He found a passion in telling stories through imagery and wanted to use this gift to do more than just take pictures or be an artist. He was interested in education and community development and took this passion to RIT where he got his Masters in Imaging arts. During this time, he had the chance to teach a lot with regards to photo education and visual literacy. He has been able to share his passion through working in various non-profits such as Americorps in Wisconsin. He ended up moving back to Detroit as he saw an opportunity to incorporate photography with other projects. D:Hive provides a great interdisciplinary environment and a diverse creative environment.
One of my biggest questions in life is how one figures out what their passions are. I have yet to figure this out for myself and Matt provided a great way to understand how to understand one’s passions. Matt said you can discover your passions by being able to, Wake up in the morning and when you’re trying to think of what to do, your passions make you jump out of bed. Your passions are what you think/daydream about during your spare time, it’s where your mind drifts to. I think this is a great description because it shows that your passions are something that inherently make you happy. You can’t force your passion onto yourself, you simply have to search for it.
Another aspect of Matt has been his perseverance and his ability to be himself and accept himself. He is gay and struggled with his own identity as a youth. As he has grown older, he has been able to accept who he is and follow his passions. Moving back to Detroit was also a part of his identity as he now lives with his partner who is an engineer at GM.
When asked about social entrepreneurship and the role of D:Hive in the future of Detroit. Matt replied by describing social entrepreneurship as something that goes beyond a sustainable business plan, it’s about growing and supporting community. It’s about your neighbors and the people on your block, it’s goes beyond providing just economic support. D:Hive will be playing a role in Detroit’s future by serving as a public space where anyone can come in and connect to the resources where they live. It will help make connections and information more accessible. All of these were part of the reasons Matt chose to join D:Hive. D:Hive is about working on a problem without a clear solution and the reason one is excited to wake up and jumps out of bed is to help find that answer.