Jenee Priebe helps bring the SHINE to the Sunshine City. As Director of the St. Petersburg Arts Alliance's SHINE Mural Festival, Priebe has helped transform the shared spaces and empty walls of our beloved city into an artists' paradise. The annual SHINE festival, now in its sixth year, has produced 93 murals in the city – and hundreds of others in cooperation of local businesses and it doesn't show signs of stopping.
Years in St. Pete
Organizations involved in
St. Petersburg Arts Alliance, Creative Pinellas, and I recently went through Leadership St. Pete.
What gets you out of bed every day?
Honestly, my kids calling for me. But beyond that, with SHINE, what I like about it is the opportunity to be involved in something bigger than myself. I think the murals in St. Pete are one of those things that make people really love where they live and feel proud of their city or connected to where they live, and I really like that.
Why St. Pete?
St. Pete is magic. I think there’s something really special about St. Pete. A lot of people say that, I think it’s true and for me, I need sunshine, water and art – and St. Pete does well with all three of those.
What is one habit that you keep?
Gratitude. I think for me, being mindful of my story and my vision for my life and appreciating all of the steps along the way and being thankful for I’m at in each moment helps me keep my perspective.
Who are some people that influence you?
The artists that I work with. I really love being around people who are just living in their creativity. When I was a kid, I didn’t know that you could do that. I didn’t know you could make a life being creative and make a good life. So for me, it’s really inspiring to see people who are really living in that and I think it’s really infectious.
What is one piece of insight - a book, methodology, practice - that you would share with our readers?
I just read “The Artist’s Way,” by Julia Cameron. It’s not necessarily the kind of book that you just sit down and read cover to cover, but moreso a creativity manual in some ways. The premise is that we were all created to be creative, and that some of us are just more blocked than others. So it’s almost a course of figuring out what it is that blocks you from living in your full creative potential. It’s almost like a 12-step program for recovering non-artists. I really enjoyed it and would highly recommend it.
What is one thing you wish you knew about your work 3 years ago?
That it’s okay to make mistakes, even in a public space. Mistakes are inevitable but it’s worth it to try something and take the risk, especially if you learn from it.
Shine 2020, more incredible murals!