Jon Jackson was promoted to global creative director this week from executive creative director at Brooklyn-based digital agency Huge, which also has offices in Rio de Janeiro, London, and Singapore. The California native began his career at Disney and worked at Sapient Nitro prior to Huge. He's worked for clients from Coca-Cola to Gucci, and most recently oversaw creative for FX and 'The Simpsons.' He shares a few fun facts about himself in this week's "Six Things."
1. He might have become a professional baseball player. If only his pitching had been as strong as his trash talking. Mr. Jackson played on the American Legion team, an all-star high school program, and later played at his local junior college where four of his freshman year college credits came from baseball.
2. Baseball taught him not to play with dynamite. One of his coaches -- who had come close to playing bass for heavy metal band Metallica --inspired team members to test their limits. "We lit a stick of .dynamite together and almost got arrested," said Mr. Jackson. That was the beginning of the end of his baseball days.
3. His first car was nicknamed 'The Beast.' "My parents bought it from one of those rental auctions and it was the ugliest color of all time," he said "Bright bright yellow with an interior that's brown vinyl." The car over heated and couldn't be driven in hot weather. Mr. Jackson inherited it from his parents at 16 and later learned from a friend why his relationship with his then-girlriend ended. "She didn't want to be seen in that hideous car you drive," his friend explained.
4. He was on 90210. A pal from his baseball team told him they could make $40 a day as extras on the show. "You'd have to go to a warehouse in Van Nuys and the first time's a novelty, but the second not so much," said Mr. Jackson. A show biz tip: You could earn another $7.50 or so if you had to change clothes or bring in a prop. "You'd go to all these weird places and then sometime see your T-shirt behind Dylan at the Peach Pit."
5. Disney Online hired him straight out of school, though he had never built a website. There weren't a lot of options in Los Angeles when he was getting his BFA in graphic design at California State University, Fullerton. Disney Online execs came to speak at his school and he and two classmates were asked to present their work. "They basically said 'we want you to work for us' that night," said Mr. Jackson. He graduated on a Wednesday and started at Disney the following Monday. "I wasn't the most digital person then. No one was. This was the mid-90s," he said.
6. He abandoned longtime love Los Angeles for New York, and broke up with her on a billboard. Right before he moved to New York, a friend mentioned that the ad space he was selling was essentially on seasonal clearance. That sparked the idea of buying a few billboards dirt cheap. "At first I was just gonna put up a picture of my dog, but it worked out as I was leaving," he said. So he designed five billboards with breakup lines like "It's not you L.A, it's me" and "I think we should see other cities." His wife worked at the Huffington Post and helped the work get traction.