Fashion artist Rongrong DeVoe is a Chinese native who moved to the US in 2009 to pursue her dream career as an artist. Her art process involves a variety of tools including watercolors, markers, & acrylic.
A Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) alumnus and former fashion designer, Rongrong has worked with top fashion/beauty brands and has been featured in world-renowned publications such as Vogue & InStyle as well as collaborated with many reputable brands such as Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Chanel, Conair Hair, Ulta Beauty, and sketched celebrities such as Reese Witherspoon.
Rongrong is known for promoting messages of women’s empowerment and inspiring women to pursue their dreams through her artwork. We had a chance to interview DeVoe and asked about her story, how she started her business and the future of her business.
Tell us your story. Why did you start your business?
I am a fashion illustrator who loves to draw illustrations about women's empowerment and diversity. Originally from China, I moved to NYC to pursue a degree in Illustration at FIT because my dream job is to be a fashion illustrator. After moving to Houston, I took a chance and decided to pursue my dream of becoming a full-time artist, so I simply started sharing my illustrations on my Instagram handle and slowly built a following. Being a business owner requires a lot of work, but with persistence and creativity, anything is possible. It continues to be a process of trial and error both in finding my audience and in reaching them, and as I evolve, I am continually finding my sweet spot in my business.
How did you come up with your business name?
Rongrong is my first name. I thought it would be unique, and it is ME after all.
Tell us about your products and services. How do you help clients?
I provide custom illustrations for large lifestyle brands as an advertising campaign or designing their products packages. I also sell my own art (prints) and products (mugs, planners, totes, and fun merchandise!) on my website: www.shoprongrong.com and retail store in Houston Galleria Mall. You can also find select Rongrong products sold in TjMaxx, Hobby Lobby, etc.
What makes you unique? What is your unique selling proposition (USP)?
I merge fun and chic fashion illustration with empowering messages through my artwork and design. I love the different colors and silhouettes that come together with a vibrant, lively, and fashion forward feel. I love watching women connect with my illustrations and see the best version of themselves or use the artwork as a reminder of how chic, cool, and fashionable they are – drinking coffee from a Rongrong mug, writing in her Rongrong journal or Happy Planner or just being a #bossbabe and framing a print in her office space! I love drawing women from diverse backgrounds (Latina/African American and more!) because I truly believe beauty is found in everyone (and everywhere), no matter what your ethnicity, race, or background.
Where do you see your business in the next 3-5 years?
I have worked very hard in the last few years to build my brand as the “go-to” consumer women’s brand for year-round unique and special gifting opportunities. I love watching my fans post on social media that they have treated a girlfriend with an inspirational Rongrong piece of artwork or merchandise to make her happy and stay motivated (my Rongrong girl tribe!). Honestly, I love thinking of what possibilities the next five years have in store for me, and I look forward to seeing what new things we have on the horizon! We will be working with some high-level national names, and I want to continue to expand and grow my commissioned work and continue licensing custom artwork to fashion, beauty, and women’s empowerment brands.
What is your favorite business quote and why?
My favorite quote is: “You can do anything you set your mind to.” We all have dreams, things we want to accomplish in the short amount of time we are on this planet. Many people don’t try to achieve their dreams because they don’t believe in themselves. So, I always tell people, you are more capable than you think! Just Do It!”
What have been some of your achievements that you are most proud of? Why?
I recently collaborated with The Happy Planner, and we launched a collection of 48 products including planners, notebooks, stickers, which sold in JoAnn stores nationwide. The collection has been so successful, and we sold out in 2 weeks! I love this collection because they featured my diverse fashion illustrations and women empowerment messages. This collection truly showcases what my brand represents, and the happy planner products are amazing and high quality.
Anything else additional you want to tell our readers?
If you ever go to China, please visit Qingdao, it is my hometown, it’s so beautiful.