How do you think about risk? What role has taking risks played in your life/career? Check out responses from hidden gems from our community below.

Nick and Sarah Simile | Photographers

We have found that taking risks goes hand in hand with starting your own business and manifesting the life you want to lead. Within the last 6 months we have both quit our day jobs and are working on our photography business full time. By taking the risk of eliminating our safety net and focusing solely on our photography, it has given us the time and creative space needed to properly grow our business and our art. It was terrifying and there were many sleepless nights as we were weighing our options. Read more>>

Xochilt Garcia | Artist & Photographer

Risk is an aspect of life that is constant. Life as we know it is a risk itself. We take risks on a daily whether we choose to break our diet, continue to drive after the traffic light has turned yellow, or choose to vocalize something controversial. I see it as a method to keep decision-making on its toes. In totality, it is oneself who decides whether to categorize a decision as a risk because, in reality, it is often something that can be calculated. Picture a life where Neil Armstrong rejected the journey to the moon…how would life be now? It is certain to say that without this leap of faith, humanity would not have progressed technologically and scientifically. Read more>>

Kristina Giang | 3D Modeler, Asset Builder

I always believe that taking a risk is better than being too scared to do anything. Time is too precious to keep waiting for a miracle to happen. Taking risks is a part of life. I know I often have intrusive thoughts telling me that I’m not good enough or I probably won’t make it because there are way more talented people ahead of me. However, at times, I have to remind myself to put those thoughts aside and to think about myself. It isn’t fair to me to compare myself to others. Instead of thinking “I’m not good enough. I will probably fail.”, I tell myself “I will give my best, and that is what matters.” Read more>>

Carina Gutierrez | Film Director & Producer

A huge chunk of my career has been pushed forward by taking risks. I actually started off working in the psychology field as a behavioral therapist. For some background- I always loved filming little home videos with friends and family whenever I got the chance. It was definitely a passion of mine growing up. While I definitely loved working in the psychology field, I always found myself more drawn to the creative film world. At first I was at this scary jumping off point leaving a stable job for a career that I didn’t really have any background or study in. Regardless, I applied for this job at a creative agency/record label and got it. Funny enough, the person who hired me had also graduated with a psych degree. Read more>>

Paizley Bishop | Owner of Peach Honey

I’d consider myself an active un-calculated risk taker. The largest and most positive shifts in my life have always come from taking a big leap and not always knowing where I’m going to land. I’ve learned throughout the years to rely heavily on my intuition towards any decision I make.. But grant myself some grace and empathy when it turns out differently than I expected or hoped for. For me risk taking represents limitless potential and possibility. When I think about taking a risk in any avenue of my life is when I feel most creative. I allow myself to be fully immersed in the visualization of what could be, and it’s really exciting for me! Read more>>

Amanda Faber | Artist & Student

Many of the things I am most proud of have come from times that I have chosen to take a risk. Some are big things like being a mother or being a contestant on a baking show. Some are smaller things like the first bit of paint I put on a blank canvas or when I do something weird with a piping tip on a cake. It is scary to try new things, but to me the risk is worth the thrill. I am curious to see if a risk with pay off or if it be a disaster. For me, there is no other way. I don’t think that everyone needs to be so risky. Some people are more naturally steady. I see that steadiness can be very fulfilling and satisfying too. It just doesn’t happen to be my way. Read more>>

Isabella Morillo | Multidimensional Artist & Entrepreneur

Two and a half years ago I came to LA with nothing but a plan and $1,300. Even with a plan I had no guarantee that things were going to work out for me and the uncertainty definitely came with its anxieties. We’ve all probably heard this before so it’s nothing new but most great things in life lie outside of our comfort zone and thats always resonated with me so taking a leap of faith to pursue my passion for art in this city, although scary, was a risk I knew I needed to take. I’ve had this idea since I was 14 and now over two years into my journey despite there being no shortcoming of hurdles I know in my heart that I made the right choice. Besides risks are the best way to keep things interesting, wouldn’t you agree? 😉 Read more>>

