Meet Young Lion: Mihály Rajkó

Jun 11, 2018

Each year, the best and brightest young minds in the industry have the opportunity to take part in The Young Creative Academy. The Young Creative Academy offers an intensive week-long course designed to give creatives under 30 the tools they need to reach their full potential and expand their personal creativity. Those who take part in the program, "Young Lions," are given the unique opportunity to engage with some of the world’s foremost thinkers, creators, and subject experts in an intimate setting.

This year, Y&R sends two creative partners, Andris Takacs and Mihály Rajkó, from Y&R Hungary to the Academy. Below, we showcase insights from Mihály, an Art Director, about inspirations, the advertising industry, and the Cannes Lions Festival.

What attracted you to advertising and how did you get into it?

I started working at the Coca-Cola Company as a Student Brand Manager. We were selected from among the country’s biggest universities. We were basically a creative agency inside the Coca-Cola Company and our target group was our student mates.

During this program I met Andris, my current creative partner. Together we brought some fun ideas to our Universities with a lot of branding. It was something like in the movie The Joneses; creating parties and Coca-Cola activations.

Andris and I later applied to a creative contest called The Big Idea by Vodafone. While we didn’t win, we did have the chance to meet a juror, Vilmos Farkas, who was the Creative Director of Leo Burnett Budapest. A week later, our phone rang with an offer for a Junior Copywriter position. Andris took the position and I got an offer to be a trainee for three months. Meanwhile I learned how to use Adobe programs in an autodidactic way, and created some designs for Coca-Cola. After my trainee session, I knew I wanted to be an Art Director. I continued to learn and to create. A half year after my trainee session, Leo Burnett called me to be a Graphic Designer / Junior Art Director, and that was the starting point of my career.

What are you looking forward to most in Cannes?

Many of our colleagues attending from Y&R have told us the conference fills you with inspiration. I hope the same. Maybe this inspiration will help me land a Cannes Lion next year.

Who has mentored or guided you in your career? What did they teach you?

Vilmos Farkas was my first mentor and, with Gergely Horváth, they taught me how to create complex and full campaigns. I learned about good insights, how to judge a good idea from the bad, and other basics that that are indispensable for our work. I also need to mention the Senior Art Directors (Matyi, Csabi, Miki) who taught me design tricks, how to be faster, how to improve my design skills. Nowadays László Falvay, our Creative Director is the one who is guiding me towards better ideas, showing me other perspectives of executions, and giving me more ownership in projects.

What gets your creative gears going? How do you get past a creative block?

In my opinion as an Art Director, I need to have two important creative gears. One is for a design approach and one for creative ideas; these gears don’t work the same way. My design gear works better when I can spend time alone with myself, music, and get into the designing mood. I start my day with a coffee and look for beautiful photos, brandings, illustrations and executions as inspiration. The creative idea gear turns on when we are joking, laughing, talking useless stuff, exaggerating things. We need to be “bad children” sometimes because that’s leading us to more unexpected ideas. Finally, the Joker card is the hot water. I can solve everything when I take a hot shower at home.

Name something creative (book/film/location/art piece/music/app) that inspired you recently.
What’s interesting about it?

I love series… maybe I am a series-aholic. My current favorites are The Handmaid’s Tale and Westworld. Both of them have futuristic storylines, and I love the way they twist my mind and make me think about what the future brings. By the way The Handmaid’s Tale has a beautiful visual world, the lighting and the camera settings are candy for my eyes.

I also recently came across a 3D Instagram generalist / motion designer @macomoroni (Marco Mori) who creates very funny and creepy 3D artworks without borderlines.

I also need to mention Childish Gambino “This is America” music video directed by Hiro Murai. I think it will be a milestone in music video history because it’s a great example of how music and visuality can make a perfect harmony. And how it can express a very sensitive and important message in an imperishable way.

The future of advertising is ____?

Based on more artificial intelligent, personalized, precisely targeted.

YR Hungary Creative Duo Mihaly and Andris

Follow us on #YRCANNES for festival and award updates. Read more about Andris here