We had the good fortune of connecting with Mark Atkinson and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Mark, why did you pursue a creative career?
Well, as I said in my last interview with SD Voyager last year… I don’t really consider myself an artist because I think it sounds too pretentious… but rather an entertainer. But I guess you could label me a creative. Ehhh… That still sounds a little pretentious too doesn’t it? Anyway, to answer your question, I think most “artists” or creatives have no choice, when it comes to pursuing an artistic or creative career. They simply follow their hearts & passions… Yup. I definitely sound pretentious now. I might as well commit all the way now! I believe it was Confucius that said… “If you love what you do, you never work a day in your life.” Or maybe that was someone else that said that… Was it Donald Trump maybe? I don’t know…. How about this… To quote the bumper sticker I saw on a Volkswagen van the other day… “YOLO!” (You Only Live Once). So why not pursue what you love to do.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Well, my “art” or entertainment that I create (how about that?) is ongoing & hopefully improving in quality & recognition. Since last interviewed last year, several new projects, nominations & even a few wins have come to fruition. I was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for my performances in the short films “Lucky” “Skin” & “Old Aquatics” at the San Diego Film Awards & several film festivals (didn’t win btw), but it’s just an honor to be nominated as they say. Winning is still better though I would think. “92115”, a short film I produced had a pretty decent festival run & did win the Spirit of San Diego award. I currently have two other films in the film festival circuit. “Leave ‘em Laughing”, a bio pic I helped produce about the late comedian Dick Shawn’s last performance on stage and “The Power Agent”, a comedy short I wrote, produced, directed & starred in about a struggling actor’s encounter with his wise, but very, very young talent agent. Oh! I also have a small part in the upcoming Netflix series “Selena.” Ok… I think that’s enough shameless self-promotion for this article. But to answer your other questions… “How did I get to where I am today? Well, I still have a long, long way to go, but it doesn’t happen over night. It takes time & A LOT of hard work. How’s that for a cliche answer! But it happens to be true. Was it easy? Nooooooooo. Did I have have challenges I had to overcome? You bet your ass. Wow. I’m really started to sound like the late legendary Hollywood producer Robert Evans now, huh? I have learned a few lessons along the way though… Film is the most collaborative art so surround yourself with good, talented experienced, positive people. And most importantly… Don’t be a dick! I guess what I want the world to know about me or my brand is… well… That I exist. And if I make some people laugh along the way then I’ve done my job. Especially now more than ever during these strange days of political turmoil, racial tension & global pandemic paranoia. Remember, fear & hatred divides… Laughter unites!

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Hmmm… Is this question for pre or post-Covid-19? I had a friend from Vietnam visit back in February & I think I was a pretty good tour guide & am a great ambassador to the city of San Diego… Especially Ocean Beach. The usual hot spots I suppose… The Hotel Del Coronado, La Jolla, Old Town, the Gaslamp etc… Obviously we are Beertown, USA, so there’s no shortage of decent breweries around town. But I think everyone who comes to SD has to try a California burrito. The fish tacos at a South Beach are staple of OB and I highly recommend the Mai Tai at Bali Hai 🍹

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Sure… I’d like to give a shout out to my Mom & Dad because they gave me… ahhh… Life! A lot of people I’ve met in my life have inspired me, supported me & encouraged me from my friends back in high school to my college friends to my friends out here in San Diego & LA. In fact, I’d like to give a shout out to the good people of the San Diego Film Community for being so supportive & encouraging over the last few years. I’d also like to give a shout out to my agents @ Shamon-Freitas & manager @ HTA for believing in me. While I’m at it I’ll give a shout out to you! SD Voyager for showing interest in me! Thank you! We should do this more often… There! Think I covered my butt with those shout outs?

Website: Coming soon…
Instagram: @themarkatkinson
Linkedin: Mark Atkinson
Twitter: @themarkatkinson
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/markatkinson1128
Youtube: The Mark Atkinson Channel
Other: imdb.me/markatkinson https://www.facebook.com/KahunaProductions/

Image Credits
Peter & Deepti Mickelsen Chris Cashman Edgar Rodriguez Dan Butler Peggy Warny The Chateau Marmont Cristyn Chandler Sage @ Freshlook Photos And Edgar Rodriguez again!

Nominate someone: ShoutoutSocal is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.