Uprising: “A whole new world” of animation for Mark Anthony
“I was a curious kid who loved creating and learning new things,” Mark Anthony says of his childhood. The animator, who is now based in Dubai, spent much of his youth playing games with the other kids in his Filipino neighborhood and putting creative spins on things that would amaze those around him. As such, it’s no surprise that this creative curiosity led him to land a creative role.
The Disney animated classics ‘Aladdin’, ‘The Little Mermaid’ and ‘Beauty and the Beast’ inspired him throughout his youth – the three that top the list of his favorite animated films of all the time. He says, “It’s amazing how these stories come to life through animation – ‘A whole new world, a dazzling place I’ve never known!’.” This escape intrigued him, and with his Christian upbringing he cultivated “a strong sense of faith and discipline”, emphasizing the importance of hard work and dedication in all aspects of his life.
It was with these values that Mark went to college in the Philippines, graduating himself with a bachelor’s degree in computer science. “I used to speak in binaries and syntax codes for my first job. But my love for design and animation dominated my degree, so I moved into the creative industry. didn’t stay put after graduating. Stepping away from everything he knew, Mark packed his bags and headed to Dubai, where he’s been ever since. “My move to the UAE had the greatest impact on my career. This is where I really learned to hone and formally shape my talent as a designer/animator.
However, Mark is not someone who sacrifices fun in his day-to-day life: “I have a happy, cheerful personality. Anyone I’ve worked with can attest to that – I’m an easy-going, ‘cool’ person. I know when to up my game and when to relax. The balance between determination and fun is what helps her get through the day and make others smile.
Starting as an in-house graphic designer, Mark began the transition to animation when he realized his passion. “I fully understand the value of design and animation in terms of content development, and that’s why I would like to continue building a solid career in this industry,” he says. With a determination to “make it happen”, Mark embarked on short courses in animation and graphic design to get started. “Keeping up to date with the latest creative trends is very important. I also had the opportunity to work with several award-winning designers, which helped me elevate my game.”
A strong believer in following his instincts, Mark shares a valuable lesson he’s learned over the years. “Be passionate about your craft, but be open to constructive feedback and criticism,” he says, “Collaboration is the key to creativity.” This mindset is one he took into his first project – a digital campaign for the launch of Starbucks on the ENTERTAINER app in South Africa. “I’m proud of all my creations for the ENTERTAINER app, one of the most successful companies in the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) offering two-for-one offers for travel, dining, wellness, shopping and hobbies,” he said. “Working at this company has boosted my career as a creative and opened up countless opportunities for me to grow as an animator and designer.”
Wanting to deliver beautiful and inspiring work, Mark struggles to find the balance between all parties involved, which he continues to hone in his day-to-day professional life. “As a creative, the hardest part for me is creating something that would be perfect for everyone involved in a project,” Mark says, reflecting on some of the challenges of his role. “Creativity is very subjective – what may look good to my creative director may not impress our client. For me, collaboration, brainstorming and working together is very important. Mark’s goal is simple: “I aspire to create works that work and designs that work.”
Part of that is staying on top of the latest developments in your field, while also including your own “creative version” of things. “Bringing a visual to life, creating beautiful works and inspiring people through designs and animations” are Mark’s favorite aspects of the process, so it’s no surprise that his goals are to keep evolving. , to grow and produce works of which he is proud. There are, however, a few uncertain aspects of creative development that he finds interesting. Specifically, Mark is drawn to discussions of how AI technology will change the creative landscape. As he says, “Whether [AI technology] is good or bad, only time will tell…”
Aware of the talent that surrounds him, Mark cites his colleagues as a source of inspiration. “I’m not going to look too far – I’m a big fan of how Creative Director of Livingroom Dubai Seyon Vela and Creative Director Lara Bizri are wildly creative yet grounded. They encourage creativity to express itself on a daily basis. A day at the office is never boring with them.
Passionate about keeping balance at the heart of what he does, Mark explains what he thinks the industry could do better with. “Creating an environment where work-life balance is a reality and not just something discussed in meetings. As creatives, it’s so important that we do something we love outside of the workplace because it helps fuel our creativity. »
Making sure to apply this philosophy to his own life, Mark’s relaxation comes in the form of days at the beach and brunches, where he can reward and treat himself after a hard day’s work at the office. “I also take time to pamper myself, whether that’s spending time at the spa or visiting my doctor for a checkup,” he says. “Work hard, party harder!”
Ultimately, Mark’s motivation for everything is simple; “My love for creativity. My passion for animation. And, of course, surrounding me with fabulous people who help me be the best I can be.