Six Degrees of Michael Arpino
The Hall of Fame induction nominations came flooding into P&PE's editorial offices as early as March this year. And to no great surprise, several votes punctuated the fact that Michael Arpino has many friends in the industry. In fact, even those who don't know him personally seem to know of him—a phenomenon often associated with the notorious. But Arpino is not known for being notorious. He's regarded for his sincerity, his accomplishments and his willingness to share his success with others.
David Orlin, senior vice president of operations, Fairchild Publications, New York City, recalls how his friendship with Arpino began. "I've known Michael for about eight or nine years now, dating back to his days at American Baby and my days at Gruner+Jahr. I have always found Michael to be a very intelligent, knowledgeable and dedicated individual," explains Orlin. "His understanding of the magazine production process is extremely thorough, and he is always willing to share his knowledge with a colleague or subordinate."
Arpino's love for art piqued his interest in design many moons ago. "I studied art and design in high school," he recalls. "And while I was in school, I got a job working for a packaging company. I was responsible for creating all of the design samples for the boxes they were manufacturing. After high school, I went on to college and majored in fine arts. After I graduated, I took a job at an art studio in New York. I spent my days doing paste up and mechanicals for some of the big advertising agencies in the city," Arpino explains.
Following a year as a designer, Arpino got a tip that Hearst Magazines was looking for an advertising production manager; he got the job. "I was primarily responsible for trafficking ad materials, but the position also gave me my first exposure to the printing side of the business. Back then, Hearst was printing letterpress, offset and gravure. They wanted to do away with the letterpress, so I got involved in making the conversion to offset," he recalls.