Sunday, December 20, 2009

Advanced Interface Design

After seven weeks our fourth module is over. Daniel Ilic from North Kingdom was in charge for all the content for the advanced interface design module and his agency just released their long awaited showreel which shows the kind of work they are doing:

What is advanced interface design? According to Daniel it's about 'Creating untraditional ground breaking cutting edge user experiences in digital interfaces.' He also quoted Simon Pestridge from Nike 'We don't do advertising any more. We just do cool stuff.'

We had plenty of great lectures from places such as DDB, farfar, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, North Kingdom, Perfect Fools, Microsoft, Visual Arts and Amsterdam Worldwide. We learned about interactive storytelling, production processes, gameplay, motion graphics, 3D production, flash animation, prototype based development and much more.

Out big assignment was to create a concept for an interactive experience and we had the choice between a fashion brand and a charity. My group worked on the fashion part, Le Laboureur, a french working wear brand that wanted to appear on the map of a young and aware target audience. This is the result we created:

We decided to roll with the Jesus/worthy concept and focus on art direction and played with interactive sounds. When the Goodby, Silverstein & Partners assignment came along we shifted focus away from this assignment for two weeks so we ended rushing the production in the last few days. I hope that there will be a bit of time in the new year to iron some of the edges away that we left for now.

Being the process leader in our group I learned a lot about creative processes and how to facilitate them. We needed a slightly tighter production plan and should have been clearer on the individual roles. The biggest learning situation for me was the different goals of all team members and how to arrive on a common goal and steer towards it all together. Summed up I received a great learning outcome and I'm looking forward to the next team module so I can build on those learnings. But before that we have an individual assignment over the holiday break: Making a portfolio.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Hyper Island in a Nutshell

Only 7 days of Hyper Island are left in the year of 2009. There is a huge deadline hanging above our heads, so there's no time to write up all that's happening. The Goodby, Silverstein & Partners days were great with fantastic presentations and interesting insights. We had DDB Stockholm over here this week going through their Swedish Army work and today Amsterdam Worldwide was in the house to give individual feedback on our work. I'm participating in a creative Google Wave experiment and there's a new movie created by the Digital Media 2010 class about Hyper Island which I'm sharing here.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

HyperDesk Part Two

After a long week filled by work with brands, brands and more brands I decided to take a couple of hours to clear my head with a drawing session and continued on my desk design that I started two months ago.


Sunday, November 29, 2009


This is the 400th post on this blog, Yay!
Hyper Island keeps me pretty busy. Many things are going on at the same time. First we have the main seven weeks assignment to create an interactive experience for a french clothing brand. Second we received a brief from Goodby, Silverstein + Partners who are visiting enxt week to create a campaign based around 5 senses and pitch it to them with finished designs. Third we're gathering a team and ideas in order to produce the main promotion site for our class. And in my spare time I'm working on briefs for upcoming competitions like One Show and D&AD, as there is no time scheduled for this in our course. Busy, but awesome. Back to work. Thanks for reading.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Motion Week

We just ended motion week, wich I could not fully enjoyed as my Macbook crashed on me on monday. RIP hard drive. So I only joined in the After Effects fun yesterday and made this short contribution above. The brief was to do any kind of film with the topic swine flu for 5-10 seconds.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

In your face interface

We started a new module at Hyper Island called Advanced Interface Design. We received another big assignment for the next seven weeks, to design an interactive experience for the french clothing label Le Laboureur. The group I'm in is the same as for the IDEO workshop and consists of Joacim, Linn, Me, Mary and Paula.

hyper island,iad10

The content provider for this module is Daniel Ilic, creative director at North Kingdom. The first three weeks so far are structured around software knowledge. We had a flash week, now we're having a motion week, and next weeks is all about 3D. Lectures in this module include farfar, Perfect Fools, Microsoft Labs, Visual Art, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners and North Kingdom
The result of the module has to be based on interactive storytelling including gameplay - let's see what we make of it.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The impact of new technology on advertising

I received an email from Sital, a student at the London College of Communication asking me for help with questions regarding her dissertation. I remember how much bloody work it was to write my own back at Bucks so I decided to help. Maybe some of you would like to join the conversation and share opinions on his topic 'The impact of new technology within graphic design, specifically within the advertising industry'. Here the questions including my short answers:

1. Do you think that digital campaigns pose a threat to the more traditional forms of campaigns? Why?

I think both traditional and digital campaigns should co exist and work closer together. It's about traditional advertising telling stories about brands using . Then digital campaigns should pick up on his and engage people further with those ideas and stories and start conversations with them. There's a great article on the BBH Labs blog about that: If you want a conversation say something interesting.

2. Idea vs. Media. Do you think campaigns nowdays are getting too carried away with the media rather than the 'big idea'? Why?

