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Inspiring Stories from DTLA

The heart of our mission at VoyageLA is to find the amazing souls that breathe life into our city. In the recent weeks, we’ve had the privilege to connect with some of the LA’s finest artists, creatives, entrepreneurs and rabble rousers and we can’t begin to express how impressed we are with our city’s incredibly deep talent pool.  Check out LA’s rising stars below.

Victoria Brown

Artistry will open up its doors as a dance studio and rental facility in the Los Angeles Area. My ultimate goal is to have Artistry’s financial structure be the steam which helps offer disadvantaged children the access to gain dance training and performance opportunities. Read more>>

Katya Ilina

My first assignment as Photographer was for concert series “TONE DEATH: A Series on Pitch Disintegration” created by music journalist and promoter Dizzy Li, to whom I am endlessly grateful for trusting in me. This work and others that followed gave me the confidence to pursue this career and the lifestyle choice. Read more>>

Suna Myles

Passionate about fashion, I worked for ten years as a Visual Merchandiser. But I had started to miss the human side. So the decision to undertake in an intensive image consultant training in Europe, where I could personally help ladies experience the best version of themselves. Read more>>

Ashlei Tabor

I first bought a camera to take photos on a trip to Haiti. However, I had no idea how to use it, I had always used point and shoot cameras. Lucky for me, I had a friend that was a photographer, and he let me shadow a couple of shoots he had and taught me some of the basics. Read more>>

Sara Velas

I knew I had to make a panorama in this building – and so I did! I took this opportunity to establish the Velaslavasay Panorama – a nonprofit institution focused on creating re-interpretations of immersive, 360-panoramic paintings. Read more>>

Matthew Allen

My middle school accidentally put me into the Film Production class instead of the computer-class that I wanted to take, and from then on I was hooked. I attended USC from 2014-2018 and started off in the film production program, but switched to Law, History, and Culture halfway through my sophomore year. Read more>>

Franco Vega

We as an agency, celebrate the big and small things from getting your driver’s license to graduating from school, similar to the way families celebrate each other. The RightWay Foundation is the only agency that is there for the youth as far as we know of on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. Read more>>

Stephen McNeely

One day I met Cathy Cooper, now my bandmate and best friend for life. We started a band called The Great Sadness. While out together, we’d notice how bad show flyers had become. I decided I would hand draw ours and began to develop my own style of pointillism. Read more>>

Tevy Khou

I always loved drawing when I was a kid. I was lucky enough to have friends, family and teachers throughout my life who were really supportive of what I wanted to do. I’m an illustrator at heart, but I love all forms of art: graphic design, writing, music, sculpture, and photography to name a few. Read more>>

Suelen Romani

My experience taught me that people identify with physical images and forms that have nothing to do with the reality and natural beauty of their bodies. And so they suffer and are always dissatisfied and sad about themselves. I have shot a variety of people not only who are comfortable and used to work in front of the camera. Read more>>

Manuel Robles, Altair Padilla, and Mindee Jorgensen

Dangerously Sleazy is a Los Angeles based punk rock band. Our music stays true to the old school punk rock attitude but has a unique sound that mixes fast punk with elements of classic rock, blues, grunge, and surf. Read more>>

Cassie Marin

I have been pursuing my lifelong dream of creating music and performing since I was four years old. I started by playing the piano, which was my first instrument aside from my singing voice. I began writing compositions at age seven and slowly found myself lost in my imagination on a regular basis. Read more>>

Emanuele Marani

I always love and looking for a challenge, I think that life without challenge and risk is really boring, so after three years as a freelance in Rome, where I also had my little studio, I decided to try to come in LA and work as freelance here. This city for me is my new challenge. Read more>>

Nishat Hamid

As an academic advisor/college professor at various community colleges around Los Angeles, I have now built this brand that effortlessly combines my two passions in life- helping students and creating cake masterpieces at affordable prices. Read more>>

Keith McEly

After a couple of years of playing in a local band, the process of working a full-time job and playing music constantly became a bit difficult to juggle, so I actively took a step back from everything and began to contemplate my next move. Around this same time, I really began to get into craft beer and home brewing. Read more>>

Linda Arroz

My interest in design carries over to architectural preservation and spent a few years renovating a Queen Anne Victorian home in the historic neighborhood of Angelino Heights and continue my efforts to help preserve Los Angeles’ vast architectural history. Read more>>

Jasmin “Esoteric Esa” Alejandrez-Prasad

For the most part, I like the majority of people in Latin culture, had a predominantly negative connotation around the metaphysical arts. It wasn’t until I started connecting more with my lineage that I discovered what I once considered taboo is actually my ancestral birthright. Read more>>

Naia Izumi

My eyes and heart lit up, and that’s where it all began. Moved to LA summer of 2013 work was scarce so I decided to street perform to make my living because shows don’t pay unless you have a significant following, and no one wanted a transgender guitarist. Read more>>

