We had the good fortune of connecting with Raevyn Robinson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Raevyn, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
My thought process behind starting my business really was motivated by a dream I had about taking risks. I knew the only way I could properly respond to the dream, was to begin my business.
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.
Starting my graphic design agency, Rae.D’ant Designs, nearly 3 years ago was tough! I naively looked for all of the support to come from friends, family and people I knew. I eventually learned that wasn’t realistic because that isn’t how successful people and brands are developed. Successful brands are actually built on confidence, commitment and customer service.
My initial challenges were to overcome the thoughts of giving up. Because I was only getting 2 or 3 logo bookings sparingly, I felt like maybe I made the wrong move in starting this business. I’d obviously defeated myself because I lacked confidence.
Somehow, I was still committed to my craft. I knew starting my business was the first risk, but I had to learn that running a business is a continuum of risk-taking. So I kept going!
Because I initially didn’t start off with having a strategy or creative rhythm, it was a challenge to develop good customer service. Primarily because I didn’t really have anyone to service. Lol. I just knew I was suppose to help people properly build the visual aspect of their brands. In finding my flow, I was able to provide better service that customized the collaborative experience for my clientele. Now, that creative rhythm and strategy is what keeps my business booming!
After a year of not having much success at all, things changed for me dramatically. I went from being barely booked for one logo project, to completely overbooked in each category of design my agency offers. It was unreal! All because I made a decision to keep taking more risks.
One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned within the past 3 years is: everything starts off as nothing, until someone has an idea. From that idea, there comes a decision to explore that idea. The one thing that separates two people that may have the same idea, is the person who actually takes the risk to execute. We all have opportunities to turn nothing into something, but we have to be more than just willing. It’s the confidence, commitment and customer service that drives everything home. That’s success. That’s what wins. That’s the secret sauce.
I’m now the creative artist behind 2 published journals, 1 magazine entry, a children’s coloring book, a line of cooking spices and nearly 200 other visual branding project launches.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
LA is so huge, so there are a TON of places I love to enjoy that really provide that chill and well-rounded vibe of culture. From the food to the ambience and the overall experience of that Los Angeles diversity, there’s some great spots!
1 of my favorite places to go for breakfast is Roscoe’s House of Chicken & Waffles. They have several locations all over the county., but the one I love the most is the one on Pico street. When I go I always order a Lisa’s Delight which is a refreshing sweet tea and lemonade mixed drink and 3 chicken wings with a waffle. It’s a pretty simple meal, but it’s soooo good! The chicken is always juicy, seasoned and fried to perfection. The waffle melts in your mouth and they have great service. The ambience is very southern-homestyle. It’s a visitor’s and celebrity hotspot!
Another LA staple that I love is “Pink’s”. It’s a sitdown hotdog stand, but they also serve burgers as well. I’m not a fan of hotdogs by far. Hotdogs are literally the last thing I’d ever eat. Unless someone mentions going to Pink’s. Then I’m GAME!! Lol My favorite thing to order is a polish dog with relish, onions, mustard, chili and cheese. It’s DELICIOUS!!! The line is usually wrapped down the block, but it’s always worth it!
A yummy spot to enjoy good ramen that I actually was just introduced to that I now ABSOLUTELY love….is Tatsu! Their ramen is fantastic, but the chill ambience helps to create an even cooler experience. One feature that I absolutely love is that you can literally order your food at the door from an electronic screen, be seated and your food comes right to you! So their flow is neat and the staff is friendly also. There’s even the option to be seated inside or outside. We all know when the LA weather is perfect, outside dining is the BEST!!!
If you’re ever in LA and want to cruise around and find neat experiences other than food, Universal Studios is always a great option. I’ve been a million times and each time feels like the first time. There’s food, tour rides, 3D experiences and small musical guest features. It’s really family-friendly, kid-friendly and date-friendly! Literally anybody can have fun there. My most favorite thing to do there is to do the Studio tour. That tour is amazing. It gives you a real vibe of “Hollywood” and the essence of film and movies in LA. It’s also a great place to spend new year’s Eve! Anyone that is a first-timer, I’d always recommend visiting Universal Studios.
Another great place to really get that LA experience is a place that gets a lot of waves, Venice Beach! Some great shops, surfing, street shows, great souvenir’s and you can literally watch people skateboard, play the guitar or shoot hoops. All in one space. Or if none of that is interesting enough, going for a good swim never hurts!
Lucky Strike is a great place for some fun-leisure. If you’re into bowling, the ambience is sweet. Great place for adults to hang and vibe!
If you have a family and are looking to do more family-oriented activities of course we can’t leave out the most magical place on earth. I’m an adult and I still geek over Disneyland! Lol. Kids adore it, but it also brings the kids out of adults. The rides are for everybody, the shows are as well. The absolute best souvenirs and experiences. While I just love everything about Disneyland, Space Mountain and Indiana Jones are my most favorited rides.
These are all places that provide a great experience of LA culture. From food to people to Hollywood to everyday life!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would love to shout-out my uncle, Carl Alexander. He passed away in 2018, but he’s responsible for part of my commitment to building my business. In my life, he’d always been the ultimate business risk taker and anything I do for my business it’s because I’ve watched him not care what people thought. He always did what he felt moved to do!
Photographer: Fred Martin