I first developed my eye for design while I was shooting fashion photography in Paris, London, and Berlin a decade ago. My skills and years of experience in photography assisted in the sharpening of my eye, which led me to attend design school to compliment my love for photography. In school, I always made sure my professors had the understanding to not just give me a high five or a gold star. I told every professor, “listen, you’re not going to make me cry. I’m here to learn, so please provide the most constructive feedback possible in order to allow me the space to grow.” And so they did. After receiving a BFA in Graphic Design as well as the recommendation letters of several professors, I continued my international resumé by working for a design studio in the heart of London. To prepare for this grand move, I sold and ditched everything I owned to move to London with the highest hopes of staying in the UK. Living abroad was a wonderfully inspiring experience, and it helped refine my classic design style and appreciation for timeless branding. (Also a love for that dry British witty banter)
After my visa expired in the UK, I was heart broken that my dream didn’t work out like I hoped. So I returned to the States with nothing but great memories, and a pair of extremely worn Doc Martins. I felt lost for quite a while after my return. Not to sound too sappy, but I had many identity crisis freak outs for the year to follow. I didn’t know what I wanted to do, or where I belonged.
During this time of soul searching, (and working a full time job that I hated) I felt inspired to launch my first online business. I had been observing these woman all over social media living their best lives, with online businesses that allowed them the freedom to work from wherever. After my dream of living abroad had fallen through, this sounded pretty amazing, and like the right path for me. So I got to work… But starting a business was much harder than I expected. So everyday I would dedicate my time to learning the in’s and out’s of business, branding, and social media. I would watch tutorials, read books, take online classes, and coaching. After a while, I ended up building my business to be fully API automated with a USA manufacturer that would fulfill every order, and drop ship to my customers. I’m proud to say my first business was featured in Buzzfeed, People, Seventeen, Self, and Nylon Magazine (without a PR agency.) Everything is figureoutable.
From starting my first online business, I learned everything it takes to up-level a brand in order to get noticed. I then decided to finally take that huge leap into being a full time entrepreneur. Flash forward a few years, and I’ve started Kelly Robyn Co. with the intention to add more value to others, and to support and move forward my client’s vision in order to help them bring their vision to life. I’m not just a product photographer, or just a designer, I’m so much more than that. I understand the process, and the up’s and down’s.
Now, I too have the freedom to work from wherever like those women I observed on social media years ago. I get to do it by doing what I love, and adding value to other’s.