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Huyen Dinh

Huyen Dinh

Meet LA-based lettering and illustration artist, Huyen Dinh.

 

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m Huyen Dinh, a full-time lettering and illustration artist. Living in different countries/cities have shaped me a better artist and person: I was born in Russia, raised in Vietnam, schooled in Missouri and now based in sunny Los Angeles.

Known for pastel palette, playful lettering with a touch of sarcasm, I have the pleasure to work with clients like Southern Living Magazine, The Washington Post, Trader Joe’s, Papyrus Greeting Cards, and Medusa’s Make-up.

 

Describe the city you’re living in and what it’s like to live there.

I’m very grateful to live in LA and surround myself with all the talented artists and diverse cultures. The city has plenty of museums, art galleries, along with so many popup shows. I’m definitely spoiled with beautiful weather and good food as well.

California Dream was my goal in college and it became true when I got an internship with Disney after graduation. I moved to LA in 2011 and have lived here since then.

 

I’m very grateful to live in LA and surround myself with all the talented artists and diverse cultures.

What is the best and worst thing about living in your city?

Los Angeles is the heart of the entertainment industry and offers endless opportunities for artists. Its popular culture enables us to have more exposure to a wider audience. The competition is fierce but I get to network and meet up with a lot of other like-minded people. As for living in LA, high living expenses and traffic congestion are major cons but you have to do what you have to do.

 

Give us 3 words that describe what it’s like to be a creative in your city.

Inspiring. Thriving. Challenging.

 

How did you start your career in art?

My interest in art started at a young age but I was more serious about it after college. As many other Asian immigrants coming to the U.S., my goal was to stick with a stable route: a business major. After being in accounting major for 2 years, I decided to switch to graphic design when I fell in love with all the selective art classes. I liked that the major is all about solving creative problems for projects/clients.

I recently quit my job to pursue my freelance lettering/illustration dream. My passion for lettering started after I took an online course on Skillshare in 2013 and became obsessed. I spent 3-4 hours daily after work to practice and work on my lettering portfolio on Instagram, and started landing lettering gigs. I would sometimes wake up in the middle of the night getting excited about a new idea and wanting to execute it right away. That’s when I know I’m very passionate about lettering.

 

 I would sometimes wake up in the middle of the night getting excited about a new idea and wanting to execute it right away. That’s when I know I’m very passionate about lettering.

Were the people around you supportive of your decision on working as a creative?

Yes absolutely, I am very grateful that my family and friends are always supportive. My mom wants me to do what makes me happy.

 

What are some goals and ambitions you have for your future work?

They say do what scares you. I want to be successful to show all Asians that it’s possible to have a career as an artist if that’s your passion.

 

I want to be successful to show all Asians that it’s possible to have a career as an artist if that’s your passion.

If you could collaborate with any person in the world who would it be?

This is a tough question. There are so many creatives I wish I could collaborate with but if I had to choose, it would be Sephora and Nike.

 

How would you describe the women around you?

I’m surrounded by driven and inspiring women, either in the same city or online through social media platforms. By seeing others thriving, it gives me more motivation to create as well.

 

I’m surrounded by driven and inspiring women, either in the same city or online through social media platforms. By seeing others thriving, it gives me more motivation to create as well.

Were there any local female creatives that you looked up to when you were growing up?

When I grew up in Vietnam, I didn’t get to expose myself to art as much so I actually didn’t have anyone in mind. I wasn’t interested in pursuing art for a career at that point.

 

Are there any challenging aspects of being a female in your industry?

I’m lucky that I haven’t faced any challenge being a female in the entertainment industry yet. So far everyone is very supportive.

 

You don’t have to figure out everything right away, you will learn by doing it.

Do you have any advice to young women who are aspiring to work in your field?

It seems cliche but the key to happiness/success is to do what you love. You don’t have to figure out everything right away, you will learn by doing it. And keep going, don’t give up before you get to the end goal.

 

 

Photos courtesy of Huyen Dinh.

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