Young Guns 19: Lam Ieong Kun

By Alixandra Rutnik and Brett McKenzie on Oct 27, 2021

Featuring the creative stars of Young Guns 19

A year and a half of uncertainty across the creative industry and beyond has finally given way to a light at the end of the proverbial tunnel — a spotlight with a great big "YG19" standing in the middle of it. After more than 70 acclaimed creatives from around the world and across a multitude of disciplines reviewed hundreds of submissions, whittling them down to a formidable finalist list, we can finally reveal the phenomenal winners of Young Guns 19!

This year, we welcome a diverse class of 32 inductees into the exclusive Young Guns family, a collection of young creative talent that is already near the top of their game — and will only get better. These are the designers, the art directors, the illustrators, the filmmakers, the animators, the multidisciplinary artists whose names you'll want to know — if you aren't already following their every move, that is.

Ahead of the Young Guns 19 Ceremony + Party taking place on Wednesday, November 17 — our first in-person event since the pandemic began — we are featuring the future legends who will be stepping into the spotlight that evening.



Macau, China


Macau, China


When did you first hear about Young Guns?

I learned about Young Guns for the first time when I was in university. I learned that Young Guns is a group of the world's best creators under the age of 30. I couldn't believe they had already produced such mature and complete works before turning 30, and they all had a lot of working experience.

At that time, I was probably trying to be as good as them, and now I am honored to be a member of the Young Guns community. This recognition is very encouraging for my future creative journey. I hope I can continue my enthusiastic creation in the future.

What did you do differently your second time around that may have pushed you into the winners’ circle this year?

The previous year I had just started my studio, and I participated without any expectation– I just wanted to try it out. However, I could not believe I even got into the Finalists. I was overjoyed because I felt more confident about being closer to Young Guns.

Young Guns means an annual summary of myself. I felt more prepared to enter this year's Young Guns as I have more experience and complete work. I didn't think too much about it after the competition– I faced the results with a normal mind. I think it is important to not focus on winning, but to keep on working hard with passion.

How do you feel you've grown as an artist in between attempts?

Next year will be the last time I can enter Young Guns. Luckily, I am honored to become a member of YG19 this year. I believe I not only have a more complete and mature mindset, but also I am more creative this year. I am trying to get out of my comfort zone. I believe it is very important for me to have a heart full of enthusiasm that is not afraid of failure. I try to challenge myself as much as possible and explore more possibilities, which is a goal I give myself every year.

"I try to challenge myself as much as possible and explore more possibilities, which is a goal I give myself every year."

Since you are only allowed to submit six projects, how did you decide which pieces were best to enter and truly reflected you and your work?

When I was selecting my work, I wanted to show my creative identity in a number of different positions, so that the judges could have a better understanding of my creative input. I wanted to show more of my different possibilities in my six works.

How did you celebrate when you found out you won Young Guns?

I woke up and opened my email to find out the news and for a moment I thought I was still dreaming. I couldn't believe it, but I was very happy to receive the recognition from everybody else.

I immediately shared the news with my wife and my partner, and of course with my family and friends afterwards. Due to my work schedule, I haven't had the time to celebrate yet, but I thanked my friends and family members who have helped me along the way.

If you had to pick one of the six projects that you entered as your favorite, which one would it be and why?

I believe it will be my recently completed, FAR SIDE OF THE MOON Mooncake Packaging, because we were able to take our ideas to our client without any reservations.

We have created a new packaging for our products which made MANDARIN ORIENTAL, MACAU different from the conventional design. With the new product, we were able to start a brand new market. Through the unconventional art of design, a new style of the brand has been created.

Not only will people discover a new side of the brand, but also they will discover an unknown side of MANDARIN ORIENTAL, MACAU. It is a young, daring, fun, luxurious, and fashionable continuation of oriental culture. It has been sold to an unprecedented response in the market, which is a very satisfying result.

If you had to describe your creative style, the part of your work that’s most distinctively “you,” what would it be?

Personally, I would describe my style as non-conventional and hope that I will be brave enough to try and challenge every project, and not be swayed by the public. Therefore, I hope my design style will not be stereotyped. It can be like life– no rules, step by step breakthroughs, and brave attempts.

Who are some of the biggest influences on your work and career– people who may have had a hand in mentoring and supporting you?

There are many people who have inspired me and supported me along the way. First, my parents and sisters who have always been very supportive. Even though they may not know much about my profession, they know that it is something I am very passionate about, so they have stood behind me without reservation.

Second, my wife who never complains and always gives me encouragement and warmth when I am tired.

I would also like to thank my creative partner Dan for supporting me and helping me run the studio. It is nice to have a buddy when you are facing challenges, so I really treasure all the time we work together. We love working together– it is such an romance.

Last but not least, I must thank my special partner, Crystal, who is a very important mentor to our company and is always there to solve our problems.

The pandemic of 2020 is slowly starting to taper a bit, so do you have any big goals moving forward into 2022?

In the coming year, I hope I can continue to maintain my enthusiasm and drive for my work, to challenge myself in different ways, and to explore new possibilities for myself. I also hope to have more time to enjoy my life.

Name a professional dream that you have yet to fulfill — hey, maybe Young Guns can help propel you in that direction!

Although there are still many unrealized goals and professional dreams, I hope to work with more brands and challenging projects in the future. Through my profession, I hope I can make a difference in society, and more people will see the power of Macao design.

Any wisdom to share?

Actions speak louder than words.




Go check out all the Young Guns 19 Winners in the archive!

Young Guns 19 Archive



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