If the quality of the design surrounding an F1 team was a key variable to the performance of the car; Marussia Virgin Racing would be winning races. Visit the POKE portfolio for more info.
12th Apr '11
In the article Culture Club, Andy Polaine combines his excessive agency experience with his curiosity to what makes some of these agency a success and other... less so. The initial insight is that it's not down to a process — many agencies have a same process and that it's rarely unique. No, the assets that seems to set them apart is; a great company culture. It's lovely to see that Andy mentions POKE as an example. I had the pleasure to work at POKE for nearly 5 years, and during all those years I did have loads of fun as well as given the chance and opportunity to do good challenging work. The quote below is polled from the article, and I think it highlights one important piece in the puzzle — diversity in personalities. Simon Waterfall, ex- co-founder and creative director of Poke and founder of fashion label, Social Suicide, previously explained that Poke made a particular effort to choose its mix of staff. “You never want to have three people the same, because they can all do the same thing,” he advised. “When you see something that you can do, there are only two responses. One is, ‘Ooh! That’s better than I can do [it],’ or ‘Oh, that’s worse than I can do it’. When you see something in a completely new field by someone else, something in you goes back to that childhood experience of, ‘F**k me! How did you make that?!’ You’re allowed to be generous of spirit, you’re allowed to have that wonderment. Choosing the most diverse group so that they don’t step on each other’s toes and [...]
11th Apr '11
Culture Club is an interesting article by Andy Polaine. In the article Andy mentions POKE as an example of an agency who have managed to create a great company culture. I concur.
“You never want to have three people the same, because they can all do the same thing,” he [Simon Waterfall] advised. “When you see something that you can do, there are only two responses. One is, ‘Ooh! That’s better than I can do [it],’ or ‘Oh, that’s worse than I can do it’. When you see something in a completely new field by someone else, something in you goes back to that childhood experience of, ‘F**k me! How did you make that?!’ You’re allowed to be generous of spirit, you’re allowed to have that wonderment. Choosing the most diverse group so that they don’t step on each other’s toes and have enough goodwill to be able to work together – that’s great.”
17th Feb '11
On the 11 of February the world lost a visionary — fashion designer Lee Alexander McQueen. Truly truly sad. We are in need of more people like Mr McQueen, not less. I had a pleasure to work for him while being part of the small team at POKE who designed and build the previous incarnation of www.alexandermcqueen.com. The project ended up winning several awards, including a BAFTA for best design. I like to believe that the magic ingredients in the project was that we adopted his extreme attention to details. To me Lee Alexander McQueen was a source of inspiration. Someone who made his own path. Paved his own road. Took no shortcuts. He also managed to find a healthy balance of being both artist and designer. Which, sadly, isn't the easiest thing to pull off.
7th Mar '10
One of my last projects at POKE was to design and build a tiny page for Motorola. The website ended up being quite a bit smaller, quite a bit different and took quite a bit longer to finish than initially planned. This is the kind of thing that might happen when dealing with large bureaucratic companies across the atlantic. However, the most important ingredient in this creative execution wasn't the website though. var myQTObject = new QTObject("http://www.nuzzaci.co.uk/wp/wp-content/uploads/2008/07/david-elsewhere-modeshift.jpg", "poem", "470", "368");myQTObject.addParam("href", "http://www.nuzzaci.co.uk/wp/wp-content/uploads/2008/07/david-elsewhere-modeshift.mov");myQTObject.addParam("target", "myself");myQTObject.write(); from the POKE website:
To demonstrate the features of the new Motorola E8, Poke enlisted the help of legendary mover David Elsewhere (to call him a dancer doesn't really describe the half of it). We worked with Motorola to find a way that could combine content and product demo in a fresh way. Maybe even making it interesting enough that people might talk about (and distribute) a product demo...And yes (before you ask); David Elsewhere has been used/seen in advertising before. Most famously the VW Golf remake on Gene Kelly's Singin' in the Rain dance. But browse youtube and you will find quite a few more. To have a look at the website and the other four new videos of David Elsewhere visit: http://direct.motorola.com/hellomoto/rokre8/experience/
23rd Jul '08
Friday two weeks ago, 4th of July, was my 1727 day, and last, at POKE. For the day I made a special t-shirt to mark the occasion. A t-shirt listing the time elapsed since I joined in different formats. From top to bottom: 149212800 seconds, 2486880 minutes, 41448 hours, 1727 days, 246 weeks, 56.57 months and 4.71 years.
