With the great insurgence of creative talent each year, many have deemed the field challenging and too competitive to join. Which is why stories and challenges of up-and-coming creatives are always interesting and inspirational to read about, because taking this path and working on successful campaigns in the ad industry is not only challenging but incredibly impressive. In our Uprising channel, we feature exactly these creatives, the ones who are growing daily and eager to make it in the field. And because no two stories are alike and each person has their own unique experience of joining adland, LBB makes sure to highlight and share their incredible stories, new projects and exciting conversations.
These rising copywriters, junior producers, planners, junior directors and others have delighted us with their stories all year, sharing their biggest lessons and what inspires them to do what they love everyday. And so, here are the top 10 Uprising features on the LBB website that received the most love for the year 2022!
Told early on that it was impossible for her to transition into the creative department because she was not qualified enough, art director from Droga5, Eunie Jang, knew that it was not going to be easy joining the creative industry to become a creative. And without a portfolio degree, her chances of making it in the ‘too competitive’ industry were realistically very slim. That, however, did not discourage the former Korean national team cheerleader from trying everything she could to succeed and challenge the odds in front of her.
Attending an international school in South Korea, travelling around the world with her family and living abroad in several countries growing up, Eunie had a truly global upbringing and experience that would prove to be greatly influential on her work and personal nature. Inquisitive and curious, Eunie threw herself into various hobbies in her childhood that speaks for her artistic and colourful personality. She tells LBB how her diligence and persistence landed her a spot in the D5in10 program, Droga5’s portfolio crash course, which gave her the opportunity to present her work in front of ceo David and successfully landing an art director internship at Droga5.
A couple of her many achievements include her debut campaign as a creative, the ‘ADCOLOR 2021 Pull Up for Accountability’ campaign which was the fastest item to sell out at the conference, her work as Droga5’s diversity and inclusion coordinator and serving on the board for Hyphen, Droga5’s AAPI affinity group, and leading agency-wide initiatives. Currently, she is working on Levi’s global campaign for the 150th anniversary of the 501 denim.
Still early in her career, Eunie has managed to successfully establish herself as a truly talented and unique creative who brings value to the team and agency as a whole, breaking the limitations of what a young creative can achieve.
If you had told Aisling Penco that she would find her place as a copywriter at Leo Burnett Toronto, she would have been both confused and extremely surprised. This is because she herself shared that she never even knew what copywriting was or that it existed. Now, the talented and outspoken young copywriter is proud of her contributions to the industry and her achievements, helping to create some of the most successful campaigns in the last couple of years. But contrary to popular belief, Aisling was not always so sure of herself and capabilities. In fact, growing up in a conservative environment, Aisling was reserved and pursued her interests quietly, escaping from reality and into her creative mind, occupying herself with its ideas.
During her time at university, she started pursuing visual arts and specifically the opportunity to become an art director, only to struggle with it and switch to general advertising and finding her current calling, copywriting. Looking to explore and begin her new career path, she attended a portfolio night that allowed candidates to present their work to an alumni for an opportunity to land professional work and was called back after impressing them!
Aisling’s professional debut was an advertising campaign for the Vancouver Aquarium, however, it is her Metrolinx campaign with Leo Burnett Toronto that she believes was what shot her to success and really changed her career. It was not only a huge success but went on to win several awards, including a Silver from the Advertising and Design Club of Canada and a Bronze from the Marketing Awards.
Yet despite her achievements and pursuing a life that is regret-free, Aisling admits that she struggles with imposter syndrome on occasion and finds it difficult to work sometimes. Nevertheless, making sure she follows her motto of enjoying life with no regrets and focusing on “showing up for herself,” Aisling believes she has so much to offer and won't be stopping anytime soon.
Ridley Scott Creative Group is a global production collective made up of multiple divisions such as Black Dog Films, Scott Free, RSA Films etc. is responsible for creative content that ranges from commercial and social, TV, documentary and non-scripted, to photography, feature films, illustration, music videos, development, creative, and next-gen content.
