Name: Guilet James Libby
Origin: Port-Au-Prince, Haiti
Places where you’ve lived and worked: Haiti, America, Singapore
- Distillery, creative director, 2020-now
- Dentsu Singapore, 2015-2020
- Leo Burnett Singapore, 2013-2015
- Leo Burnett Chicago, 2012
1. How did you end up being a creative?
After 12 long years of wearing a tie to private schools, I realised that all it did was choke me and my creativity. So, I ditched the idea of wearing a tie and the corporate world, and pursued a career in the arts. Instead of worrying about my appearance and conforming to a certain standard, I could focus on expressing myself.
Looking back, I can’t believe that I spent so many years thinking that success was tied to wearing a suit and tie. I’ve learned that true success comes from following your passion and doing what makes you happy. And for me, that meant ditching the tie and embracing my creative side.
2. What’s your favourite piece of work in your portfolio?
The following piece of work gave me a chance to use my creativity to make a positive impact in the world. It’s also a piece of work that is still relevant today.
3. What’s your favourite piece of work created by someone else?
When thinking about my favourite work, I can’t help but think of a project that hits close to home. The opioid crisis has affected many of my friends and community members in Massachusetts, and the reality of losing loved ones is a constant reminder of how fragile life is. I always wanted to contribute to raising awareness on this topic, but my former boss Michael Shirley beat me to it. His team created a powerful project called Prescribed to Death.
4. Who are your creative key creative influences?
Throughout my career, I have been fortunate enough to have been guided by exceptional creative luminaries, such as Ted Lim, Andy Greenaway, and Tim Green, who have all played a crucial role in shaping my creative vision. As a student, I also looked up to renowned figures like David Droga, Joji Jacobs, and Eugene Chong, whose work inspired me to relocate to Singapore.
5. Who do you most admire?
I have tremendous admiration for my wife. Not only has she brought our two boys into this world, but she’s also my rock, my sounding board, and my partner-in-crime. I can never fully express my gratitude for everything she does for our family, and I shudder to think where I would be without her support
6. Do you have a catch phrase?
I’ve coined a catchphrase that my managing director, Simon Hearn, has also embraced: ‘We’ll get there!’ It’s a simple yet powerful way of conveying our collective determination to reach our goals. This phrase serves as a constant source of motivation for both ourselves and our company, propelling us ever forward towards success.
7. What kind of student were you?
8. What really motivates you?
The idea of producing work that brings a smile to the faces of my children.
9. What career did you think you’d have when you were a kid?
I would be a painter or stockbroker.
10. Cat person or dog person?
11. Any regrets?
I wish I had met my wife earlier.