Yes, there are different kinds of campaigns, some that use media in a new way, and other that just rely on great storytelling (strong & big ideas). I think we need both, the ones that get carried away with media are good because they explore the boundaries of what can be done. But then once the technology is 'exploited' campaigns are created that use a new technology or a new media and connect it with the story of a brand in a meaningful way. I prefer the later ones, but as mentioned before, boths are valid things. A current example for this is augumented reality. A year ago just using this media/technology was enough to create a buzz for a brand, now agencies must work much harder to come up with ways to use augumented reality in a relevant way for the brand. They cannot just play the novelty card anymore.

3. What do you think the future of advertising (online) will hold? Why?

Media knowledge will be crucial in order to create tailored concepts to reach people in a relevant way. On the other hand we might see more engaging campaigns once creatives will manage to combine digital media knowledge with great storytelling skills, disciplines that are somewhat seperated in the advertising industry today. We might see more specialized creatives that will collaborate closer with partners from other areas, for example storytellers + technologists. And there should be more hybrid creatives that will be able to span big stories over multiple channels all in a relative way rather than just being replicated in a different format. I would wish for more interactive and engaging stories being told around products and brands.

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Remember my former partner Kristin? She's the one I started this blog with three years ago. She's still doing awesome things in London and just started a new project with her creative partner Nora: Überbuli

It's a duo of a crazy German and an even crazier Hungarian hunting for creative projects in advertising by doing all sorts of things to initiate that. They've got some work up over at carbonmade you might be interested in. They're planning more things in the near future – so stay tuned and join their twitter fellowship if you're curious about the adventures of those girls @uberbuli

Friday, November 6, 2009

Intense Energy

Robbin & I spent the last 6 days working on a submission for the Young Guns Student competition 2009. We entered the open brief category with a digital advertising idea for the energy drink BURN this morning, just before deadline:

We want to involve users in the brand promise 'Intense Energy' of the energy drink BURN. Through a game where players and teams fight each other for energy, using their mobile phones as weapons. You point & shoot at your opponents mobile device, if you hit - his energy decreases. By scanning a BURN can the player receives an energy boost. Challengers advance in ranks and compete in leader boards.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Bring it to life

The new ad from Guinness drops the 'Good thing come to those who wait' line and introduces 'Bring it to life'. I don't know about the strategy, it's seem more generic than the previous one, but maybe I'm missing a point. Yet the ad itself and the storytelling within it is stunning. By AMV/BBDO London.

Monday, November 2, 2009

The Hyper Island Way

During our first idea development session in module 2 we were filmed in order to give people a little glance what Hyper Island is about. This is the result.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Workshop with IDEO

Hyper Island IDEO Workshop
One of the highlights of the course so far was a three day hands on workshop with IDEO. We had Fredrik Aidehag & Juho Parviainen from the Munich and London office of IDEO over at Hyper Island to give us a lecture and conduct a workshop on human centered design - just the way IDEO work themselves.

We worked in new groups for this assignment and each group identified a local business in Stockholm and approached them with this project. My group consisting of Linn, Ahmed, Mary, Joacim & Paula worked with a high-end hair salon in central Stockholm. The process that followed was divided into four main areas: Insight, Synthesis, Idea development and Prototyping.

Insight was about observing and understanding the scenario. We spend a day at the hair salon talking to employees, interviewed customers, documented the user experience and looked into all touch points of the business. We also talked to 'extremes' - people who would never use this kind of service and people who have very high demands on such a service. All this was documented in word, picture and video.

After the insight phase we started the synthesis phase: We gathered and structured different user stories, using the data from interviews. This phase was about framing opportunities from the researched material. We clustered observations and connected them with each other in order to extract behavioral insights. Having identified areas of opportunity we formulated several 'How might we...' questions - question that we would use in the next step, the brainstorming to develop ideas around them. Examples: How might we get people to be braver about new hairstyles? How might we lessen the feeling of risk of a bad haircut? How might we help people communicate what they want in a clearer way?

Brainstorming: to be honest, I've been in a few brainstorming session but never in a very effective one - I was never a fan of this type of idea development process. But IDEO showed us ways to facilitate effective sessions to harness the creativity of a larger group, and it worked a treat. Here are the 7 rules of brainstorming as used by IDEO:

rule #1 defer judgement
there are no bad ideas at this point because there's plenty of time to judge after

rule #2 encourage wild ideas
it's the wild ideas that often provide the breakthroughs and we can always bring ideas down to earth later, we new paths for non obvious ideas

rule #3 build on the ideas of others
think 'and' rather than 'but'

rule #4 stay focused on topic
you get better output if everyone is disciplined

rule #5 one conversation at a time
that way all ideas can be heard and built upon

rule #6 be visual
sometimes a picture really can speak a thousand words

rule #7 go for quantity, not quality
set an outrageous goal and surpass it!

