Thursday, December 20, 2007

Hyper Island students launch Facebook application

On the 17th of December five students from Hyper Island, Karlskrona, launched a competition on Facebook. The application is called Top The Tune and it challenges the public to send in interpretations of classic entries from the Swedish Eurovision Song Contest. Both video- and photo entries are accepted and the users can submit their interpretations by sending an MMS or via the application's file uploader.

The Top The Tune player
The Swedish Facebook campaign is an initiative from the Melodifestivalen 2008 Karlskrona marketing group. They requested a smart and new thinking web solution with user generated content.

The Top The Tune application
The thematic challenges are running in two week-long cycles and there are brand new iPod Nanos up for grabs! The first competition cycle runs between Monday Dec 17 and Saturday Dec 29 2007, the theme for the first round is "Melodifestivalen 2006". It is the users of Top The Tune who elect the winner by rating 'thumbs up' or 'thumbs down' - the most popular entry wins.

The application users can comment and discuss the entries on the Top The Tune Facebook page, it is also here that new announcements, events and prizes will be posted.

The Top The Tune page on Facebook.

Add Top The Tune to your profile and submit your entry today!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Christmas decoration time at Hyper Island

On the schedule: Drinking glögg and taking a few bold steps into the world of marzipan design. The Digital Media and Interactive Art Director programs in Stockholm got together to anticipate the upcoming Christmas festivities creating some marzipan figures. They were helped along the way by two representatives from Dekorera Mera - professionals in cake design!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

LA, SF, NYC and London - here we come!

For the first time Hyper Island will perform a recruitment tour outside Sweden. Starting point for the tour is Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York and London. Together with students, some of the Hyper Island staff will tour four world cities in order to meet up with creative people that are interested in becoming Hyper Island students for the fall 2008.

Hyper Island will run the Digital Media program in Karlskrona and the Interactive Art Director program in Stockholm with an international touch. This means that the two programs are open for English speaking people as private paying students.

Dates for the recruitment tour are:

Los Angeles 5th-6th of January
San Francisco 12th-13th of January
New York 26-27th of January
London 2nd-3rd of February

In order to take part in the recruitment tour you have to apply (see how to apply below) to participate in a recruitment day. A recruitment day consists of:

- A personal interview.
- Informal meetings with Hyper Island students and staff.
- An individual creative task.
- A team assignment.

Participation in a recruitment day takes about 10 hours.

How to apply?
If you want to participate in one recruitment day during the recruitment tour you have to send an email to providing Hyper Island with the following information:
1. Full name
2. Address (street and number, zip code, city, country)
3. Phonenumber
4. Email address
5. Date of birth (YYYY-MM-DD)
6. Previous education
7. Choosen city for the recruitment tour (LA, NYC, SF or London)
8. Which day of the recruitment days you apply to take part in
9. URL to your portfolio
10. A personal letter (Maximum one A4 paper)

A pre-condition of having the chance to get admitted to a recruitment day is that you together with your application provide Hyper Island with a URL to your digital portfolio and a personal letter - who you are and why you wish to become a student at Hyper Island.

The personal letter should be attached with your email as a PDF document.

If you get admitted to a recruitment day, an email with more specific information regarding the process and structure of the recruitement day will be sent out to you.

For more detailed information about the specific programs and the conditions of being a private paying student see Digital Media Program Karlskrona and Interactive Art Director Program Stockholm.

Friday, December 14, 2007

London calling: Students wanted

Mattias Hansson, CEO of Hyper Island, with digital guru and organizer Phil Jones at the Digital Podge lunch, the London Arts Club.

London calling: Students wanted

The last few weeks Hyper Island CEO Mattias Hansson has attended two events in London, mainly to keep up the good relations Hyper Island has in the international digital business arena.

Mattias talked about the education of and need for new digital talent on the CLICK 07 conference, arranged by magazine Creative Review. Afterwards there was a queue of people from the world's best agencies, wanting to know how to attract students from Hyper Island. We said as we use to in these situations: "Please come and lecture and share your experiences, and maybe some student will want to spend his or her internship period with you".

The very same queue, only different people and companies, appeared at the exclusive Digital Podge lunch where some of the world's best creative directors gathered at the London Art's Club on 40 Dover Street.

Many of the companies at these two events clearly said that they are dying to get Hyper Island students for internships and showed interest in finding deeper cooperation with the "education revolution" from Sweden. Some of the companies attending were:

(CLICK 07):
Crispin Porter + Bogusky, GT Tokyo, Black Magic Marker, Lowe Brindfors, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, Saatchi & Saatchi Interactive, Arc Worldwide & Leo Burnett Ltd, Isobar, Zulu, Wieden + Kennedy, EURO RSCG 4D Digital, Ogilvy One Worldwide, R/GA London and Agency Republic.

