Meet the Periscope Class of 2021: Bliss Cortez, Reza Filsoofi, Sarah Clinton, and Stephcynie Curry

Meet the Periscope Class of 2021! Each week we will be introducing this year’s creative class leading up to the culminating Periscope Pitch + Artist Entrepreneur Showcase on Sept. 8! Meet Bliss Cortez, Reza Filsoofi, Sarah Clinton, and Stephcynie Curry!

Sponsored by Piedmont Natural Gas Foundation and Fifth Third Bank.

Bliss Cortez

Your local trash-gremlin who does event and video production with a passion for repurposing trashed and abandoned items! This led me to reach out to those I have collaborated with in order to source supplies that would have been discarded otherwise. Creativity manifests in numerous ways, including mutual aid!
I established the mutual aid organisation, Bliss and the Trash Plants, which  provides community-building programming, education, and resources to bring relief to marginalised beings within numerous demographics, and promote self-sufficiency. I have been able to offer plants, grocery and essentials kits, first aid items, house furnishings, and art supplies to the community. This all became crucial to people after the 2020 tornado and the city shutting down due to co-vid. In 2020, I curated nearly 200 kits of food and essentials—each built with each individual/family’s allergy and dietary restrictions in mind. This all brought positive outlets and mental wellness to those in need.
Periscope has been a great way to validate the steps I have already taken with the organisation, as well as assisted me in finding the balance of being an entrepreneur, artist, and activist. I would definitely recommend it to another artist for those reasons!

Reza Filsoofi

I am an Iranian musician, playing Iranian music. I use the term Iranian to include folk, classic, and contemporary music to describe the genre. Iranian music has a deep connection to Persian literature. Persian poetry has been regarded as spiritual and a source of wisdom, peace, divine love, and appreciation for life. I must add that the combination of poetry and music in its best form is in Sufi Mystical Music, which is not only beautiful and uplifting, but also promotes and encourages respectful and compassionate behavior toward others in the world. I believe my music is inspired by such ideology. My ultimate goal is to not only make connections with my audience, but also create a safe place for them to connect with others while they are experiencing such a divine sound. Caravan Ensemble has served such a purpose during the past few years. I have performed with other artists in South Florida and we have united audiences from different practices and background with them, with us.

I joined the Periscope 2020, I learned a lot from all presenters during our eight weeks program  plus got  connected with amazing Group of Artists and I will be always in touch with my teammates.

Sarah Clinton
Visual Art

I am a painter and mixed-media artist who creates paintings that tell a story, often using paper and fabric embedded into the detail of my pieces. My Periscope experience helped me identify what to outsource, and provided a diverse sounding board for ideas and perspectives from the small group discussions and organized breakouts.

I recommend the Periscope program to anyone wanting to strengthen their creative business and make connections with super-talented people.

Stephcynie Curry

I am a singer, performer and songwriter. I have a passion for creating opportunities for myself and my community that will help us all sustain as full time artists. I believe artistry is a career that can be just as secure as a corporate job if we do that work. I want to change the stereotype around artistry being a hobby or a side hustle, because for me it’s neither of those things. Periscope has helped me streamline how I approach my business. I’ve learned actionable steps that are steering me in the direction I’ve always felt was a challenge. I just never fully understood how to get here and now I get it. Being an entrepreneur in any field is a challenge, but because being an artist is such a personal career it can be hard to seperate the business from my person. Periscope has helped me do that. I would suggest that any artist who wants to TRULY understand how their art can operate as a business join the Periscope program. There is so much support and so many resources that make it almost impossible to not succeed once you’ve completed the program.