’s in Echo Park for dinner. The next day we’d get açaí bowls from Glowing Juices in the morning, go hiking at Griffith Park and then get lunch at Thai Patio in Thai Town for lunch. Then we’d grab our roller skates and head over to Mar Vista Roller Hockey Rink to skate with some of the coolest and kindest people I’ve ever met. We’d finish off the day with watching the sunset in Venice. The next day we’d do some shopping in Highland Park, definitely stopping into Prelude & Dawn. Lastly, a trip to LA would not be complete without spending a day at the beach in Malibu.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Thank you to all the inspiring and creative women in my life, including but not limited to: Viscaya Wagner