Senior Designer Stephen Parker doesn't take no for an answer - he wanted to work on the Squarespace design team badly. “I knew this job was going to be mine one day. I just had no idea how or when."
Stephen always knew his ultimate goal, even while freelancing for Squarespace for several years (designing templates for version 5) and subsequently joining our support team. Throughout, he worked hard at cultivating a relationship with Creative Director Tyler Thompson. Conversations between them often went something like this:
Stephen: So, when are you going to hire me? I'm dying to come and work with you guys.
Tyler: Dude, you're not ready. Go read about color theory.
Back and forth they went, each time Tyler pushing Stephen a bit further along on his creative journey. All along the way, Parker refused to give up.
As Tyler tells it:
Stephen asked for a design job at Squarespace 3 times and each time I said no, but gave him my specific reasons. First I asked him to work on color and spacing. I suggested some reading and designs and designers to study and follow. Later his designs lacked the final polish. He continued to study and always pushed himself to be a better designer. I started seeing his work on Dribbble and the Squarespace forum, and they were really, really good. He knew our brand inside and out, knew the system as well as anyone (from working support), and had really blossomed into a damn good designer.
Needless to say, Stephen's "stubbornness" finally paid off when he moved to New York and officially joined the Squarespace design team full-time in December of 2010.
Name: Stephen Parker
Position: Senior Designer
What do you actually do every day? Mostly I'm in Photoshop designing something new, building pages on Squarespace, or making tweaks to something that already exists. I'm responsible for the majority of creative assets that go out for the current version of our system. So, that includes maintenance and expansion of our front site, advertisements, direction for promo videos, art for blog posts, press kits, email newsletters, landing pages, etc.
What is your background? I'm an artist. I grew up cooking professionally in restaurants, and I've always enjoyed creating things with my hands. For me, art is mostly crafting in a series of rotating mediums; paint, food, music, design, etc.
Favorite thing about working at Squarespace? Definitely the cast. Squarespace is filled with an unbelievable collection of brilliant people.
Who do you admire and why?Kenya Hara is the Art Director for Muji. He has great thoughts on "memory" and "emptiness". Tyler Thompson, my boss, is the most visually intelligent person that I know.
Top 3 Blogs in your RSS reader?
Last 5 Songs played on your iPod?
- River of Brake Lights -- Julian Casablancas
- Queen Bitch -- David Bowie
- Holy Thursday -- David Axelrod
- Veridis Quo -- Daft Punk
- Plasticities -- Andrew Bird
5 Fun facts about yourself?
- I play stringed instruments.
- I'm a chef for the royal family of Dubai.
- My parents are both social workers.
- I'm an over-the-roll folder.
- I have a 12-year-old daughter who is much smarter than me.