(Digital Podge 2007):
Third Eye Design, Acknowledgement, Diesel, Reading Room, Work Club, Brand Union, Åkestam.Holst, Beattie McGuinness Bungay, Bright Digital, Chinwag, COI Digital Team, Creative Social, Free Spirit, Agency Republic, Carnyx Group, Harvest Digital, New Media Age, Proximity London, RMM, Start Creative, VCCP, Virgin Games, Twenty Six

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

William Hall at Hyper Island

William Hall worked with the Digital Media students in Karlskrona on the Visual Communication module. Here is his account of the process:

Having explained my ten rules of typography (the list is below, but the details remain a closely guarded secret of Karlskrona students), I talked a little about my own work, which you can view at

Our projects include corporate identity, website design, and restaurant graphics, but we mostly work on book design. Our book projects include a catalogue for Calvin Klein, a cookbook for Italian chef Giorgio Locatelli, and catalogues for artists such as Robert Ryman, Michael Landy, and Barbara Hepworth.

The Design Process
When we design a book the initial layout is presented to the client in the form of a 'blad' (an acronym for Book Layout And Design), and this is what I asked the students to present. A blad is usually an 8 or 12 page booklet designed to give as clear a picture of the final book as possible.

The blad shows the proposed size, paper, layout, typography, and the treatment of images. We demonstrate how different types of page will look, such as a chapter opener, or a main text page. This is usually accompanied by a book dummy which is the correct size and has the correct paper and number of pages, but is totally blank. (see below the hand made blad for Giorgio Locatelli, the dummy, and the finished book)

The blad is used to discuss the design and possible alterations before the entire book is laid out. It is often also used to take to a book fair (usually Frankfurt) where publishers show book stockists and other trade buyers their forthcoming books.

We would usually have 2 or 3 weeks for this process. Hyper Island students had less than a day, which makes their contributions all the more impressive.

Hyper Island Book Project
The brief was to design a layout for a bilingual architectural book featuring either Andrea Palladio, Le Corbusier, John Pawson, or Zaha Hadid.
The page size had to be 12 x 17cm, and I asked for two spreads, and a cover if time permitted. I wanted the students to interpret the work of their chosen architect and communicate this in a direct or indirect way as they saw fit.

The students were asked to present and defend their work in front of the class, using a webcam to show their printed blads. The results were incredibly varied.

Although most used western alphabets, Arabic, Japanese, and Cyrillic were also used, providing their own technical and interpretative issues. As each design was unveiled we discussed its various merits and drawbacks, and sometimes even the work of the architects: 'I actually hate everything about this architect...' said one.

Shortlisted designs
Amongst the most successful work were Stephanie Lindgren's John Pawson, which used much white space and a short rule to give the book an identity and a strong framework, and Rebecca Berg-Olsson's design for the same architect. Berg-Olsson cleverly started her English and Japanese texts from opposite ends of the book, subverting notional protocols of book design. Andreas Fernhede Dagman's design for Le Corbusier had clean lines and a strong typographic cover.

Johannes Mathisson chose Zaha Hadid and set the companion language in Russian. Responding to Hadid's angular, sculptural constructions, the design uses confident diagonal paragraphs to create a fresh, dynamic and useable layout.

Claes Källarsson broke one of the rules of the brief - as he had been encouraged to do - and chose an architect not listed in the American deconstructivist Frank Gehry. Källarsson's sinuous columns echo Gehry's architecture in both a figurative and a conceptual way, and the two greys used to denote the different languages seem to invoke the metallic folds of Gehry's Guggenheim Museum.

Aina Cecilie Ørebech's Zaha Hadid focused on Hadid's deconstructivist credentials, literally deconstructing the text into concrete poetry and making rorschach type patterns with a monospaced utilitarian font. Perhaps the most challenging design presented, it was also one of the most successful.

In a spirit of solidarity I also answered my own brief, choosing Zaha Hadid and interweaving the two languages with double linespaced columns. Though vigourously defended this was widely panned by suddenly vociferous classmates.

William Hall, London, December 2007

William Hall's Ten Typographic Rules

1. Consider the user and use
2. Choose an appropriate font
3. Use as few fonts as possible
4. Don’t distort type
5. Make black stripes: kerning and tracking
6. Make black stripes: hyphenation and justification
7. Make black stripes: leading and baseline grid
8. Be consistent
9. Separate text and image
10. There are no rules

Monday, December 10, 2007

Hyper Island at the SACO student fair in Malmö

Business Management student Charlotte Hagefors reports on the SACO student fair in Malmö:

We were six students from Hyper Island, Karlskrona who went to the SACO student fair in Malmö the 27th of November. We were all excited, and after a fun three hours journey we arrived to Malmö and finally we found the exhibition hall.

