Art vs Tech, NFTs and Starting from Scratch with Sabela Garcia Cuesta
I have known Sabela for some time. We used to work together at WeWork, and when she left the company, we stayed "Instagram Friends". She wasn't known to me as an artist when we worked together, but I was amazed when I started seeing her work on Instagram.
She was recently named "the psychedelic Picasso," and her drawings are a bundle of joy and celebration of color. When you ask her to define herself, she thanks God for NFT as she no longer needs to select between being a techy or an artist, and she can finally embrace both.
Sabela says that as a child, she was a nerd, always had good grades, and was very competitive. One day she realized she memorized her school notes in colors and drawings.
The Spark to Change
Sabela defines herself as a born artist and admits to having unlimited creative ideas daily. Still, she remembers growing up being told things like "you'll never be able to make it" or "if you are a full-time artist, you will be very poor and have a life full of struggles," so she chose to work in tech instead. Being let go from WeWork forced Sabela to recalculate her future and turn to her passion, art, now from an entrepreneurial angle.
If you speak to Sabela about NFT, you'd think she's been in this world for years. The fact is she learned it all by doing. After leaving her tech job, she decided to be an entrepreneur. She started her own CBD brand working on everything from scratch including its brand, which she named "Art District". While building her company she started drawing more, getting invited to shows and galleries, selling her art, and being asked to lead creative remote workshops for employees during Covid.
One of the events she attended was Art Basel's show in Miami and that's where she was first introduced to the world of NFT. NFT hit home because Sabela never saw herself working alone in a studio, and getting into NFT allowed her to do so much more: Create, have a community, and earn money by doing what she loves.
Sabela's first NFT experience led her to actually lose money, but she takes it lightly and refers to it as her "tuition cost". She wrote a blog post about it, which led to her being invited to the What's Next Wall Street show. All this publicity now means more of her art is sold.
Sabela's Mental Health Tips
Find inspiration. Find inspiration in the little things in life: a new recipe that you try, a book, an article, or a conversation.
Express yourself. When you feel frustrated, devastated, upset, or happy and excited - emotions build up. Explore ways to externalize them without hurting other people.
Set up a goal. Or many little ones. Be aware of what you have accomplished after a determined time frame you set up. The feeling of self-fulfillment is irreplaceable.
Take risks. If you don't do it, you will regret it forever. If you do it and regret it, at least you experienced it. Worst case scenario: you learn.
Don't kill your creativity. Don't let yourself get influenced by what people say about your ideas and work. Allow yourself to be playful, test new things, experiment. Even if it doesn't work, at least you had the opportunity to find it out by yourself.
Work in teams. Find people who like working with you and who stand for the same as you do. Teamwork makes life easier and more enjoyable.
Her Future Self
Sabela found a way to remove her debilitating inner thoughts and thrive as an artist. She even wrote about it. Sabela wants to continue being an artist, use her tech skills, and affect people in her community. You can follow her travel and meet her IRL or see her art in the Metaverse.