From designing props and key costumes to the film titles and posters that grab our attention and make us want to run out and watch them on the big screen, graphic designer Jiping Liu has found a unique niche for herself in the film industry, both in the U.S. and China.
By the time Liu made the decision to break into the film industry, her talent as a graphic designer at home in Beijing, China was already well-known throughout the design industry thanks to her work as a lead designer for Tencent and Inforgence. While the endless creative opportunities and potential collaborations Liu could immerse herself in through film ignited her inner passion, the choice to step away from a good job as a designer in the corporate world required her to set the safety net aside and take a leap of faith.
After graduating with her bachelor’s degree in digital media from Beijing Jiaotong University, Liu says, “I got the chance to go for my master’s degree with a full scholarship in China and I was also offered a good graphic design job, but I felt I was too young to settle, so I gave up the opportunities and applied to school in America to study filmmaking.”
This was barely three years ago, but the number of high-profile film productions she has contributed her skills to since confirm that the life changing choice she made leaving everything she knew behind in order to pursue her true passion was definitely the right one, as is often the case, but rarely do the results come as quickly as they have for Liu.
For Liu 2016 has been insanely busy with her doing the graphic design for the films “Red Cherries,” “She Gives Me Sight,” which earned awards at the Hollywood Boulevard Film Festival, LA underground Film Festival and the Hollywood International Moving Pictures Film Festival, “Escape,” “Don’t Touch Me,” “Successor of the Southern Star” and several others.
Her adept skill as a graphic designer combined with her knowledge of the filmmaking process has provided Liu with a strong creative foundation that has allowed her to apply her talents to various other areas of a production such as costume design as well. Earlier this year Liu costume designed the dramatic crime film “Locked” directed by Ye Kuang (“Harmonica,” “Love Behind”), whose film “Harmonica” took home the Grand Prize at the Carnegie Mellon International Film Festival.
As the costume designer of the production Liu used her graphic design background to draw out all of the costumes we see in the film before constructing them. “Locked,” which stars Leanne Agmon from “Blue Bloods” and “Unforgettable,” and Johanna Finn from the multi-award winning film “14 Days” and the series “My Haunted House,” has proven to be a resounding success with the film taking home the LAIUFF Awards for Best Actor and Best Narrative, as well as the Audience Award for Best Film and Best Actor at the 2016 Los Angeles International Underground Film Festival,
Liu used her design skills once again as the costume designer of the recently released “Lordwolf” commercial for Beard Guyz directed by Mauro Borrelli (“The Ghostmaker,” “Haunted Forest”) who earned the Audience Award at the Los Angeles Italian Film Awards for “Goodbye, Casanova” and the Venice Film Festival’s AIACE Award for “La Donna del Moro.”
As a graphic designer Liu has an expert eye when it comes to color, a necessary strength and crucial component in designing the costume for the commercial’s leading wolf man played Daniel Sobieray from “Days of Our Lives” and “The Young and The Restless.” You can check out the new commercial here.
Since moving stateside Liu has landed a job as the lead graphic designer for Alpha Pictures, a Chinese based production company that recently opened their LA branch.
“We are trying to turn the most popular comics in China to feature films in next two years in America,” Liu says about her work with the successful production company. “I love both filmmaking and design, so I feel very lucky to be a graphic designer at a film production company, because I’m passionate about my work.”
Liu has put her creativity to paper designing a plethora of posters and presentations that Alpha is currently using to gain funding and get the word out about several upcoming films such as “Female Robot,” “Spore,” “The Death God’s Plot,” “Rain Village,” “Meet William,” “Moon Vortex,” “Requiem Street” and many more.
Whether she’s designing film posters to grab the audience’s attention or spark the interest of potential investors, or using her graphic design talent to create graphic props and costumes for productions, Jiping Liu is one creative artists who’s found her rightful place in the international film industry.