Artists and creatives face innumerable challenges given that their career path often doesn’t come with a playbook, a steady paycheck or any form of safety net. It’s definitely not easy and so we asked a few of the artists and creatives we admire to talk to us about why they chose to pursue an artistic or creative career.

Sebastian Feichtinger | Writer, Director, Content Creator

The beauty of an artistic career is the opportunity to express who you are through your work. I have always been the kind of person who loved to share my thoughts and journeys with others. Filmmaking is my way to share and create anything I want. I lived in three different countries over the years and have met so many people that inspired me to write and direct. When I first noticed how much fun I had expressing myself through film, I realized that I wanted it to be my career. Read more>>

Richard Johnson | Attorney & Singer-Songwriter, Captain Badass

Somehow along the way, I decided to have a sporting and positive attitude about this world and do whatever I could best to contribute to this great human adventure and our American spiritual and musical heritage, to make the best use of my own talents, gifts, energy, and time, to repay the investment of my parents and teachers and our forebears, by being the best thing I could be, and that has involved a lot of roles through the years, including father of three, idealistic and innovative high school math and science teacher, respected Am Law 100 commercial litigator, Anglican acolyte, philosopher, theologian, mystic, yogi, shaman, and finally, Captain Badass (but, whatever my trade, I’ve been writing songs and thinking about music all along the way–mostly my own little secret). Read More>>

Jordan Broberg | Actor/Director/Writer

When I was thirteen years old, I portrayed Hellen Keller in William Gibson’s play, The Miracle Worker. On closing night, I nearly lost a pinky after smashing a glass plate during a scene (I truly could not see it!) but, after a standing ovation and soaking my bloody costume in bleach, I had to come back for more. Since then, I have been in more than 70 plays, diving headfirst into training at the USC School of Dramatic Arts on a full-tuition scholarship. Read more>>

Kim Baschet | Digital Designer

I started as a kid developing my creative side and my family encouraged me to pursue what I loved. I knew I wanted to be a designer as I was inspired by designers in the field I was looking up to. I used creativity as a way to express and challenge myself and dedicated a big part of my life to it. It was my hobby, my study and now it is my career! Design is the perfect intersection of my love for the craft and the desire to do something useful. Read more>>

James Hereth | Writer and Editor

Pursuing an artistic career isn’t for the faint of heart, for sure. But it was the only path I ever considered. Most people have a knack for certain things. Specific subjects or interests come easy, or maybe just feel worth the trouble. Math and science did not feel worth the trouble. Instead, making up stuff was what I wanted to do all the time. Read more>>

Gabriel Cadena | Biophilic Designer

I decided to pursue a career in biophilic design because the practice combined my loves for people, plants, architecture, and immersive set design. I’m able to create beautiful living works of art that bring the rain forest into our modern day concrete jungle. Bring the outdoors, in. It’s my personal experience that tending to living plants provides purpose, a reminder of the Beauty the earth provides, and the future ahead. To quote the late Audrey Hepburn, “to plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow” Read more>>

Jashawn Boswell | Cinematographer & Musician

There are two objects from my childhood that are the seeds of the journey I’ve been on: a red toy piano and an Elmo reusable film camera. I took pictures of everything and when I wasn’t running around with a camera, I was sitting underneath a glass table trying to learn the piano’s programmed songs. I quickly learned about the connections and stories that could be told using both of these things I only thought of as “toys.” Read more>>

Brittany Love | Bead Artist & Creator

The reason I pursued an artistic career is because I love the fact that whenever I create something, it’s always something new. It’s a career I can’t get bored of. I participate in so many forms of art like music, graphic design and video editing. There’s always a new creation of something. I’m not creating the same things everyday. Bead art has been my top form of art lately because of how therapeutic it has been for me, the income I make, and the impact it has on people. Being able to make anything I want out of beads is very exhilarating because there’s so many people, places, and things that I can do depictions of. Read more>>

Alex Nicholas | Comedian

As long as I can remember I was always drawn to things that didn’t have rules or structure. From drawing, skateboarding and to now comedy are all things that attracted me because they’re all inherently limitless in possibilities. I think that careers that are strict in structure have a “right and wrong” way to do things in order to progress which never suited me. The pursuit of a creative career made more sense to me because your progression is all at your own pace and what comes out of it is all based on what your goals are and how much time you’re willing to put in to your craft. No two people are exactly the same so the different paths you end up taking in pursuit of the end goal you want are infinite, which to me can’t be recreated with the typical 9-5 career. Read more>>

Josh Wei | Record Producer, Songwriter

In many ways, I was thrown into the arts as a career. It wasn’t part of the plan at all to go in that direction, but I messed up a major placement exam when I was 16 and instead of attending a traditional academic institution, I opted to attend a trade school for the arts. Read more>>

Aaron Kai | Hyperrealism Painter & Fine Artist of the Movies / Actor

There are two things I live and breathe for: painting art and watching movies. Both were rooted at age 3 when I would draw an image from a tv show or movie that I felt looked cool. At 9-years old I saw the film, THE FRENCH CONNECTION, during its theatrical release. I held onto my seat like a rollercoaster ride as I watched the famous high-speed chase scene of Gene Hackman’s character cop Popeye Doyle running red lights in a Pontiac LeMans in pursuit of an elevated subway train. Read more>>

