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Old 01-02-2015, 02:16 AM
 
1 posts, read 963 times
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Hello everyone!

I am in my early 20s and looking into moving to Portland to embark on a new chapter in life. Born and raised in Las Vegas, NV. I am sorta tired of the "f**k off" attitude of the people here. That with the lack of culture, community, and support. I'd hate to complain, but I am interested in moving to a much friendlier city to surround myself around good interesting people that I can pursue an art career.

So with some questions in mind, would someone please help to answer?

1) Whats a good way to get around besides a car?

2) Is there good prosperity for an artist? (Graphic Design, Drawing, Painting)

3) Hows the art culture?

4) Where exactly would you recommend to stay as for someone who wants to be involve with the hip scene? Such as near venues, galleries, bars, etc.

5) How are you portland people? haha


Yes you can label me as a hipster, I dont mind :P. I am just looking to place myself in a much more positive atmosphere and enriching environment in which I can support myself through an day job, plus hustling my art. Answer any question, or link me to any other threads, websites, etc. Id appreciate it.

Thank you!
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Old 01-02-2015, 07:54 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,056 posts, read 25,583,723 times
Reputation: 7808
If you live in the city, bus and biking are a great way to get around in the city. Not sure what you mean by prosperity, there is a good size art community that are all struggling to make money, but a good community of people nonetheless. The art culture is on the small scale from what some might be use to, but it is a more organic art culture that is thriving here.

In northeast near NE Alberta and 15th is a good place to stay, lots of people in the art community live throughout that area. If you look on Craigslist you might find a sublet for a short period of time where you can live in a house with a bunch of creative people to get a better feel for the type of community here.

And right now we are a little cold but doing good, it warms back up to the normal 50 and raining soon, which will be nice.
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Old 01-02-2015, 11:10 AM
 
119 posts, read 236,552 times
Reputation: 136
I think Portland would be better for what you want than Las Vegas, but then again, I'm not a huge fan of Las Vegas, and I think almost any other city in the US would be better for what you're looking for.

1) If you live and work in the core part of Portland, it's pretty easy to get around without a car. Lots of people bike to work here. Public transit is not always great, but certainly is adequate and at the risk of sounding like a broken record, much better than LV. The bus network is pretty extensive, and we have light rail, but unless you happen to live near a station, you probably wouldn't end up using it very much.

2) As you hopefully know by know, it's not easy to make a living as an artist anywhere. Never has been and never will be. If you are a skilled graphic designer with a very strong portfolio, you might be able to find work, but most of the graphic designers I've known here have struggled, although it's probably a little better now that the economy is picking up. Realistically, you'll have to find a day job and pursue your art on the side. Portland is FULL of 20-something people just like you, which is nice in one way, but means there is a lot of competition for those day jobs and it's not easy to break in coming from somewhere else, unless you have distinctive marketable skills. I would not recommend moving here without a job unless you have at least six months of living expenses saved up.

3) I'm not sure what you mean by art culture exactly, but in my opinion, it's great. I'm in my early 50s and a fairly serious amateur musician and artist (drawing and painting). I've found many great opportunities to pursue both. Sometimes I think that every Portlander under 70 is in a band. I take drawing classes at the Pacific Northwest College of Art and there's always interesting stuff going on there. The gallery scene is good for a city our size and there are some really interesting contemporary art venues (google Disjecta and Yale Union for some examples). Obviously, we don't have an art scene like NYC or LA or even Seattle, but there is plenty happening here, and I think Portland is much more down to earth than those places. I think you'd have no trouble finding like-minded people here.

4) I agree with urbanlife78, the Alberta st. area would be my top recommendation for you. So nice to see someone else on here whose in touch with the Portland of today!

