Jessica Spencer

Experience that shows.

For proof positive that Keen is the creative shop for you, take a look through some recent projects created in collaboration with some of the best small businesses, publications and top-notch agencies around.

Website Design

Over the years, Keen has had the privilege of designing fresh, creative websites for a variety of businesses. Some sites, like Dusty Feet, Door Deals (and the site you're on right now) were designed entirely from scratch by Keen to meet the client's needs and results in maximum creative impact. Others used a custom design to work with existing CMS templates like Wordpress, Squarespace or Magento, giving the client a custom look that was more economical. On every project, the website's aesthetic personality, tone and look are pitch-perfect with each client's brand and identity. On Dusty Feet and Lula in London, handmade illustrations and type were included to add visual impact. 

Print Design

There's nothing like a crisp, white sheet of paper; it's the ultimate canvas for creating designs that make an impact, that people can see, touch and feel. Keen began a lifelong love-affair with print design by laying out menus, table tents and specials boards for local restaurants where she tended bar and waited tables through school. Throughout her career, she's designed a little bit of everything: logos, brochures, business cards, manuals, newspaper & magazine advertisements, special sections, and dozens of full publications. A strong command of typography, color, and image-based design bring a polish and professionalism to every project. 

Food Photography

Making dishes look as delicious as they taste is an art all it's own. Keen has set up shots in kitchens near and far, and is most at home hovering her lens over a perfectly positioned plate. 

Photo Styling

If there's one thing Keen knows, it's food. Being born to a family of foodies and working for over 10 years in the restaurant industry has given Keen a unique insight into the world of food service that other creatives simply don't have. At the helm of 417 Magazine's art department, Keen turned the publication's food coverage on it's head, using food styling and photography approaches that brought restaurant reviews, food features and tasty-looking covers to a whole new level. To show food in the most delicious way possible, Keen hand-crafted special sets, selected props and backgrounds to photograph every dish within, and experimented with plating and shooting angles to bring a special tone and personality to each dish. Combining the imagery with complimentary design and typography results in a top-notch finished product that's worth digging into.

Mostly Serious Culture Photography

This year, I had the pleasure of photographing the team over at Mostly Serious for the launch of their new & improved website. We worked together to capture aspects of their office that reflect their team, beautiful environment, and a unique office culture that they hold dear. 

People and Places Photography

Jessica Kennon Spencer of Keen Creative used to think of herself strictly as a print and web designer. However, after a few years spent in the magazine publication world, working with and learning from some of the area's best photographers, like Randy Bacon, Christian Gideon, and Travis Howard, she found herself reaching her own camera more and more. Over the years, she has photographed clients, models, architecture, current events, and countless plates of food. One of the biggest highlights? Shooting a  2-day guided luxury fly-fishing trip on the North Fork River, with Longboat Outfitters and writer, Savannah Waszczuk. 

417 Magazine Redesign

This year, Keen had the exciting opportunity to create an all-new design for 417 Magazine- it's first makeover in over 6 years. For the new look, bold new fonts, contrasting type treatments, a refined color palette and new page compositions were designed with care. However, it wasn't just the look that was new, Keen worked closely with the editors and publishers to develop new packaging and ad-placement strategies, expanded content and a more cohesively organized book. A true labor of love, the new design is clean, consistent, reader-friendly and more contemporary than 417's previous look. 

Best New Restaurants

"Best New Restaurants" was the cover feature for the August 2012 issue of 417 Magazine, which highlighted new and notable eateries in the area. I collaborated with fellow staffers, Garrett DeRossett, who designed the menu collateral on the opener, and Monica Duwel, who drew the hand type that appears on a few pages. Most food was shot on bright white to contrast with the rich atmospheric photography and bold, clean type treatments.

"Best New Restaurants" was a finalist for the City and Regional Magazine Association's Best Feature Design category, a first-time category nomination for 417.

Editorial Fashion

Some of the most fun work in Keen's portfolio includes the fashion photo styling that was done over 30 months as art director for 417 Magazine. Sometimes working with a style coordinator, and sometimes selecting products herself, Keen excelled at bringing together perfectly-produced photoshoots that put the products first. From start to finish, she chose concepts, sketched layouts, casted models and scouted shoot locations for monthly style stories, longer fashion features, and lavishly-produced style features up to 14 pages long. Keen's abiltiy to understand the product's target demographic allows her to expertly style, produce, pose and shoot fashion images that really sell.

10 Most Beautiful Women

Keen had the opportunity to work on the 2012, 2013 and 2014 features for 417 Magazine's 10 Most Beautiful Women, who were chosen by editors for their inner beauty, civic involvement and philanthropy. Each year, concepts were painstakingly chosen, locations scouted, and 10 separate photo shoots were held in a single day. The shoots were a carefully-choreographed collaboration between the subject, wardrobe and hair stylists, assistants, photographers and the location of the shoot, all directed by Keen. 

In 2012, the winners were asked the question, "What do you think is beautiful?" Each individual answer was worked into their photo shoot, and expressed through props and posing, and photographed by the great Randy Bacon.

In 2013, the women were photographed in 10 separate locations throughout Springfield with coordinating wardrobe and posing. Photographer Christian Gideon brought a subtle urban editorial feel to the final images.

In 2014, Prixel Creative was tapped to create light and airy portraits of each woman using creative lighting and posing, in their Springfield Studio and on-location at the Historic Firehouse No. 2.