Iina Töykkälä is the creative brain behind the wonderful video project “Women Talk Work”. Having worked with illustrator Jacqueline Colley, creative director Elaine Perks and many more inspiring creatives, Iian’s aim is to spread the word on women in the art industry. If you ever feel yourself lacking in inspiration and motivation, the Women Talk Work project will lift your spirits.
Okay Iina! For people that haven’t heard of your wonderful project “Women Talk Work”, could you let us know what it’s all about!
WTW is a series of short videos which features creative people sharing their work, interests and experiences in the creative industry. The filming happens in people’s work spaces, so basically it’s a sneak peek into people’s studio settings, but also into their creative journeys and the experiences and motives behind their work. I think you get a better picture just by watching a video or two!
I also want to address right away that the title of the project says women, because it was the status of women in the creative industry that was the starting point of the project, but the project includes anyone who doesn’t identify as a man.
What triggered you to create such an inspiring platform? We’ve never stumbled across anything like this before, and as a female it’s really wonderful to see other women creating and talking about their experiences.
That’s exactly why I started the project really! So that people would see other people doing stuff and talking about the same fears and struggles they’re experiencing. Seeing those kind of examples is so important because I think for young people, being an adult and a ‘professional’ can seem really far away. So you need to see someone who’s been there and ‘made it’, to realise you might not be that far from it. I started the project during my last year at University and definitely reflected my own fears and expectations of post Uni life to it, as well as not having too many women designers around me to look up to as examples of what I could become.
It’s so humbling to see women of all backgrounds being featured in the project – from graduates to creative directors. What made you decide on such a large spectrum of creative? And who would be your dream creative to feature on Women Talk Work?
The project started by me talking to my course mates and that way I gained confidence in the whole process, but I quickly became aware that there could be more to it. The idea of talking to professionals was super scary but I realised it was something I just had to do. I wanted to know what was the biggest dream, motivation or worry of a student or a graduate, but to kind of complete the circle, I needed to know what people with more experience had to say about it all. How do they see the beginning of their career? What has been the biggest struggle they’ve faced? How have they built themselves up? I basically wanted to know how to keep doing what you want to do.
From the very beginning of the project I knew I wanted to talk to a variety of creatives from different backgrounds and that is still something I aim to do more. The thing is, there is an increasing amount of content made focusing on female creatives, but it often seems to be about the same top names of the industry. And it’s great, I mean, there can never be enough exposure on women in the arts, and there are some amazing women out there, but I think it’s a shame that so many stories are left untold.
So to the question about a dream creative to feature: anyone who puts their skills and ideas out there and tries to create something.
Do you have any big plans in the coming year for Women Talk Work?!
Due to post graduation busyness I’ve had to slow the project down a little bit, so my big plan is to get back to making videos regularly, but also to expand the project one way or another; maybe a printed something, maybe an event… So far I’ve interviewed lots of illustrators and designers so I think it would be good to hear from other creatives too.
We look forward to your future endeavours! If any female creatives want to get in touch and speak/share their experiences, how would they go about getting in touch?
If anyone wants to get involved the best way is to drop an email or message on Instagram, whichever suits best!
And finally, a thoughtful question to finish; what is Women Talk Work’s overall aim?
It’s super cheesy, but it's to inspire people. It’s about trying to find out what factors people getting into arts, then starting and carrying on in a creative career. I wish the project could contribute to making the creative industry more equal and diverse.
Thank you so much!
Thank you <3
Check out Women Talk Work with the links below!
If you’re a creative with something to share, don’t hesitate to get in touch! Check out our ‘contact’ page for more information!