Besides those rules, which are both obvious and crucial, there are other key points to turn the brainstorming session into an effective one. The group size should be quite big, 7-10 people is a good number, to keep the tempo of the session high. There should be a time limit, the session should be scheduled for a short time, but this time should be used effectively. But most of all, the work and research done beforehand helps the greatest deal: having the right focus or 'How might we...' questions to steer the group seemed to be the most helpful thing.

Using all those tools we generated an enormous amount of ideas in a short time around our chosen opportunity areas and after evaluating them in our team we settled for one specific direction: The hair salon we were working with has a rather creative approach, they want their customers to take more risks with their hair and be more adventurous. For this we focused on a voice controlled digital mirror that helped the customer and the person cutting the hair to explore more and daring possibilities.

Entering the fourth, last and most fun phase of human centered design: Prototyping or build to think. The solution we came up with had to be prototyped within 2 hours so we could share it with the course for feedback and further improvement. We had to take decisions on how things work down to the details, and act out the scenarios that could occur. The point here was to make the idea as real as possible as fast as possible. We had a great time building a corner of the hair salon and faking a digital & voice controlled display, emulating the experience.

Embarking on this new way of working was exciting and taught me the effective way of human centered design which opened up many creative opportunities within this project. I would have loved to work another week with the brilliant guys from IDEO. Going through the whole process with a specific client helped understanding this way to work and I cannot wait for the next project where I can put those methods to use. IDEO seems like an awesome place to work.

My three biggest learnings from this workshop:
  • How to use behavioral research to gain insights and frame opportunity areas
  • How to prepare and facilitate an effective brainstorming session in a big group
  • How to bring an idea to life quick and dirty in order to see and improve its potential

Pictures by Paula Kreuger

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Hyper Island was founded to produce CD Roms

Today we had a lecture with David Erixon, he is one of the three founders of Hyper Island. He is also the brand strategy director of Vodafone. He talked about the upcoming global brand relaunch of Vodafone. It was fascinating to go through the whole case study, from previous 'fuck ups', to research stage, to insights, to new strategy all the way into integration of the new direction. So after googling David I found this interview of him, with the reasons he founded Hyper Island in the first place with two others.

Found on Knitwareblog

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Hyper Island on tour

Facilitators and students will be traveling around in the next few months to represent the school in 8 major cities around the globe: Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, London, New York, Oslo, Stockholm & Sao Paolo. It's a chance for interested people to learn more about Hyper Island and to apply for a course here at the same time. It's Hyper Island choosing students, and students choosing Hyper Island.

There will be 100 seats for international students between the five programs for next year. If you want the chance for one of them, check out the recruitment website. If you have any questions regarding the dates in November & January for London, send me an email to waldemar.wegelin (at) or leave a comment here.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

5 criteria for my dream job

What do I want from a job? Inspired by this post.
  1. I want a job at a place where everyone commits to doing their best and most creative work.
  2. I want a job where I can work with like-minded people who I can learn and get inspired from.
  3. I want a job that gives me the opportunity to use the tools that I've learned in the past years.
  4. I want a job where I will be constantly challenged and have the chance to fail and grow.
  5. I want a job without restrictions to media for my work and creativity.

The people of IAD10

These are the photos of yesterdays shoot for the Interactive art director 10 part of the Hyper Island website. Photographer: Azin His photobitch: Lasse

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Focahontas by Anna Wegelin

My sister Anna just released her first accessory line 'Focahontas' together with photos of them on a model. See them below and pay her little online store a visit:

Monday, October 5, 2009

Lipton competition interview

We (Robbin, Nathan & me) went to Paris last week to present our idea and work in front of the Tribal DDB team and Garth Woolley, the global brand manager of Lipton.

Here's an interview from the Hyper Island blog about it:

How did you end up working together?
We (Robbin & Waldemar) worked together in a previous school project. We enjoyed that, so when we got the brief from Tribal DDB and Lipton it felt natural to continue with our collaboration. Nathan joined in as the missing piece and our group was formed.

How come you submitted to the contest in the first place?
The brief arrived immediately after our second module where our very inspiring project leader Henrik (kudos!) armed us with tools for generating and developing ideas. This challenge looked like a perfect opportunity to practice and use those toy on our own. And obviously we were excited about having the chance for a trip to Paris.

What was the brief about?
It was about finding a solution that would connect Lipton Ice Tea and their message "Drink Positive" with its audience. The criteria was that it would have to be innovative; something that simply could not have been possibly five years ago.

What's your concept about?
We call it the "Smile Experiment", basically it's about bringing the Lipton Ice Tea message to life and connecting it to Lipton's target audience in a really cool way. Think emotional browsing... for the moment though we can't give away too much information because we're Tribal DDB and Lipton are looking for a way to produce our idea.

