Along with being creative director at Cheil Worldwide, Eugene Park also wears many hats that take her from doting mother of a five-year-old daughter to jazz singer and even travel writer. Her passions expose her to varied contexts and situations that broaden her perspective on life and the many colorful hues it takes.
“Talking to my five-year-old daughter inspires me,” says Eugene Park, creative director at Cheil Worldwide. Children and the innocence they bring to conversations bring new perspectives that spark joy – and ideas. For Eugene, inspiration comes from her everyday life and the people and activities she engages in. Above all, I think what matters most is to filter these sources so that they can be used in the right direction.
Fueled by these inspirations, Eugene has no time to rest. Her motto of living life in the moment drives her to cherish every moment she has, and Eugene certainly knows what she wants to do in life. As a student, she knew she liked “inventing ideas and coming up with sentences”. With that dream, Eugene majored in creative advertising in college — and it led to the start of a career she’s been obsessed with ever since.
LBB> What inspires you most at Samsung? And what verticals are you focusing on?
Eugene> First of all, I would like to talk about Korea’s national feelings. Seoul is a very lively and inspiring city; it’s never boring. I think the same applies to the Samsung brand – it keeps changing.
Having joined Cheil Worldwide nearly 10 years ago, my time here has truly flown. I think the reason is that Samsung is constantly changing and I have to continually study to keep up with those changes. Moreover, competition is also fierce in the domestic electronics market. So if you don’t follow even for a moment, you will lose. That’s why Samsung keeps coming out with better, newer and more creative products. And that’s what makes it inspiring to me. It’s great because that kind of rhythm really matches my personality; I don’t like to stay inactive even for a while.
We manage the product lines for laptops, micro LED TVs and Samsung service. Over the past six years, I have managed domestic and global projects, including the Chevrolet automotive brand and Korean brands.
LBB> What are the key messages that are important to Samsung and how do you apply them in your creative process?
The general key messages of Eugene > Samsung are: “tolerance for independence”, “pushing the limits” and “constant innovation in openness”. And we’ve applied a common principle to all of our creative work: reflecting serious technology in a playful way. As you know, Samsung’s technology is constantly evolving and it is not easy to explain it to consumers every time. Nowadays, we officially do this through a “techmentary”, in which the technology is explained in depth. But that doesn’t fit most commercial products, so we need to think about how to show the technology to consumers in a more playful way. This was our criterion for evaluating creativity.
LBB> What exciting project are you working on at the moment? Can you give us a taste?
Eugene > Samsung recently announced its purple line through an unboxed event where new products are revealed. I am happy to say that I am in the process of creating the S22 Bora Purple product launch movie. This new line of products appeals to the sense of fantasy and is inspired by Disney cartoons. You will notice that characters who have magical powers are usually purple. So we came up with the idea of associating magical powers with Bora Purple, and we introduced animation techniques to make the film appealing.
Until now, almost all of our product launch films have focused on creating storytelling and 3D techniques. This animated film is the first made for Samsung’s main products. As it was my first attempt, I paid a lot of attention to the steps involved in the process as they were very detailed and complicated. This was a global project that involved a director in Australia and an animation company in London in coordination with our team in Seoul headquarters.
It’s a new approach for us, so I’m really looking forward to seeing if people like it. If you find it on YouTube, don’t forget to hit the “Like” button!
LBB> What are the highlights of your career and why was it important?
Eugene> It was when I met Yu-na Kim while working on a film for Nike. She is a great athlete in figure skating. It was a big deal to be involved in that because Nike had never made a movie in Korea. They set very high standards, and it was the one and only time Nike made a movie in Korea. I was thrilled to have won the pitch to work on six six-second teasers and a 30-second movie, which caused a stir in Korea at that time.
Not only that, since Yu-na had to be in Vancouver to train, I was chosen as his body’s replacement. And the composite photo of my body and face in the print ad was also displayed in all Nike stores. I will always remember this!
LBB> How do you ensure you continually improve your skills to stay relevant? And what new skills do you think are very important for creatives?
Eugene> In my opinion, having a strong sense of curiosity is the most important trait a creative must have. For me, if I ever lose that, I think I might quit the advertising industry. Open-mindedness, great imagination, problem-solving abilities, among many others, are also important traits to have.
In terms of upgrading, I always try something new. Recently, I took some NFT courses. Anything new always fascinates me. It is also very important to know how to handle technical tools. Many people these days are becoming individual content producers and creators and using various tools to convey their thoughts in an effective and engaging way. We also need it to create compelling advertisements. So I also started learning how to use Adobe Premier for creative video editing.
LBB> Going forward, what are the trends or issues that are very important for creatives to note in meetings with clients?
Eugene > There’s a joke we get every time we get a brief – “this time the MZ generation will be the target!” Until recently, most Samsung products were aimed at the MZ generation. But now we have generation alpha, which is my daughter’s generation, I think that’s the word we’re going to see a lot of memories.