We had the good fortune of connecting with Kendra Dandy and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kendra, why did you pursue a creative career?
It just seemed like a natural thing to do as a lifelong creative person who has always enjoyed art. The tough part was figuring out how to make it into a viable career since it is notoriously difficult to thrive in this area. After many years of hard work and persistence, it paid off and I couldn’t be happier about it.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My artwork is described as unique, sassy, fun and something that will spark a conversation. I basically just combine elements/themes/colors I like, experiment and practice often and the style naturally evolves over time. I definitely believe in practicing and just allowing whatever you come up with just exist without overthinking it or feeling the need to come up with long excessive stories. Sometimes (or in my case, pretty much all the time) a fun quirky design can be just that. Evolution is important to my work and it tends to do that by experimenting with different mediums whether it be physical art tools such as paint/pens/paper/canvas or digital mediums like my iPad or Adobe programs.
My career as I know it today began well after school since I was not even aware that this was a viable career path.
After majoring in fashion merchandising in college, I didn’t really find it aligned with what I wanted to do as it lacked the creativity I enjoy so in my last year of college, I took whatever graphic design classes I could take in order to diversify my skill set. After I graduated from school, I ended up working in retail for several years since it was very difficult to find a job in my preferred field. Whenever I would get home from my retail job, I’d always draw every day, work on new designs and utilize social media platforms to post about my work in order to get discovered. Eventually all of this persistence paid off and I began getting noticed by major brands and decided to try my hand at doing this full time.
It has definitely not been easy over the years, but the key is persistence and making high quality unique work that stands out among the many other artists on social media.
Getting to where I am today has taken years of hard work and sometimes social media makes it seem easy and instantaneous but it’s important to acknowledge the journey. I’m definitely proud that I’ve managed to maintain my career as an independent artist. Being able to see my work on many different products all over the world is amazing and I’m very happy to have found a career that celebrates my creative nature.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I would have to admit that I am pretty much a hermit and spend the majority of my time indoors so I’m not sure how exciting and fun any recommendations I make will be. I suppose it would depend on what the person would want to do and then I could tailor my recommendations to them or we could look up something together.
I’m always a big fan of coffee and Philly has no shortage of coffee places, so it would depend on the neighborhood. The Philly Art Museum and the Barnes Foundation Museum are two of my favorite places in Philly to visit as an art lover. Keeping with the art theme, of course I love art supply stores, so Blick and Artist & Craftsman Supply are two of my favorites.
If anyone is a fan of niche/unique perfumes like I am, Perfumology is an awesome store that I love to visit.
Food wise, I do like seafood, so Oyster House is a good place to stop at and Harp & Crown is another cool spot to grab a meal. I’m also a huge fan of craft cocktails so a few places I like to go are The Library Bar, Tequilas, and 1 Tippling Place.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would say that my family has been great at encouragement and letting me know they’re proud of me which goes a long way. As far as people in my career, my licensing agents at Jewel Branding have been extremely important with growing my brand nationally and internationally. Many fellow creatives I’ve come across on instagram have also become important to have as people to share experiences with, Donald Robertson, who is an incredible artist has also been super awesome to me and someone who’s career path is very inspirational.