See It Be It is a programme that aims to further women in the creative industry, encouraging them to grow their careers and reach senior positions. Across three days, 12 women will be part of an inspirational programme which will take place during Cannes Lions.
We’ve reached out to these 12 selected creatives to get their thoughts on the concepts of leadership, femininity and success, all of which Getty Images continues to challenge in our latest #RePicture campaign.
Juliana Ardila is an Art Director with Leo Burnett MENA, in Dubai.
At Getty Images, we’ve been tracking the changing visual dialogue around females. Are you noticing shifts in how women and girls are represented in the creative industry both at the agency and client side? Are you satisfied with the way that females are currently portrayed?
There has definitely been a change in the mindset of women; they treat work like an important part of their lives if not the most. Nevertheless, there’s still a long way to go and a lot of work and collaboration from the agencies in order to maintain this ambition and keep this talent intact.
Unfortunately at a cursory glance, females are still viewed not as ‘equals’, but firstly as ‘women.’ Take for example, the process of mentoring. Men tend to mentor other men. Seeing an older man mentor a younger woman over lunch is easily and often misinterpreted.
I’m not making a general statement but even though we turn a blind eye to it, men often label women in a way that is different to men. A woman can be too old, too young, too pretty, too careless or even too approachable just by the way she looks. This trickles into infinite misconceptions about the quality of work a woman delivers, without even looking at it.
We are judged and pushed not only to be constantly good at our work, but also to be constantly mindful about how we portray ourselves to others.
This year 4 out of 17 jury presidents at Cannes Lions are women, more than any previous year. Are you seeing more women entering senior creative roles across the advertising industry? Does more work need to be done to elevate women into these roles?
Although the number of women in creative roles in advertising has changed, it has been very little and at a very slow pace. The disparity amongst gender at higher positions in the industry is undeniable.
One of the main reasons this disparity exists is that for most women, a time will come when they’ll have to decide either to stay in the workforce or start a family. As with many jobs, these years coincide with a critical time for career development.
This gets particularly tougher in a creative department that has nurtured a culture of staying up late until 2 am or longer to come up with new ideas.
It’s a fact that if anyone wants to succeed in the creative industry, they need to push themselves as much as they can. This shouldn’t be a gender competition.
Women need to focus not on “proving themselves” but on “believing in themselves” and producing a higher quantity of high quality work. Agencies, when the time is due, need to support these women and be more flexible, without disregarding the multi-faceted roles that women need to play in their personal lives such as being a wife, mother, partner, aunt, etc.
If you can visualize success and leadership for women today what would that picture look like? What would it look like in 5 years?
The upcoming generation of women will be more confident and fearless. I expect them to have ambitions that burn brightly and never dwindle, to work without prejudices and to match men in every achievement.
I also look forward to a time when agencies will appreciate and unlock the true value and advantages of having senior women build their brands. For this kind of a future, they will need to make a woman’s work-life balance a lot easier than it presently is.
Who’s your professional female hero/crush? Why?
It sad, but this answer took me the longest. I realized I didn’t know most of the lead women in this industry, even though I know there are many CEOS and woman around the globe that are changing this.
The only name that came to my mind was Annie Leibovitz. I admire her, not only for being extremely talented but because she open her way into a male-dominated business, especially at that time. I admire her mostly because she found what she absolutely loves to do, and she never let anyone or anything stand between her and her passions and the fact that she doesn’t do it for recognition, but for the pleasure of making things better. As Annie Leibovitz said: “I’m more interested in being good than being famous.”
Juliana Ardila was born in Bucaramanga, Colombia and has lived in Australia and New Zealand. She got her Graphic design degree at Jorge Tadeo Lozano University in Bogotá. Has worked at McCann Erickson Corporation, Lowe’s digital media group ‘Mass Digital’ and Leo Burnett Colombia. She recently moved to Dubai as an art director for Leo Burnett MENA.
She has been awarded in different local festivals in Bogotá and Dubai, and was a gold medalist in the first Young Lions Design competition at Cannes Lions.
A coffee-holic, ex-gamer and excessively fond of music, she enjoys cooking, movies, design and countless other manifestations of creative culture.
Join the conversation online by using #RePicture, and help us challenge convention.
Widen the visual representation of Beauty, blur the lines of Family and Community, and create a new vision of Success.
To participate, upload the photo you’ve taken (consenting subject only of course) to either Twitter or Instagram, and add the #RePicture hashtag – tag the @GettyImages handle on Instagram. Our Editors will highlight their favorites.
Follow us here and on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to see all the concepts we’re discussing and find out how you can participate - or if you’re heading to Cannes Lions, join us in the Palais during the Festival.
Editor's Note: Please note, by adding #RePicture to your photos, you grant us only the right to publish your images, credited to you, on our Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr and Facebook accounts.