Creative Mind in the Making: Mykel C. Smith
Mykel C. Smith is the founder of MCSC, short for Mykel C. Smith Creative. An agency which utilizes every possible outlet to provide clients with one of a kind experiences, from music production to fashion shows to event planning. Mykel has been active in the business for more than 20 years. He can be a celebrity stylist, a creative producer, a show director and more. He is a jack-of-all-trades and fuels projects with his creative energy.
Mykel started off as a stylist. He moved to NYC at the age of 18 and received proper training about the profession while working at Salon Brittanica and Associates. He then reached out to showrooms to style models and build their portfolios and was soon hired as a stylist. Throughout years of hard work and networking in the industry, Mykel has styled for Caribbean Fashion Week, Tika Sumptner, Steven Tyler from Aerosmith, Keke Wyatt and the family of Bob Marley. At the same time, he contributed his creative vision to many publications and curated events for the fashion industry. Mykel always knows the perfect formula for hosting a successful event, including the guest-list, location selection and schedule management.
Styling and creative direction for Jamaque Paradis magazine by MCSC.
Having developed a vast network of connections, Mykel decides to combine everything he knew to create an outlet for creativity. He wants the vibe of an “Andy Warhol-inspired Factory”, he and his employees refer MCSC as a “Creative Think Tank”. Creative direction is also considered the management of creative process, when art direction and design meet strategy. It involves developing creative vision, managing client relationships, orchestrating different avenues of the creative process, etc. Knowledge of fine art, imagination, strategical thinking and organization are must haves. MCSC is a company that employs artists who create art for business. Mykel expects his employees to create new visions and execute them, he also needs to maintain powerful relationships with showrooms.
Professionally engaged in the industry for so long, Mykel has developed his own set of standards for projects. Mykel says in his interview for CFDA, “We have 3 C’s within my company: Cooperation, Communication, and Compensation.” Mykel decides whether the project is meaningful, can help the company grow and nourishes their creativity before coming to an agreement with the client. MCSC doesn’t live by the quote “the customer is always correct”, they bring clients’ visions to life to those who are willing to work together instead of dictate MCSC’s every move. According to Mykel, the job isn’t easy since sometimes clients aren’t willing to put in effort to determine what they really need and can afford. However, with his set of standards, MCSC is able to filter through clients and create projects that are worthwhile.
Handl phone case launch event curated by MCSC.
Mykel’s future plans include getting the agency to go global and take on large corporation events to infuse creativity within the corporation’s structure. At the same time, Mykel is working hard to improve diversity within the industry. He thinks that there are many creatives of color who have never been given opportunities to show their talent. “Don’t just use us for window dressing.” Mykel says. “Everyone deserves fair treatment-especially if you’re talented. Don’t just do it to make everybody happy for media or press.”
Mykel and his team and clients.