What if you win?
We did win! We went to Paris thursday morning and presented to the client, Tribal DDB and a bunch of other people visiting the Digital Days. The client loved it and we've received nothing but praise from everyone involved. Bringing our idea to life will initially mean a lot of planning and testing on behalf of Lipton and Tribal DDB. For us, this means that we not only won a competition and a piece for our portfolio – but also a chance to get our idea produced. Maybe even more trips to Paris or London, fingers crossed.

Any new learnings?
Lots! First of all about the work progress and the great value of having tools and structure for generating ideas. Secondly that don't settle for an idea before you get that special butterfly feeling in your stomach. We generated a couple of hundred ideas, lots of bad ones and about three "good enough" and in the end this one that filled our criterias of being both great and innovative. For the presentation we created a case movie. Despite of being a bit persuasive the movie also made us think ahead and plan exactly what we we're gonna say to whom. We ended up rewriting the script a couple of times and each time made the idea and our common understanding of the possibilities even greater.

Feature dreams, where would you like to end up?
Answering this questions while sipping a cappuccino next to the impressive Notre Dame, it's tempting to say Paris. But honestly, time will tell. It's not so much about a certain place in the world as about finding a nice atmosphere with values focused on creating idea driven work. Nathan is excited about Japan as a place to work, we are still spinning the globe.

Congratulations also to the following students whose projects made it to the final stages of the contest: Azin Ashourvan, Gro Larsson, Lasse Korsgaard, Jon Eskilsson, Minna Johans, Magnus Karlsson, Alexander Kristensen

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Birthday present - Paris

It was a good day. Today I turned 27 and right in the morning we received an email that our team (Nathan, Robbin & me) won the Creative Contest set by Tribal DDB Paris for the DDB Digital Days. Not only did three other teams from Hyper Island made the shortlist (making HI the most shortlisted school, thus winning an additional school price) but our concept seemed the juries favourite that got us to the next step: client presentation. They've booked us on a plane (leaving in 7 hours) to Paris so we can present our concept in front of the Tribal DDB team and the global brand manager of Lipton Ice Tea. Bags are packed and fingers are crossed.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

5 experiences, 10 days & lots of learnings at Hyper Island

Real-time is running quick at Hyper Island so it's hard to keep up with blogging everything. I would like to reflect on the last 10 days and what I took out of them. Ordered around five key experiences:

1. Objectified, a documentary film by Gary Huswitt
After Helvetica Gary Huswitt set out to explore product design. A great journey into the minds of different product designers that we witnessed on the big screen last week with a few fellow Hyper Islanders. It was very satisfying and inspiring to watch it and think about the insights in the movie. Some that got me thinking: Can we design objects that get better over time? How do objects function in complex systems? Does design separate? Design is translation. Think about the value chain beyond the obvious. Entrepreneurial logic rather than employee logic. If there's no philosophy behind design practises, design may become useless. Design will become more collaborative. Form doesn't follow function anymore (example: iPhone). How and where can I apply my design thinking?

I'd like to re watch it and link more of those thoughts together and apply them to creative problem solving for brands. As the movie fits perfect into the current interactive user experience module, the educational DVD edition is already on it's way to Hyper Island.

2. Workshop on interactive copy writing / storytelling
Karin Ernerot alias Karinskii is a Creative Director, Copywriter & Screenwriter. She works closely with traditional agencies and educates them about digital media. The web is not just another media channel. Whereas in traditional media a brand buys media space and advertises a certain amount of time, interactive media requires a long term digital presence. The brand is always available, 24/7.

All those differences between offline & online mean that there are different questions we should ask ourselves during the creative process:
  • How can the brand activate people?
  • How can we create brand loyalty online?
  • How can the brand keep an ongoing dialogue?
  • What are the goals for the conversation?
  • How can the brand become a tool?
After this dive-in, into what digital media does best, we switched to storytelling. We discussed different aspects of storytelling. Structure makes it easier to write stories. Stories can be enhanced by adding some things or taking some away. A twist in the story makes a big difference. What are the motives? Karin showed us different structures like the three act structure, Jung's 12 character archetypes and the hero's journey. It's great if you take the archetypes and apply them to brands to define their tone of voice, of the hero's journey on a movie to see it working. The second part which will be more based on writing exercises will continue on Thursday – my expectations are high!

3. Workshop with Doberman
Doberman is a Swedish agency specialised in digital design and service development. They practice the Service design approach and work out how to improve everyday experiences. They shared the making of a new mobile service provider store with us today.
If you want to create a magic experience you have to hide the technology and put the fun in the foreground. Understand people's situation: How do they feel? What do they need? And what drives them? We received a new assignment for this week to work out a new user experience for a dull, scary or embarrassing situation in everyday life. A challenging assignment.

