Want to work with Rihanna, style the world’s most famous trainers or witness mind-blowing art every day? These industry insiders spill the secrets of making it big
The creative industry, can, at times, feel seriously cutthroat. Does one foot in the door mean a never-ending span of nightmare internships, kissing goodbye forever to your parents and dog and a pokey windowless cubicle? According to these industry professionals, no, that’s not the case. The impossible dream of a creative career, whether you’re an aspiring photographer, filmmaker, art director or entrepreneur is within your reach.
Professional creatives band together this week in London for Le Book Connections, a custom-made trade show for the creative industry. The show is a dynamic networking and ideas-sharing platform that stops off in global locations like LA, Berlin and New York. We caught up with some of the jurors this year to ask them for their most valuable tips and tricks for making it.
KATE MAHON, ART BUYING DIRECTOR AT SAATCHI & SAATCHI
“All my previous career choices (and there were many) in some way, shape or form have been of use in my current job. Building trust with those around you will create the best work atmosphere and that in turn helps people produce the best work. Also, attending industry-based events like Le Book allow for a sort of professional speed dating environment which may open up totally unexpected relationships. Lastly, stay calm when everything around you turns to mayhem – a trait I hasten to add I am sadly lacking but admire in others.”
RONOJOY DAM, GROUP CREATIVE DIRECTOR AT DAZED MEDIA
“There are legitimate ways to do whatever you want; learn from everything and everyone and you'll have no regrets. Life is hard work: don't be bitter, be better. Follow your instinct, and don't expect to always love what you do. People are the most important thing, in work, and life. Meet new people, make friends, be inspired by them, learn from them. All the original Dazed & Confused family met through nightclubs. I met the best people through London nightlife. Le Book is a place where you get the chance to do that with a lot of people working in the same industry, which is handy.”
SCOTT WRIGHT, DIRECTOR OF STRATEGY & DIGITAL AT XL RECORDINGS
“William Goldman's old quote about Hollywood applies just as well to music and every other creative industry: 'nobody knows anything'. All good work is the result of good research and the right collaborations can elevate your work, so meeting new people is crucial. It’s important to always know how people are communicating, consuming and sharing, online and off. This changes all the time and that creates opportunities.”
GARY ASPDEN, BRAND EXPERT AND CONSULTANT AT ADIDAS
“If your family doesn’t have the money to support you then don't go to college unless you are totally committed to what you are doing. When I was first starting out I was warned by a very talented and respected stylist that the fashion industry is about 10 per cent people with talent and 90 per cent people that want to go to parties. I have always held onto that one.
There are a number of people who hold influential positions in the industry who I dealt with when they were assistants or interns. I liked them as people and tried to treat them well. I like to think that some of them have adopted a similar philosophy.
Influence and reach isn’t necessarily the same thing. I despair when I hear that promoters are booking DJs based on the size of their social followings rather than the quality of the music they play then that cannot be good for popular culture.”
Check out more of what Le Book has to offer here