18th Jul '08
After 5 years in London. I'm leaving. I'm leaving POKE. I'm leaving London. I'm leaving England. I'm not leaving Europe, though. Willow and I have had thoughts for quite some time about "going somewhere else for a while". I, being half Swedish half Italian; living in England, have had the fortune of working and living in an unfamiliar culture and therefor find a lot of insight and enjoyment in the smaller things. Willow, on the other hand, is half English half American living and working in England. When we've discussed about potential destinations we have loosely talked about New York, San Francisco, Vancouver, Oslo, Zürich and Genéve. The tricky bit has been work and languages. I speak three languages (Swedish, Italian and English) and Willow speaks two (English and French). We agreed that for both of us to learn a new language would be too much of an undertaking. I think the strongest contender was Vancouver. But then I suggested Willow should apply to a masters at Konstfack in Stockholm, Sweden... and she got in! The program, titled Experience Design, is a interdisciplinary course over two years. Sounds amazing and i'm jealous. So, in August, Willow and I are moving to Stockholm. We still haven't found a place to stay. So anything is of interest. We are probably looking for something in the outskirts, but that's cycling distance to Sodermalm. Preferable a part of a villa with a garden for the cat and parking for the car we are planning to buy and drive over. I am also in need of a job. So again, [...]
16th Jun '08
I'm personally not involved in this one, but many of my friends and co-workers are working their asses off to make this project happen. The lead flash developer on the project, Derek 'Dezza' McKenna, told me at lunch time that this will be the last ever project where he incorporates a countdown on the pre-launch website - a countdown that simultaneously reminds him every time he looks at the site how the deadline is creeping closer and closer and closer.... tick tock tick tock. playballoonacy.com will be special.
3rd Jun '08
27th Apr '08
10th Dec '07
For the 4th year running, POKE will have a stall at the V&A Village Fete. It's always tons of fun, so I suggest you all cancel whatever plans you might have for Friday the 27th and Saturday the 28th of July and come on down!
V&A and Scarlet Projects present Village Fete, the contemporary take on the traditional English fete. Over 30 of the most inventive and dynamic creative individuals working in the UK today come together to create an extraordinary array of stalls offering games to play and products to win.more info at the V&A website
20th Jul '07
Yesterday we atPOKE launched a new project. That, in it self, might not be a blog-worthy piece of news, but this little project includes a GPS device, four web-cams, a field divided into 80 zones, a bull called Derek, some Glastonbury tickets, a tiny sign-up form with an absolutely brilliant cognitive test and a Uniform Resource Locator:www.orange.co.uk/spotthebull/.
22nd May '07
As a christmas present from POKE this year, Simon Ridgwell and I received a Ferrari Experience from Red Letter Days. People who know me know that I'm not only a huge fan of the Scuderia Ferrari (Formula 1 Team), I'm also a huge fan of the the main sponsor of the team: their amazing road cars, and that this present is realistically the closest anyone could get to giving me the perfect present without spending about Â£100000 (which would be overwhelming, but I wouldn't turn it down). It was something special. As the title implies, I lost my license two days before I was scheduled for my mighty experience. I didn't lose it on a traffic related incident, rather in a weird "Disappeared Along With My Wallet and Mobile Phone From My Fat While I Was At Home" incident... it is still not resolved (and probably never will). It looks like someone just walked in through the front door and picked them up from the table and left. When I realised that the wallet was nowhere to be found, I got a cold-sweat whether or not I would be allowed to drive with no physical driving license, just a photocopy of the passport and driving license I sent to the Smile bank when I applied for an account. It turned out that the people at Donington Park were very relaxed (and understanding) over the fact that I just had a black-and-white copy of my driving license. Getting there Since it was a bit of a special day, and since Simon Ridgwell is a proud member of Classic Car Club, he decided to go there in style. We left from Hammersmith at 6.30 and arrived [...]
