Kearra Johnson has achieved every aspiring entrepreneur’s dream: turning a passion project into a successful business, including black culture. Through products and content, she lets passion power dreams, using art to provide a voice for the voiceless.
As the owner and operator of Studio Lo, a design-based creative studio, this 23-year-old entrepreneur encourages representation in the world of graphic design and builds strong, visual identities for brands.
Playing Cards. Tees. The dreamer herself uses these projects to turn visions into realities.
The Revolution Card Deck is dedicated to those who made a way out of no way. The “Thank You Black America” Tee uplifts Black culture.
From idea to fruition, Kearra says that when you dream above the standard, anything is possible. While in high school, she spent many evenings discovering, crafting and perfecting her artistry in the graphic design lab. When word got out about her talent in design, she acquired her very first clients: classmates who would offer $25 for a “cartoon” made by Kearra’s design.
A half-decade later, she continues to freelance but on a much higher scale and with an established brand.
This year, she celebrated Juneteenth by collaborating with The Black Pantry in Kansas City. On her Instagram, she snapped a photo in front of the general store, where she had distributed her latest products including cards, tees and art. The caption read,
“It’s about collaboration and connection. We’re nothing if we don’t support one another.”
During Kearra’s senior year at the University of Missouri, she was asked to create something both visually and conceptually powerful. With this, she decided to design and produce playing cards that inspired conversations on representation, activism and Black culture.
One interesting and intentional detail that you may notice about her Revolution Card Deck is the indistinction between court cards and gender.
Ida B. Wells is the Jack of Spades. Oprah Winfrey is the King of Clubs. George Washington Carver is the Queen of Diamonds. Kearra said that since all icons are powerful and influential, she did not want a hierarchy present.
The deck is available for purchase online and in-store at Made in KC as well as on the Studio Lo website.
As a branded freelance designer, this female disruptor uses her platform to instill representation, share underreported stories and turn dreams into realities.