How This 26-Year-Old Los Angeles Artist Became a Periscope Celebrity

Amanda Oleander is one of the first celebrities on the live streaming app.

December 21, 2015, 9:57 AM

— -- Amanda Oleander has made a business out of sharing her life live in real time with complete strangers.

The 26-year-old Los Angeles-based artist is one of the first celebrities on Periscope, the mobile live streaming app. Oleander has more than half a million followers and over 40 million likes from the people who tune in to watch her.

"My friend told me about it. … I was just doing YouTube before a little bit. I had no subscribers on there," Oleander said in an interview with ABC News' Michael Strahan for the ABC News special "The Year: 2015." "He was like, 'You should try this new -- you don't have to edit, add music. You paint.' I'm an artist, so I paint and draw live."

Oleander uses Periscope as a way to showcase her art, much of which she has sold to viewers.

"It turned into [a] business, but also such a great community," Oleander said. "My birthday just passed, and my Periscope family -- that's what we call them -- they sent me things that I feel like some of my relatives even know."

When she first started, Oleander said she experimented with the app by live streaming while she was sleeping.

"It was just an experiment. It was a sleep-scope. … It was very dim. You couldn't see anything. It was far away. I was just like, 'Let's just see how many people would watch,'" Oleander recalled. "I had 18,000 people come in to watch that. And that was, like, the first month of Periscope."

On Periscope, which was released by Twitter, users can broadcast live from around the world. Broadcasters can let viewers replay their live stream when it's complete, and the audience can send "hearts" to the broadcaster. Users have broadcasted everything from sporting events, their travels and even what's in their fridge.

What she likes about Periscope, Oleander said, is that the community is positive.

"It's live, and if there's any trolling or any disrespect, you just block them immediately," said Oleander.

And while she may be one of the app's stars, Oleander said her passion is her art.

"If you follow [your passion], the money will come after. … I think too many people are thinking, 'What can I do to make money?'" Oleander said. "I didn't come to Periscope thinking that at all."

Watch ABC News' "The Year: 2015" with Robin Roberts HERE.

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