Student Awards Judges 2021
Inspiration and Advice for the Next Generation of Creatives
February 22, 2021
Our 2021 Student Awards Judges have built some incredible careers, and an Applied Arts Student Award is an excellent foundation to start building yours.
Regardless of what stage in their career our 2021 Student Awards Judges are at, one thing they all share is that they were once students looking to get their work into the world; just like you. They know where you’re coming from, now you can get to know a bit about where they came from, what inspires them, and even some nuggets of creative counsel.
Mooren (Mo) Bofill, Partner, Creative Director, Design at One Twenty Three West in Toronto, Alumni of York University
The newest Partner at 123w – one of Canada’s leading agencies, Mo will help them expand across Canada through the lens of Design. Formerly Executive Director of Design at john st., Mo built their award-winning Design offering from the ground up. She helped transform iconic Canadian brands like Bell, President’s Choice, Winners, and Koodo, as well as global brands like KFC, Coca-Cola, and Corona, to name a few. Her work has been awarded by D&AD, HOW, Cannes, Lürzer’s Archive, Communication Arts, and ADCC, among others. A frequent speaker, she mentors through RGD, is an instructor and mentor at Miami Ad School Toronto, and helped create their new Design Program, is on the Board of the ADCC, and is a leader on the issue of diversity in our industry.
Jean-Philippe Dugal, 360 Creative at lg2 in Quebec, QC, Alumni of Université du Québec à Montréal
My biggest source of creative inspiration is my friends. I'm actually incredibly inspired by them and all their stories.
My one piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is to stay naive. For me, it's the key to keep trying, to keep dreaming of new projects.
Something most people who work with me don't know is that I'm actually good in renovation. Even with my clean designer hands. Haha
I think the secret to my success is to never give up. Keep searching for answers. And make sure you've got the team with you that has the same objective.
Stephen Flynn, Creative Director at Wunder in Halifax, Alumni of Durham College
My biggest source of creative inspiration is observing the world. If you want to get people’s attention you need to understand what makes them tick.
My one piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is, find a way to make your book represent your full potential, not just the work you’ve been assigned.
I think the secret to my success is identifying big opportunities; seemingly boring briefs can always result in really great work.
Regan Fraser, Art Director at McCann in Calgary, Alumni of NAIT and University of Regina
My advice to the next generation of creatives is to make it personal. Hold every decision close and do everything for a reason as you bring that idea to life. It might not be your product or your company that you’re promoting, but that idea will always be yours – so treat it like it’s precious as much as you can. That inscribed value is what people notice.
Mariela Hsu, Creative Director at Design Army in Washington, Alumni of Dawson College
My biggest source of creative inspiration is people. Although I’m an introvert, I love people. Their good vibes spur me onward and show me new perspectives.
My one piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is to be observant. Be curious. Passion is a very important thing to have, but maintaining the fire in your heart and being disciplined are equally important.
Something most people who work with me don't know is that I actually have a good singing voice. I like singing for my daughters and they love it. I rarely show this gift to others though, only the intimate ones.
My favourite way to unwind from work is to exercise. I can’t live without exercising. Yoga & weight training are ways for me to achieve balance.
I think the secret to my success is a love affair with typography. I LOVE designing type and type is one of the key ingredients in design. Without this skill, you cannot survive as a good designer.
I'm currently obsessed with a sustainable, plant-based lifestyle so that my children will still have a nice planet to live on.
Anand Iyer, Associate Creative Director at No Fixed Address in Toronto, Alumni of OCAD University
My favourite way to unwind from work is to get the heck off the grid and into the wilderness to photograph wildlife. If you’re interested in seeing my wildlife photography check out my Instagram @anand_iyer. I realize that was a blatant self-promo but hey we do work in advertising ;)
Jelle Maréchal, Creative Director at Bruce Mau Design in Toronto, Alumni of University of Antwerp and St. Lucas School of Arts, Antwerp
Something most people who work with me don't know is: I rarely name, lock or organize my layers.
Pia Nummi, Director, Creative Services at Canada Goose in Toronto, Alumni of OCAD University
My one piece of advice for the next generation: Kern baby, kern.