4. DDB creative contest for Lipton Ice Tea
The brief was to come up with a way to communicate Lipton's brand idea of 'Drink positive' in a way that could not have been possible five years ago, because of technology or people's behavior. We worked on this brief for two weeks in a team of three and delivered a pretty satisfying result. I'm hoping to share it once the results are in. Not only did we develop a great amount of ideas but we took the best one and presented it in a case movie that describes the background, the thinking and the user experience of this idea.

5. Lucy McRae
Today we had one of the most inspiring lectures so far: from Lucy McRae. Before she went into delivering craziness that makes people think, she was a ballerina dancer for 14 years, studied interior design for two years, and worked in architecture in London for another 5 years. She had a break through at Philips as an 'Body Architect' and worked on multiple projects with Bert Hess which you can see here.

It was amazing to hear her talk about the process of creating her pieces. About bringing immediate and spontaneous ideas to life using the simplest tools. She talked about her work at Philips where she created interesting visions for them such as Electronic Tattoos or Probe skin dresses. She worked in multidisciplinary teams, with a creative partner and on her own and shared her thoughts on those. What if computers would be more sensible to what we're feeling? A new whole bunch of new thoughts entered my head after having her speak how a huge company like Philips could benefit from findings of an artist like her and create actual products from those insights into the future.

* * *

So what have I learned? How to make a case movie from scratch. How to disassemble user experiences and gain insights from this process. How to tell a story in writing with the help of existing structures. How to use technology not for technologies sake, but to add value to people interacting with it. How to apply thinking from different disciplines to the creative process. How to combine interactive thinking with people's needs and objects in the real world. How to approach a problem from the point of view of the user. And most importantly – I don't know anything and there's still an abundance of things out there to explore and combine.

Monday, September 28, 2009


How many questions did you ask today? More great drawings of wisdom on

Friday, September 25, 2009



Monday, September 21, 2009

Sounds from the cloud

I'm a music collection addict, actually music is the only thing I collect. If I hear a good song I need to get it onto my hard drive. (Insight: nowadays people collect less actual stuff but way more data & information)

My iTunes library is completely sorted without missing album covers and of course everything is labeled correctly. I feel like I need to 'own' the music. Here at Hyper (and Sweden I guess) quite a big part of the music is listened through Spotify. I have a hard time liking this app, I can't imagine not having my music collection. Robbin, a fellow art director, has deleted his extra large (over 40 Gig) music collection and switched to Spotify completely for his music needs. He describes it as a very fresh feeling, a cleansing of old music. I won't go that far (yet?) but I should get out of my comfort zone and will have a iTunes free week. Let's see if I can survive on sounds from the cloud and discover some new audio goodness in the process. After all, music is part of my business.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


Module no.3 has begun. Interactive User Experience is the topic. It will last for seven weeks and we have a huge assignment, the client: IKEA. The brief is very open so the opportunity is huge. Client presentation will be in 40 days but we'll have plenty of workshops in between so there are only 16 effective days to work on this brief. We're in new teams again which consist of 4-5 people. I'm working with Natasha, Filip & Anna María and our team name is Insexnyckel, the Swedish word for the Hex Key / Allen Key which is used to assemble most IKEA furniture.

The Insexnyckel team
The first part of the assignment was completely dedicated to producing a group steering document and to discuss and form guidelines for our team. Here's our outcome:

The Insexnyckel- Manifesto
We've started with the idea development and will spend the next days researching and understanding the brand before we continue to generate more ideas and develop them further. And yes, I'm into time lapse lately.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Update from HI

Life's great at Hyper Island. We finished off the second module with a client pitch / presentation which we prepared within 5 days. There was a total of three different clients but we were divided into groups so everyone was focusing on one. Our team was working on ICA Banken, a sub brand of a supermarket, similar to Tesco Finance. The brief was about imagining the future banking experience in 2015 and find ways for ICA Banken to become the most innovative bank on the market. We delivered a pretty cool concept and presented it well, it seems like it got the job done and inspired the client. If there's going to be time we'll put the idea it in a case movie / video format and I'll share it here.

Simultaneously we're working on a competition brief for DDB's Digital Days 2009 in Paris. The brand to work on is Lipton Ice Tea. We've spent all Sunday at school working on ideas for this brief because Hyper Island doesn't schedule any contests in the curriculum. After the concept session decided to finish the day off practising my drawing skills. I've got an idea for my desk here at Hyper, it's all work in progress but here's part one:

Monday, September 7, 2009

7 Insights from Hyper Island

Last week we finished the first part of the second Module. In eight days our team of seven members interviewed seven people (Noah Brier - the barbarian group, David Droga - Droga 5, Iain Tait - Poke, Ben Malbon - BBH labs, Richard Gatarski -, Carlos Bayala - Mother, Annika Lidne - Disruptive Media) and listened to three lectures (Jonathan Briggs - co founder of Hyper Island, Petter Warnsberg - Kingston University, Mans Adler - bambuser founder) while crawling the web for countless hours. Using all this information, analyzing and connecting it was a very valuable experience. In the process we identified seven insights that are relevant to the media industry and that we think are worth sharing:

#1 In order to innovate we need to cross bridges between industries and categories
We need to look beyond the obvious and keep our eyes on other categories that are disconnected with our interests. Rather than focusing too much on technology we should look for new ways for suitable applications and combinations. Mashups and APIs are great example of exciting possibilities when blurring boundaries.