Lila Rose

LA naturally felt like the next step for my personal life and my business, seeing as it’s one of the music centers of the world. It also meets my needs for a warmer climate, and a place where I can be around like-minded individuals: animal rights activists, spiritual types, and creative edge walkers. Read more>>


I started as a singer in a band back in my home state of Massachusetts. Being a frontman gave me the confidence to try standup comedy, and I really took to that mode of expression. After a year of cutting my teeth in the Boston comedy clubs, I moved to New York City. Read more>>

Mack Goldsbury

I’ve got two Grammy nominations for best Jazz soloist and best overall Jazz record. Pretty tough competition since I was up against the likes of Miles Davis and Chick Corea! Okay, that was in 1989 before a lot of your readers were even born. Read more>>

Josh Desure

Seeing people dive on top of each other so they can get a few words into that microphone or stage dive made me fall in love. People being more passionate than anything else I’ve witnessed before. I knew then that’s where I want to be, that’s what I want to do. So I picked up a guitar and learned a few chords. Read more>>

Martell “Telly” Shannon, and Brian “BE” Ruffin

We became friends as adults, which is rare. After separately attempting to succeed in other ventures. We came together to create a clothing business, instead of just coming up with a catchy name or phrase that might be popular at the time. We decided to think of something we lived by. Read more>>

Tennessee Kamanski

I moved to LA two years ago from Las Vegas. This feels like home for now- my Grandpa grew up in Eagle Rock, he used to tell me about stealing eclairs there when he was in “The Black Widow Spider Gang.” So I have plenty of history to draw from here. Read more>>

Hyden Yoo

Hyden has been the creative head of his label since 2008. The Hyden Yoo collection is developed for every man for every day and every night. Hyden has also since started the easily accessible streetwear brand Standard Issue. Hyden now lives in Venice, CA and designs out of his studio in DTLA. Read more>>

Megan Prescott

I started acting at the age of 15. I starred as ‘Katie Fitch’ on seasons three and four of the UK drama ‘Skins’ which later aired all over the world. I have been acting ever since Skins, but now I also write and create my own short films. I spent the last year living in LA, where my twin sister lives with her amazing rescue bulldog, Marge! Read more>>

Cierra Brooks

I decided to move to take the risk of “trying” LA out for at least one month, well one year and a few months later I’m still here. My story is meant to inspire and show others that anything you want to do can be obtained with the right mindset and consistency. Always follow your heart and make sure what you do always counts. Read more>>

Eser Tozum

As a conference interpreter, I have worked internationally at summits and conferences of organizations such as the European Union and the United Nations. I have traveled the world from Africa to Australia. I had the privilege to work with prime ministers of countries such as Germany, Turkey, and Holland. Read more>>


As an artist, my journey began much long ago. I started to express my passion for music around eight years old at a Tommy The Clown birthday party in South Central. I never actually started to pursue making my own music professionally until I was around 14 years old. I didn’t get access to a studio until I was about 15 years old. Read more>>

Farida Amar

I never thought I would end up running a publication, but now that I am I can see how it pulls from every aspect of my past learnings and challenges me everyday in new ways. I can’t imagine doing anything else. Except for flying, I am still doing that, and I am now working on a commercial fixed-wing license. Read more>>

Louis Easton

The Plant Mon believes in creating better and more eco-friendly alternatives to contemporary flower and plant arrangements using the newest science and academic approaches. He is proud and excited to be at the forefront of a new revolution in gardening and providing a better quality service for all customers. Read more>>

Francisco Moreno

Many people were doing drugs or joining gangs or making friends at school. I kind of got bullied a lot almost every day and there was no escape from that, people would tell me just to take it like a man, but honestly, I lost myself a lot more in music than anything else. Read more>>

Rosecleer Johnson

I graduated from Le Cordon Bleu and immediately began working as a personal chef. With art always being a driving force I wanted to marry the two and I developed a great interest in Food Styling/Food media and began working in that field simultaneously. Read more>>

Joy Kim

I started teaching which I am passionate about. I teach my students for many months to ensure their success. (Other academies are only few days long typically). I am proud of say all my graduates are working except for the ones doing continuing education. Read more>>

Chiamaka Offorjebe

I discovered modeling and was signed to a modeling agency called Bounty LA last summer. My path with modeling was accidental. It began with a small birthday shoot I did, and from there, photographers reached out to me for collaborations and soon I was representing clothing brands like Obawear. Modeling helped me discover a new confidence in myself that I never knew I had and opened a lot of amazing doors for me. Read more>>

Allison Peck

Growing up in Sacramento, I knew from my first conscious moments that art was my calling. When I graduated high school, I moved to LA to study art at Occidental. After graduation, I taught art in continuation schools, camps, and underserved neighborhoods for a few years. Nearing burnout from health issues and working multiple jobs, I knew something had to change. I enrolled in the MFA program at Otis in 2012. Read more>>

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