Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Viviana Puello, CEO of ArtTour International Magazine, located in New York, NY, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I'm the CEO of ArtTour International Magazine, the premier multi-media platform promoting artists worldwide with a reach of over 10 million viewers in 180+ countries. Our platform comprises an art magazine we distribute in print in Barnes & Noble stores and digital format on Apple iTunes, Issuu, and PressReader. We also have a TV Show on Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire through Vivid Arts Network TV. And we help artists expose their works by organizing international exhibitions and live events, among them the famous ATIM's Top 60 Masters, which the media have nicknamed the "Oscars of the Visual Arts."
Tell us about yourself
I'm an artist, curator, best-selling author, media producer, TV host, and founder of ArtTour International Magazine, Artists For A Green Planet, and Create 4 Peace. My story is one of passion and resilience. In my best-seller book, "You Are The Masterpiece: An Artist's Journey From Homelessness To Triumph," I share my experience as a homeless immigrant woman, the challenges of being an artist in contemporary society, and my road to becoming the person I am today.
I'm passionate about art and helping individual artists succeed because I believe in art as a vehicle to raise global consciousness and make this world a better place. I'm also an environmentalist and a volunteer leader of the Climate Reality Project, trained by former Vice President Al Gore. Therefore, two of our publications at ArtTour International Magazine are dedicated to raising awareness about environmental conservations and issues affecting Mother Earth.
I also host "The ArtTour International Show," a weekly TV series on Vivid Arts Network TV, and "The Winner's Journey," a podcast where I showcase entrepreneurs' inspiring stories. My non-profit organizations "Artists For A Green Planet" and "Create4Peace.org" help artist-activists promoting environmental and social initiatives find a voice.
What makes me wake up every morning? My passion for life and the desire and excitement to create something new. I love the process of creation.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
As a business owner, the most significant accomplishment is to witness how our services and products help the life of our clients. For example, I've enjoyed seeing the lives of many artists transformed and their careers skyrocket through the publicity we do for them. It's great to see how artists reach international recognition when we present them with ATIM'S Top 60 Masters Awards. Being there for the journey is an immense joy. Some of our clients are artists who worked with me before the creation of ArtTour International, so I've seen them grow not only during the twelve years that ATIM has been active but even before that. Being able to offer them through our services life-changing experiences is very fulfilling.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
I don't use the word hard; I prefer to say 'challenging' because it helps set my rebellious self in motion to overcome obstacles. The most challenging part of being a business owner is finding a work/life balance. In my case, there's a gray line separating both. I'm passionate about what we do, which has caused me to overwork myself occasionally and get sick. But because I enjoy what I do, I don't know when to stop. I've become a lot better at it; with time comes wisdom.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Discover your passion and let your motivation to start a business be your desire to help others with your love. Don't just start a business for the sake of it; you'll get burned quickly. Instead, when you follow your passion, you'll have an inner fire that will keep you going during tough times.
- Do your work of research, create a business plan, and set goals and study to become better in any field that will help you succeed. But don't go in blindly. Passion is excellent, and optimism is a must, but knowledge is also necessary. In business, ignorance is not bliss.
- Get up and do it. Don't wait to get everything ready because that might never happen. So get up, get to work, start creating and start developing with what you have now. Even if you go slow, you are walking towards fulfilling your dream. Someday might never come. Your power lies in what you do today.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
Believe in yourself. Most people think that they need to take the newest course or learn the trending business tips because it will help them live the life of their dreams. My approach is different. I believe you first need to BE so that you can DO everything you want. It is not knowledge that will inspire you to take action; it's believing in yourself and your power—the awareness of your greatness—that will move you.
I want to invite everyone to read my book "You Are The Masterpiece: An Artist Journey From Homelessness To Triumph" and discover how amazing we are. If you need a dose of inspiration or if you feel down and need a push. Download the book here. It will help you tremendously.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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