Presentation of four inspiring women in digital design who have made the Netherlands their home | Dutch digital design | Open mic

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An Indian strategist. A French designer. A creative director from the UK. And an executive producer from New Zealand.

Dutch Digital Design – a collective of Dutch agencies and brands share and celebrate the best of Dutch digital work – published a series short interviews on their website showcasing four inspiring digital women who dared to leap into the unknown and made the Netherlands their home. Here are some excerpts from the four interviews that explain why these women opted for a career in digital design in the Netherlands.

Let’s start with a brief introduction.

Nishita Tamuly. Senior strategist at the Dutch digital experience agency Your Majesty. Originally from Pune, a city in western India, known for the Aga Khan Palace, a memorial dedicated to the inspiring Mahatma Gandhi.

Josephine Cambier. Originally from Lille, northern France, living and working in Amsterdam. She studied communication design in Paris and is now a senior designer at the Dutch digital design agency GRRR.

Liza Enebeis – born in UK, raised in Greece, studied in Paris and London – now lives in Rotterdam. Liza is Creative Director at Studio Dumbar (part of Dept), a Dutch branding agency specializing in visual identity and movement.

Jena Fenwick. From New Zealand. Executive Producer at Resn Digital Experience Design Studio. From a communications degree at Auckland University of Technology to an internship in Hong Kong – with a 2-year stopover in London, Jena now lives and works in Amsterdam.

How did they get to the Netherlands?

Photo by Javier M. on Unsplash

About six years ago, Nishita decided she wanted to explore the world. First stop: the BIG apple, New York City. Here she started her career as a strategist, and while she loved her job and NYC with its endless opportunities, life was fast paced and the hours were crazy. Time for a little reflection. Was it the work-life balance she was looking for? In 2019, she decided to find out if she could find this work-life balance in the Netherlands.

‘An interesting place, in every way. People and agencies seem to thrive on creativity and diversity.

~ Nishita Tamuly

Nishita is enamored by the ‘balance in everything’ in the Netherlands, their way of life and their attitude towards work, which translates into a healthy work-life balance.

Joséphine was offered a 6-month scholarship for an internship in the EU. Spending six months in Denmark, Joséphine felt an affinity with a clean and simple design. Something she wanted to explore further. She was also looking for a place as energetic as Paris, but not as manic. It was Amsterdam! She arrived in 2014 and is still here.

Josephine was also drawn to the Dutch work-life balance and their nine-to-five (thirty) mentality. One of the things she really likes is the fact that everyone has the opportunity to work part time. It is socially accepted.

“People can choose to work part time, with or without children. To devote their time to other projects that they like to do. It makes people happier. Also, in general, you are not expected to work late, as is the case in Paris. ‘

~ Josephine Cambier

She finds that the Dutch can sometimes be brutally honest. However, she can live with the Dutch franchise. She even enjoys it, especially at work.

“Honest feedback allows you to progress faster and deliver better quality work. “

~ Josephine Cambier

Liza was looking for a design internship while studying in Paris. She has always loved the sound (and the look) of Dutch design. To her, it was as if the Dutch were willing to take bigger risks and liked to experiment.

Studio Dumbar in Rotterdam caught his eye. She approached them and they offered her a seat. However, after her internship, she decided to continue her studies and obtained a master’s degree in design at the famous Royal College of Art in London.

But the Netherlands was always in his head. So, after nine years in London, Liza returned to the Netherlands as a designer. Liza is now Creative Director at Studio Dumbar.

Jena was looking for a city with a similar dynamism to London, but also a growing number of digital opportunities – aware that this market was growing rapidly. Digital was just an afterthought. Digital was taking the lead.

“The Netherlands is not only a creative hub for global brands and agencies in Europe, it is also at the forefront of digital innovation. In addition, they value the importance of enjoying life, but also the need to work hard. In this sense, culture adapts to the ebb and flow of our industry. ‘

~ Jena Fenwick

About the Dutch attitude to (digital) design

Photo: VanMoof, an example of functional Dutch design, incorporating the latest technology

“There seems to be a real interest and enthusiasm in incorporating new technology into everything the Dutch do. There is a real intention to know “what is the next step”. The Dutch are open-minded and enterprising. Their open-mindedness seems native.

~ Nishita Tamuly

Joséphine finds that the Dutch are very design oriented. You see this everywhere you go. For example, the design of the Dutch postage stamps, the logo of Dutch public transport. They have a modern design and get the message across. It’s the power of design. In countries like Spain, Italy and France, design derives much more from art and fashion. It is not as much an autonomous movement as it is in the Netherlands. In the Netherlands, it feels more functional.

“It all depends on the mentality and culture of a country which determines its attitude towards design. The Dutch approach to work and design is liberating. There is a feeling of equality and honesty. Every idea is welcomed. Everyone contributes to a greater whole.

~ Liza Enebeis

Who or what inspires them?

“I was already fascinated by The Manufacturer when I was in New York. How exciting to find out that they are working with Your Majesty. I’m really inspired by Co-Founder and Creative Director Amber Slooten, whose dream is to produce digital-only fashion. ‘

~ Nishita Tamuly

The Manufacturer is an exclusively digital Dutch fashion house. Fashion without physical compensation. You only wear it online. It’s the ultimate in sustainable fashion. How it works? Digital-only fashion is popular on social media, like Instagram and TikTok, and in games (fashion skins). But is also used for sampling purposes. It removes the need to produce unique physical samples.

“GRRR as an agency focuses on important issues. Things that matter to the world. It is inspiring and creates a positive attitude at work. It also shapes the team that we are.

~ Josephine Cambier

Joséphine is inspired by one of GRRR’s clients, The Ocean Cleanup, a non-governmental, engineering and environmental organization based in the Netherlands. They focus on developing technologies to extract plastic pollution from the oceans.

“Studio Moniker is autonomous in its approach. Constantly pushing boundaries. Experimental. But still as aesthetic. Many of their projects are self-initiated in response to a problem. Truly inspiring. ‘

~ Liza Enebeis

Studio Moniker is an interactive design studio based in Amsterdam. Their goal is to research the social effects of technology. How we use technology and how it influences our daily life.

“Sea Shepherd is a protector of the sea, engaging in direct action campaigns to defend wildlife and conserve and protect the world’s oceans from illegal exploitation and environmental destruction.”

~ Jena Fenwick

Sea Shepherd is an international non-profit marine conservation organization. Jena first worked with Sea Shepherd during the development of its new website. She is inspired by their passion, their dynamism and what they represent.

The full interviews can be read at dutchdigital.design


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