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Vicki's End of Year Message

last updated 21 December 2022

Bright Founder and CEO Vicki Willden-Lebrecht shares with us her end of year message for 2022.

It recently struck me how rarely, as a creative, you stop and celebrate ‘making it’. There’s always something more you can add, and the art of finishing, and handing it over is actually an art form in itself, one that’s often neglected. By the time you actually finish and complete something, you’re far too busy with whats next or you’ve had a new idea that it’s impossible to stop and reflect - reflect on how far you have come, all you have done, how your work has translated the brief, warmed the heart of a child or inspired someone to think differently.

I want to take a moment to share a poem I recently discove and have slightly adapted from the British Design and Art Direction’s D&AD award submission page. It goes like this:

Making it takes a lot.

It takes the ‘best brief ever’ and wide-eyed naivety.

It takes indecision that becomes obsession.

It takes thinking, rethinking, tearing it up, and making it fit.

It takes working through the bad to achieve the brilliant, and the character to see it through.

It takes hours and hours.

Tabs on tabs.

Crafting drawing and layering to perfection.

It takes a village.

A lot goes into making it.

But once you’ve made it, everything changes.

For you, your clients, our industry, the world - everyone.

title Vicki delivering her speech at Bright’s Christmas Party 2023

I set up bright in 2003 and if you do the maths that makes us 20 next year. On reflection of meeting this milestone, when I look back Bright has far exceeded any vision, but what has struck me is the fact that we operate under the very same values that were the basis of how/why we began.

The acknowledgement of our artists in the work they do, that they are credited, valued, and respected for their work. These founding principles remain true. In fact, it’s these principles that have driven the growth of the Agency over the past 20 years.

title Left to right: Bright Artist Luna Valentine, Bright’s Ilaria Vigilante, Arabella Stein, Susan Penny

Your talent has quite simply provided the road map which has steered our agency to be what it is today, I can assure you. I hope after 20 years that you can trust me when I say we will keep finding, searching and closing for any opportunity that will advance an artist’s career.

Our relentless desire to champion creativity and discover opportunity for you, means we’ve crossed boundaries – not just internationally, but across artistic mediums and we’ll continue to adapt and evolve to ensure your progression so you can focus on your creativity, safe in the knowledge that we’ll be turning all the stones.

title Bright Live, June 2022

And let’s face it, there’s not much safety or security spoken about in these perma-crisis times is there?

But I would like to offer assurance and stability, that in this everchanging landscape, Bright is the guardian of you and your work and rights. Last year it was NFTs, next year it’ll be AI, we have travelled through so many hazards and challenges and have grown every single year we have been in business and are committed to staying ahead of industry change and challenges. We are problem solvers and a dynamic company that has a huge head start going into 2023 and beyond.

Bright has no limit on creativity, but we learned very early on to invest to match that passion with robust and accurate infrastructure that will always be working just as hard alongside us. We’ve new additions to the contracts and royalties team adding insight and direction that allows our artists and authors to rely on extensive experience in negotiation.

Our agency in New York has expanded to 8 agents this year, 2 of which will be in Bologna, so get your diaries ready. We have seen two UK staff move to work out of our US office under James Burns as we continue to maximise on stateside opportunity.

Despite the turbulence of the past few years, we continue to build on our successes and will always be finding great work opportunities for our artists. And as you can take comfort in our competence, we take comfort in the power of your creativity.

We believe that the wonder of your work has never been more important. Through your artistic expression, new ideas are translated to the world. Messages of hope, inclusion, change and inspiration are communicated through your storytelling. That is something I know that each of our agents feel entirely privileged to be part of and work alongside you and help your work come to life , so thank you.

title Bright’s James Burns and Bright Artist Amanda Quartey

We simply couldn’t do that without the support of our wonderful clients that have been loyal and committed to us since the beginning and I simply want to say thank you. Thank you for believing in our artists, trusting us, breaking new talent, being open to unpublished artists, and going on such imaginative journeys with us.

My team – My Directors James and Arabella, and everyone at Bright - all brilliant and the lifeblood of the agency, I thank you for your talent, hard work and agility: none of this happens without you. You have astounded me with your development, growth and maturity, your unfaltering positivity in times of adversity.

title Bright’s James Burns and Vicki Willden Lebrecht

Lastly, I just wanted to reflect once again on the concept of ‘making it’. The poem says that: A lot goes into making it. That it takes a village. But once you’ve made it, everything changes. For you, the world - everyone.

Have a wonderful, restful end to 2022 and don’t forget that you are amongst your villagers. We can’t wait to celebrate you even more in 2023.

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