We had the good fortune of connecting with Vanessa Shive and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Vanessa, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
I grew up in a family of business owners, who always planned for me to step up and take care of the family business. However, it wasn’t something I wanted for myself. My mother wanted to be an archeologist but due to family pressures she wasn’t able to follow that path and always wondered how different her life could have been. Due to that, my parents were always very supportive in regards of me choosing art as a career. I’ve always enjoyed watching films, visiting museums and drawing. So once I found out I could design for a living, it was a no-brainer.
My creative career, has been very fulfilling and I’m so excited for what projects I’ll be working on in the future.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I always want to put my culture in my personal artwork. Wether it is through architecture, people or props. My artwork is very colorful, whimsical and story-driven. I like to capture feelings and my goal is to evoke that same emotion to the viewer. It fills me with joy to see people seeing themselves and their experiences in my work.
I’m also proud of my journey as an artist. I grew up in a developing country and being an artist can be a hard path. There’s not an established industry nor support. It hasn’t always been easy, being away from my tight-knit family and life-long friends put a lot of pressure on me and I spent a lot of time questioning if I made the right choice. I found support and friendship in the art community and it gave me strength to keep pursuing my passion. This wonderful journey has taught me to be resilient through adversities, to believe in myself and to be grateful for every opportunity that comes my way.
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?
Definitely the beach. I think it’s such a serene landscape. We probably would take a yoga class by the ocean and have a picnic while we sketch all the landmark locations we visited that day. I also enjoy hiking, running and dancing. If we had a whole week we probably would go to Tahoe for the weekend.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My parents deserve all the credit for always supporting me and encouraging me to pursue my passion. My mentors, friends and teachers for being an immense source of inspiration and knowledge. The WIA staff members who always encouraged me to be not only a better artist, but a better person.