Kazumi Vites | Fashion Designer & CEO of WOOL PROJECT

Life is pretty much risk taking. I believe there is nothing secured or guaranteed in our future. We do not know what’s going to happen tomorrow. Either on a small scale, like trying a new product at a grocery store, or on a large scale like marriage and moving to a different country, are all risk taking. I decided to move to California when I was 30 while I was working for a prominent apparel company in Tokyo. I was having fun with my friends and life was okay, but my real desire was to be independent mentally, financially and emotionally. Read more>>

Marischa Slusarski | Artist

Making art is my obsession. It can also feel spiritual, like a form of meditation. When you have a so-called light bulb moment, or what I call a brain orgasm, it’s magic, you are energized and on fire. But being an artist is also agonizing and heart-wrenching. Every single move feels like a risk. Is this the best size, is this blue the right shade, is this what the gallery wants, is this a good price point? And letting your art be seen often feels like waiting to be humiliated. Overcoming those fears are the risks you take if you have to make art. Read more>>

Chris Vaccarino | Founder & CEO

Risk-taking is a necessity when starting a company. Without risk, there would be no opportunity. You have to take that leap and go all-in on what you believe will become a successful business. There are ways to minimize risk – such as starting a side hustle that could eventually turn into your main gig – but your time and energy will need to focus on really growing your business without distractions. I always wanted to start and own my own business and see my parents’ entrepreneurial spirits instilled that drive towards my future at a very young age. After establishing my company, reflecting on the necessities during the beginning stages was eye-opening. A support system is also crucial. Read more>>

JacQuar 937 | Label Owner, Executive Producer & Songwriter

I think risk are necessary for success and growth. I aim for calculated risk but it doesn’t always work that way, especially in the beginning. Some things in life are just trial and error. As long as your constantly learning and revamping yourself, your product, or company, then a loss isn’t a loss, but a lesson. I think about the stories they will tell about the risk I took in future, AFTER I’ve connected all the dots. Most people get hung up on taking risk because of public opinion, afraid to look like they don’t know what they’re doing, or afraid to lose/learn in public, but I’m not afraid though. I get discouraged, but I get myself together, pick up the pieces, and revamp. You only lose when you quit. Read more>>

Natasha McCrea | The Love CEO

I’m now living the life I have designed for myself, not the one I was handed. Taking risks is the one tool that has taken me the furthest in love, life and relationships. With failed marriages and businesses under my belt taking risks is what gave me the strength to get back up, identify what I really want out of life and achieve my goals. Taking risks is what allowed me to build a successful business, tour a one woman show, take a film to Cannes Film Festival, coach my kid into a full ride scholarship to college as a single mother, and find the love of my life. When taking risks became a practice I finally began to live out loud. Read more>>

Marilize du Plessis | South African Actor & Writer

I think risk taking looks different for everybody. For one person skydiving is a risk and for another living their most true and authentic life is a risk. I believe that as long as you are leaning into choices that make you a little uncomfortable every now and again, you’re taking risks and it’s in those experiences that we really grow into the people we are meant to be. Read more>>

Pete Mills | The Sweet Kill: singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist. The Audio Studio: producer, owner, engineer, mixing, mastering.

“No risk it, no biscuit” Bruce Arians coach of the 2021 super bowl champions Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The parallels of football and life are many and I feel compelled to implement all I learned from my days playing the grid iron. I remember questionnaires handed out by my coach asking us who our toughest opponent would be, and I while all my teammates would write down the most challenging, talented teams I knew immediately it was ourselves. We as a team are only as strong as our weakest link so thus began my journey not only to be the best defensive end, I could be but to build up my fellow lineman and defensive unit as well as make efforts to inspire the offense. Read more>>

Tatiana Kahvegian | Designer of sets/environments & visual artist.