Founded by renowned filmmakers Ridley and Tony Scott, the group partnered with LBB this year to sponsor our Uprising channel in an effort to make more opportunities available for the next generation of creative talent. Known for their work in guiding young and emerging talent in production and creative, the group aims to support rising creatives with the help of experienced individuals like Luke, Jake, and Jordan Scott, RSA MDs Kai Hsiung, Luke Ricci, and John Payne, Black Dog’s Martin Roker, and COO Richard Nicholas. RSCG have always been interested in mentorship and fostering creative talent, and for this year, they knew they wanted to extend their efforts and do so much more. Check out the full piece for more details about this partnership.
Nico Rahardian Tangara, senior art director at BBH Asia Pacific, displayed from a very young age a curiosity to find and fix things. A passionate gamer kid from very early on, he displayed creative tendencies playing video games, creating private servers and custom game maps for Warcraft 3 in his spare time. It is those experiences that Nico believes have helped his creativity flourish and discover the idea of “gluing things together to see if it works,” a mentality he still carries with him in his creative career.
In addition to following web tutorials and make-shift explanations, Nico attended the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts where he obtained a Diploma of Design & Media in Advertising and following that, pursued a Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Communication at Loughborough University.
He started as a junior art director at Young & Rubicam in Singapore then moved to Ogilvy & Mather, working on campaigns for Changi Airport, Jewel Changi, KFC and Singtel. Afterwards he joined BBH Asia Pacific in 2019, becoming involved in immersive campaigns such as ‘Honeyfruit’ and ‘The Battle of Baron’ for League of Legends: Wild Rift. He firmly believes in using gaming engines to fully transform production processes and is working on sharing his ideas and vision with the world. Nico shares that he has learned many things over time and throughout his career, most importantly to not immediately “jump into execution, but think of the idea first,” a lesson that still sticks with him to this day.
Being a workaholic and struggling with an unfulfilling life, Lead producer for one of Australia’s most in-demand and respected creative agencies, Jess Evernden shares how she flipped her life around and went from someone with no identity outside of work to someone with a fulfilling career and a healthy approach to living. The Thinkerbell lead producer claims that a simple shift in her mindset, a simple state of mind she reached during her art therapy journey helped her make that change for the better and truly restructured her life.
Moving to America from New Zealand to pursue religion, Jess’s family initially thought that the move would be a great decision and a positive change on their lives. But the move only left Jess and her family confused and she admits she didn't take the transition well. Leaving high school at 15, uncertain of her life and the future while also being a generally a disrupted youth, Jess had to go through a lot of self discovery and growth to become the person she is today.
In terms of her path to production, it started when she worked in administration for Toyota and saw the marketing department working firsthand, developing a fascination for what they were doing. Trying freelancing as a creative producer, Jess learned to find fulfilment through her career and with each project. Finding a new career that is healthy and that she enjoys as well as discovering who she is through painting has been revolutionary for Jess, and it is stories like hers that tell us to not give up but believe in change and a bright future.
22 years old and already a senior creative technologist at Wunderman Thompson, many would believe that Jonothan (Jono) Hunt is not normal, a prodigy with above-average capabilities and confidence greater than many in his age. But Jono would disagree, coping with imposter syndrome and dyslexia among other issues certainly does not make him feel confident or special but rather inferior, especially when he mentors people twice his age.
Growing up, he was fascinated with electronics and often, out of curiosity, would take things apart and teach himself the best and most creative ways to put them back together and wire new life into them. And as he grew older, this creative side in him was used as a teenager to code games and apps and then slowly using his electronic skills and capabilities, to make money at 15. Being interested in the advertising industry but too young to join, Jono kept working on himself and honing his skills until he finished his education, moving to London at 18 to pursue his goals and eventually writing emails to many of the UK’s advertising agencies.
Working on many great projects, Jono’s most memorable experience so far is the pitch he worked on for a prototype of a voice-controlled experience. It was not only a win with his ECDs, but a successful project as a whole and one that, in addition, made Jono sure it was fit for global implementation.
Jono is passionate about his job, and even though aspects of it can be tricky he can’t help but be excited by the experimentation of new technologies. He is humbled by the knowledge that he has many opportunities that many (including people his age) don’t have. And he aims to instil confidence in the people he supports and works with.
Being an ‘unschooler’ and having two poets as parents, Sarah Kdosi knew that art and poetry was her calling and quickly became obsessed both from a very young age. And despite her family’s financial difficulties, their insistence on creating a creative and artistically rich culture around the house helped them become more resilient as they faced their struggles and allowed Sarah personally to not only learn how to express herself but foster her artistic tendencies.
