Today we’d like to introduce you to Dawn Lee.
Dawn, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
My passion for graphic design and art grew very naturally throughout my whole life. I remember that I was in elementary school when I asked my mom to take me to my first Photoshop class. Since I grew up as an only child and my parents were working, I had a lot of time at home to pick up hobbies. At first, I used Adobe tools to edit funny photos or use the animation effect to make GIFs. I’d share them online and loved seeing people’s comments on what they thought – it was my first step into becoming a designer and sharing my work in the digital space. Fast forward, what started as a childhood hobby turned into one of my most popular services- YouTube intros.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
The biggest challenge as a designer was being my own manager while designing. When I was freelancing, I had to carve out time to focus on design, make sure to keep my clients in the loop, and active outreach for potential new opportunities.
I like to focus purely on design and ride the creative wave when it comes. When I feel inspired, I can sit through the whole day pumping out design after design. But switching back and forth from creative thinking to business managing cut off my groove and my efficiency as an artist.
Eventually, as my client list was growing, I started to tell my friends and others that I need a partner. I needed help managing the business aspect as well as client relations. Luckily, and coincidentally, I had a friend who was passionate about the creative world and was interested in this potential opportunity. She jumped on board and we’ve been working together ever since.
This is cliche but…. 1) keep your side hobbies and passion projects alive! You never know what will happen. My hobby of making silly GIF’s during my free time ended up being my full-time job; now, one of my main specialties as a graphic designer is making fun and eye-catching digital animations.
2) find mentors and network! Before being a freelancer and later starting my own company, I used to be an intern at Jeffrey Campbell. My boss from there later turned in my mentor. He’s no longer with the company due to his new opportunities, but he still helps me through everything that I don’t know. His willingness to share his own experiences helped guide me through own my career path.
Please tell us about DLD.studio.
We specialize in all things graphic design and digital art. We’re mostly known for logo design, YouTube graphics, and intro animations, but we also offer website design, merchandise designs, and album cover art.
We are a dedicated team of creatives that considers work as passion projects. We give our all to the projects that we choose to take on. We’ve mostly had long-term collaborations with our clients, and like to be their one-stop design place to achieve all their creative visions. We like to do more than what is requested — there are times that we even pitch other ideas that they might not have considered to further develop their brand.
What advice would you give to someone at the start of her career?
Be a resourceful designer.
Instead of only taking on projects that you have experience in, I think you grow the most if you get into the habit of saying yes (assuming the project makes sense). If the project opportunity is a bigger scale than the one you usually take on, don’t be afraid to take on the challenge. It’s possible to find another artist to collaborate with and push the project together. You also don’t know how to work with other artists until you keep doing it over and over.
- Website: www.dld.studio
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/DLD.studio/
- Other: https://www.instagram.com/dawnleedesign/