Bold Journey Magazine feature, October 2023

Bold Journey Magazine feature, October 2023

We were lucky to catch up with Mark Rivard recently and have shared our conversation below.

Mark, thank you so much for joining us and offering your lessons and wisdom for our readers. One of the things we most admire about you is your generosity and so we’d love if you could talk to us about where you think your generosity comes from.
My career was built on being a visual artist first and foremost. As an artist who spent many years alone in the studio, deeply wrestling my own selfish thoughts and ideas, when I found an audience building I was starting to see a bigger purpose. My business and career as an artist were largely boosted by becoming a national spokesperson for Sharpie Markers in 2011. This lead to public speaking in schools and at organizations telling my personal story through the lense of my art career. I began to notice that my story was impactful on people, and being in a position to inspire was even more impactful on me. I saw myself in the kids I was meeting around the world, I understood their struggles, and I had the gift of an engaging story. Studio art is an inherently selfish endeavor, when I found the path to combining my studio practice with my public identity, a new road was paved. And nothing has ever felt better than knowing I have impacted someone.

Thanks for sharing that. So, before we get any further into our conversation, can you tell our readers a bit about yourself and what you’re working on?
I am 1-of-1 in my field. As far as I know there is nobody on Earth that does what I do. And that’s probably in part because I don’t really know what I do either. One day I may be teaching in a local high school, another I might be consulting the city on an event or skatepark build. One day I’m painting in the studio all day and selling original art, the next I’m designing product for my brand Do Rad Things. One week I’m on tour speaking at Air Force Bases, then the next I’m directing a Stage Culinary program (My Culinary Arts educational program.) at a local restaurant.

Everyday is different and it’s been built like that by design. I hate being bored and stagnant. I essentially have a constantly evolving career that is rooted in constant change and following the things I find interesting. I’m an artist first and foremost, but have a brand called Do Rad Things, I run an extensive creative arts educational service, a culinary arts education project called Stage Culinary. I’m also the co-founder of the skatepark nonprofit City of Skate, and during COVID I launched a sketch project that supports the Post Office called The Postal Express Project where people from all over the world request small sketches based on a one word prompt and they are mailed via USPS. Everyday is a new adventure.

Looking back, what do you think were the three qualities, skills, or areas of knowledge that were most impactful in your journey? What advice do you have for folks who are early in their journey in terms of how they can best develop or improve on these?
1. CONFIDENCE. If you don’t believe you can, nobody else is going to either.

2. RELATIONSHIPS. I’m not talking about attending some bullshit networking conference, I’m talking about nurturing real life relationships. Understand what a mentor is and value that person. Be authentic to those who support you or are in your life, whether they have business potential or not, never underestimate where relationships can take you… And just simply stop saying the word Networking all together. Nothing could possibly sound more disingenuous. Be authentic.

3. BE REALISTIC. If you can’t reach the net of a 10ft basketball hoop on your best jump, you’re not going to make it in the NBA. Be honest with yourself about the expectations of you business…

What is the number one obstacle or challenge you are currently facing and what are you doing to try to resolve or overcome this challenge?
Me. … let’s just be honest, you are the biggest hurdle to your own success. I’m no exception to that. I’m the absolute worst thing for myself imaginable, until I’m not. It’s not rosé and caviar everyday, and no matter where you see yourself on the success meter, there will always be another notch higher you’re punishing yourself for not reaching. We are the biggest challenges to our own goals. Nothing is really all that difficult once you just simply get started. So START.

Contact Info:

  • Website:
  • Instagram: @RivardArt.
  • Youtube: Do Rad Things


Image Credits
All images Copyright Mark Rivard.

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