Cre­ativ­ity in ac­tion

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - EDUCATION & FURTHER STUDIES FAIR -

WE live in a time of great me­dia con­ver­gence. Ev­ery day, we cel­e­brate the rise of a new idea or an in­no­va­tion. Dig­i­tal knowl­edge is no longer an op­tion but a must if we want to stay ahead of the in­dus­try.

“The younger gen­er­a­tion to­day is full of ideas, they would do what­ever it takes to sur­prise and in­spire their au­di­ence ( or fol­low­ers). How­ever, it takes cre­ativ­ity to go fur­ther than where they are,” says IACT Col­lege cre­ative and mar­ket­ing di­rec­tor and se­nior lec­turer Penny Low.

“Cre­ativ­ity is the big­gest com­mod­ity. It ex­pands hori­zons and helps you soar be­yond lim­i­ta­tions. Op­por­tu­ni­ties are end­less for peo­ple with cre­ativ­ity.”

What does it take to get a head start in the cre­ative in­dus­try? Here is an in­ter­view with a few of IACT’s alumni who started off their jour­ney in cre­ative ca­reers as early as their col­lege days. All of them are ris­ing stars in their re­spec­tive fields.

They are Grim­film YouTube Chan­nel founder and di­rec­tor Jared Lee ( J), who also co- founded and co- owns Morn­ing­wood Café; win­ner of Bella Cor­re­spon­dence 2013 and the lead singer of “An Hon­est Mis­take”, who is also into host­ing, danc­ing and act­ing Ash­ley Chan ( A); artiste and TV host for Astro XiaoTaiYang Chan­nel Melissa Ong ( M); and the founder and con­tent cre­ator of Bry­zoid. com Bryan Alexan­der Lim ( B). His clients in­clude Nike, Astro, Tiger­beer and Me­dia Prima.

What is the cre­ative in­dus­try in Malaysia like?

J: The cre­ative in­dus­try in Malaysia has a lot of po­ten­tial and that means plenty of job op­por­tu­ni­ties.

A: I def­i­nitely feel a lot more new jobs are open­ing up and as Mass Com­mu­ni­ca­tion is such a wide field, there are lots of ca­reer op­tions to choose from.

M: Yes, it’s true, and it’s a mat­ter of grab­bing the op­por­tu­nity. Take for ex­am­ple, James Wan for The Con­jur­ing or the CG for Life of PI, which was done by lo­cal artistes in KL, all we have to do is learn to ap­pre­ci­ate all the op­por­tu­ni­ties given to us.

B: I agree with ev­ery­one. There are more op­por­tu­ni­ties th­ese days as the lo­cal start- up or­gan­i­sa­tions are tak­ing the ini­tia­tive to be bolder and more au­da­cious in en­gag­ing with the com­mu­nity with fresh ideas. At the same time, on the education end, more and more peo­ple are trained in the field and they have learnt to be more open and ac­cept­ing when it comes to new ideas.

What is your hope for the cre­ative in­dus­try in Malaysia or, at least, the field you are in?

J: One of my big­gest wishes is to change the Malaysian mind­set to­wards our “Bu­atan Malaysia” prod­ucts. Whether it’s film, mu­sic, art or even clothes, we need our peo­ple to sup­port our lo­cal tal­ent so that the in­dus­try can grow. That is the only way to get the world’s at­ten­tion.

M: Malaysians need to sup­port and nur­ture the cre­ative in­dus­try in Malaysia. We are good and we can be even bet­ter and per­haps even com­pete in­ter­na­tion­ally, but we have to start by be­liev­ing in our strengths and pos­si­bil­i­ties in this field.

A: On top of that, I hope the in­dus­try is given the space and free­dom it needs, not be­ing sti­fled or con­trolled too much. It will def­i­nitely grow if we are given more free­dom

B: It is also cru­cial that other in­dus­tries cre­ate a col­lab­o­ra­tive in­fra­struc­ture to work hand- in- hand with the cre­ative in­dus­try in a wider per­spec­tive. Cre­ative in­dus­try is one of the best plat­forms that busi­nesses can lev­er­age on for growth.

Be­ing an alumni of IACT Col­lege, the only cre­ative com­mu­ni­ca­tion spe­cial­ist col­lege in the coun­try, how has the col­lege taught you about be­ing cre­ative and pre­pared you for the in­dus­try?

B: Education at IACT Col­lege is ver­sa­tile. It has a wide choice of sub­jects. For ex­am­ple, in Diploma of Mass Com­mu­ni­ca­tion, we had to learn how to use the dif­fer­ent medi­ums in the in­dus­try. Thus, we had sub­jects from de­sign­ing, writ­ing and idea con­cep­tu­al­i­sa­tion to even cor­po­rate man­age­ment. It has made me ver­sa­tile when en­gag­ing with cre­ativ­ity.

J: The joy I found be­ing at IACT was the free­dom to dis­cover what I love and be­ing en­cour­aged to go af­ter it. I found my love for film- mak­ing through a sim­ple video as­sign­ment. And most of the as­sign­ments at IACT give you room to do what you want, rather than ‘ fol­low what the lec­turer wants’.

M: Yes, it was so much fun study­ing in IACT Col­lege with many ‘ out- of- the- box’ el­e­ments. I re­mem­ber once dur­ing the sub­ject of Pre­sen­ta­tion Skills, we had to talk about our dreams and pas­sion in five min­utes ( with props and cos­tumes). Can you imag­ine the ex­cite­ment of see­ing my class­mates com­ing to class wear­ing py­ja­mas say­ing their dream was to sleep 24/ 7? It was as­sign­ments like th­ese at IACT that al­ways made me think a lot and un­earthed the in­ner cre­ativ­ity in me.

A: IACT has taught me to think out­side the box. The lec­tur­ers guided us to do things and cre­ate things that were new and en­gag­ing. Ev­ery­thing I did at IACT was very hands on and pre­pared me well for the in­dus­try.

IACT Col­lege de­clared the month of March as “Cel­e­brat­ing Cre­ativ­ity” month. The high­light of the month is “Cre­ative Car­ni­val”, which is hap­pen­ing on March 19 and 20, 10am to 5pm, at its cam­pus at VSQ Tower, Pe­tal­ing Jaya. For more in­for­ma­tion on the event, call 03- 7954 1909 or visit iact. edu. my.

Melissa and Bryan ( cen­tre) talk­ing about their ex­pe­ri­ence within the cre­ative com­mu­ni­ca­tion field.

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