We asked some of the most creative folks we know to open up to us about why they chose a creative career path. Check out their responses below.

 Joshua Mannila | Portrait Photographer

I pursed a career in photography because I have always felt drawn to it. There is something about taking photos that I absolutely love. I love experimenting with different themes and ideas in order to articulate what is happening in my brain, and bringing it to life through my camera lens. Read more>>

Cristina Moskewicz | Photographer & Flow Artist

Truthfully, I pursued photography because I was inspired to. Specifically music and concert photography, because something about candidly capturing those moments in music, or of a specific artist, made me feel like I was at that event or in that moment. I guess that goes for any type of photography honestly. Read more>>

Josiah Johnson | Filmmaker & Writer

I opted for an artistic/creative career (in film directing and screenwriting) because it satisfied me. I dreamed and created art frequently as a child. Some of my best memories were creating content on a white and red tape cassette recorder with my niece and nephews. Read more>>

Jacques Philippe | Filmmaker & Fashion Designer

I believe art chose me. For as long as I can remember I was always drawn towards the concept of bringing an idea to life. I believe it is a unique capability we have as humans to bring an idea into fruition. Read more>>

Laurey Bennett-Levy | Mixed Media Abstract Artist, Graphic Designer, Arts Advocate and Community Builder

With a peacock! It’s how it all began. At the age of seven, my bunk was receiving an art lesson to make an animal sculpture. I veered away from her prescriptive steps and my campmates copied my sculpture. I knew at that moment…I was good. Now that peacock is my logo and symbol of my strength and discipline. Read more>>

Muge Li | Illustrator

I like to express my thoughts through art. I really enjoy the process of creating them. Catching the ideas in my head and making them into an illustration is a wonderful feeling for me. I love telling a story in one illustration, but I also love to write my own stories and make them into a series of illustrations, such as picture books. I am especially fond of humorous quirky characters and imaginary stories. I want to bring people joy and cheerful through my illustrations. And I also want to let my picture books light children’s childhood and build a connection between children and parents. That’s why it is a such meaningful work for me. Read more>>

Anna Achimowicz | rock choreographer, performer and art. dir. Rock Dance Theatre / Rebel Crush. Rockstar Physiotherapist, NCMT therapist / Performing Arts Medicine

Creative career chose me. I was always a hyper active child growing up in San Diego, so my mom took me to modern dance class when I was 6 or 7 years old, being a figure ice skater herself in the past. Initially i was very resistant, but once i got the bug everything else came afterwards and as we say is history. Contemporary dancer, choreographer, then movement director. Dance and performance pedagogue, and also finally physiotherapist specialised in treating musicians and stage performers. I was hugely independent as a personality, pursuing a creative life path was just obvious about me. Read more>>

Lyndzy Gordon | Geeky Fashion Designer

I’m a creative, colorful soul and want to incorporate that and my passions into every aspect of my life, including my career. I love creating designs that people can wear! Seeing folks wearing my artwork on their bodies makes me incredibly proud. Read more>>

 Josh Chaney | Photographer

I would say I first made the decision that I needed to live an artistic/creative life overall, whether that overlaps with career or not. These past few years the overlap has ebbed and flowed quite a bit, but I have learned that I cannot feel fulfilled if I am not making room for art in my life. This is what has driven me to pursue an artistic career. I feel so much more in touch with myself and the world around me when I have space in my life to dedicate to creative projects. My main goal with my career is to nurture this passion. Read more>>

Bry’Nt | Rapper, Model, Actor, Creative Director

I didn’t “decide” to become a creative. I’m simply a creative person, and it just so happens that I also create works that serve me professionally. Read more>>

Daniel Kouba | Editor & DP

My Dad was a film photography hobbyist and musician. His taste showed me many different musical artists and it ultimately got me into music production which I did throughout high school. During a 3-month student exchange in Mexico, I bought my first camera to capture the beauty of nature and the culture I was immersed in. This was the stepping stone that ultimately lead to my current career as a video editor and DP. Read more>>

