From Artist to Entrepreneur
February 15, 2014
Our Entrepreneur columnist shares a story about a local artist who turned her creative passion into a lucrative profession.
It's not everyday that you meet someone that used skulls to decorate her wedding. When I heard a recent bride talking about it, I had to know more. Sarah Hollis had a "Day of the Dead" themed wedding. It was funky and completely represented her style as an artist. She creates beautiful work from all types of medium and used these skills to design her wedding. After this experience, Sarah decided to take a different approach to her artistic career. She began her own company, Romance and Rebellion. Sarah creates handmade, edgy, nontraditional, wedding décor and is in the process of expanding her company beyond her current Etsy shop.
When you meet Sarah, she is passionate. She is passionate about her art and the art community in Cincinnati. She was born and raised in Cincinnati and received a bachelors degree from the Art Academy of Cincinnati and a Masters Degree from the University of Cincinnati’s School of Art (DAAP). Sarah has contributed in numerous ways to the art community, including her current positions teaching at the Art Institute and the Art Academy. She has worked on beautifying urban areas in Cincinnati by creating mural designs and participating in Streetscapes in Ludlow.
After getting to know Sarah and working with the Art Academy, I am inspired by the number of amazing artists that are starting their own companies. Sarah reflects upon her own education and says that starting your own company was never discussed when she was an art student. She was trained towards exhibiting her art in galleries and specializing in one particular form of art. Coming out of school, she thought her options were limited. She never considered starting her own company.
What is inspiring about Sarah's story is the journey she has been on. 10 years later, she has gained the confidence and knowledge to start her own company, and artists all over the city are doing the same. Educational and art institutions are taking the lead in entrepreneurial education for their artists, from the Art Academies partnership with Bad Girl Ventures to Co-Workers at ArtWorks. Artists are making Cincinnati beautiful by bringing their art to the consumer on Main Street.
Entrepreneurs are instinctively creative. They can see things that do not exist and create something from nothing, just like an artist. I look forward to supporting the artists in our community, as they become entrepreneurs. So, take a page from Sarah's story, and as she put's it, take hold of your own destiny. Consider what you could do if you followed your creative passion.