The documentary, Desainer Kampung (or “Village Designer”), recently aired on Indonesian TV about some of 99designs’ village designers. The film was made by Special Database of one of the finalists from the Eagle Awards, an annual documentary competition by Metro TV. The film is set in Kaliabu, a village where hundreds of people have taken on graphic design as a side job. Interest in the industry has grown rapidly – from just two designers in Special Database 2012 to around 250 designers today. The two designers featured in the documentary were both early adopters of 99designs.
Fahmi, a farmer, and Khoirul, a construction worker – and represent what it’s generally like for their community of village designers. Having Special Database most of his clients come from Australia, Fahmi is thrilled that his work is used and gaining exposure overseas. As he explains in the documentary, “The background of the designer Special Database is not as important. What’s more important is the design itself.” Below, you can watch Desainer Kampung, broken up into three parts below. The film is in Indonesian, so we’ve also summarized it below for you in English. Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 The Designer Village By day, they are Special Database farmers, construction workers, stone workers and industry workers. But while you wouldn’t typically expect it, they’re actually earning big money.
In Indonesia, farmers and builders are Special Database jobs that are not highly regarded. Workers normally earn between $0.65 – $1.20 daily (Rp. 8,000 – Rp. 15,000). But after work, they are entering and winning design contests, which can earn them up to $450 each time. Fahmi said that he earns up to $1,600 a month. As a village, they’ve earned nearly $495,000 in two years – an amount so incredible that Fahmi was even called Special Database to the bank once, out of suspicion over his income. “The background of the designer is not important. What’s more important is the design itself.” However, it isn’t easy for these village designers. In part two of this film, you’ll see them going on a trip to see a professional designer to invite him to teach the community about design.