#2 Screens are not enough anymore, they are mere obstacles to seamless integration
Technology is getting smaller. Augmented reality is only the beginning. Interactivity can reach a new level if we interact beyond the screen with our surroundings.

#3 Emphasis will shift towards connecting ideas rather than remembering and gathering information
Tools like twitter allow for concentrated streams of information. We have more access to information than ever before. The world doesn't need more blogs, it needs better blogs. Inspiration VS Information – It's much more valuable to inspire than just to inform.

#4 The Baby Boom is yet to hit the Internet

A new generation of users is growing up with the web. Kids will flood the web with a lot of time on their hands and change they way we approach our work. We need to rethink our way to design interactive experiences because of more segmented user groups.

#5 Brands no longer compete with brands, they compete with everyday live and all media out there

More sources than ever fight for our attention. People are able to create themselves without very little costs. Creativity is the ingredient that will make a huge difference, if used for the right reasons.

#6 It's impossible to keep track of everything, we need to establish filters

Today's information society is ever evolving, we have to accept that we cannot follow everything. Identifying filters is important, and there is great potential in this direction. What sources to trust? What's a balanced mix of filters? Who controls them? It's crucial to realise that we cannot just fill our heads with the newest stuff – we need to stop and reflect and create something new out of those findings.

#7 When telling a story, digital media gives it the possibility to evolve and never end
The future is about collaboration and influences between industries. In contrast to traditional media, where a TV spot or campaign had a beginning, a middle and an end, interactive media gives us a platform to tell the story on and on and to re-engage people more frequently by letting them participate in the process and allowing them to navigate a story at their own pace and level involvement.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Interview with Iain Tait

After the whole preparation bits we started the second module at Hyper Island. It's about today's Information Society and The Future Digital Industry. We're working in groups of seven people, researching different sources around the web in order to find out what's happening at the moment. We also conducted a series of interviews with industry leaders. One of them was a short one with Iain Tait from Poke:

Hyper Island: Before we can attempt to change the digital industry, we'd like to understand what it's about so maybe we can start off with the stuff you like about it right now. What are your favourite bits? You've been in the business quite long and must have seen it all, what kind of stuff gets you excited nowadays?

Iain: The things that excite me about digital are the same as they've always been. Empowerment, democratisation, decentralisation, and so on.

We tend to quickly forget how much the world has changed in the last 10 years. I remember in my first job having to go to a library to look something up. Imagine that!

The book that started it all for me was a book called Being Digital by Nicholas Negroponte. It still amazes me how few people actually 'get' the fundamental premise of digitisation. And how once things can be digitised and connected the game totally changes.

HI: What do you think about all the new trends and technologies that are popping up daily? How do you keep yourself in the look and how are you able to keep up with everything? Do you have any tips on how to filter the important stuff out?

Iain: That's a great question. And it's actually at least 2 questions.
Keeping up with everything is impossible. You need to give up now or your brain will explode. It's always been impossible to keep up. The problem is that we've now been sold a lie. We've been told that thanks to wonderful software and gadgets it's possible to stay in the loop with everything. It's not.

Here's my tip for everyone. *Fish in different ponds from everyone else*. Of course you should make sure you know about the big important stuff. But don't just read the same blogs as everyone else. Find some niche stuff. Find some crazy MIT department that specialises in quantum storage theory and subscribe to their RSS feed. Join a Russian techno forum. See how oddballs are using technology. Then start making connections. Interesting stuff happens when you make connections.

Knowing how to filter the good stuff from the bad is tough. It's just a case of watching things over and over again, then you start to spot what works and what doesn't. You'll never get it right all the time, but you'll start to spot patterns and develop instincts. It's the same as anything really, the more you do it, the quicker and better you become.

HI: We guess you guys know some things about Hyper Island. We heard that you even recruit from here. How do you think Hyper Island prepares us for the roles we want to fill in the future? What are your expectations on HI graduates? And maybe you'd like to share what those expectations, tell about Poke and your goals?

Stay curious. That's really vital.
The thing that really excited us about HI students is the fact that they've been given a broader education than most. They've been exposed to a broader set of things that most students. And they've not just been taught a bunch of tools. Most importantly of all they seem equipped to learn!

HI: For the final question we'd like you to take out your crystal ball in order to make a prediction on what the next years of digital media have in store for us? It's always better to be a few steps ahead!

