The Malaysian creative community suffered a significant downfall during the Covid-19 pandemic. With creatives all around the nation experiencing job losses and retrenchments, even those who are lucky enough to keep their jobs are still struggling to stay afloat.
To top it all off, the creative sector has been labelled to be non-essential, dampening the hopes of many creatives, especially those who are either just starting out or those who work freelance and have trouble finding jobs.
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Although creatives are not frontliners, they still make up a vital chunk of Malaysia’s essential workers, for life without them would just be bleak. Creatives consist of writers, graphic designers, artists, singers and many others.
With that, three enthusiastic women from creative backgrounds have recognised this issue and have created Cult Creative, a Malaysian-based startup digital platform that connects likeminded individuals in Malaysia through their new and upcoming professional app. The purpose is for its users to connect, network, collaborate, upskill, and heighten their performance.
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The brains behind Cult Creative are co-founders, Shermaine Wong, owner of Tish Events, Lina Esa, Former Editor of Cleo Malaysia and Manisha Jagan who is in charge of M Talent Asia.
We at JUICE had the opportunity to sit down with these amazing women, as they share their upcoming plans for Cult Creative.
Coming from different backgrounds, these women are a prime example that creatives can set their differences aside and collaborate together to make something special.
When asked how Cult Creative came to be, Shermaine expressed that it was an idea that she pondered on during MCO. She thought it would be interesting if there was an app that could connect creatives together.
Not long after, Manisha had come on and soon recruited Lina, who expressed how sad she was that she had lost her job as an editor after Blue Inc closed down. Luckily for her, when life closes a door, it opens a window.
Although the app is still in works, Cult Creative is now mostly active on Instagram as they post content such as “Creative Crush Wednesday” and “Lokal Makers” that highlight our local creatives and their works.
They also have a session called a “Meet your creative mentor” programme that allows individuals to connect with their favourite, distinguished creatives in the industry. From time to time, Cult Creative hosts cult mixers for individuals to connect with each other through different activities.
The work that Cult Creative has put in has also caught the attention of other creatives from neighbouring countries too as they are willing to hop on the bandwagon. Shermaine added that they are pleased to have supporters from other countries but would like to keep it at home ground for now as they solidify their plans on expanding their services to other countries in the future.
When asked if there would be any upcoming physical events in the future, Manisha expressed that the team is planning to create a Hybrid Creative Festival in early 2021 and are now currently set to raise RM100,000 via a rewards crowdfunding campaign on PitchIN. The goal is to expand the development of its initiative for creatives who will then be able to collaborate digitally, learn new skills and discover opportunities for growth.
The PitchIN rewards include a subscription to the platform in 2021 with access to the free professional networking app for the creative community. Thus, pledgers will receive exclusive Cult Creative merchandise which consists of their specially-designed stickers, patches and bags.
To support Cult Creative, click here.