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Maribeth Rayfield | 01.10.19

2018 Year in Review

As a new year begins, we’re grateful for the opportunities that have been presented over the past year—and excited by those that are yet to come.

We set out several years ago to build a company whose overarching purpose was to be more focused and intentional in the work we do—and at the same time improve the lives of both our clients and ourselves. If we measure 2018 against that original mission, I’d say we’re succeeding. Working alongside this talented crew and learning (literally every day) from them has been the greatest gift. 2018 marked a year of reinvestment and renewal.

We’re ready—bring it on, 2019.

2018 marked a year of reinvestment and renewal.
We’re ready—bring it on, 2019.

Tuesdays—each and every one

Fueled by inspiration from the Maker movement, we launched a creative challenge for 2018: to post a piece of original artwork in the form of our studio icon. Each Tuesday, we posted a uniquely created “Adjacent A” on Instagram. While we intended for these to be quick, spontaneous explorations, our imaginations would occasionally get the best of us, resulting in some executions that required a bit more planning (and in rare cases, culinary skills)! The benefits of this exercise were immeasurable, not the least of which was creating content on a weekly basis for our previously sparse social channels. Facing “the blank page” on a regular basis throughout the year forced us to think differently and strengthened our collective creative muscle.

Facing “the blank page” on a regular basis throughout the year forced us to think differently and strengthened our collective creative muscle.

Adjacent a’s in 2018

Six years and counting

Adjacent celebrated six years in April, and we’re ever grateful to all of our clients, partners, and friends for placing their trust in us, and cheering us on in the early days. We can’t wait to see what the next six hold!

Doubling Down

In July, we were thrilled to elevate Dan Rose and Tom McCaffery to partners in the studio. Their collective talent and individual contributions to the team have made a significant impact. Their addition has rounded out our offering as a studio, and solidly positioned us as an emerging leader in the design systems space.

Dan brings to us his boundless enthusiasm as well as a wealth of creative, UI, and design experience. He’s the champion of our ever-evolving design process, social coordinator extraordinaire, design conference pioneer, and tireless collaborator.

Tom brings to us his unmatched technical knowledge and extraordinary problem-solving abilities. His knack for distilling complex functionality into simple and intuitive UI is no doubt one of his greatest contributions to our team. Oh, and… he’s solidified his role as grammar police.

Shine On

Among the many studio improvements we completed last year, most notable was updating our interior lights. Frustrated for years by the building’s harsh overhead fluorescent lighting, this enhancement gets the most applause in our book. The large amount of natural light in the studio during the daytime hours—supplemented with task lighting—made it possible to tolerate the situation longer than we anticipated. Six whole years! Now that we’ve made the leap, we’re thrilled with the improvement in light quality and overall feeling of warmth in the studio. Fueled by the lighting project, we gave the whole interior a fresh coat of creamy white and our space now feels sufficiently refreshed.

In Search of Clarity

We’d talked about attending a conference together for years, and for some crazy reason decided that mid-December would be a great time to schedule this event. ; ) Kidding aside, our journey started in late August when we were thrilled to hear the announcement that Clarity, a renowned design systems conference we’d had our eye on for some time, was going to happen—and here in our own state. NYC at holiday time? We’re enthusiastically in!

An all-around great experience, most notable was the lineup of truly relevant talks and the palpable vibe of positivity within the design community. The stellar conference and the energy of NYC provided a backdrop for incredible team bonding, and memories that we’ll carry with us for years to come. We miss you, Chelsea!

Let There be Donuts

Mid-December marked another milestone for the studio. We completed and “soft-launched” our new website—quite literally from a high-top table at The Wilson on the evening before the conference. Fueled by craft cocktails, with enthusiasm abounding, we flipped the switch.

Naturally, the next morning we celebrated with donuts at Doughnut Plant. Bellies full and minds blown, we proceeded to Clarity, and continued to be inspired and exhilarated throughout the following days. Well worth the price of admission. We returned from NYC with renewed passion and creative energy, excited by the work that lies ahead in 2019, and ever grateful for the partnerships that got us here. Cheers to a new year!

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