Jacob Moniz | Concert Photographer

As a kid I was always fascinated with art. Even though I wasn’t great at hands on arts & crafts I stumbled upon photography in high school when I was required to have an art credit to graduate. I quickly fell in love capturing portraits. I went on to do a couple video competitions and my passions grew deeper. Then around early June 2021 I started attending local concerts. Read more>>

Stephanie Lilly Smith | Co-Founder, COO – Creatricity & Producer

The short answer to this question is that I pursued an artistically creative career because my parents gave me the space to explore any and everything creative. Growing up, I played the piano, I danced, I sang, I did theatre and along the way I began helping my instructors put plans together for the recitals and showcases that we did. I was afforded so many opportunities to travel as a result of my artistic choices. By the time I had to make a choice about what I would study in school and later go on to pursue – it was already a matter of fact that I was going to be going after something in the performing arts. Read more>>

 Coline Creuzot | Artist (Singer/Songwriter)

The ability to express myself artistically has always been therapeutic and came natural to me. I fell in love with singing, dancing and writing songs at a young age, it was always a way for me to express the way I was feeling. I knew very early on that I was going to be an artist. Music has always made me feel alive. Read more>>

Shantel Dang | Self-taught Jewelry Designer & Maker

I used to joke around with my friends and family that I didn’t have even one creative bone in my body. Haha! Seriously, I was probably the last person to be picked for a game of Pictionary (still am by the way). Read more>>

Clayton Stocker Myers | Actor & Screenwriter

My first memories of harnessing my creativity into any form or creative field is from when I was a kid coloring in sketches my Brother would draw and eventually drawing my own sketches. As time would go on, I’d find myself participating in school plays, community theatre, taking acting classes as electives from middle school through high school. The whole time doing this, enjoying myself, but not remotely considering the possibility that it might be what I’d want to pursue as a career. Read more>>

Christine Li | Wedding & Portrait Photographer

As much as you find your calling, I think that more often your calling finds you. Our work is often deeply rooted in who we are and what we value, and it is so intricately connected to our personality, our passions, and our experiences. For me, being an artist and pursuing an artistic career was never so much an active choice as it was a natural development (and even extension) of who I am: a creative being. Read more>>

Marcus Brown | M. Aurelius: DJ & Bedroom Producer

I sought out an artistic career because I love being able to express creativity in different forms. Read more>>

Diego Monterrubio | Artist & Professor

In talking about my artistic roots, my grandfather Victor Monterrubio once said to me as a young boy, ‘El arte lo tienes en tu sangre’ (‘Art is in your blood’). Those are the words my grandfather, an illustrator for Coca-Cola in Mexico for more than 40 years and I didn’t fully understand the phrase, but with time and experience I learned the truth about what he said. Read more>>

Amanda Huang | Food Entrepreneur, Cooking Instructor, Designer

I’ve always been an artistic and creative person. As a child, I was always creating “something”, whether it was a painting, a piece of pottery or baked goods. I later went to an arts high school, specializing in visual arts, and then I pursued my Bachelor of Fine Arts in New Media from Ryerson University. Read more>>

Joey Phantom | Rapper

Because music is my only true passion. I couldn’t live with the regret of not giving this my all, no matter the outcome. It’s something I know is right in my heart. Read more>>

Stephanie Bahniuk | Theatre Designer

The path to my creative career started way back when I was very young. My parents put me in dance lessons because I was so clumsy and pigeon toed as a kid and I spent many years in ballet and Ukrainian dance. I actually ended up dancing professionally for seven years with the Ukrainian Shumka Dancers through high school and university which really solidified my interest in theatre. Read more>>

Aaryaman Kakar | Actor

There are two reasons behind this: 1) I was very indecisive on my career choice, my ambitions varied from (a career in sports to law to pursuing my family business and acting as well.) The reason I decided to choose acting was because through this medium I would get the opportunity to
pursue an honest version of those professions perhaps at least once in my lifetime. Read more>>

