Shini Park is the founding director of multidisciplinary digital agency CUBE Collective, and creator of storytelling platform CUBICLE. We will be speaking to Shini about her career beginnings, cultural identity and the biggest challenges she has faced during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Talk us through who you are and your career path up until today.
Shini was born in South Korea, grew up in Warsaw and studied in London. She started blogging at university and after 10 years, launched CUBICLE. The idea was created as she wanted to express what she had learnt as a freelancer and it evolved into an incredible storytelling platform.
Any advice on creating content during the pandemic?
Have a few drinks, it gets the creative juices flowing! And she also bought a second-hand Profoto studio kit which is so helpful for shooting at home.
What advice would you give to young creatives trying to pursue their passions?
The obvious answer is the 3 C's - consistency, content and communication across your social media platforms. But also, go offline and "understand the art of slow making and slow creating - my best work can come out of major procrastination". Essentially, everyone works in a different way so move at your own pace.
You describe yourself as a third culture kid, do you believe this has strongly influenced your work or outlook?
Growing up in a different culture to your own means you soak everything up and so it definitely has an environmental effect. She suggested that having a combined experience of different cultures, experiencing micro-aggressions and having to mould yourself around these cultures creates a jumble of something interesting.
You recently launched 'Your Cubicle', which is a design grant for small Black-owned businesses - could you explain a bit more about this scheme and its importance?
The grant essentially provides helpful design tools to improve branding for small businesses. She explained that the design industry is certainly no exception to systemic racism especially as design schools are primarily only available to students who are able to pay the fees. And for small businesses, good design is expensive - "you get what you pay for in terms of design." The first grant was given to @acomplexioncompany and applications are open until the 20th Jan!
How would you describe your personal style?
"I would say I'm quite androgynous. Maybe a mix of equestrian inspired clothing - boots, coats and Ferragamo style items, and Italian, romantic, story-telling outfits!"
How do you keep your focus and consistency when calamity strikes?
As a creative, it's important to be happy and productive but also to be sad and low sometimes - it gives you a base and fuel to work with. "You don't know that you're up if you haven't been down" so rest and be gentle on yourself.
What are you excited about creating in the future?
Vlogs and having a moving image diary. And she wants to make furniture in the future!
When you have creative ideas, where and how do you start?
"Start with the easiest thing, just get the ball rolling."
Any tips on how to increase brand awareness? - @byluisagoncalves
Prove yourself! "I once redesigned a brands website on my own accord, showed them in our next meeting and I was offered to take over the creative direction for the brand!"
If you could rent anyone's wardrobe - dead, alive or fiction - whose would it be?
Meg Ryan's wardrobe in You've Got Mail! <3
Watch the whole IG Live with Shini below.