Our place became really nice and it was full of people the whole Wednesday. We got the impression that the concept that Hyper Island is offering fell into lots of students interests. We were all of us hoarse and tired after 7 hours of constant speaking, but also proud and happy over the 580 people who signed up for a news letter.

We had one competition over one Ipod, the winner was Maniel Glyré.

Charlotte Hagefors

Friday, December 7, 2007

Q&A with Fakepilot

Flash Programmer Fakepilot, also known as Mattias Lindberg, says “Don’t rip off my work like Levi’s, Nokia and Usher did, hire me directly instead”. According to quite a few people he is considered the best flash programmer in the world, period. Together with Andreas Lindholm he runs The International Style and he was recently invited to Hyper Island to talk to the students.

What is Fakepilot's mission statement?
Fakepilot's mission? He is the universal soldier. He believes we can end war with war. Terror with terror. His mission is really too dreadful to talk about. He started a news channel called "The Free-doom channel". Watch the first episode on Youtube, maybe parts of his mission is explained there:

What do you want to do with The International Style?
Our goal at the moment is to use our communication, marketing and design skills plus ideas to make this world a little better place to live in. That's what we have been working for all year long and we will do it as long as we can afford it. Now and then – we might work with some other projects for hand picked clients. Help them and their messages for a while. Our goal would be economic comfort and creative freedom.

Where do you think the industry is going in the future?
The Internet has only started to show it's true potential. I believe Internet will become a digital free market and that television will be free from "puppet master claws" as well. Internet is today the only free medium, by that I mean – it's the only place where you can upload videos for others to watch, you can start blogs and write anything you want without getting censured – in contrary with all other big medias of today. Paper form or television. They are all controlled by the power elite, most of them are neo-conservatives. They earn money on war and want to keep people stupid and poor. They don't say that themselves, but their actions speak louder than words. Take that with a pinch of salt. Internet is actually my hope for humanity.

Practically, as the bandwidth expands – this would mean more video and more companies that makes services which benefit each and every one of us. The design industry will keep on moving along, changing trends, like fashion...

What kind of advice did you give to the Hyper Island students?

One advice was to set your goals above the stars. Only then it's possible to become one. I also tried to explain how important it's been for me, to see every person you meet as an opportunity. You can never know where your "loser friend" will be in 5 or 10 years. Every meeting is an opportunity to succeed. It might be a future acquaintance that later tells his boss about you and want to hire you. It might be a new friend. A new colleague or simply – not an enemy. Many people only respects people who accomplished something. That's the wrong way to go. You should get respect by seeing anyone, then they might remember you as admirable. A positive social circle. Contacts is everything. Even more important than skills.

What the Fakepilot in action:

Sebastian Suarez-Golborne

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Lecture spotlight: William Hall

Karlskrona Digital Media student Johannes Mathisson writes about a typography lecture:

One of the most interesting lectures we've had so far during this module has been the one about typography with William Hall. During my studies at Sörängens Folkhögskola I did quite a lot of page layouts. The name of the course was "Linje för skrivande och grafisk formgivning" (Course in writing and graphical design) so it contained a fair amount of typography theory and exercises. I found those lessons very interesting back then. Sorry to say I haven't been doing any "copywriting" since and that's why I found William Halls lecture so giving and inspiring. This reintroduction to typography acted like a small kick start for me to regain the motivation I lost during the Concept and Development module.

Just like many other lecturers, William Hall had a task for us. We were to layout to bilingual spreads using only typography as means of design. No images or other graphical elements were allowed. He also announced a competition were the winner got some rare art books he brought from England. I was quite surprised when he nominated my layout as one of the top 5. After a vote I won the second price, maybe because two of my fellow nominated classmates had left earlier leaving only two to compete with. First price went to Claes Källarsson while Aina Cecilie Ørebech got the third price.

The task was to choose an architect and try to convey his or her style with the layout. I choose Zaha Hadid because I was really inspired by her diagonal shapes. I tried to capture that feeling be using diagonal spacings between the columns on the pages. The angle of the diagonal isn't very big so the text remains easy to read. Although it's difficult to make out in these thumbs I choose english and russian as my two languages. My choice of fonts was Garamond for all text and headers while I used Book Antiqua for the running header.

Johannes Mathisson

Below some works from Johannes Mathisson, Aina Cecilie Ørebech and Claes Källarsson: