It takes a lot for someone to pivot from their 9-to-5 job to a career in live streaming and content creation. Especially during a time in which a shaky economy causes many to refrain from taking such a risk. That's not the case for Vantana aka "Vantanart," however. Once he told the world that he quit his job to pursue a brand new endeavor as a Twitch streamer, Vantanart confidently embarked on an exciting journey that's fulfilling him and his followers thus far. What we have here is a rising variety streamer, a talented illustrator, and a man devoted to his craft as a yoga instructor. ONE37pm reached out to Vantanart and he decided to expound on his passions, his experiences as a POC/LGBTQ+ in the game streaming space, and more.
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ONE37pm: So I read that you have three loves in life - drawing/painting, yoga, and gaming. How'd you develop your passion for art as a whole?
Vantanart: This is a great question. Growing up as a creative I've always loved visual art like painting, drawing, photography, etc. I'm also very passionate about music, health, and wellness. Back in 2015, I wanted to come up with a name or signature that encompassed all of my passions in one. I took my name Vantana and put my art into it. Giving myself the creator name "Vantanart." I believe that the way you live life is an art and that we are all artists of many crafts. Life is art and art is life.
ONE37pm: Walk me through everything that inspired you to take up yoga.
Vantanart: Years ago, I created a new lifestyle for myself. I started doing a lot of meditating and had a whole new outlook on life, health, and fitness. I've always jokingly imagined myself being a yoga instructor but never thought I would have the motivation or the funds to go out and do so. Yoga isn't the most accessible thing for most, especially minorities. I fell in love with it, and I wanted to be able to give the gift of yoga to friends, family, and everyone I cross paths with. Yoga has truly been a vehicle for me and it allows me to help others which I love.
ONE37pm: Now give me a breakdown of what kickstarted your love for gaming.
Vantanart: I've been playing video games for as long as I can remember. I can't remember the first game I've ever played but the PlayStation One was my first console. My younger brother and I loved every kind of game and we would play them more than often. I had no idea that gaming would be where it is today and it's truly a full-circle moment that I've found my way back to my love for it. If you would've told me that I'd have my own show on the internet making art and playing video games, I would've never believed you. Gaming is something that has never left me and I'm grateful that I rediscovered my love for it.
ONE37pm: What made you want to begin live streaming on Twitch?
Vantanart: I used to come home from my day job and play one of my favorite games Fortnite. It was a way for me to unwind from long days and just relax. When the quarantine happened in 2020, I used to play with a few of my friends and they joked about us streaming on Twitch. I had no idea about the live streaming industry until that moment. I started out streaming yoga and playing Fortnite. I've been streaming ever since.
ONE37pm: What games would you say give you the most joy while playing on stream?
Vantanart: I'd have to say anything retro. Video games were a huge part of my childhood so when I played games from the early 2000s like GoldenEye 007 or titles like The Sims. It makes me really happy and brings back a lot of great nostalgia. My two favorite games I've ever streamed were The Urbz and Def Jam: Fight For NY.
ONE37pm: As a POC (person of color) and LGBTQ+ streamer, have you bonded with fellow streamers from both groups? And how would you describe the sense of unity among them?
Vantanart: Absolutely. I've made some really genuine connections through streaming. I think the sense of community on Twitch is like nothing I've ever seen. I've never met so many bright individuals in one space. Going into streaming, I didn't think I would find so many communities that resonated with me. I think that marginalized gamers have a bigger reach than ever before and it's all because of those bright individuals using their voices. We're stronger together, and the strength and passion that exists in this community make me really proud to be a part of it.
ONE37pm: What would you say are some essential tips for those looking to approach Twitch streaming as a full-time job?
Vantanart: One tip I would give is to never stop learning. There is so much information out there that could completely change the way you see and think about streaming. Being honest about your goals and what you're doing to achieve them is key. Constantly evolve your content and keep it fresh and fun for both yourself and the people watching. Lastly, shoot all the shots and set yourself up for success.