Kendra Allen Design and Photography
By Athena Raypold

A Woman-Run Business Helping Women-Run Businesses

Creative entrepreneur, Kendra Allen, of Kendra Allen Design and Photography, acquired an advanced graphic design diploma from St. Lawrence College in Kingston, ON, before becoming pregnant and relocating to Edmonton. Having been raised in an entrepreneurial family, Kendra has “always been in that atmosphere of going after what you want and not being afraid to work for yourself,” she says. “[While] some people might shy away from that – dreaming too big, having too much risk – I’ve never really been afraid of that.”

Thus, while Kendra offers a variety of services for clients – from photographing families to designing birth announcements and invitations – she is building a niche in which she supports other creative women entrepreneurs in developing and communicating their brands. Kendra Allen Design and Photography endeavours to help women communicate not only what their business is about, but also who they are as people, effectively supporting other women-run businesses. “I know what it’s like running your own business, and it’s not easy,” says Kendra. “I like to empower women to follow their creative dreams.”

I like to empower women to follow their creative dreams. - Kendra Allen, owner, photographer, graphic designer
Kendra Allen Design and Photography takes unique, creative head shots of female entrepreneurs and other business owners
Photo by Kendra Allen Design and Photography

Photography as Artistic Communication

In college, Kendra was trained in graphic design and photography alongside one another; so, to her, one complements the other. She uses photography to accurately and artistically communicate who the woman behind the business is, as well as to beautifully showcase her product line or creative process for use on websites, social media, and advertising.

Kendra Allen Design and Photography shoots unconventional head shots of clients in order to “[capture] someone’s personality in a non-traditional setting, either something that reflects their work or their personality so that they can show their [customers] who they are,” says Kendra. Since most creative entrepreneurs can only manage to take selfies for their businesses, Kendra helps her clients introduce themselves and their products in both an expressive and professional way. “I am working with a baker who makes macarons,” she says. “I [am doing] head shots of her in the kitchen she works in, then photographing the [macaron] process.”

Kendra Allen Design and Photography helps companies find their unique voice through head shots, branding, logos, colours and more
Photo by Kendra Allen Design and Photography

Creating and Communicating a Brand

Kendra is passionate about branding, about accurately representing a business visually. “You need to have something in line with what you’re doing so people understand,” she says. “It’s really important to have a consistent representation of your brand and to use that appropriately – how and where to use it. I am there to help with all of that.”

To acquire a sense of each client’s business, Kendra Allen Design and Photography begins the branding process by emailing clients a questionnaire. “Hearing it in all of their own words gives me an idea of what they need and what they’re looking for,” says Kendra. From there, Kendra creates a mood board – a visual, digital collection of patterns, colours and ideas of what she thinks communicates the brand and presents it to the client for review and discussion. The process is collaborative and tailored to each individual client and their business, ultimately aimed at capturing the business’ core values and uniqueness.

Once an idea is agreed upon, Kendra designs a logo, which can be digital, custom calligraphy, hand lettered or even painted, depending on the clients’ needs. For example, Kendra recently created a hand painted, watercolour flower design to complement a client’s existing logo. “She wanted it to be more artistic than just her name,” she says. Kendra can even provide insight on business development, assisting clients in choosing an appropriate name for their business, in addition to developing the brand.

When a final design is agreed upon, Kendra Allen Design and Photography provides clients with a complete branding package with essentials like logo variations, colour palates, typography and directions on how to use each component. “Providing a full set of services to creative entrepreneurs, I aim to help them [represent] themselves to the world,” says Kendra. “I really want to help in every way that I can.”

Kendra Allen Design and Photography designs business cards, in addition to offering photography, head shots, branding, logo work and more
Logo design by Kendra Allen Design and Photography
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