We took a moment to pick the brain of the INCREDIBLE multitalented business director/writer, Bonita Darkoh. She shared her journey, inspirations and her love for advertising.
Are you currently working on a personal project?
Yes, WalkingBrand! I was inspired to work on this project after a conversation with the Director of my business. She had mentioned that the business found it tough, when trying to recruit people of colour. I shared with her a number of creatives I knew via Instagram and Twitter. She was shocked at the amount of talent there within the community. This is where my bridging talent to opportunity motto came from. I use walkingbrand to promote the work of creatives that I come across, whilst writing on the disparity within the industry on HuffPost. The project is important to me because as a BAME individual within the industry, I cannot sit back and accept the disparity.
Have you always wanted to work in the creative industry? If yes, can you tell us why? If not, how did you land your current position?
Yes, I knew I wanted to work in Advertising when I began to develop a strong interest in audience behaviour. I know.. It's the least exciting part of advertising, but I genuinely enjoy understanding how a placement or creative type can influence the performance of campaigns.
What has been your biggest achievement to date and why?
Biggest achievement to date I would say is working, studying and launching this project. Working a 9-5 whilst studying for my MSc was a challenge in itself, I knew I would have to use my time wisely. As soon began my masters late last year, this project came to mind and I was determined that I could juggle all three priorities. So far it has been a success, and it has taught me you can never be too busy to make a difference.
What would you describe as you biggest obstacle so far?
The 'who you know' game, when trying to get into the creative industry this a big obstacle. I often found myself unable to find the suitable role for me due to my lack of connections in the industry, when starting out. I landed the job I finally wanted when gaining industry knowledge in a more junior role after 6 months, in a different company. After I got the experience things got a lot better, but if I had told myself this is a stepping stone I may have not been in the industry today.
Taking a lighter note what and who inspires your creative process?
The talent around me, although I work in the creative industry I got my own project going due the creativity around me. The talent I see inspires me because I have come to terms with the barriers people of colour can face. Working in the creative industry made me immediately feel like I had my own calling, and that was to put the work of others on my social platforms. The lack of representation pushed me make social media profiles solely for this purpose, and begin to write to HuffPost on this issue. I have come across so many talented individuals ready to give up, and essentially their talent is want pushes me. My creative process derives from wanting to eliminate the disparity within the industry.
What three tips would you give your younger self?
Do not be afraid to be different, unique sells. Network, network, network you never know what opportunity it can land you. Have a point of view and stick with it.
What words of wisdom do you have for other creatives?
Social media has become a platform which many people use, no matter your following count you are just as valuable. We can get caught up in the numbers game, but it just takes one person to recognise your work.
If you had the opportunity to get a message across to a large group of people, what would you message be?
Do not feel discouraged, there is space for us all.
What legacy would you like to leave behind?
I would like to be remembered as someone that helped bridge talent to opportunity. Using my connections within the industry to help others.