Maker We Love: Keeney Design

Maker We Love: Keeney Design

Rachel of Keeney Design gets her inspiration from her interests in biology, outdoor adventures, and art to focus on the details found in the environment. She features birds, insects, flowers, and anatomy in her digital illustrations while promoting environmental and scientific education. Check out her artwork and story! 


Rachel Keeney, Owner/Illustrator



Tell our customers about your brand:

My illustrations combine my interests in biology, outdoor adventures, and art to focus on the details found in the natural world. By breaking down my subjects into vibrant colors, shapes, and textures, I hope to encourage others to make time for observation of their environment. Most of my illustrations feature local species, so you can probably spot them in your backyard or local park.

What is the story behind the making of Keeney Design?

I have an early memory of going around my Cincinnati neighborhood as a little girl selling my drawings of mallards for a dime each. Did I really know anything about ducks? No, but I liked the colors and wanted to share them with others.

I went to Wheeling Jesuit University to study biology, and discovered that science and art go hand in hand when I got to illustrate a dichotomous key of crayfish in West Virginia. Wanting to learn more about graphic design, I moved to Pittsburgh to complete a Masters of Interdisciplinary Design at Chatham University. My full-time job as a graphic designer at Mellon College of Science (Carnegie Mellon University) lets me combine my biology and design degrees, but I started Keeney Design in 2017 to do freelance design and personal illustrations. With my own work, I hope to promote environmental and scientific education by featuring birds, insects, flowers, and anatomy. I guess I’m still trying to sell you all pictures of mallards, but the neighborhood is Pittsburgh and the medium has changed from Crayola markers to digital illustration.

When I’m not working, I enjoy gardening, backpacking, biking, and most recently, caring for our chickens!

What is one product our customers need to know about?

The silly goose birthday card. Snail mail, puns, and goofy party geese – what more could you want?

In three words, why do you love Pittsburgh?

Parks, Pierogis, People 


Learn more about Keeney Design here:






Shop our Keeney Design collection here. 

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