Creative Industry Event Le Book Connections Arrives in L.A.
Before the event on Feb. 4, we asked for some advice from folks at Guess, Google and more on how to make it in the creative industry.
It's no easy feat trying to make it in the creative industry — let alone getting your foot in the door. But that's not to say that it's impossible for anyone aspiring to be part of the field, from artists to photographers to entrepreneurs.
Le Book Connections, an international platform for connecting talent and organizations, will take place at the Pacific Design Center on Feb. 4 from 11:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Ahead of the event, The Hollywood Reporter asked a few members from this year's jury (which features a group of judges including THR creative director Shanti Marlar) for their advice on achieving their dreams and staying motivated in a cutthroat industry.
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On achieving your goals:
George Faerber, vp creative services at Guess
"Work for anyone and everyone you can! Doesn't matter if it's paid or not, take any job. I did it all: test shoots, assisting people, coffee runs — didn't f—ing matter what it was, I did it. Just get your foot in the door and keep your focus on the work. The paid jobs will come once you've proven yourself. Starting out as a freelancer when I was young gave me the opportunity to meet people working at all levels in the industry. I'm still working with and consulting with those same people today. It's a small world. Le Book is the perfect tool to start getting yourself out there. Look through it, get inspired and then just start emailing and calling everyone whose work you love!"
Roderick Stanley, executive editorial director at M.A.C. Cosmetics
"Don't wait for permission. Stay alert to opportunity. Be prepared to wing it. Don't be afraid to fail. If you do fail, try to learn from it. Ask people you like about their work; they will probably be happy to talk. If they're not, oh well. "Making it" and "breaking in" is arbitrary, so try to enjoy it all. Don't be in a rush. Be nice to people. Be nice to interns. They might be in a position to give you work 10 years later. And they will definitely remember you."
Sean Ivester, creative lead at Google
"One of the most important things you can do (in any profession, really) is surround yourself with the right people. You become like those who you’re around, so I would advise someone who’s trying to break into the creative industry to look at who they’re spending their time with and see if those relationships are helping them get to where they want to be. If you’re surrounded with success and positivity, chances are you’ll find both of those for yourself as well. And that’s where Le Book is so crucial, they’re connectors. They’ve helped me develop a strong network within the creative community that I know I can rely on."
Joyce Azria, creative director at BCBGENERATION
"When your passion becomes your profession, the evil forces of reality and financial obligations begin to contaminate the creative process. Having sources of creativity that you can come back to and get lost in is essential to staying open and energized. Le Book is a melting pot of art and serves as home base for inspiration."
Andy Griffiths, vp marketing at Andy Griffiths
"Persevere. It's not always about the right idea but about the ability to come up with ideas. I always believe in a good brief, hence I ultimately believe in garbage in garbage out. Le Book has helped with incredible access and exposure. The fact you are in "good company" says a lot about the work and the talent included."
On staying motivated:
"I remember a time when I was literally starving and couldn't afford rent. I was at that point where you have to decide if you are going to continue to do what you love, or settle for a job that just pays the bills. I realized that when it came down to it, I just wasn’t very good at anything non-creative so my options were limited. It was basically "follow your dreams or starve in the street." As far as motivation, starvation was pretty powerful. I busted my ass and thankfully, it ended up working out!"
"When I first started out, there wasn't really any magical moment to pinpoint. I just managed to, over a period of years, swap jobs I didn't enjoy so much (office admin, kitchens, games testing) for jobs I liked more (writing, interviewing, making magazines, websites). It was all quite gradual. I enjoyed it all and felt lucky for any opportunity."
"Anything really worth doing isn’t easy. I think just knowing that ahead of time helps a lot. Yes, there will be times that you want to give up and yes there will be people who don’t believe in you — especially in a field as subjective as creative. It happens to me frequently, but a long time ago I taught myself to be disciplined, not motivated. Motivation is fleeting, it will come and go. But discipline is consistent, it’s there everyday. If you know what you want, commit to it and persevere through the hard times. Your success will be all the more rewarding."
"I think giving up can sometimes be part of the process itself, but a true creative must be committed to a greater purpose. The thing that keeps me going is knowing that when you are given the gift of creativity it is because you must shine it outwards, so I make it my mantra to "Shine On" and keep on influencing those around me to do the same!"
Find more info on Le Book Connections here.