One Under 30: Young Creative Spotlight – Michelle Edu

Highlighting young talent in the ad world
— one person at a time.

As part of an ongoing series highlighting young talent in the industry, Branding in Asia brings you “One Under 30” – a special feature that focuses on up-and-coming talent in the ad world, one person at a time.

This week we feature Michelle Edu, Creative Director at BBDO Guerrero in the Philippines.

When asked about what inspires her, Michelle said she was “inspired by the anime I watched from when I was a kid up until now. Anime and cartoons offer such a wide range of stories, which has helped me grow my imagination.”

 
 

The Basics

Name: Michelle Edu
Age: 27
Agency: BBDO Guerrero
Position: Creative Director
Hometown: Rizal, Philippines
Current Location: Rizal, Philippines
Education: University of Santo Tomas, Bachelor of Fine Arts major in Advertising, 2014

Seven Questions

How did you get your first break in the industry?

After graduation, I tried applying for a graphic design position at a large food manufacturer here in Manila. My mom and dad would tell me that it was okay to give it a try for the experience. But after getting an offer, I declined.

I guess I kind of knew that working under one brand would mean that I would get the same job orders over and over. The thought scared me, to be honest.

 
 

So, I waited, tried exploring art, and researched for art director positions instead. I enjoyed ad practice classes in college anyway, and at least I was aware that every job would be different. On my sixth month of being unemployed, I stumbled on a brief that would get me into a creative workshop in BBDO. I submitted an idea and got in.

What is your personal mantra?

Practice makes you a better creative. And kindness goes a long way.

From what person, place or thing have you drawn your greatest creative inspiration?

I get hyped by good design. I love looking at art that has a clever twist and a level of intricacy to it. I’ve been fangirling over Yuni Yoshida’s Instagram for almost a year already for her unique approach and perspective to her work, even if it’s commercial.

“I guess I kind of knew that working under one brand would mean that I would get the same job orders over and over. The thought scared me, to be honest.”

I’m also heavily inspired by the anime I watched from when I was a kid up until now. Anime and cartoons offer such a wide range of stories, which has helped me grow my imagination.

What do you love about the job?

I love solving briefs and problems. It’s satisfying to know when the work is relatable with the people you’re talking to.

What about your job are you not so crazy about?

The long hours. And sometimes the conflict between account management and creative.

What is some work you’ve done that you’re most proud of?

My favorites would be my illustrations for our Snicker Wrong World Cup Finals campaign. These were part of a more significant campaign that involved almost all of the agency’s art directors. It was fun working on art and crafting these on top of our regular day-to-day work.

World Cough Print

Image via Michelle Edu

I also loved working on light-hearted and fun campaigns like our Thumb films for Yellow Cab Pizza from roughly 4 years ago. Casting our lead thumb was a feat in itself.

Image via Michelle Edu

Another fun one would be our music video that launched SPAM in the Philippines. It was a boy band, after all.

All for SPAM

If you had to choose another career what would it be?

It would probably be an illustrator or a film director. Something still close to something creative.

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