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Inspiring Stories from the North-West Side

The heart of our mission at VoyageChicago 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 Chicago’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 rising stars from the North West side below.

Saba and Imran Osmani

VivirMed is a clinic my brother and I created to be able to better serve our community. To be able to give back to the community is what we had aspired the moment we decided to go into the field of medicine. Even though we hadn’t faced similar kinds of hardships my parents and grandparents faced as a result of being born and raised in the United States, we can confidently say we inherited the same kind of compassion and commitment to be good doctors. Read more>>

Eva la Feva

I started belly dancing in college -. I loved feeling in control of my body and learning about the history of the art form. I began performing belly dance acts in variety shows and quickly got hooked – and often I would perform in burlesque shows alongside circus, sideshow, and and other variety performers. Read more>>

Lauren Barajas

I was seventeen years old when I first getting into photography. I then attended a two week intense training photography class in Manitou Springs Colorado in 2010 and 2011. I fell in love with the art of capturing people and nature through my camera lens. Read more>>

Patryk Ruta

I was always an athlete since I was a little kid. Being active and exercising were always in my life. I decided to make it my career and decided to study Exercise and Sports Studies at Robert Morris University. While finishing up my college soccer career and getting a degree I started to look into being a personal trainer/strength and conditioning coach. Read more>>

Rachel Loomis

Art and creating has always been a huge part of my life and who I am. I grew up getting art classes from my mom who also loves art and attended RISD for a time. She started me on my creative journey. I remember finding all of her old art supplies and being handed down art bins, portfolios, pastels, and much more. Read more>>

Sarah Beidatsch

I’ve been taking pictures for a real long time, one of my favorite gifts when I was little was a teeny Nikon Coolpix from my grandparents. I was on my high school’s yearbook staff for a couple of years, and I took “headshots” (if you could call them that) for our drama club. Photography is something that’s been consistent in my life. Read more>>

Ted Sollinger

I started my return to art about three years ago after a 16 year absence. At the same time, I started my transition from a career in retail to one centered on art and building a creative community. My business, Otter Art Studio, is not only my studio space for me to create, but it is also a space for fellow artists to visit, to share knowledge, work together and discuss our views on art and how art is still relevant. Read more>>

Galina Tarantul

I truly believe that people have a calling in life. There is something that we all really enjoy doing, which we can do every single day in our life without getting tired, something that we truly believe in and are passionate about. For me that passion is Photography. I know that through my work I can capture memories, feelings, and beauty of people that I get to work with. Read more>>

Darya Stefanovic

I have worked in the architecture field since I was a high school student; I loved the premise of the profession but I was getting bored of the office life and drained physically and emotionally. My true passion has always been design in general: whether it is utilitarian, playful, or experimental. Read more>>

Shawn Tegtmeier

Quit smoking when I was 36, after smoking like it was my job for 18 years. 3 years and 40+ pounds later I joined Weight Watchers and slowly lost the weight. During this time I started running, slowly. Steadily. I started taking classes at MCC to learn more about exercise and how to eat, stretch… all that good stuff. Read more>>

Rosie Pieroni, Nick Pieroni

Chandelier Circus is a circus troupe comprised of performers from the Chicago and Milwaukee areas. Most of our performers me while training at performing with the Gamma Phi Circus at Illinois State University. We all had a passion for performing that extended beyond their college years. Read more>>

Abby Alley

It all started back in 2013 when I (Abby) went to teach primary school in Arusha, Tanzania. Seeing firsthand how difficult it is for many Tanzanians to find a job that paid enough to support their families, I knew I wanted to do something to get involved. Read more>>

Benjamin Caughlin

I completed my residency at the University of Illinois at Chicago where I trained with some of the leaders in facial plastic surgery. This was followed by a fellowship in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery to gain specialized training in at the University of California in Orange County. Read more>>

Pavel Adamek, Kristen Adamkova

Pavel bought his very first camera in 2013 and shot his first wedding in 2014. Since then, he has shot over 40 weddings , with many more to come. Very soon after we got eloped in 2015, both our passions for people and art as a medium of expression merged into what is now the family business, The Adamkovi. Read more>>

Thierry Roger

Originally from France, Thierry Roger studied fashion and art at L’ecole des Beaux Arts de Tours. While in Paris, Mr. Roger continued his study of fashion and later worked for the House of Guy Laroche. He moved to Chicago in 1990 and made his fashion mark quickly, his biography includes a line of couture evening wear for Henri Bendel and Barneys. Read more>>

Debbie Forrester

I have been a life-long fiber enthusiast. I learned to knit as a child then took up crochet as a teenager then back to knitting for the past 20 years. It has been my creative outlet and a way to make unique personal gifts for family and friends. It was a natural progression to begin learning to dye. Read more>>

Wendy Altschuler

I grew up with panoramic snow-capped Montana-mountain views, saturated with lodgepole pines, western larches, beargrass, twin flowers and sage. I also grew up dirt poor, with zero resources and no safety net. I witnessed my family struggle in heart breaking ways and I knew that I would have to claw my way out of that narrative and create a new one, a happier one. Read more>>

Charlie Otto

I escaped college with a finance/accounting degree in 2006, forcibly forgot every lesson learned, got a job as a barback at a music venue named martyrs, started a bunch of bands, and that’s that. Pretty smooth, things are easy for reasonably privileged white males. Read more>>

Amanda Schneider

Here’s where it all began: I was introduced to the world of contract office furniture straight out of school. I started in 2001 as a product designer for Allsteel, a division of HNI and one of the largest companies in our industry. At that time, just post “dot-bomb” you can imagine it was a pretty tumultuous time to be in furniture as not many companies were expanding office space. Read more>>

Chantel Ferraro

I would LOVE to say that from day 1, I had a SURE vision for myself and what I wanted to be when I grew up. I have always admired those who seemed to have it all together. You know, those who just KNOW where they belonged and fit in this world. As I mature personally as a woman, mother, and now entrepreneur and partner with my husband Mike Ferraro, I have come to accept and be proud of the journey I have traveled this far. Read more>>

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