Successful endeavors can result from passion. Consider Dotun Abeshinbioke, the founder of New York’s Abiké Studio, who Insider claims transformed a college pastime into a six-figure business.
“Three years ago, I was studying graphic design at the Parsons School of Design, and I started freelancing as a way to build out my portfolio,” Abeshinbioke said. “I initially started doing design work for T-shirts and flyers, then I started designing sets to showcase my photography.”
In November 2020, Abeshinbioke stepped into her creative brand, which was inspired by her traditional Yoruba name, which means “born to treasure,” after shifting to small-scale installation art. Abeshinbioke searched for inexpensive substitutes for the sets that served as her inspiration using supplies from hardware and discount stores because she had a limited budget.
“The help of community members and social-media followers is what shifted my transition from passion to profession. I gained traction when I started sharing more of my work on Instagram and connecting with industry peers there,” she said, adding that she would go live to show her building process.
In addition to her friends who would recommend her to other creatives looking for design for projects like music videos, companies began to employ Abeshinbioke for work as a result of the posts becoming viral. Abeshinbioke’s efforts expanded to record covers, work events, and brand activations after the project, which raised rates. By joining with Creative Collective NYC (CCNYC), a networking platform and production agency for creative freelancers to connect with partners, Abeshinbioke’s business grew in 2021. She was now able to create sets for Foot Locker as a result.
Among Abeshinbioke’s other projects are the #REELJOLLOF basketball match between Ghana and Nigeria, the Billionaire Boys Club, Pokemon, the New York Yankees, and CCNYC’s CultureCon event in 2022. In addition to a project manager and two graphic designers, Abeshinbioke works with independent contractors and freelancers to develop projects’ branding and websites. – Steve Sijenyi