Meet Sam Stevens, Founder and CEO of Peaceful Places LLC, a nature-themed virtual reality app that creates experiences for relaxation and reflection. Sam is a current student at CU Boulder studying Computer Science and Creative Technology & Design. Sam developed the idea for Peaceful Places over a decade ago and has been a serial entrepreneur ever since!
Sam grew up in Durango, Colorado. Sam’s childhood consisted of being involved with bands and creating digital artwork. In 2008, Sam had a dream that led to the creation of both Peaceful Places and Dreams Lost in Time. These projects were intended to create a new form of therapy using virtual reality. Peaceful Places specializes in providing the highest quality nature-themed virtual reality experience for relaxation and reflection.
Sam has always been passionate about music, art, and photography. Sam began developing the concepts behind Peaceful Places and Dreams Lost In Time in 2008. The development of Peaceful Places and Dreams Lost In Time opened the world of entrepreneurship to Sam and he's passionately pursued entrepreneurship and a professional art career ever since. In 2010 Sam opened his first solo gallery and began selling art on camps at the UMC a few years later. This experience sparked a newfound love and appreciation for the Boulder community and drew Sam to CU Boulder.
About Peaceful Places
In 2008, Sam had a dream that led to the creation of both Peaceful Places and Dreams Lost in Time. These projects were intended to create a new form of therapy using virtual reality. Peaceful Places specializes in providing the highest quality nature-themed virtual reality experiences for relaxation and reflection. Peaceful Places did a soft launch in December 2020 and is now available on the Oculus Store for Oculus Go.
Sam has made much of his progress by himself. However, there are a number of people that have helped Sam truly bring Peaceful Places to life. Belin Fieldson assisted with developing the first edition of Peaceful Places, while Aaron Blue and Decker Cleveland were early supporters and helped share entrepreneurial knowledge. Sam also notes that in 2020, he had the privilege of working with Ellie Merkel and Josh Hicks in CU’s New Venture Creation Course with Brad Werner. Together, the three of them won the course’s final pitch competition with the Peaceful Places idea.
Sam elaborated on those that helped him along the way,
“I won’t name them all, but over the past year John Keller, Jay Browne, Tallis Salamatian, John Bacus, Brad Werner, Chris Gustavson, Erick Mueller, and Brian Plavnicky went out of their way to share their wisdom and show their support. It’s hard to put into words just how helpful that has been!”
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic put an end to one of Sam’s companies formerly known as VEACE, and almost ended Dreams Lost in Time. Sam struggled to keep Peaceful Places and Dreams Lost in Time afloat with a lack of face-to-face interactions with clients and patrons.
However, Peaceful Places did see a number of positive changes and found a new set of opportunities within VR and VR Therapy.
Future Plans and Upcoming Projects
Peaceful Places is currently working towards developing a partnership with an undisclosed hospital to develop virtual reality therapy applications. Peaceful Places did a soft launch in December 2020 and is currently available on the Oculus Store for Oculus Go.
Peaceful Places plans to continue establishing partnerships in order to innovate new virtual reality therapy applications.
Sam has also been releasing numerous projects and creative works on @dreamslostintime with big plans for the future. Much of what Sam has planned is top secret, however, he mentioned that a new NFT collection will be released soon. His previous NFT will be featured in a new and fully animated show titled MOTION. The show premiered April 15 and will continue regular showings until May 15, at 2611 Walnut Street in Denver, CO, and includes music from his new album “Keep Searching”.
Advice for Current Students
Sam provides this piece of advice for current students,
“As corny as it sounds, chase your dreams. If you can learn from the failures that you experience along the way and continue to relentlessly pursue your dreams, I think you’ll be pretty impressed with how those dreams can manifest. Also, if you have an entrepreneurial spirit, I absolutely 100% recommend taking the New Venture Creation course with Brad Werner.”
Sam would also like to give a special thanks to GetSeedFunding for their support in 2020 and to his family and friends for all of their support over the years.