11th May '07
Creative Review have done a small piece on the new POKE office. I'm very pleased that my Swedish clogs made it in there. more photo and the article can be found here
5th Apr '07
This past weekend, the entire company of POKE went on a city break together. Third year running, this little "company get away" has become a nice little tradition. First year we (then 12) went to Tuscany in Italy, last year we (then 28) went to Sussex in England and this year we (40) went to Llangadog in Wales (just west of Brecon Beacons National Park). I don't want to compare them to each other, since they have less incommon than common. What they do have in common, though, is that they are a bucket full of fun. Here are some links Emma Beddard's Flickr set Marc Davie's Flickr set Nick Farnhill's Flickr set Igor Clark's Flickr set Tom Hostler's Flickr set John Zachau's Flickr Laura Green's Flickr set Asi Sharabi's Flickr Iain Tait's video capture of The 'Gor Dance
26th Mar '07
The last of the three monster projects I was involved in during 2006, has been launched, so I thought I would present all three under the same post. So in chronological order: topshop.com A huge e-commerce website. POKE designed and built the html templates that then was incorporated into a huge system build by IBM that goes under the name 'webasphere'. The difficulties were to get the web page to feel fresh and still keep within all the heavy restrictions the system came with. Read more about the website at Tom Hostler's blog bbcgoodfood.com A website for an already existing magazine. This was a very intense project with almost no speed bumps along the road. All wireframes had been done. All content existed. Read more about the website at Tom Hostler's blog travel.dk.com Last but not least. A web site for the travel books published by Dorling Kindersley (DK). Aside from the normal travel website stuff - browsing your chosen destination and viewing/reading about attractions - you can create your own attractions, print, download and share your own compilation or personalised travel guide. This website is massive and includes a lot of good features. So, visit it, sign up and explore. Read more about the website at Tom Hostler's blog
16th Feb '07
So, we are now a few weeks into 2007 and it's about time to look back at 2006 and see what actually happened. Since I have had this digital online journal for almost a year (1st of May), 80% of what I'm mentioning here have already been documented earlier. 2006 for me started with coming back from San Francisco (where I had celebrated Christmas (in Lake Tahoe) and New Years (San Francisco) with my girlfriend Willow and her family) and began moving in with Willow to her flat. During 2006 we had done quite a few improvements to this flat. First we extended the loft so the bedroom got a bit bigger, then we changed the flooring and built a loft bed in one of the bedrooms. But 2006 has just been the beginning... If everything goes as planed, during 2007 I will tell you all about the new kitchen, the new bathroom and the new staircase up to the loft. Â Work I don't talk much about work on this journal. And that's not because I don't do any work or that nothing exiting happens at work. No, the main reasons is when i'm not working, and sitting by the computer, I prefer not to talk, reflect or spend time on work related stuff. I have been at POKE for over three years now, and during these three years a lot has happened e.g. we have grown 462.5% in size, changed offices twice, rolled out a lot of really nice work and won more awards than I can remember. So, as a big reward for our great achievements, about a month ago, we moved into 10000 sq. ft. of dedicated private space. So 2007 surely kicks off big. It's a bit of a [...]
16th Jan '07
Since the beginning of this week we [POKE] no longer live at the third floor of Biscuit Building - we have moved from a shared space on the 3rd floor to 10000 sq. ft. of dedicated private space on the 4th. And... it's wÃ¼nderbart! You can find some photos of the new space at Tom Hostler's flickr photoset named Poke 3.0. My old desk-mate Dom Goodrum have also uploaded some photos onto his flickr account (yeah, that's me in action and my beard looks fake!) AND Yesterday, the 6th of December, on the very same week we moved upstairs, POKE turns 5 years old!!
7th Dec '06
Globalrichlist.com is an award winning website that POKE did back in 2002, 2003 (or something), that has this week (again) made it into the spotlight. Iain mentioned the webs 'coming back to life' phenomena a few days ago in his post titled Tea for 2.0, where he talks about another POKE project, Teabuddy. Thatâ€™s one of the things I love about online. Things can just live on forever, getting discovered by new audiences up to years after they originally launched. This monday (13th november), Global Rich List made it to the top of Digg.com, with the post 'I am the 447,241,380 richest person in the world!, and later on in the week it's number two on the 'biggest diggs of the week list'. What is Digg? Digg is a user driven social content website. Ok, so what the heck does that mean? Well, everything on digg is submitted by the digg user community (that would be you). After you submit content, other digg users read your submission and digg what they like best. If your story rocks and receives enough diggs, it is promoted to the front page for the millions of digg visitors to see. What's interesting is not the fact that Global Rich List is a good, simple and interesting webpage. What's interesting is not the fact that if you get high up on Digg you get loads of traffic. What's interesting is how a good, simple and interesting page such as Global Rich List get used by the users of Digg. Thousands and thousands of Digg users have visited Global Rich List during the last few days, and none (so far) have [...]
17th Nov '06
above photo of Willow and me was talken by Iain Tait, and stolen from his flickr page Last night we (POKE) held another Clubpub party. This time the theme was 'back to basics (again)', and held at a pub called 'At the Horse and Groom' in east London. As always, it was a brilliant night. Judging from the photo below, Willow, Gustav and I probably left the party a bit to soon. From left to right, Johan Blid, Igor Clark (with tape hat), Kate Theakston (head banging), Cookie (sweaty guy with an impressive mustache) (photo by Dominic Goodrum)
16th Nov '06
We (POKE) kept the throne from last year, and are once again rated as the number one digital agancy by Revolution Magazine.
13th Jul '06