Iain: I think we've been through a couple of distinct phases of the web. Firstly it was about websites and software and technology. Secondly it's been about people and connections and creativity. I reckon the next big shift is going to be about connecting 'stuff' to the network.

Nike+ and Fiat Ecodrive get people really excited because they're examples of networked stuff.

But they're both really manual, early examples. You have to take out a thing and connect it to a computer and manually click on things before you get anywhere. What if all that stuff was connected to everything else all the time? In smart ways that made our lives better?

Millions of tiny dumb computers connected to the net that together make something so much bigger than they could ever be on their own. Of course there's loads of things to figure out. Things like privacy and network capacity.

Things like Twitter are also interesting pre-cursors to networks of small bits of information. In the last 3 months I've always heard about celeb-deaths first on twitter, and often I hear about incoming weather first on twitter too. Silly examples, but both show how a kind of real-time network of tiny pieces can start to be incredibly useful.

Monday, August 24, 2009

My desk at Hyper Island

This is my desk. There are many like it, but this one is mine. My desk is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I master my life. My desk, without me, is useless. Without my desk, I am useless. I must use my desk true. I must think faster than any other creative who is trying to out-think me...

Sunday, August 23, 2009


The final bit of preparation for the Hyper Island course was a trip to Barnens Ö to unite the team and make an efficient group out of us. After a long bus journey we arrived and mixed into rooms before the first exercise which we called Desert Storm. Everyone was blindfolded and dispersed on a large meadow. The first goal was to search the field for a rope and get everyone to hold it. Without speaking to each other, and obviously without seeing anything at all. The next step, after everyone was holding onto the rope, was to form a square with the rope on the floor. A great experience it was, we made it and learned a lot in the process. The rest of the day was about the course and expectations. The expectations our co-workers have, our expectations of each other, the course, the Hyper Island brand and the expectations on ourselves. By the time we were done with half of this it was rather late and everyones brain seemed to sharing one thought: we need dinner! But nothing's easy with Hyper. Dinner was turned into a task, 55 people need food, we have a kitchen, and products. Mission: Feed everyone, and consider special requirements like vegetarians, people who can't eat eggs, fructose and a dislike of red meat & pork.

Driven by primal instinct and immense hunger leadership was taken and stuff was decided on. I took the role of one of six kitchen chefs. Cooking for 55 people sounded like a fun challenge. With the contents of the kitchen we created a menu for 'Chez Hyper': Thyme marinated Pork fillet, with a peppery onion gravy, together with salty oven baked potatoes and a zingy Ratatouille variation. The vegetarian counterpart was all about Catalan Tortillas de Patatas. All was rounded with olives, cheese and fresh bread and followed by fresh fruits baked with white chocolate and topped with vanilla ice cream for desert. The teamwork was amazing and everyone seemed very happy about the food. For me it was one of the best tasks at Hyper Island so far.

Reflections and more defined expectations filled the second day. It felt overwhelming to gasp everyones expectations and it was rewarding to find and define common goals for the work ahead. Every single Hyper student is now itching, not because of mosquito bites that go hand in hand with outdoor trips but rather because of the great anticipation that we built up. We want to start the next module and gets hand on within interactive media. We are greatly prepared and we won't have to wait long to start. Maybe 9 more hours.


People told me that it's rather tough to find a place to live in Stockholm. They seemed to be correct. All international students referred to the flat hunt as the first challenge of Hyper Island. So after countless long days without a home I joined a group of Hyper students and we found a great house that will serve us as a headquarter to retreat from the screens. It's in the outskirts of Stockholm and it's an awesome place with a lake nearby. Quite a contrast to living in the hectic city if London.

We call it the HyperCastle, and I'm looking forward to the cold winter in this cozy place.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Understanding Group & Leader

The whole of last week we had an intensive course called the UGL (Understanding Group & Leadership) as a preparation for the year ahead at Hyper Island. It was very demanding and intense as we were there for almost 12 hours a day within the same group of people. Yet it was very worth it. There were many individual and group tasks that made us realize how we interact with each other and how we are perceived by others. In between the tasks we reflected on the happenings and the processes. And of course we were fed quite a lot of theory on feedback, leadership qualities and group dynamics.

For me the course was very helpful and if I keep using all the tools learned in the last week I can see myself becoming a much more effective part of a creative group. There are still two days left to reflect on the UGL before we start the next course on Thursday: Team building. All 40+ interactive art directors will go away for two days to a place north of Stockholm to practice group dynamics and become a functional team.

More pictures from last week are here.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

My current wallpaper

Got the sign from Matt Jones and placed it onto the colours I like at the moment.
It reminds me why I'm doing what I'm doing.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


Looks like Nike and W+K Portland are also figuring out the magic of Hyper. Quite rad.
They seem to be doing good things recently.

