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Asian-American young woman  in front of clouded sky in a light pink jacket.
Photo by Jordan Kadish
Life

Jordan Kadish: Student by Day, Artist by… All the Time!

She is a passionate artist, a hard-working student, and a creative force to be reckoned with. She was voted to have had the best dorm out of all Eickhoff/New Res. Hall applicants in last year’s RHA dorm contest. She crafts the loveliest embroidery and the daintiest jewelry. (I’m partial to her bracelets, but her ethereal necklaces and earrings are to die for!) She’s an avid Spotify playlist curator with a phenomenal taste in music, movies, and art. She is Jordan Kadish, a junior psychology major at The College of New Jersey who puts all of her heart and soul into every creative endeavor she embarks on. Her latest, an Instagram store filled with the loveliest pieces of art (wearable or otherwise) that everyone is growing increasingly obsessed with.

Since meeting Kadish, one of my closest friends both on and off of the TCNJ campus, I have known her to be a hilarious and imaginative beam of light. Her kindness and artistry cannot be matched, something every single person who crosses her path takes note of and falls in love with. Now, it’s Her Campus’ turn!

 

What draws you to creating art? Where do you find inspiration?

I consider myself a really creative person and have been making art for as long as I can remember. I think that other than just having that in my personality, it’s the people I surround myself with and seeing other people’s art that really inspires me to create. I have heard from many people that following artists on Instagram or seeing what their friends or classmates can do is often discouraging due to comparison, but I’ve always found it quite the opposite for me, surprisingly. I absolutely love getting inspiration from other artists online, going into AIMM and looking at the artwork other students are making, and seeing my friends excel in whatever art they partake in. For me, it’s more inspiring than discouraging because it pushes me to be more creative. 

 

Do you have any favorite pieces that you have created over the years?

Although embroidery is what I am the most focused on right now, my favorite medium of art to work with is plain old pencil drawings, and those often end up being what I am most proud of and my favorite pieces. Oftentimes, whatever is most recently drawn by me ends up being my favorite until I draw something new. However, one of my favorite things to do pertaining to my work is to look back at all of my old sketchbooks that I have kept since I was super young and see how much my art has changed. I think that seeing improvement in your work is one of the most rewarding feelings, and that goes for any of the forms of art I do, whether it be drawing, embroidery, photography, or graphic design. It’s easy to forget where you started compared to where you are now until you see the dis-proportional cartoon figures and overly-saturated photographs you took at a young age, compared to your current work. These are a few pictures of my work that I would say are my favorites, though: 


Photo of two embroidery wheels, one with lyrics from Taylor Swift and one with lyrics from Harry Styles.
Photo by Jordan Kadish

Do you remember the first piece of art that meant a lot to you and that maybe got you interested in creating on your own?

My father’s paintings and drawings have always been hung up in my home since I was little, so constantly seeing art that was created by someone I was so close to definitely inspired me to create my own. 

 

How have the people around you shaped your creativity and your art – if at all)?

The people in my life definitely have a big impact on why I have always been interested in art. My parents both went to art school (my father for fine arts and my mother for fashion design), so they have always encouraged the artistic sides of me and my brother from a young age. Some of my earliest memories are of my brother and I sitting at the kitchen table and drawing characters out of children’s books. My mom in particular is a big inspiration to me, as she started a self-made career and business in jewelry; all made, designed, and sold by her, which is hard to do in such a male-and-big-industry dominated business world. When I was younger, I would often sit beside my mother as she made jewelry while stringing my own bracelets and necklaces that I would give to my friends. My high school photography teacher was also very encouraging in me continuing my work with photography, entering contests, and leaving the opportunity open for me to develop film or edit my photos after classes ended. 

 

What do your own pieces of art mean to you? Where do you want it to take you? 

My own pieces of art means a lot to me, but it is the time and effort put in to make them and the ways I can connect to people through my art that means the world to me. I have always been a ‘people person’ – despite my introverted and shy nature – and have always appreciated how my art has the possibility of starting conversations and meaning something to people, no matter how small that meaning is. It made me feel so fulfilled and happy when people purchased my embroideries or bracelets for friends and family members. For me, happiness seldom comes from making money off my work, but it’s hearing that people appreciate my art enough to buy it, and them having a genuine interest in how I make my art. 

Though art is one of my biggest passions, I don’t think I would want a full time career in art just because I have other goals having to do with psychology. However, I’m hoping to declare a minor in fine art sometime soon and want to slowly build a business in selling my art, and, of course, just continue to make it for fun! 

 

Do you have any advice for someone who might love to create but just doesn’t know where to go with their passion and their imagination?

My advice is that everyone has to start from somewhere and not to compare someone’s day 500 to your day one! I see so many people with a passion for art that discourage themselves into thinking that they will never be good enough or just don’t have it in them to create great art. I think that with anything, there are going to be people who take things very naturally and others who need a bit more time. Take constructive criticism, practice a lot, and most importantly, do not put yourself down for ‘mistakes’ or art that did not go the way you expected. It sounds corny, sure, but don’t give up on something you really want to do. 

 

You can find and shop Jordan’s spirited, made-with-love work by visiting her Instagram store: @createdby.jk! And with 20% of proceeds going to Color for Change, there’s truly nothing stopping you from falling head over heels for her dedicated, colorful art for a cause.

Debra Kate Schafer is a Journalism and Professional Writing major at TCNJ with a background in music journalism, newspaper writing, and radio. When she's not writing, she can be found playing with her dog, laughing at her own jokes, talking about Harry Styles, and eating too much sushi for her own good.
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