The Online Avenue Opened Doors to Learn from Esteemed Industry Experts

With our next online courses starting in January 2024, we speak to 22-year-old Creative Director, Fajer AlWugayan from Kuwait to get the inside scoop on it’s really like to study online with Condé Nast College having recently completed the Online Course in Creative Direction. 

 Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do?


Over the past four years, I’ve navigated the realm of Creative Direction as a freelance professional while cultivating my passion for art across diverse mediums, particularly painting and animations. One of the achievements dearest to my heart was my first art exhibit in 2021 titled “Chances Are Our Dreamz Aren’t That Far Away” showcasing artwork from paintings to hand painted leather jackets and&collage prints. My love for art later developed to creating art through communicating visions with Creative Direction. Collaborating with over 50 brands across the GCC countries culminated in the establishment of DAWN (@dawn club) in 2023, a visionary creative consultancy.


The pivotal moment arrived upon completing the online Creative Direction course with Condé Nast Collegepropelling me to actualize the launch of DAWN. DAWN stands as a vibrant community, a space for international brands and creatives who hold artistry and authenticity in high esteem. Our services include Creative and Art Direction, serving as the bridge that fosters profound emotional connections between these visionaries and their audiences.

Fajer's moodboarding process for a creative direction for a campaign
Fajer’s moodboarding process for a creative direction for a campaign
Scanned Collage:
Zbyzahya F/W23 Campaign “Wild at Heart” 
Mixed Media Collage – Content Creation
Creative Direction, Art Direction & Collage Art Work: Fajer AlWugayan
Photography: Pavel Radulescu
Production: DAWN


How did you find out about the Condé Nast online course?


A year ago, a dear friend introduced me to Condé Nast’s courses, but residing in Kuwait posed a challenge for attending in person. Balancing a full-time job alongside the establishment of DAWN made physical attendance at a course abroad unrealistic. Going through the courses available I came across the online course which became the digital atelier where I refined my craft, enriched my passion and connected with like minded peers andprofessionals.


What made you want to take an online course with Condé Nast College?


Unable to physically attend, the online avenue opened doors to learn from esteemed industry experts and bond with bright minds across borders. Working  with GCC brands for the past four years, a longing emerged to broaden horizons beyond borders—a goal to ignite my visions on a global canvas. Connecting with creatives internationally was what steered me toward this transformative course.


How did you find studying the Creative Direction online course?


Honestly, it wasn’t the easiest juggling a full-time job, executing creative campaigns, life, and diving into an extensive online course. Yet, the beauty lay in the flexibility—lectures and tasks recorded, waiting for me to tap into at my own pace and space. This autonomy became a priceless asset, a cornerstone of my learning success. As a visual learner, the recorded visuals were better for me in comparison to sitting in a classroom and listening to an expert speak (I prefer watching visuals).


I do not undermine valuable experiences being told throughout lectures, which was favourably also available throughout the course both live and recorded. The live lectures satisfied my longing for a physical presence in London. Despite the virtual setting, the live sessions brought a sense of immediacy and connection, almost as if I were there in person, engaging with the expert lecturers insight in real time. These live lectures offered valuable insight and experiences I wouldn’t have been able to tap into otherwise. .

One of Fajer's moodboards

Collage Artwork:
“With U Always” – 2021
Mixed Media Collage 
4×6” Print

What was a highlight on the course for you?


The biggest highlight was immersing myself in the world of Condé Nast. Vogue, Architectural Digest, Condé Nast Traveller and other iconic magazines have long been inspirations throughout my artistic journey. Being part of an educational establishment affiliated with the media publisher behind my favourite magazines—it’s a surreal feeling, like I’m one step closer to the dream. [Also]earning from my peers and esteemed professionals. Coming from an Arab background, this course offered an international perspective of different cultural backgrounds and creative ways of thinking. We explored current relevant themes like AI and sustainability.


What kind of assignments did you get to do?


The assignments were an array of creative tasks; we tapped into branding, visual ideation, creative direction, campaign management and so much more. We dissected how directors think and plan to achieve successful brand communications such as GUCCIFEST as well as reevaluating existing campaigns.


Some of my favourite assignments werecreatively directing an innovative development for a theoretical publication and I drafted  a dream cover page for Vogue. I tapped into the emerging theme of AI and its connection with humanity/fashion in today’s contemporary era.


What was the hardest thing about the course?


As a Creative Director, I enjoy meticulous project work, especially when it comes to moodboarding and concept ideation. The weekly tasks pushed me to step out of the comfort zone of relaxed deadlines, demanding swift and critical thinking. Balancing these tasks amidstlife’s demands posed a challenge, yet the flexibility to tackle them at my own pace proved to be the ideal solution, allowing me to maintain both quality and adaptability.


What did you get out of the course? What was your main takeaway?


The course significantly broadened my creative horizons, nurturing an expansive mindset. One of the standout takeaways was further developing my ability to communicate visually, craft campaigns, and devise communication strategies across various digital platforms, skills crucial in today’s digital age.

Equally enriching were the meaningful connections forged with fellow creatives; these bonds are a treasure I eagerly anticipate nurturing. I’m excited about staying connected and supporting their creative endeavours, fostering a community of mutual growth and achievement.

ZbyZahya Compaign, Creative Direction by Fajer
ZbyZahya Compaign, Creative Direction by Fajer
Zbyzahya Ramadan Campaign 23 “Botany & Stardust”
Creative & Art Direction: Fajer AlWugayan
Photography: CODED Campaigns
Production: DAWN

How do you feel studying the Online Creative Direction course has helped you with your career?


Beyond expanding my creative horizons, the interactions with both peers and field professionals served as a catalyst for believing in myself that I too can achieve greatness. These encounters not only fueled my motivation but also instilled a deeper sense of confidence in my work. They provided invaluable insights, equipping me with enhanced strategies and a comprehensive understanding of team dynamics and idea implementation. This newfound knowledge and confidence became the cornerstone in finally launching DAWN, enabling me to execute better strategies and breathe life into ideas with a refined approach.


What’s your advice for anyone thinking about doing the course or who is already signed up to do it in the future?


My best advice is to truly give the course your all. Challenge yourself with new platforms and ways to execute ideas. Dabble into different mediums and channels to find your artistic imprint. There will be trial anderror, do not let that discourage you. Not everything you create will come out perfect but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep producing work. Research and ideate multiple approaches when completing a task. I would also say connect with your peers. There’s no better way of learning than exploring different backgrounds and ways of thinking. Interact with the expert professionals and don’t be shy to ask questions. This is a valuable learning position that will offer you invaluable insight from experts in this fast growing field. Last but not least, believe in yourself and your dreams. Don’t forget to invest in yourself. Embrace the course as a journey filled with opportunities for enjoyment and growth, rather than a task to simply complete.

Find out more about the Creative Direction online course

Words and images supplied by Fajer AlWugayan