To tell you about myself, this would be the part where most people turn into gold medal winners and world champion swimmers who love to read and walk once a week in the Scottish Highlands.
I don’t have any gold medals at the minute and walking is not really in one of my top ten things to do when bored. But what I do have is the ability to see the whole picture - the context, the room set, the clothes, the tone of voice - and arrange things by being aware of style intricacies. So good ideas and good designs communicate correctly and just don’t end up, good ideas or good designs that just don’t work.
About why I do it
As we grow up we learn that even the one person that wasn’t supposed to ever let us down probably will. You’ll have your heart broken and you’ll break others’ hearts. You’ll fight with your best friend, Who you might even fall in love with, and you’ll cry because you feel time is flying by so quickly.
So, take too many pictures. Laugh too much. Forgive freely. Love like you’ve never been hurt. Life comes with no guarantees, no time outs, no second chances. Tell someone what they mean to you, and tell someone off, speak out, dance in the pouring rain. Hold someone’s hand, comfort a friend, fall asleep watching the sun come up and smile until your face hurts.
But most of all don’t be afraid to take chances it's where we live in the moment. Because every second you spend angry or upset is a second you can never get back.
About who I do it for
I’ve worked in some large advertising agencies.
I’ve had the big accounts and the fancy lunches.
The fast cars and the even faster women. Too much of the latter it has to be said. But in short, I’ve lived the life of an Art Director and Designer at the top of his game and do you know what? It was brilliant. Absolutely amazing. Out of this world.
But here’s the strange thing. It’s even better now.
Now I get to create powerful ideas for people. Not for huge, faceless corporations. But for people. People who run their own businesses. People who not only want to see something different, but have to see something different because their business depends on it. Because their business has to stand out, or it’ll disappear.
Interview with Manchester Fashion Network
MFN: How did you get started as a Freelance Creative Director?
TM: When you've been in this industry as long as I have and you're passionate about the work that you do, then you want to know that your very best work is getting made, that your ideas are being realised and that clients are getting original, compelling ideas. Working for someone else, you don’t have that control. You are beholden to an agency structure and agency politics. This can mean your ideas are dismissed for all the wrong reasons and that clients don’t always get to see the best ideas.
I remembered how I felt when I first started working for myself and experienced not only the feeling of self-worth, but also enjoyed that look on my client's face when I had exceeded their expectations. Today, hundreds of projects later, I still get the same buzz that comes with solving a problem for a client and it’s this that makes getting up in the morning very easy.
MFN: What makes you unique?
TM: It may sound stupid to you, but it’s ME! There is no other human being exactly like me on this earth. I think differently. I work differently. I am……different! I work primarily on passion. Any project whether it's large or small has to strike a chord with me personally. The money, whilst it does have a bearing and does keep a roof over my head, is not why I’m in this business! Every piece of work I do has a touch of Timmy Time in it.
I am a brand in my own right; once you get used to seeing my work, you will be able to read a piece of copy, look at a shoot or scroll through a website and know it's been touched by the hands and mind of Tim Marner! What you see is what you get. I'm totally upfront, honest and most of all, I love what I do. And it’s this passion which comes across and it’s what my clients buy into. All of this is what makes me unique.
MFN: What is the most exciting thing that's coming up for your work?
TM: If you'd have asked me this question a few years back, I would have mentioned some of the big brands like Adidas, Vivienne Westwood etc with the glow that I enjoyed when dropping them into conversation when I was with friends. Now, I’d have to say the most exciting thing coming up next, is whatever project’s next. This is because I’m working with companies and individuals who want to make a difference. People who are passionate about what they do and want to provide their customers with great products and exceptional service.
Let me give you an example. I am currently working on a project for Mr Mole Man. He’s ever-so friendly and a real gentleman. And if you don't know who he is, follow him on Twitter. He'll wish you, along with everybody else, a lovely day and will even tell you about the weather. I've helped to transform Mr Mole Man into a household name in Shropshire. Today people refer to him and trust him enough that he’s become a regular part of their lives. This is a business that a few weeks ago was on the verge of being closed – yet today is a roaring success. I saw the man and the vision that was in the business and brought it out and shared it with everyone else.
MFN: What are your future plans?
TM: To help as many small, individual or start-up businesses as possible. We all know having the right type of branding can propel anyone's products and services to great heights; the only trouble is not everyone has big brand budgets. My aim is to help as many businesses achieve their full potential with the right marketing. Be that creating a brand or a website, or simply telling their story in the most compelling way – allowing them to get started and importantly, for the money to start rolling in.
MFN: What piece of advice would you give to an aspiring Creative Director?
TM: In my career I've encountered what I like to call the "but” people and the "well, I'm not too sure” people. These are individuals who always have an opinion on your ideas, but are very slow to offer their own. The best advice I can give, is never give in to them. Have faith and believe in yourself and your own creative abilities as these traits are what make you, you. But above all, be passionate, caring and honest - as this shows in every project you do and every word you speak. For only when you believe in a client – can you convince someone else to also believe in them – and only then can you really do your job.