Iva Prkacin, Associate Creative Director at Anomaly in Toronto, Alumni of Mohawk College
My biggest source of creative inspiration is human behaviour. If you really understand how a person thinks or interacts with something, you can come up with ideas that relate to them - that can help or inspire them in some way.
My one piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is: figure out where you want your career to take you early, and spend every day taking small steps toward that goal.
Learn from every person you work with because creative work is very subjective. Whether it's learning how to do something like they do or learning that you don't want to do it like them, it'll help you figure out what type of creative/creative leader you want to be.
My favourite way to unwind from work is to hang out with my friends, forever including but not limited to my dachshund, @LongboyHank.
I think the secret to my success is collaboration. Ideas will be able to go so much further with the right team, with each person bringing a unique perspective and skill to the table.
Allison Roger, Creative Director at Sid Lee in Seattle, Alumini of the College of Wooster
One piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is: Greatness is equal parts courage and vulnerability.
James Sadler, Executive Creative Director at TAXI Vancouver in Vancouver, Alumni of Staffordshire University
My one piece of advice for the next generation is: at some point in your career you will hear the phrase, ‘There’s no such thing as an original idea. Everything has been done before.’ When you do, slap them as hard as you can.
Maxime Sauté, Partner & Creative Director at Rethink in Montreal, Alumni of École pratique des hautes études commerciales & attended College of Art and Design (Belgium)
My biggest source of creative inspiration is having multiple sources of inspiration, not just one.
My one piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is: creative people with talent but bad attitudes don't last long. Execution is the key; ideas are nothing without it.
Something most people who work with me don’t know is that I sleep with my eyes open.
My favourite way to unwind from work is by running and drinking wine. In that order, it’s better.
I think the secret to my success is that I was lucky, I believe it’s because when I was born, my grandfather, who sold champagne in Europe, put some behind my ears as a good luck charm.
I’m currently obsessed with my 1-year-old daughter, Romane.
Steve Savic, EVP, Executive Creative Director at Critical Mass in Calgary, Alumni of Alberta University of the Arts
Avoid Easy Street. Take the Road To Ruin. Live dangerously.
Cody Sennyuen, Senior Designer at Quake in Toronto, Alumni of Humber College
My one piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is that I think it's important to stay true to yourself. We all come from different backgrounds and cultures, and have different interests and experiences. I think it's important to inject that into your work whenever you get the chance.
Stuart Thursby, Principal & Creative Director at Stack Creative in Toronto, Alumni of Western University
My biggest source of creative inspiration is taking in as wide a variety of experiences, shows, games, flavours, sounds, and sights as I can.
My one piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is: resist locking yourself to one set career trajectory. There’s more security in entrepreneurship and staying active in multiple areas than it may seem.
Something most people who work with me don't know is that I have a degree in History.
My favourite way to unwind from work is mainlining Euro drama shows. Borgen? Trapped? Broadchurch? Dark? May there be many more!
I think the secret to my success is working with good, smart people who are in this crazy business for the right reasons.
I'm currently obsessed with…did I mention Borgen? Because it’s 100% Borgen.
Alexandra Wells, Creative Lead at MediaMonks in Seattle, Alumni of OCAD University
My biggest source of creative inspiration is Instagram. Love/hate but it's bananas how deep you can go, what you can find, and where you'll end up. There are people out there doing some pretty amazing (and strange) stuff.
My one piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is: let your mistakes be your mentor. Being creative in advertising can be tough. Learn from your experiences and carry them forward in a positive way. It will make all the difference.
My favourite way to unwind from work is by making ceramics. It feels great to use your brain and body to do something tactile after thinking about intangible concepts all day. Or I watch TV—that's always a good time too!
Catherine Wong, Group Creative Director at Leo Burnett in Toronto, Alumni of OCAD University
The secret to my success is surrounding myself with smart, nice people. Without the smart, nothing good gets done. Without the nice, nothing done is worth doing.
My one piece of advice to the next generation of creatives is the importance of having a healthy life outside of work. Be with family. Hang with friends. Go do things. Bring that nugget of life into your work. It adds insight and humanity, and often, those are the best ideas.