Christine Choi | Character concept artist

I didn’t have a lot of means to entertain myself as a kid growing up in a strict household up until my late teens, so whenever I used up my allotted 30 minutes of weekend gaming, I had to get imaginative and familiarize myself with the toys and drawing materials at my disposal. At first I only pursued an education in art because it was the only thing I felt even a little comfortable doing most of the time. Read more>>

Jinx Kelly | Professional Mermaid, Burlesque Performer, Creative Embodiment Mentor, Event Director

I realized that there were only two things I wanted out of life—To have fun and spend time with my loved ones and to make art. Read more>>

Gabriel de Leon | Drummer, Composer & Music Producer

It all started when I was but a mere child. I, alongside my brother, was raised under a very musical household. A lot my beginnings were thanks to my father, a musician by profession, and the guidance from my very supportive mother. Read more>>

Jessie Santiago | Salon Owner/ Hairstylist/ Artist

After two decades of being a hairstylist on the autism spectrum, masking became nearly impossible for me anymore. I worked in dozens of hair salons in states all around the country. I always hoped to find my salon home but all I ended up finding was toxic work environments that encouraged unhealthy habits, little to no practice of ethical touch, gossip, and cliques. Read more>>

Stage Antics | Clay Gregg – Guitarist, Brandon Garrison – Bassist, Evander Suju – Frontman, Dalton Haegele – Drummer

Evander Suju: “I pursue an artistic career because I find a lot of meaning in finding my way through passion and going against the grain of the stereotypical ins and outs of daily life. I want to make a difference somehow but I never found it in the realm of school or conventional means so I find that music is an eternal expression of how we feel. Its timelessness has moved people for generations. I feel if I pursue that I will find my own way and happiness, and that’s what matters.” Read more>>

Joshua kim | Entertainer (Model, Dancer and Actor)

I went to University and graduated with a Business Degree and then went on to work office jobs and also for Microsoft which I soon realised that I could not do this for the rest of my life. I looked inside of myself to focus on what the things were that make me happy and even if I were not to make the most amount of money from it I would still be happy doing it, which turned out to be dancing and I have not stopped dancing since that decision I made 7 years ago. Read more>>

Awa Yin | Character Designer

To become a character designer is the dream I want to achieve. Zootopia has always been my favorite film. When the main character Judy takes the train to Zootopia, I was astonished by the diverse environment and considerate devices for every kind of animal. That was the first time I approached the concept of character designer, and this feeling buried a little seed of dream in my heart: I want to be on a team to develop these ideas. Read more>>

Gary Phillips | Crime Fiction Writer

I grew up reading science fiction and comic books and watching cowboy shows on TV. When I was 8 or 9 I got a book from my aunt, prose short stories of Twilight Zone episodes. I knew then that i wanted to write my own tales of strangeness and mystery. Read more>>

Alane Grace | Freelance Artist

Becoming the artist I am today just sort of fell onto my lap. I was drawing fanart for fandoms I was currently obsessed with at the time and realized “Oh, I can make money out of something I enjoy making?” It’s the only path I’ve ever known. In another timeline, I’d be currently pulling my hair out trying to earn whatever degree I need to be a doctor per my mother’s wishes. Read more>>

Hesiquio Mendez Alejo | Game Developer/Designer

As a kid, I wanted to be an inventor. I was the type of kid that would put all electronics apart because I thought little beings were controlling things inside. My mom (understandably) would get upset while my dad would calm her down and tell her he would fix it (most of the time he could not or ended up with almost working). I am a curious person, and luckily I had a dad who would push that. This curiosity made me want to learn for fun, and experiment to see what would come up. Once my mom and I immigrated, I spent a lot of time playing video games. Eventually, I was able to combine these two passions and was able to learn game development and game design. Read more>>