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Dana Veraldi ’02: Drawing Inspiration to Build a Brand

Kathy Smith
As a senior in her screen-printing class at Maryland Institute College of Art, Dana Veraldi ’02 made 12 t-shirts with a drawn portrait of her friend. She gave them to her other friends and they wore them to his birthday party. Who knew it would be the origin of Dana’s signature brand, DEERDANA?
 
You’ve probably seen DEERDANA t-shirts on friends and in magazines. Her brand book is a portfolio both of her products and her art. With fans like Justin Bieber, Orlando Bloom and Mark Ruffalo, DEERDANA has achieved a cult following.
 
Veraldi joined Shipley as a quiet sixth grader and felt encouraged to follow her own path. “Shipley nurtured students’ individual interests,” she says. For Dana, that included spending hours in the dark room experimenting with photography and working with silk screening.
 
Veraldi’s business has expanded since that first birthday party. Over the past several years, she has balanced fine art with commercial art, consulting for firms such as The Gap, La Mer, and Tory Burch, to name a few.
 
Throughout, Veraldi has maintained ties with Shipley both through her close alumni friends and through her art. In 2012, she was chosen to exhibit in Shipley’s Speer Gallery. “It was my first solo show!” she says. And she has carried with her the deeply rooted lessons in community service, donating profits from select lines to certain charities. “Service,” she says, “became a part of my everyday life. I find it necessary and empowering to give back.”
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The Shipley School is a private, coeducational day school for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. Through our commitment to educational excellence, we develop within each student a love of learning and a desire for compassionate participation in the world.