2 Minutes With … LaTecia Johnson, Founder of Visionary Rising

On launching the creative studio to help artists control their destinies

LaTecia is a senior entertainment and technology executive and entrepreneur at the intersection of culture, community and creativity. As founder of Visionary Rising (VSNRY)—a creative studio for ambitious brands and creators ready to scale—she's focused on building safe digital spaces while doing innovative work for rising and global acts.

Her career includes stints at companies such as Apple, Microsoft and Nielsen Media, as well as high-growth startups Decent Labs, A Cloud Guru, Cash App and more.

We spent two minutes with LaTecia to learn more about her background, her creative inspirations and recent work she's admired.

LaTecia, tell us …

Where you grew up, and where you live now.

I grew up in Tampa Bay and now I live in Austin because I can get to either coast in under four hours. 

Your earliest musical memory.

Riding in the back of my parents' car singing Janet Jackson when I was 2 or 3 years old. I loved Rhythm Nation and couldn't get enough of it when I was at that age—still can't. 

Your favorite bands/musicians today.

Beyoncé is my favorite artist today. I also have Janelle Monáe, Amber Mark, Tems, Maggie RogersBNZN and other Afrobeats artists in heavy rotation.

One of your favorite projects you've ever worked on.

The Diplo release on Royal. This was his first time selling royalties directly to his fans. The release sold out in a few minutes and went on to win a Grammy. It was a really great experience working with the Diplo team to pull that together during one of the busiest times.

A recent project you're proud of.

I'm really proud of Visionary Rising, my creative studio and consultancy that I launched in 2016. This is something I will forever be proud of. Everything that happened in the first few years was through sheer determination. Now, the business is a go-to partner for emerging creators and creator-focused startups. We've worked with some of the biggest names in the industry like Wethos and Storyblocks, which are revolutionizing how creators get started. We have remained true to our vision: to be a space where creatives of all types can do their best work.

One thing about how the music world is evolving that you're excited about.

Music hasn't historically been looked on as part of the creator economy. But the great thing about all of these emerging technologies, like AI and Blockchain, is they have streamlined the process and put artists in full control of their careers, perhaps for the first time. That's forcing everyone to take stock of how the industry serves artists. Let's not forget that they are the heartbeat of everything. If artists aren't thriving and making music we love, there is no industry. In 20 or 30 years, we'll look back at what's happening now as the moment of change. 

Someone else's work, in music or beyond, that you admired lately.

Janelle Monaé. I really loved the way she rolled out her latest album. The Wondaland team did a phenomenal job of integrating existing fans and introducing new ones to Monaé in a really authentic way that is sometimes missing in today's rollouts.  

I'm also a huge fan of my friend, Noel Tantinyá. He's a creative director who has worked for Netflix, Nike and Cashapp. Name a great brand that exists today and Noel has probably worked with them. I'm a huge fan of people who are passionate about their work, bring out the best in everyone and just make the world better. That's Noel times 10! 

A book, movie, TV show or podcast you recently found inspiring.

I can't get enough of Vibrate Higher Daily by Lalah Delia. I'm a huge mindfulness advocate, and her work has been instrumental in how I approach releasing things that don't serve me. I highly recommend this read. 

An artist you admire outside the world of music.

Shonda Rhimes. She gave us Crossroads, Grey's Anatomy, Scandal AND How to Get Away with Murder. Please preserve that woman at all costs. 

Your favorite fictional character.

Issa Dee. It's not even a competition. 

Someone worth following in social media.

Drew De Leon. I enjoy his take on the music industry and the community he's building. He's also someone who cares deeply about his work and brings out the best in everyone. 

Your main strength as a marketer/creative.

Making the intangible tangible by remaining curious and open to dreaming. I always tell clients to bring me their biggest ideas and we'll figure out how to make it happen. 

Your biggest weakness.

Wanting to do everything all at the same time. My partner has to constantly remind me that I am human and there is a time and a place for things. 

What you'd be doing if you weren't in the music business.

Selling and renovating real-estate. I'm probably an HGTV host already.

2 Minutes With is our regular interview series where we chat with creatives about their backgrounds, creative inspirations, work they admire and more. For more about 2 Minutes With, or to be considered for the series, please get in touch.

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