Monday, August 10, 2009

First day of UGL

Sunday, August 9, 2009

First days at Hyper Island

Thursday the 6th and Friday the 7th of august were the first two days at Hyper Island in Stockholm. They were introduction days. We've met our co workers Micke & Sofia (and everyone else working for HI), they will be overseeing the interactive art director program for the next 45 weeks. I say co workers because there are no teachers at this course, no books, no classes, no homework, no exams and no grades. I will try to to recap what it's all about:

We received a lot of information, which will be repeated in the following few weeks with the aim that after this we will not get answers from our co-workers anymore and are only directed towards finding those answers ourselves. At Hyper Island we won't be judged and we won't receive any praise in any form. The education will be experience based and real life scenarios will be recreated as often as possible. We should regard Hyper Island not as a school – it's a job, a company we work at. We will work with real clients, we will have client meetings and a least 40 hour weeks.

There are multiple goals for this program:
  • learn how to learn
  • become problem solvers
  • become innovative entrepreneurs
  • learn about group dynamics
All of those with the most important one always upfront:
We have to be always at the cutting edge of digital communication and thinking.

The challenges we will face in order to fulfill those goals are numerous. We need to handle our expectations and forget the traditional school experience we all made. We need to repair the school damage. We need to be responsible to reflect about our doings and interact with others. We need to get our hands dirty and be as brilliant as we like, no one will stop us. Even if everything we do will have consequences for us we are encouraged to make as many mistakes as possible. And we need to be supportive to ourselves and the other participants of the course. It will be a lot about leaving our comfort zone and experimenting. Hyper Island is a laboratory that we will get access to, we will receive all necessary tools but it's up to us what we make of it.

The rest of the days were about introducing ourselves to the group with a presentation about who we are as persons. It was quite captivating to hear everyone's story – the group consists of some great characters which will make for a very exciting year.

It was all pretty mind blowing and those guys mean business. In order to prepare for all this, on Monday we will start our 5 day UGL course (Understanding Group and Leader). It will be an intensive program all about insight into group dynamics, conflicts, feedback, leadership and personal growth. Read more about it here.

We were told that we won't have time for anything else for the next 5-7 days as we'll be spending every waking moment within our UGL groups. So I'm off to bed and will begin the Hyper adventure in a couple of hours. This is so fucking exciting!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Starting in Stockholm

All was packed and my room was empty by Monday. I took the plane to Arlanda in Stockholm and left my London life behind for now. I still don't realize that I went to a rather random place, Sweden that is. Stockholm is treating me well so far. The summer that didn't really kick in in England is warm and sunny over here. I got a cheap motel to stay the first few days and to fulfill the unofficial first Hyper Island module – finding a flat in Stockholm. And it's a huge mission. Everyone seems to be after a home here, and there are hardly any offers, so I'm still looking for a place to settle for the next 10 months.

I had the pleasure to meet quite a few Hyper students already and they couldn't be more diversified. It seems people came from all corners of the earth to learn the trade of interactive art direction here at Hyper Island. Norway, Lebanon, the United States, Germany, Italy, Spain, Scotland, Denmark you name it, they have it.

Up to now it's been super exciting and I cannot wait as tomorrow, finally, is the first day of the course at Hyper Island.

The city is very beautiful with a lot of water surrounding it

Most of the time we're checking the websites for new flat offers, refresh, refresh, refresh

A bunch of students are renting a house near the city called the 'Hyper Mansion', a great place for parties

Friday, July 31, 2009

Dan & Amber on advertising

Dan & Amber a creative team at Y&R London gave an in depth interview for Careerplayer about their job as a creative team in advertising. It's very interesting, especially if you want to know what this job is all about. Check it out here.

Found on Biscuit Barrel

Counting the days

Since I'm leaving London on Monday to work for IKEA we had a little Swedish farewell party last Friday which was awesome! Cheers.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Best of Bucks hunt

Last Thursday my former advertising school Bucks New Uni had their annual London graduate exhibition. They had some really great books on show – a vintage year so to speak.

One of my favourite portfolios was created by Alex & Linda, two girls from Austria who have been at Bucks for three years now and just finished the course with a great collection of work. They have a very interesting selection with many packaging and product innovations and a huge range of media.This print campaign that had me laughing at the show was done by Matt & Matt for Gillete, here are two of the posters.
Have a look at the Bucks hunt website to see all creative teams and their work, there are way more goodies in there. Like Sarah & Laura, Sam & Kieran, Fiona & Sarah and many more.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Gif photography

Jamie Martinez is a mexican photographer that makes awesome animated photos. Sehr cool.

Monday, July 20, 2009

My sister Anna is half way through her fashion design studies in Hamburg. In order to get an internship in a fashion department she assembled her first portfolio website. Enjoy her drawings and see photos of a model in Anna's first spring/summer collection 'Forbidden Colours' on

She received first responses already, one is an internship offer at Zac Posen in NYC. Other people seem to like it too. Nice.