2 Minutes With … Jemima Monies of adam&eveDDB

On #SheTakesOver, David Hockney, and opening a specialty coffee shop during Covid

Jemima Monies joined adam&eveDDB in 2013 as the agency's first new business director, becoming deputy MD in 2018 and chief marketing and operations officer in 2022, having played a key role in the agency's growth. As well as sitting on the management team, where she's focused on creating an inclusive and sustainable environment where everyone can thrive, she continues to lead the agency's new business and marketing department, seeking out the best clients and opportunities to make brilliant and impactful creative work.

Jemima is also a co-founder of #SheTakesOver, an industry-wide initiative aimed at elevating all women in creative production. When not in the office, Jemima can be found at her husband's coffee shop in Putney, dabbling in latte art, or somewhere nearby wrangling two small children.

We spent two minutes with Jemima to learn more about her background, her creative inspirations, and recent work she's admired.

Jemima, tell us...

Where you grew up, and where you live now.

I grew up in Southfields in London, and it's where l live now. In fact, my daughter is at the primary school I went to. It doesn't make me sound very adventurous. I spent a year in Sydney in my twenties.

How you first realized you were creative.

I used to make clothes and bags out of old pairs of jeans, and I was always volunteering to do the school event posters.

A person you idolized creatively early on.

Steven Spielberg. I grew up in the '80s watching his early classics like Jaws and E.T. I have family in California and loved to visit Universal Studios, where the films were brought to life and made even more magical. 

A moment from high school or college that changed your life.

I had a wonderful English teacher who inspired my love for literature and introduced me to the likes of Harold Pinter and William Blake. I went on to study English.

A visual artist or band/musician you admire.

David Hockney. I long to live in A Bigger Splash.

A book, movie, TV show or podcast you recently found inspiring.

Stranger Things for my love of all things Steven Spielberg and the '80s.

Your favorite fictional character.

Ferris Bueller. My first crush.

Someone or something worth following in social media.

DJ Fat Tony. I sat next to him on the plane back from Cannes this year—he's as brilliant in person as he is on Instagram. We hit it off when I asked him what he was doing back in economy, and I got a sneak peek at his next meme.

A recent project you're proud of.

She Takes Over. An industry-wide campaign created by adam&eveDDB that champions all women in creative production—filmmaking, photography, animation, illustration and music—making them just as easy to find, and hire, as men. This year we went global with talent and agency and industry partners signing up across five continents.

How Covid-19 changed your life, personally or professionally.

My husband opened a specialty coffee shop last year just as everything was opening up again. We'd always loved coffee, and at the height of the pandemic when everything was locked down, our local became our only respite. It's been exhilarating and exhausting in equal shots. He does a lot of the baking himself, so I now often wake up to the smell of cinnamon buns.

Someone else's work you admired lately.

A mixed media painting of a diver by my sister which features in our coffee shop logo and is on the wall in the shop—everyone comments on it.

Your biggest weakness.

I've got so many, it's hard to narrow down to just one.

One thing that always makes you happy.

Watching a film on the sofa with my kids. They are only 3 and 5, but have already been through all my '80s favorites, plus Jurassic Park and Harry Potter.

One thing that always makes you sad.

Zoos and aquariums. I question why, as a nation of animal lovers, people think it's acceptable to keep wild animals outside their natural habitats and subject them to physical and mental abuse for our pleasure.

What you'd be doing if you weren't in advertising.

A marine biologist in California. Growing up, in between the Take That posters, my bedroom walls were covered with pictures of whales and dolphins and artwork by Wyland, an American conservation artist famed for his whaling walls.

2 Minutes With is our regular interview series where we chat with creatives about their backgrounds, creative inspirations, work they admire and more. For more about 2 Minutes With, or to be considered for the series, please get in touch.

Jessica MacAulay
Jessica MacAulay is a contributor for Muse by Clio. She's also a recent graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder's College of Media, Communication, and Information.

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