If you have the time and means to do so, I would highly recommend coming here for a few weeks in the winter, so you can see for yourself what the climate is really like. If you come in summer for the first time, you will fall hopelessly in love with place and be unable to be realistic about its faults. Find a cheap place to stay on AirBNB, near Alberta st., and hang out. Alberta is non stop coffee houses, bars, restaurants, galleries and shops almost the entire way from Martin Luther King blvd. to NE 33rd Ave. Portlanders aren't always the most approachable but sometimes I think it's just shyness. Talk to random people you encounter and I think you'll quickly get a sense of whether this place is for you.

I don't think Portland is a particularly easy place to establish yourself in, but once you do, it's a wonderful place to live. Whatever you do, I think you should get out of that nightmare in Nevada you are living in now!
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Old 01-02-2015, 12:49 PM
 
4,063 posts, read 3,780,189 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kander63 View Post

4) I agree with urbanlife78, the Alberta st. area would be my top recommendation for you. So nice to see someone else on here whose in touch with the Portland of today!

!
I'll make the wise-crack that in some ways Alberta Arts district is the Portland art community of 5-10 years ago.

There's no question it's still a hub of the arts scene, but it's also gentrified quite a bit. Not on the scale of SoHo, perhaps, but it's definitely no longer up-and-coming. And Portland doesn't have rent control.

A lot of the artists I know there are established and homeowners, not struggling 20-somethings.

You can probably still rent a room for $450-600/mo with utils, but rents for stand-alone apts. aren't in 'starving artist' territory. Personally I think the real question is what is emerging as the 'next' Alberta Arts today.
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Old 01-02-2015, 01:56 PM
 
119 posts, read 236,552 times
Reputation: 136
Bler144,

OK, I would agree that Alberta St. is already well into the gentrification process. In my mind, I was reacting to the people who think NW 23rd Ave is "hip." Alberta at least has a good 10-15 years left before it starts getting Pottery Barn and Restoration Hardware et. al.

If I knew what the next Alberta Arts district was going to be, I'd be buying real estate there!
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Old 01-02-2015, 03:18 PM
 
4,063 posts, read 3,780,189 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kander63 View Post
If I knew what the next Alberta Arts district was going to be, I'd be buying real estate there!
Lol - true. I think the city has been trying to convince people that Lents is the future, but that hasn't gone so well for them.

I'd say NoPo/St. Johns, but it seems like the forces of gentrification got there before the artists.
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Old 01-06-2015, 09:05 PM
 
Location: SDL/PDX/RDU
3,285 posts, read 1,694,109 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kander63 View Post
If I knew what the next Alberta Arts district was going to be, I'd be buying real estate there!
Montavilla?
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Old 01-06-2015, 09:58 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
73 posts, read 141,426 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bler144 View Post
Personally I think the real question is what is emerging as the 'next' Alberta Arts today.
Probably Gresham.
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Old 01-06-2015, 10:02 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
73 posts, read 141,426 times
Reputation: 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by bler144 View Post
Lol - true. I think the city has been trying to convince people that Lents is the future, but that hasn't gone so well for them.

I'd say NoPo/St. Johns, but it seems like the forces of gentrification got there before the artists.
I've been in St. Johns for 15 years now, and I make my living as an artist/designer. There was a pretty great arts community that made a lot of things happen in the void. Now that the void is filled, I'm not sure I could afford this neighborhood if I were moving here today.
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Old 01-07-2015, 11:06 AM
 
2,430 posts, read 5,528,579 times
Reputation: 1216
Quote:
Originally Posted by kander63 View Post
Bler144,

OK, I would agree that Alberta St. is already well into the gentrification process. In my mind, I was reacting to the people who think NW 23rd Ave is "hip." Alberta at least has a good 10-15 years left before it starts getting Pottery Barn and Restoration Hardware et. al.

If I knew what the next Alberta Arts district was going to be, I'd be buying real estate there!
I place bets on Foster-Powell. Alberta is old news, expensive and too cool now to be an artist enclave anymore. FOPO is just starting to become cool. After that the next enclave will have to be in outer NE or SE which will be interesting, as that's the last of the cheap areas after FOPO and Lents.
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