Anthony Konigbagbe
Share:
BS in Entrepreneurial Studies
2013
Freelance Artistic Director and Production Designer in New York City

In a couple sentences, describe what you do for work and how you feel about it.

I work as a freelance artistic director and production designer in New York City. Conclusively, I love it. 

How did you get your job? 

I found art direction through working in fashion. Being freelance is more of a choice than a position or a role. With that said, I got my job by combining my degree at MCAD, my experience in print and experiential advertising, and my perspective as a first-generation Nigerian-American Midwesterner into an art director both clients and artists understand and relate to. My role at every company or on any project is always just being myself. Which is dope.

Why did you choose the bachelor of science program? Was it the right choice?

I chose the program because I felt the bachelor of fine arts was too narrow for me. I started out as a BFA illustration major, (subconsciously) thinking fashion illustration would be an indirect path to artistic direction. However, I switched to the BS after one semester because I saw many routes to my goal through sustainable design/entrepreneurial studies.

What is the most memorable thing(s) you did or learned in class?

I conceived and produced an independent cross-program exhibition with thirteen BFA students who were all practicing entrepreneurs, called LINKS. It was the last project I completed at MCAD before I moved to New York permanently. Big up Lars Mason for holding me down throughout that process. Twas a mad ting.

What was it like working with "real-world" clients while still in school? Did you have a favorite?

It was a blessing because my entire professional career since graduation has been "working with real-world clients" so that was smart. This is a core reason why the BS program is dope (and thorough, I guess). Nasty Gal was by far my favorite client because my instructor Boriana Strzok knew very clearly that the client's project would prove intensely relevant to BS and advertising students and it did, ten-fold.

Can you briefly describe one or more of your internships?

I interned at Mother New York for three months during the Summer of 2013. There I focused on print and experiential advertising. Clients included Target, Burger King, Tanqueray, Stella Artois, White Pike Whiskey, and Virgin Mobile. Upon completion, I was offered a full-time position as a junior art producer. 

Who was your favorite teacher and why?

Jerry Allan. No one understands subjectivity and turning personal narratives into success like this mother****er.

Did MCAD prepare you for life after graduation? In what way?

Yes and no. Yes, because it taught me that your network is one of the most valuable things you will ever truly have. No, because there was no class on creative equity and transmedia storytelling, two things I now consider profoundly important.

Name your biggest takeaway from MCAD?

Discipline and relationships. 

What inspires you/your work?

Women, product, great design, being American, clothes, my parents, legacy, immigration, hardcore live street raps. 

Has your work evolved since leaving MCAD? How so?

Yes. I know now to tell a little piece my story in all my work, instead of just building an aesthetic. 

What advice do you have for current MCAD students?

Write your own curriculum, then do that. Learn your way. Never compromise on your education. Don't listen to irrelevant people or teachers. 

How do you network yourself and your art?

Through living people I meet in the physical world and Instagram.

Do the Twin Cities offer many opportunities for creatives?

Yes in regards to product design, graphic, design, music production. In regards to fashion, no. 

Current obsession?

Herb Lubalin and Jun Takahashi.