The Spotlight Series serves to interview and highlight individuals following their true calling, from entrepreneurs, to artists, to creatives, and beyond. The purpose of this project is to shine a light on their work and understand how they are positively impacting and shaping their local culture.
VM Creativ is a joint effort to create visual art by Viv Delgadillo and Matt Mateiescu. The couple’s venture combines their passion for creativity and travel to establish a location-independent business model. During our chat, they talk to us about what it’s like to run a business with a romantic partner, why burn out almost always poses a threat (even while doing something you love), and how they turn daydreaming into actionable to-do’s.
Backpacker extraordinaire Sophie Ombregt talks to us about her bumpy beginnings into traveling, what it’s really like to explore the world as a solo woman, and how to use street smarts to stay safe while on the road. Let’s give in to wanderlust with Sophie!
Ami Kim is a South Korea-based musician, sonic alchemist and spiritual ninja by way of North Carolina. Ami often incorporates influences from American soul, folk, hip-hop, jazz and electronic music into her craft as she explores topics ranging from love, to social equality, to spirituality and metaphysics.
In this interview of the Spotlight Series, South Korea-based filmmaker Matt Collamer opens up about his quest for honest and authentic storytelling, why personal and professional growth/exploration are essential to his craft, the importance of unrelentingly committing to your dreams and how he copes with the anxieties that plague the creative path.
Nicole Vasquez is a Chicago-based entrepreneur with a knack and passion for bringing people together to share ideas, exchange information and establish mixed-industry collaborations. She facilitates this process every day at The Shift, the co-working and community space she founded, by connecting fellow entrepreneurs to opportunities and resources. She frequently hosts and leads events, panels and workshops to discuss entrepreneurship, building collaborative communities, and managing co-working spaces. In 2015, Nicole was named one of the “35 Under 35 Making an Impact in Chicago,” and won the Community Award at the RedEye Chicago Big Idea Awards.
McKensie Mack is a creative, entrepreneur and communication strategist who hails from the South Side of Chicago. Her work today ranges from satirical campaigns, to language learning, to community building for women and people of color. Her interests also lie in empowering young women as she works to foster a community of strong, diverse, badass women for future generations to come. A self-proclaimed night owl with a Southern soul and a ‘bad’ attitude, she is a force to be reckoned with.
It’s hard to believe that same sex marriage has only been legalized in the US since June of 2015. Surely this ruling is a major victory for the LGBTQ community but as I learned while talking to Antonio Elizondo, there is still a long way to go. Antonio is a Chicago-based LGBTQ nationally recognized advocate working in the HIV / AIDS prevention field, with a focus on youth programming. I sat down with him to learn more about this topic, his background and why his work matters.