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Buckhead’s Hidden Gems

Every day we have a choice. We can support an up and coming podcaster, try a new family-run restaurant, join a boutique gym started by a local fitness champ or we could keep giving away our money to the handful of giants who already control so much of our commerce. Our daily decisions impact the kind world we live in; if we want a world where small businesses are growing and artists and creatives are thriving then we should support them with our time, money and attention. We’re proud to highlight inspiring creatives and entrepreneurs each week in Hidden Gems series.  Check out some of Buckhead’s gems below.

Essence Sylvia Smith

When I was preparing to graduate college in 2015, people kept asking me “what I was going to do next?” My response was “I’m going to finesse my way through life.” It made people laugh but I was so serious. I had no idea what I wanted to do in life but I wanted to finesse my way through it. Read more>>

Brandon W. Jones

I’m from the Detroit area, moved to Atlanta to attend Clark Atlanta University. After graduation, I’ve held several positions within the CPG (Consumer Packaged Goods) industry working with Campbell’s Soup, Power Crunch Protein Bar and most recent Aquahydrate. Read more>>

Mukari Rashad

Your Morning Wood was founded January 2018 after I (Owner & Founder) was unexpectedly fired from a television project. Every day, I was challenged and kept fighting until one day, things clicked. I sat in my small apartment home on the couch thinking, “What’s something I spend a lot of money on, that I can do myself and make a profit?” The Answer: CANDLES! Read more>>

Tyler Watkins

My love for fashion started at about 18 months old. My grandparents were my inspiration. I was their first grandchild and both of them loved to shop for me. But mostly my Papa. At 18 months, I was told that I had around 20 plus pairs of shoes. Every outfit was paired with matching shoes. Read more>>

Tal Shlafman

My journey begins when I first watched Rocky at my grandma’s house in Israel (where I lived my first 24 years of life). Somewhere along with all the air punching and panting I had this feeling of empowerment, I felt I could do anything. Obviously, I couldn’t do much back then, as I was only around seven years old. but that didn’t stop me from beginning my dream. Read more>>

Kyle Lee

How I started – I wanted to start doing something on the side I could invest my energy into. I started to get serious about starting my line from figuring out the design to deciding what I wanted to sell. I started to order samples and get my website and things in order and went from there, eventually launching ‘Koûteux’ which stands for expensive in French on my birthday October 3rd. Read more>>

Sydney Watson

Hey, guys! I’m also known as Swatso. Originally from Columbia, Maryland, I made my way to Atlanta almost five years ago! Back in the DMV, I collaborated with some friends and local photographers in the area. I attended a photog meetup for fun and was reached out to local artists after. Read more>>

Ashley Banks

Since I was a child, I’ve always loved writing. I saw it as my outlet. I’ve always been told I have a way with words. Once my mother passed away from breast cancer, I spent my life feeling lost. No one in my family ever took the time to sit down with me and explain what happened or why. Read more>>

Lily Thomas

My full “photography + videography” story started a couple of years ago when I was attending college. I felt a little lost, trying to figure out what I wanted my major to be. Over time, I actually dropped out and fully took on photo and video as my career. It was a slow and scary process at first. Read more>>

Jennifer Teubl

My time at the hospital ended when a colleague approached me about joining a group practice, almost four years ago. I was thrilled to have a new opportunity to do therapy with individuals, families, and couples. Since then, I’ve opened up my solo practice in Atlanta where I have the honor to assist clients to be their best selves, discover their strengths, and walk through healing pain from the past. Read more>>

Mia Rio

Singing had always been my favorite creative outlet though, and I did quite a bit of acting too, mainly street theater as well as school and church musicals and plays, but making a career out of these things was never in my plans. I wanted to go safe with a salaried job that guaranteed me a solid financial future. Read more>>

Brittany Garman

After college and having worked in the interior design field for several years, I got the idea for my first startup, BashBLOK; a web application for planning and managing personal events. I saw a need for a consumer based event planning platform and decided to take the leap of faith to build an app! From here, the true learning really began. Read more>>

Sekou Saunders

I love what I do and what’s been created. The feeling of seeing people that just met laughing together. Or their faces when they’re blown away by the experience they had that do. Even the aftermath, a couple of weeks later when I receive that thank you again text or email. Our group trips now average about 25 people per trip. We go to a different country, at least every other month. Read more>>

Anthony Makeen

Over the years, I’ve had an absolute pleasure of discovering avenues to share my gifts and gaining experience in the areas that I wanted to turn up my hustle in. It’s purely my drive and faith that got me to where I’m at today because I’ve experienced many obstacles where I should’ve, not could’ve, but literally should’ve just thrown in the towel and have come away with wins. Read more>>

Elizabeth Rudd

The best way to provide superior and comprehensive care is to give undivided attention to each patient. Insurance constricts us as physical therapists in so many ways, making it impossible to provide thorough and well-rounded care. Thus, I do not contract with insurance companies. Read more>>

Martina Lindo

I could never decide if I was Jamaican or American. And it sounds silly but I felt like I always had to choose. I felt like it created problems for me in every aspect of the world. So again, I would write. Stories upon stories about a young girl who wanted to be free to just be! I found comfort in adolescent characters on TV and in movies. Read more>>

Lesa Wilson

I started my career when I was in high school. At that time, there was a partnership between all the local high schools and a trade school that allowed us to dive into a trade before we graduated. I chose Radio and Television broadcasting. This led to a job as a radio DJ and then another job in television with our local Comcast affiliate. Read more>>

John Paul Van Wert

Shooting sports was an eye-opening experience because I experienced each sport on an intimate level: the sidelines. Action shots are cool, but I always gravitated toward portraits of players who just walked off the field. I made some work that I’m still proud of to this day. I knew at that point that photography was more than just a hobby for me. Read more>>

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