This month, we’re more than happy to introduce you to Tom Page, a very creative designer in his own right and an art director who’s an inspiration to his staff of talented designers and animators here at bluemountain.com.
Hi Tom, when did you first realize you had design abilities or know that you wanted to be an artist?
I think I have been drawing pictures for as long as I can remember and it has really been the only thing that I have really ever wanted to do. My mom and dad are very artistic so at a young age they were very supportive.
What is your current position at bluemountain.com and can you tell us a little about your background as a designer?
I am an Art Director with Blue Mountain and have been in the greeting card business for almost 19 years. I started out as an illustrator and over the years worked my way to Art Director.
Could you tell us a little more about your work?
As an Art Director I’m lucky to work with a very talented staff of designers and animators developing concepts and stories that can be turned into digital greetings which people can share with each other for any occasion. So, it’s really not “my” work but more of a collaborative effort with the team. We are all working toward a common goal and push each other to create amazing that we believe our customers will love.
Which is your favorite ecard you’ve created and what makes it special to you?
Wow, this is a tough decision because I have worked on A LOT of cards, a few of which are featured here. I have another favorite I worked on that was a Claymation piece we did for Christmas about 5 years ago. We wanted to create a piece that reminded us of all the Rankin–Bass television shows that we were fans of as kids. This was such a group effort. It was also something that we had never done before, at least a clay piece of this scale. I enjoyed every part of it from planning to the finished piece. Everyone that worked on it did an amazing job. I really grew as a storyteller and leader from that experience.
Who is the artist that has most influenced you? How do you use that influence in your work?
It’s so hard to pin-point just one person but if I had to pick one I love the emotion you feel from an Otto Dix piece, especially the series from the First World War. I try to put some of that emotion in my personal work. At my current job, I’m lucky to be surrounded by so many talented people. I have really pulled so much from many of them.
What types of things do you do to keep yourself motivated?
The way people communicate is rapidly changing which of course is so important to our business. Following that and how it effects what I do is very motivating and exciting at the same time.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I’d like to teach someday. I have learned so much here I would like to think I can help some students out there be better professionals.
What advice would you give an aspiring artist who’s interested in the same career field you’re in?
This is one of the reasons why I’d like to teach. Be willing to take on any task then over deliver on it. Build as many positive relationships as you can. Don’t be late with your work, that kills careers. Learn how to take and give feedback. As a creative person feedback is a part of everyday life, if you don’t take it well then this isn’t the career for you. Also learn how to communicate well and speak in front of people. Communicating your vision is important and being able to do it well will give you more opportunities to move up in an organization.
On a final note, Tom, what are some things you like to do when you’re away from work?
I do art when I can but when you’re doing that in some capacity all day it can be challenging to continue at home. So I enjoy playing golf, watching movies, hitting the gym and most of all just being Dad. I’m lucky to have a very supportive family. I have been married to my wife Tina for 20 years this June and have two great kids Dylan and Claudia.
Thanks, Tom, for sharing your background, interests and creative passion with us!