#TPBTH Meet: John Park
Name, craft/industry/blog/passion, most popular handle/website:
Founder and Creative Director at Arts+Sciences Marketing
How did you get started?
I got my start at Arnold Worldwide, an advertising agency in Boston, as a copywriter. I wrote TV commercials, magazine ads, radio commercials, stuff like that. Probably the most famous thing I did there was co-create the Flo character for Progressive Insurance. After doing that for a couple years, I switched to a social media marketing agency, then I became a creative director at an interactive design and development agency. A few years ago, I started my own marketing agency, and moved it from Boston to Charleston.
What or who influenced you the most as you were developing your craft?
My first mentor in advertising was George Tannenbaum. He’s a cross between a yogi and Yogi Berra. You can read his blog at http://adaged.blogspot.com/
Why do you love your job?
Are you kidding me? I get to write words and draw pictures for a living.
What inspires you?
I’m inspired by people who are good at their craft and are also good at running an agency.
I’ve also had the good luck to work with some amazing creative directors, like Dave Batista and Birch Norton at BEAM: www.beamland.com
Also a few people I’ve worked with have gone on to start their own agencies, like Christine Pillsbury and Geordie Mcclelland at Altr: www.getaltrd.com
5 words that describe who you are:
(see what I did there?)
When you were a kid what did you want to be when you grew up?
Oh boy. I wanted to be a scientist baseball player who wrote children’s books in his spare time.
I’m lucky because every project I take on is like a new job, so each day has so much potential! I suppose it would be nice to be imagining, creating and executing 100% of the time. (Right now I spend about half my time drumming up new business.)
3 things you aspire to be or do:
I aspire to :
- Enable my clients to leave no money on the table because of crappy marketing.
- Employ and provide for a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens.
- Be the best part of my client’s work day.
(Fill in the blank) I appreciate __________ in my life, because__________.
I appreciate having my wife Laurie in my life, because she makes every day better, makes every moment together worthwhile, and brings heart to everything does.
What was one of the hardest lessons or toughest obstacles you had to overcome?
In marketing and advertising, you learn pretty quick that it’s not a matter of if you ever get laid off. It’s a matter of when. Especially for creatives. Getting laid off is hard. And it never gets easier. Just less surprising.
Advice for someone who is looking to begin a new hobby/job/life pursuit:
Call me, we’ll grab coffee. 843-868-1864. Seriously.
Something your followers would be surprised to learn about you:
I’ve been to every continent (except Antarctica. That box is probably going to stay unchecked for a while.)
A hot dog and a beer at Fenway Park.
I also love a nice piece of toast with bone marrow.
Locally, the street corn at Taco Boy is pretty great, and the cauliflower soufflé at Trattoria Lucca is out of this world.
And I love my mom’s Kimchee (every Korean says their mom’s is the best Kimchee, but my mom’s really is the best).
Anything by Ryan Casey (the
Also the “Yard Too Far” at Husk bar, but I don’t think they make it any more.
And the Affogato at Welkin Coffee.
When I was a kid I was a huge R.E.M. fan. Then I got into Radiohead. I recently got a subscription to Google Music, so that’s what I launch when I get in the car now. When my wife and I got married, we danced to “God Only Knows” by the Beach Boys.