Risk taking has a big role in my work and practice, and even in the fact that I’m here in NYC. I moved to NY in 2018 from Sao Paulo, Brazil, where I was born and had been working professionally for around 10 years (mainly as a scenographer in the art department for films, series, and advertising, but also as an architect). I came for a master’s degree at Tisch-NYU, which was something that I had never really conceived of doing before that moment. It was a sparkle that became a flame, and things happened fast, and intensely. I wasn’t really prepared, practically and emotionally, for the move and all that it entailed. Read more>>

Michaela Greene | Music Journalist & On-Camera Host

Risk-taking has completely changed my life. Almost every accomplishment I’ve had has come from me taking a risk, pushing the envelope, and exploring the unknown. Everything appears “scary” until you do it. If you think about it, every decision you make is potentially risky. The moment you walk out of your house, you’re taking a risk. Whatever you want to do, there is a risk involved, but it is necessary for progress. There wasn’t a risk I didn’t take where I didn’t learn a valuable lesson or excel from it. Try not to get comfortable with security; however, be comfortable with adventure and exploration. Read more>>

Blossum Smith | Event Planner

I have to say, if I didn’t take any risk, I wouldn’t be where I am with my business now. I gave about 2/3 of my savings up and invested it into the start of my business. In the moment, I said to myself “Blossum, it’s all or nothing.” By the grace of God, not only did I make it back, but I doubled it within a year, met some amazing clients along the way, and was able to broadcast my talent. . I took a leap of faith and followed a passion of mine and it’s been loving me back double time. Read more>>

Manuel Borrero | AR artist & entrepreneur

The problem with staying in your comfort zone is that it does not allow you to grow. I think that taking risks in life is something that we all have to face at some point no matter what. There is only 2 outcomes from taking a risk, success or failure. I am not afraid of failure and I have learned so much from my failures. You have to fail to succeed and you have to risk to win. Do not expect to win without failing at some point along the journey. Read more>>

Grace Stuve | Dancer

Taking risks is a big part of life and a scary part of life. Everyone would rather be comfortable all the time because it’s the easy route, however, you can’t live your life to the fullest without risk. The whole world views taking risks in a very negative way which is the wrong way to look at it. Risks should be seen as a positive aspect of living because they make you “level up” in whatever it may be, from your career to relationships, or maybe just as a human being. Risks make us better overall. I’ve had to take many risks in my life as a whole, not just in building my dance career. Read more>>

Charles Jake Johnson | Actor & Writer

I have always been of the mindset “the bigger the risk, the bigger the reward”. I don’t believe in being content, or being satisfied if the goal isn’t met. The biggest risk that I’ve taken in my life is leaving everything and everyone back home in Michigan so I can pursue my dreams. Sometimes you have to be selfish in order to change the cycle and to change things for your loved ones. Read more>>

Pendrick | Songwriter and Artist Developer

Taking risks has really been the difference between success and failure for me . I honestly rather not refer to it as taking a risk, I would say “taking a leap of faith” and to explain how impactful it is for me , I always weigh out risk vs reward. and often times if the reward is worth it ill take the leap without fear and allow intuition to guide me. Moving out of your hometown , risk/Leap of faith.
Quitting your job for your dream. Leap of faith. Read more>>

Soledad Cabezas | Director, Building New Hope/ Owner, MARCA LLC

Risk has played an important part in my life because even though it gives you uncertainty it also gives you the opportunity to evaluate the worth of the things you are hoping to achieve. Risk allows me to grow in a constructive way because I learn, even if it doesn’t go the way you expect it. But I think you can measure the levels of risk you want to take, big or small. I know risks as everything in life comes with responsibilities, and I always take it whenever I know I can commit to it, or to accept if it goes in a different direction, so I don’t have regrets. When I decided to come to the USA, I had to take a risk, because I knew my career would take a different direction but also, I was going to be out of my comfort zone. Read more>>

Matthew Mendoza | Blonde Specialist

I am a huge risk taker!! Ever since I was a kid I remember my only fear in life is missing out on what life has to offer me, so taking risks was kind of a normal thing for, I never really feared it. Risk taking played a huge role in my career. I was working a stable job with a good income. I knew I always wanted to do hair but never pursued it. One day I just went online and searched hair schools, called the first one that came out, signed up, quit my job and decided this would be it. I took a huge pay cut and became a receptionist at a salon just to throw myself into the field. Read more>>

