Our year in review - 2015
We’ve had a great year and this time is a good opportunity to take a short pause from the keyboard and look back on everything that has happened.
In January, the team was distributed on the opposite ends of the planet. David and Marco were staying in Florianópolis, Marco’s home town in the south of Brazil. They had fun, drank cocktails, took surfing classes while licking the sun at the beach. Meanwhile in -10°C at the other side of the planet, Hjörtur had a holiday with his friends and family in his home country, Iceland.
New year, new website
We’ve been running 14islands for almost four years now. The company has gone through many changes and we’ve done lots of good stuff. Yet, we still had the same website that we built when starting the company in 2011. It was time to do something about it, so we cleared our schedule and made it happen.
The hardest website to build is our own. It forced us to take a step back and think hard about the soul of the company. We also wanted to do a better job of showing our completed projects. After lots of discussions, post-it notes, design sessions and a trip to David’s family summerhouse in Gävle - we had a new website that felt right to us.
Company retreats are always a good idea to have when you have a tight team like ours. Getting close to nature fits our company spirit. And, of course, you get to drink some beers and do some nice grilling.
Yes, that is a chicken grilling on a can of beer.
Awwwards in Barcelona
In February, we jumped on an airplane to Barcelona to enter this years Awwwards conference. It’s an event about web design that also recognizes the most inspiring projects in the industry. It was a great experience, warmer than Stockholm, and we met tons of old friends and cool people. We wrote summaries for day 1 and day 2 at the conference.
Kingdom of the North
One of the great things about conferences is we get time to mingle with people we’ve admired for many years. Fellow Stockholmers North Kingdom were at Awwwards to accept the award “Site of the year” for the Hobbit Chrome Experiment. This opportunity started the spark that lead to us helping them out on new projects. Marco collaborated with them on a project for Disney, and Hjörtur collaborated with them on a space mission for Syfy. Such an inspiring place, with lots of talented people.
Korea, China and America
Life ain’t all about business. The team also visited various places around the world. Hjörtur made a trip to South Korea on a parental leave with his 5-year-old son and stayed there for 3 months, doing meditation. David who had been working remotely from Colombia and Brazil continued his America trip to Argentina and finally to Brooklyn, New York - catching up with our old friends Anton & Irene among others. Marco traveled across the globe to visit Chengdu, China.
Picture taken in the Meditation Center, South Korea.
With friends at Fjord
A lot of our friends work at Fjord - an avant-garde design agency with an amazing culture. We were brought in to lead and help with a couple of projects for clients such as H&M and others.
“Do great work with great people.”
This opportunity also gave us a good inside view from an inspiring service design agency. Fjord became a very close partner to us and we are proud to have built this strong relationship with them through the year.
Talks and workshops are also among the fun things we did this year. Marco did one for Elespacio, a digital agency in Barcelona, about the “good, bad and ugly of responsive webdesign”. Hjörtur had a talk at Aftonbladet about “lessons learned using Wordpress as a CMS”. We also did talks for the students at the Mobile Creative program at Hyper Islands about responsive web development. And Marco also did a Responsive Recap talk for agencies in Stockholm.
In the papers
Breaking news, or not really, but we had our first newspaper appearance in a newspaper in Iceland. Its called Fréttabladid and is the biggest traditional paper in Iceland. That was something new.
Wave of (cool) client work
The year ended with lots of cool projects. We did the Oyyo webshop using Shopify with our friends at Studio Källbom. We built a new website for SPG with our friends at BVD. And we worked on the Facebook TechPrep website and Google Santa Tracker 2015 with our friends at Upperquad, and many others.
Julbord in Sandhamn
After all the hard work, talks and traveling, the 14islanders decided to reap their harvest in Sandhamn, an island in the beautiful archipelago located in Stockholm. We filled our stomachs with traditional Swedish christmas-food and sung Swedish drinking songs as we toasted the traditional schnaps.
Hej då, 15. Hejsan, 16.
We want to thank all our friends and the people we been working with for an amazing year. We really couldn’t do any of this without you. Happy new year everyone, lets make next year count!