A maker at heart and a nurturer of creativity, meet our Creative Content and Social Media Director, Christel.
Can you tell us a bit about the places you’ve lived and how you got here?
I was born in the Philippines, and emigrated to Australia when I was three years old. I spent my most impressionable years in Sydney, and then misspent another sizable chunk of time in London, before flicking between São Paulo, New York, and Berlin, amongst other places. I touched down in Hong Kong for the first time ever around three years ago, and somehow a job and an apartment fell in my lap within two weeks of landing. Hong Kong is one of the most baffling and wondrous places I’ve lived so far.
What do you do at Grana?
I’m the Creative Content and Social Media Director here at Grana. I direct and nurture the process of coming up with visual and verbal concepts for the brand, and then help them come to life. I find ways to communicate the Grana brand that not only expresses our ethos in a way that people can relate to, but that also challenges people’s own thoughts about modern life in general. My job is to present the Grana brand and somehow have it connect with people on an emotional level.
What kind of work have you done in the past?
I’m a maker at heart. I just like doing stuff. I’ve worked within the fashion and music industries for a long time in multiple forms since I was a teenager; but almost all of it has been within the ever expanding universe of the internet. Amidst other things, I’ve been a (print) magazine editor, a music journalist (online), a gig and party promoter (IRL), an online ghost-writer for a media personality, and I also still collect cheques for music I’ve written, randomly.
What’s the most difficult thing about your job?
Due to the ‘democratisation’ of content on the internet via the personal publishing platforms that are social media, almost everyone has an account on some channel or another. Despite this, in the very short time that ‘social media’ and ‘online marketing’ and most especially, ‘content’ have been real and actual paying jobs on the market, the fundamentals of social media and content are still deeply misunderstood. The most difficult thing about my job is explaining the nuances of the (dare I say) craft to people who, despite having all of the above social media accounts, do not understand the true nature of the medium.
What have you learnt about people through your job?
I consider what I do in general a type of anthropology. I learn the most about people in the day-to-day interactions with different aspects of a business. Historically, for me in my own personal experience at least, my role as a creator and social media person has always sat smack bang in the middle of many different departments; from Product, to the Art Department, to PR, to Merchandising, to Retail, to Tech and even to working with external collaborators, stakeholders and creators. Each of these departments speak completely different languages! But taking the time to establish and sync into the same vernacular as the people you are working with is super important, and not only will save you endless ball ache, but is incredibly rewarding at the end of the day.
What do you look for in quality when it comes to curating your life?
I guess I’m quite an emotional curator. If I really love something, I will eventually have it; regardless of price tag, perceived market value, availability, or the impossibility of acquisition. I am willing to wait for the things I find worthy, and I will bide my time to get what I really want, rather than settle for something that I know will never do.
What do your friends know you for?
What I think my friends know me for and what they actually know me for are probably different things! But I guess my friends know me for my unbridled joy at ridiculousness (both my own and others), my occasionally stunning illogicality, my hair whips, and my deep and unashamed love for karaoke.