Holly Brooks | The Original Creator of Breastmilk Keepsakes

I grew up crafty and sewing with my grandmothers, but I never imagined I would be here as the owner of my own small business! The first half of my adult life I worked at an animal hospital. It was stressful, but I absolutely loved it. Our home has always been filled with animal companions as a result. I just called it a hazard of the job! Read more>>

Ignacio Zas | Music Producer & Composer

In my case, working in music as a producer/composer, it’s partly because of my (perhaps unhealthy) obsession with music and how it’s made. It was never a matter of dreaming of fame or anything like that, it was always this feeling of admiration and sheer joy I got when I listened to the bands I liked or watched live music. Read more>>

David So | Gym Owner & Creator of Neighbor And Brother

What’s good ya’ll. My name is David So and I am the creator of Neighbor And Brother. NAB is a community that uses an active lifestyle to take their shit to the next level. When I was at the lowest point of my life, I pivoted my focus towards my physical well-being by working out. Along the way, I was able to inspire others who would ask me for advice. I noticed I was able to motivate others, get creative with my workouts, and have fun all while doing so. Read more>>

Clara Chou | CG Animator & Generalist

I guess it fits my personality the most. I have always known that I would pursue an artistic career without asking why. However, I did not know what exactly I wanted to do. I had a happy childhood, and I played every day after school. Perhaps that allows me to think creatively, accept challenges willingly, and take risks bravely. I remember that I used to memorize jokes and entertain my family. I also watched lots of movies back in high school. Read more>>

Caesar B | Community Organizer & Apothecary

Because I’m a creative. I think it really is that simple. When you think about the question “why did you pursue an artistic or creative career?” the immediate answer that I feel is because I am creation and art. Nothing else ever felt right, going to school or doing something that didn’t feed entirely what I wanted to make. It never felt whole or good enough. Read more>>

Tara Moran | Actor/Model, Musician, Multimedia Artist, Filmmaker

I just didn’t see myself doing anything else! I love the unparalleled thrill of expression you get from art. I love the flexibility and the inclination to create something new. I feel welcome in the industry and I have a voice that I would not have in any other sphere. Read more>>

Priya Mani | Artist, Singer, Songwriter, and Arranger

I’ve felt very connected to music since I was a child, and my interest only grew stronger with time. I grew up surrounded by a very musical atmosphere at home, with Bollywood, Indian classical, western pop, and other genres of music playing in the background! When I think about what inspired me to dream big and pursue a career in the field, I’m reminded of the simple moments from my childhood. I used to sit on the balcony of my apartment and sing with my guitar for hours everyday, imagining myself singing on a stage to an audience. Moments like that made me realize that I’ve always been at my happiest when I’m singing or playing music. Read more>>

Pranto Podder | Photographer & Filmmaker

Back in 2008, my uncle went to Singapore for a visit and when he returned, he had bought a Fujifilm camera. I still vividly remember that day when I took the camera to the rooftop and started figuring it out by myself how this small equipment works. There was this real connection I felt when I captured a bird flying in the sky. Looking at the picture, I was like wow I just captured something in the moment. 2015. I moved to the United States, and I started seeing people using Instagram as a platform to show their work. Read more>>

Sheri Bradford | Sheri Of All Trades, Master Of Most

Even as a kid, I knew I wanted to be a storyteller. Being an only child, you’re kind of always tasked with keeping yourself entertained, and for me, there was no better way to do that than by watching a good movie (shout out to the “Indie” section at Blockbuster!) or by curling up with a good book (double shout out to R.L. Stine and Judy Blume, who played almost as formative a role in my childhood development as my actual parents). For me, it was a bit of a no-brainer when my teacher asked us what we wanted to be when we grew up. “I wanna tell stories, Miss!”. And that’s what I’ve been doing ever since. Read more>>

Taya-Morgan Moore | Artist

My end goal is to become an animator. Since I can remember, I’ve always loved visual art. There’s never been a time where I wasn’t surrounding myself with it. Whether it was art I’d created and taped to the walls or posters of others’ art. I also love movies, finding a good underground movie is like winning the lottery. My origin for loving movies was Pixar. The visual design paired with the storytelling is what made me want to become part of the entertainment industry. What better career is there for someone who both loves visual art and good storytelling? By the end of my career, I would like to have fulfilled my dream of being part of the industry whether it be through Pixar or not. Read more>>

Hugh McCrae Jr | Actor

I have always felt more comfort, joy, and fulfillment being creative. I never thought of pursuing an acting career until life just kept pulling me towards acting. Once I started getting roles I really couldn’t see myself doing anything else. Even with the high rejection rates and extreme competitiveness of working in a major market like Los Angeles, at the end of the day I am enjoying everyday I get to wake up a do what I do. Read more>>

Chelsea Sule | Makeup and Hair artist

Oddly, I didn’t actually pursue this career at first. I went to college with a plan to go into the medical field. But my first job was in high school, assisting in my mothers salon, where I fell in love with the beauty world. I continued to do makeup and hair through college, working at various counters and salons. Once I graduated, I decided to take a year or two off between grad school and kept working as an artist. After I worked my first fashion week and got on set for the first time, I knew that this was the life for me, and have been building my career ever since. Read more>>