When Derek Fagerstrom was growing up, creative young people wanted to do anything but go into business: They wanted to start a band, write a screenplay, or paint murals. But the world has changed. "We’re seeing a totally different approach to business," says Fagerstrom, who is now 39. "People no longer think of business as the antithesis of art, but as an opportunity to express their vision."
Over the past two decades, Fagerstrom has started a range of small businesses together with his wife, Lauren Smith, based on their shared passions and hobbies. Among many other ventures, they opened a San Francisco store called The Curiosity Shoppe, where they curated the work of their artist friends; launched a live event series called Pop-Up Magazine; and rehabilitated a quaint movie theater in Russian River, California. Fagerstrom considers these projects his creative contribution to the world.