This week we are working with Katrina Brees, a local New Orleans Artist who is the brains behind I ♥ Louisiana as well as the Mardi Gras Krewe, the Bearded Oysters. Our task this week is to help Katrina formalize and launch a business that provides Carnival props and entertainment for any sort of gathering. They are ready to transform celebrations and work to bring “one nation under a groove”


Check out updates from the week below!

The 'Me' Mobile

52 Businesses Blog Day 1: KOLOSSOS

Turning a passion into a business can seem daunting.  For the past six years, I’ve spent almost all my free time sculpting art-bikes.  People started sharing photos of my bikes online and it wasn’t too much time before the bikes were really taking off.  Paid appearances, commercials and commissions started coming my way. But the passion I felt for making art bikes, is not the passion I feel for data entry, financial reporting, re-reading contracts or customer care— especially during my free time.  I looked for talent agencies to represent my art, but they didn’t really understand my act or how to make money with me.  I knew how to make bikes, I knew how to make money with bikes, but it wasn’t a business.

2 months back, I was attending the New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, representing my company, I Heart Louisiana, which provides Carnival krewes with locally sourced beads.  I was prancing my lanyard around, handing out promotional products and pitching anyone that would listen. I was thankful to have my own company to be promoting, but my passion was deflating.  In my desire to refresh my entrepreneurial spirit, I decided to go pitch a totally new business concept on the 52 Business’s bus (BOB).  They seemed to dig the idea and over the next couple weeks I got to know the guys a little better.  One day the 52 Businesses guys were over at my art studio and Colin said he was interested in making my bikes a business.  It wasn’t the business I had originally pitched that day on the bus, but my excitement skyrocketed.

So this week, I won’t be making any art-bikes.  Instead, I’ll be blessed with the help of the 52 Businesses team to make something even more KOLOSSOS:  A parading performance troupe for hire that provides event goers with an interactive Carnival spectacle featuring my art bikes.  Sounds pretty fun, right? Well, its actually extremely boring and thats why I need 52 Businesses the most.

katrina mobile me Photo Credit: Joshua McGowan


Wednesday Check-in


As a start-up its hard to know where you should invest your time and money because there is no right path.  Some advisors just push me to sell, sell, sell while others tell me to slow down and do more research before I execute.  It’s emotionally overwhelming to strategize how to invest so much thought and energy into an unknown.  As luck would have it, the 52 Businesses Team is on my team this week to get me over this hump.

Photo Credit: Amber Wilkie

The last couple of days have been KOLOSSOS for me and my bikes.  Colin, Jason, Max and Hannah have been hard at work turning my hustle into a business.  We’ve been making a lot of business-y things that happen inside laptops. Each entry, a new home for the 10,000 bits of information that I hold in my brain about how to do everything in this business from customer contacts to tying bikes up in a trailer.  Today, I saw the light and realized that very soon, I’ll probably be doing a lot more of what I love in the venues I want, for the prices I want, for who I want and it’s pretty connected to what’s in all those new files.  I’m truly excited to be learning how to develop strategies to keep my business aligned with my vision and the work experience I desire.

Featured Photo Credit: Roy Guste