Today we’d like to introduce you to Janica de Guzman.
Janica, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I was working as a fashion model to help pay for college so in between classes and fashion shows, I began interning at Ferroconcrete, a branding and design agency in Downtown LA. I worked my butt off to escape the fashion industry and prove myself for a job offer. Thankfully it worked.
My copywriting career began with writing witty Tweets and Instagram captions. Then quickly grew to bigger roles as I became the lead copywriter for campaigns, rebrands, and commercials for brands in beauty, entertainment, and food. So essentially, my career began with 140 characters.
While at Ferroconcrete, we started our own monthly publication featuring restaurants, bars, and the people who shape Downtown LA. It’s been a great tool in exploring our city and connecting with the community, but the best part is eating at new restaurants. I’ve embraced the “will work for food” idea wholeheartedly. Currently, I am the Senior Staff Writer and Digital Director of LA Downtowner while I do freelance copywriting for various brands and agencies.
Has it been a smooth road?
I wouldn’t label this as a struggle but more of a moment I can laugh at – I fainted at my first meeting. We had a big presentation at The Walt Disney Concert Hall, a humble place to experience a flush of cold sweats and an increasing ring throughout my inner ears. There’s nothing quite like having my creative director look over me as I reawakened from the darkness of tunnel vision. Since then, I was laughably known as Panica.
The creative industry is highly competitive so it’s things like this that we have to learn and do better. Everything is a new experience (fainting or not) and that is what makes my work exciting.
Tell us about your childhood, what were you like growing up?
I was a soft spoken, out-of-tune, shy little girl. So the rare times that I did speak, every word mattered. Yet, growing up with two bigmouth older brothers taught me to be quick with comebacks. That’s probably where my knack for brevity and wit came from.
In school, I loved creative writing classes. I would stay up late writing essays then keep my family hostage as I read it out loud. I didn’t consider writing as a career, I just enjoyed doing it. In fact, my childhood career goal was to become a supreme court judge or to work at Jamba Juice. I’m glad neither came to fruition.
What is your favorite childhood memory?
My 5th birthday party at home. My mom transformed the entire lower level of our house into a candy cave. She hung candies from the ceiling and taped them to the walls, every inch was covered in candy. As soon as my mom gave the OK, all the children spread like bacteria and grabbed as many candies as they could. I vividly remember standing by my mom and watching it all happen. Some kids were shy and slow to start, others ransacked the place leaving wrappers and sticky fingerprints everywhere. It was nuts. I’ll never forget that birthday and the effort my mom put into it. Thanks mom!
So, what should we be on the lookout for, what’s next in store for you?
I want to work on Super Bowl commercials and see my taglines lit up in Times Square. It’ll take a lot of pitching and probably a lot of hours spent staring at the wall for inspiration but it can happen. My ultimate end goal is to live a life writing about world travel and street food –travel fascinates me and food excites me. I have dreams about what I’ll eat the next day and with that much passion about food, it would be a shame not to put it into good use.
- Website: www.janicadeguzman.com
- Instagram: @janicadg
Work images credit to: Ferroconcrete http://ferroconcrete.com/