Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Sebastian Alappat, Founder of Spark, located in New York, NY, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Spark is an integrated art program that inspires and educates children using the three pillars of art, yoga, and meditation. We are a community-driven, child-centered experience that uses this creative trifecta to kids as analog tools in an ever-increasingly digital world. Our classes emphasize fun, exploration, and creativity to bring forth the fire that lies within each child.

We believe this is needed now more than ever. Spark is a healthy and safe space for children in person and virtually for kids to breathe and be. We believe that children of all abilities and backgrounds can be inspired to create a better future. Our team of Teaching Artists shares their gifts through intuitive exploration and individualized attention to ensure children can learn, grow, and express themselves in every imaginable way.

Tell us about yourself

After a dozen years as an art director and designer, I grew sick of looking at a screen. I wanted to honor my love for art. I walked away from my Creative Director position and began a year of freelance as I figured out my next steps. A yearlong practice of drawing every day led to my first solo art show. That motivated me to keep painting and following my art.

A fortuitous lunch with a friend led to a conversation about teaching art to kids. I followed that path, and it led to the start of Spark. Since 2015, we have created a program that is based on the disciplines of art, yoga, and meditation. We offer after-school programs, private classes, pods, birthday parties, camps, and more. I am motivated by spreading the power of our program to children everywhere through myself and my team of incredible Teaching Artists.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

My biggest accomplishment has been growing the business from one student in my home to reaching several hundred a week nearly eight years later. We are in every borough of New York City, and I have employed almost 12 Teaching Artists to help me spread the Spark. By empowering these talented artists, they can build rapport with children and grow the program in schools and locations I have not, thus enabling growth.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

A hurdle or challenge can come your way when you think you have it all figured out. In those moments, it's how you respond that truly tests you.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Do your research before you start. Do this so you can create your unique selling proposition!
  2. Find what you love to do and make your work- (then it doesn't feel like work).
  3. Don't give up on yourself. Dreams aren't bankable, but work ethic and drive are.

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.

Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.