Lukas Milanak | Artist & Designer

In financial markets, there’s an old saying that money is made through “Time in the markets, not timing the markets”. I believe this applies in a creative profession too. There’s no right time to leave stability for your dream. You just have to make that choice, and jump the hurdles as they come. It’s never easy, but trust that you are the kind of person who can handle whatever comes your way. The sooner you can commit to building your future, the sooner you’ll get there in the end. Read more>>

Tina Gharavi | Film director & screenwriter, occasional professor

I started my film production outfit, Bridge + Tunnel, originally because no other production company was interested in producing my work. It was the bravest and most foolish thing I have done… I didn’t realise how much there is to running a company and I am often saying if I knew what I know now… I doubt I would have started it (Excel, I mean, come-on!) … Luckily, now I have a great team who help with finance… (shout out to Kathryn Warwick!). Having a production company means you have autonomy and the chance to organise groups of people. It means autonomy, fleet of foot… and a masthead for a mad caper! But find a good accountant/bookkeeper!! Read more>>

Chris Byers | Actor, Model, & Artist

I’ve always looked at risk taking as a way to conquer my fears. When I was in high school my senior year I decided I wanted to try all the things I was too scared to do the previous years. I loved to sing but hated doing it in front of people. So, I joined chior. I auditioned for solo pieces and ended up getting 2 solos and was featured at the solo night concert. I tried out for every play, auditioned to do the morning announcements, in which I succeeded!, got cast in the talent show, participated in our ‘Mr. and Miss Mesa’ pageant my school threw. I auditioned to host rally’s and got to do a couple! I was terrified and exhilarated all at the same time. Read more>>

Micah Gonsalves-Gregg | Entrepreneur

I think risk-taking is necessary because it’s the driver of today’s greatest innovations. The founders of the world’s most influential companies like Walt Disney, Netflix, and Apple all have the same thing in common, they took a risk of doing something new and uncertain. For me, I believe the biggest risk is not taking any at all. Risk-taking plays an important role in my life because it’s how I grow and it’s how I learn. If I didn’t take the risk of quitting my full-time job to go all-in on my business, my business wouldn’t have grown to where it is today. I was not certain if it was going to work, but, I had to take the chance. Risk-taking has resulted in my biggest wins and greatest failures, a lot of the time, the failures have been more valuable than the wins because they taught me important business lessons. Read more>>

Hellin Kay | Filmmaker, Photographer

Risk taking has been a large part of my career and life in general; not following the path others wanted or expected me to take has been how I’ve lived. When I was accepted to Bard College at 18, I had $16 in my bank account, yearly tuition was $25,000. I was raised in a single Mom household, we had emigrated from the Soviet Union to America ten years ago at that point, no one had that kind of money, but I was determined to go to film school there and somehow with loans, scholarship and hustle I not only went but graduated. When I moved to NYC, I had $500 to my name but I found an apartment to split with a roommate in the East Village, got a job at Quad Cinemas selling tickets and scrambled to pay for my first feature with credit cards, which was the 90s way. Read more>>

Refilwe Maitisa | Actress & Singer

I consider myself a person who has always taken risks. I think about risks in relation to personal fulfillment and desired outcome. Venturing into a career in entertainment, coming from a family whose careers are in corporate, was a risk for me. Furthermore, I took a major risk by moving from South Africa to the US at a young age to pursue my career. So, I believe in high risk, high reward. Often, risk taking has resulted in many successes, I would not be where I am today if I didn’t take risks. Read more>>

Viktor Drago | Viktor Drago Social Media Star

What do you think about risk ? I think risk it’s a necessary step in order to achieve success, we live in society where people feel that better work 50 years on work for someone than, take a risk and work 1 year on yourself and try, because the society is so scare of anything new, scare to say a word, scare to step out of their comfort zone, scare to try and etc. Read more>>

Susan Erikson Hawkins | artist/sculptor

I think risk taking is very important. In a way, my entire career path can be seen as a series of absurd risks combined with blind leaps of faith. Each time I’ve taken a chance, or risk, it has changed the course of my life and career for the better, each leading to a more interesting, more unique, and more challenging opportunity. Read more>>