Now an art director at VMLY&R West (Seattle), Sarah always knew that she would end up doing something related to art in the future. And surprisingly, although she grew up uninterested in mainstream education, she still decided to get a degree in art to simply be around other creative individuals - a decision she takes great pride in.
Upon a recommendation by her college professor to apply for an internship at the advertising agency Hiebing, Sarah was accepted and was later offered a permanent position as associate art director in the agency. Many would say she joined VMLY&R West in an unconventional way, tackling a political piece of art that was risky and showed a lot of courage and confidence that VMLY&R picked up on and wanted to have.
Endlessly curious, Sarah’s passion for storytelling keeps her motivated and the rising representation of marginalised, underrepresented and underprivileged communities in advertising grows her excitement and belief in an advancing industry.
Although Cameron Booth grew up trying many different hobbies, playing sports, ballet and becoming a black belt in karate, nothing had interested her as much as art. The creative lead at Modifly changed her initial plan from pursuing a business degree to double-major in art and graphic design and strategic communications (media studies) at the University of Colorado.
Growing up as an only child of divorced parents from different cultural backgrounds, the time she spent with her mother’s French family differed drastically from her experience with her father’s Texan one, teaching her valuable life skills like how to resolve conflict and be a good listener. Passionate about sustainability and gender equality, Cameron believes that there’s still a lot of work to be done in the industry to improve on both, mainly the need to hire more female creative leaders and to make designs that are friendly to the environment and that contribute to a healthy planet. Practising what she preaches, Cameron is currently assisting in the creation of a culture committee at Modifly in an effort to promote more diversity and celebrate culture.
Cameron’s first professional experience in the industry was when she interned at Modifly, but even then, some of her initial success and projects came as a result of her good self marketing and personal effort. In terms of the project that she felt had the most impact on her career, Cameron names the Super Coffee's #AddSomethingPositive campaign that she also worked on at Modifly as the turning point where she felt mostly changed. Cameron is thankful of the negativity in her childhood growing up because it gave her the desire to seek a positive and happy adult life, and believe that sometimes, you really have to put yourself first.
You know those people who are always acting foolish to make others laugh and who have an overall “chaotic energy” about them? Kelly Oostman admits to being one of them and to displaying rebellious and trouble-seeking tendencies from a very young age. All in good fun, Kelly’s colourful personality eventually found its match in music, a medium she enjoys creatively exploring and engaging with.
Growing up in a household that valued academic success, the Sonic Union sound engineer felt the overwhelming pressure and need to succeed throughout most of her life. This desperate urge to make it was reflected from the start in her career when she began stressing out about the silly little mistakes and imperfections she faced. Luckily, her creative journey taught her at some point that “it’s okay to fuck up,” relieving her of the harsh expectations she placed on herself for a very long time.
Kelly admits that although she likes her creative roles and projects, she enjoys the social aspects of her occupation the most. And collaborating with some of the most interesting and amusing people in the industry and forming great relationships is what truly makes her glad with her career path.
A project she prides herself in is the sound design and mixing she did for the short narrative podcast ‘Anomaly.’ Available in an audio-only medium, it was in Kelly’s hands to make or break the project as the worldbuilding and story relied heavily on the sound design. It was accepted to Tribeca’s Film Festival’s first podcast selection, an achievement the Sonic Union is ecstatic about. Kelly’s love for music and creativity is limitless, and accepting her ridiculous and rebellious nature, she gets to enjoy a challenging yet fun career path that allows her to be herself.
As a curious kid who loved learning, watching Disney movies and putting a creative twist on things around him, Mark Anthony, an animator for Livingroom based in Dubai, left his computer science bachelors degree and path towards a technological career to pursue his true calling in design and animation. A strong believer in following his instinct, Mark switched to the creative industry and started out as an in-house graphic designer and then transitioned into animation upon realising his passion for it. His first project was a digital campaign created for the launch of Starbucks on the ENTERTAINER App in South Africa, a prominent and successful company in the region.
In addition to encouraging people to follow their true passion, Mark feels strongly about the importance of a work-life balance and hopes that the industry does a better job tackling the topic in the future. A healthy balance between work and entertainment helps fuel his creativity and gets him through the day, a balance he believes is vital for other creatives to have.