Nanyang Polytechnic’s School of Design, in an initiative with the Institute of Advertising Singapore (IAS) saw 7 of Singapore’s top Creative Directors presenting their advertising work to 800 students and academic professionals. Held on April 21 at Nanyang Polytechnic’s auditorium, the event saw the likes of the Republic’s top creatives like Ali Shabaz- Chief Creative Officer, Grey Worldwide; Calvin Soh – Publicis Asia Vice-Chairman, Chief Creative Officer-Asia; Ajay Vikram – Executive Creative Director, Publicis; Alex Lim – Creative Director, Publicis Singapore; Pann Lim – Creative Director, Kinetic; Sean Lam – Creative Director, Plate Interactive and Chris Lee – Creative Director, Asylum.
The visually thought-provoking presentation by the speakers completely engaged the students. Commented IAS Advisor Mr Patrick Mowe, “The Institute of Advertising Singapore with the active endorsement of SMRT Media have worked hard with the Nanyang Polytechnic School of Design to encourage students from final year secondary schools up to the Polytechnic level to develop their interest in Creativity. This event taps on the inspirational qualities of Singapore’s own world class Creative Directors to inspire the students about careers in creative work for marketing communication which does a good deal to drive the Singapore economy.”
The event was also made possible by sponsor SMRT. Vice President for SMRT Investments, Taxis and Engineering, Ms Teo Chew Hoon commented, “SMRT Media is a firm believer and advocate in promoting creativity in the local advertising industry… this year, we are taking an exciting approach by infusing creativity into the school curriculum through this forum. With this, we want to nurture and inspire a future generation of new designers.”
To promote greater involvement in the forum, Nanyang Polytechnic School of Design organised a design competition, where Year 2 design students were given the opportunity to design posters and electronic direct mailers (EDMs) to promote the forum. The final design selected by Leo Burnett’s Creative Director Chris Chew and his team was displayed in 24 SMRT stations.
Commented Year 3 Visual Communication student Faiz …. ” The talk was rather inspiring. It definitely opened my mind that what we can do is not only limited to prints, packaging etc. The possibilities are endless; its just a matter of thinking. Looking at different creative people and how they work and their thoughts… especially looking at Pann’s and Sean’s works kinda gave me the drive to push my designs further. I think this kind of seminar helps us students to have a different change of learning environment and listen to some of the professionals speak about what they are experiencing out there right now. Sometimes you gotta learn from the best to be the best.
I feel that Spore do have the talents in the creative industry, its just that some are still yet to be recognized and be brought forward. The industry is still maturing in the context of S’pore but the talents have definitely anchored some major jobs overseas. I believe in due time the creative industry could be something to be reckoned with.”
Year 3 Visual Communication student Ong Kai Min commented, “I was really impressed by the talk and the works that were shown. Some of the works were really hilarious while some were just jaw dropping. Of course, the thinking process/exploration of ideas would have been really thorough so as to not miss out any possible ideas for the ad. I enjoyed the whole seminar as every Creative Director presented to us a variety of interesting works. I learnt that we need to create things that are rather ‘contagious’ as participation seems to be the thing now. To be able to see all of them there talking on the stage to us was a real privilege and I hope that this wouldn’t be the last time we were to see them in our school. However, I heard some people complaining on the duration of the seminar.
To me, Singapore’s creative industry isn’t as flexible as the industry in the other parts of the world. This is because I do feel that the clients in the local industry are looking for safer ideas. The industry seems to be growing really rapidly in today’s context compared to the past couple of years. Of course we are really fortunate to be able to witness works that are done in Singapore by well known companies like Asylum, Kinetic, Publicis, Leo Burnett and many other talented ones. I do hope that there are further opportunities in our school like this in the years to come.”
Student Jocelyn Woo was equally enthusiastic but raised two issues: “The speakers addressed all the questions my friends and I wanted to ask in their presentations; it’s as if they could read our minds. In the end we had really nothing to ask! The design student also wondered whether our local clients would be more open to such ideas; “I think our Singapore clients like to play it safe and are afraid to do anything new, maybe they should also attend this forum!”
IAS Executive Director Jennifer Goh enthused, “This event was a success, we had the best speakers engaging 800 hyper-active youths for 3 hours and they stayed on till the end. What can you say about that? We are looking forward to next year’s seminar!