Tell us about your business
ENGN is a go-to for professionals needing creative across photography, video, and music production. On the visual side of things it includes an awesome professional headshot service for professionals and entertainers, specialised corporate photography (dignitary visits, product launches, key event coverage) and professional video production/editing (corporate films/interviews, artist reels, etc). On the music production side of things, it’s always been about creating and/or working with the best live bands in Singapore with events and venue placement, but with 2020 now essentially completely closed for live entertainment for the forseeable future, the focus has been on production and recording such as pre-recorded event music production and audio/visual content for artists.
What’s your role all about?
Since starting my first business at 22, I’ve always shifted between roles in my businesses and moved comfortably between photography, video and music creative; this didn’t change when I rebooted in Singapore about six years back. In an average week I’ll spend time being personally involved in the hands-on creation of client deliverables, to steering creative projects, shaping client briefs, or managing entertainment in more of a Creative Director role. As a professional creative I’ve always enjoyed both ends of any brief and have always resisted the temptation to pull myself away entirely from being on the ground. The beauty of rebuilding in a new country is that I’ve been able to undo a few of the mistakes made as previous ventures grew larger and now focus on weighing my time far better by simply being involved in as many aspects of the business as possible that I enjoy.
What’s the hot topic in your sector right now?
Everything is professional headshots at the moment (which is particularly great as I’m strangely passionate about wanting everyone to have great headshots!) and, since the announcements of Phase 2, it’s been a very busy time with clients updating theirs for LinkedIn, CV, website and the other endless applications available to us now. As such, the shophouse studio on Niven Rd has been getting way more use which – after so long in lockdown – is a welcome reprieve to the home office setup.
Why are you a member of AustCham in Singapore?
To keep connected to the growing community of Australian business here and stay in touch with what Aussies are up to on the ground. I’m particularly excited to lean further into the AustCham SME & Startups conversation as there are so many overlapping challenges and opportunities, it’s a great time to be engaging with and learning from like-minded business owners.
Where are your favourite places to photograph in Singapore, any hidden gems?
The studio I work out of on Niven Rd is an absolute gem, and pretty much the only location I’ve been able to easily work from since CB! Location photography is still a little tricky to navigate with the restrictions, but the shophouse studio is tucked into a beautiful street of classic Singapore architecture just far enough away from the craziness of the main roads around it. The whole area aligns with my favourite personal photography spaces in Singapore too, which is ultimately why I made the decision to work from this particular studio – as far as I’m concerned, if there’s a shophouse in front of you, there’s an opportunity to make great pictures that are uniquely Singapore.
What has been your best on stage experience?
The best experience I’ve had wasn’t so much on-stage but onscreen. I held the role of Music Director on Network 10s Good Morning Australia with Bert Newton while John Foreman took up the reigns of MD on year one of Australian Idol. I remember seeing John onscreen as a younger piano player thinking “he’s got the best gig in the world”, never imagining that I would get to spend five episodes a week working with and being around the best local and touring artists at the time; all the while in a live studio with an incredible crew and production staff, working between pre-records and live airings, sitting 12 feet from arguably Australian TV’s greatest ever presenter in Bert Newton. There were plenty of big names and stories from “Studio Bert”, and – although ultimately glad to see the back of that gig – the whole experience around that time of my life was really something that shaped so much of my approach to my professional life going forward.
And when it’s time to get back to enjoying live music, ensure your event has the very best experience in Singapore by visiting http://www.engnentertainment.sg
ENGN’s main website is http://www.engn.sg