16 December 21 -

Super8: Eight intriguing articles from December.

The end of this year feels like we’re coming full circle. And we can’t help but reflect on the curation Super8 by Zoe Warne at the same time last year. Back then the theme was Compassion, and boy, did we need it. After another year enduring such a challenging collective experience, this year it felt right to make it about Reflection; both on the year that was (and what we thought it would be) and, what the future may bring.

While it’s often a sprint to the finish, this year feels different. Not so much a sprint and more like a Hail Mary half-court shot to get us to the end of 2021. Once it’s left your fingers, the flight path is determined, so this final selection for 2021 helps guide your technique, straighten up and fly right – graceful, determined, and right on target into 2022 and beyond.

1. The story of Adidas’ D Rose Jump Store.

  • Watch the video here.
  • Article by: The Drum.
  • Contributed by: Claire Grainger.

The question: how do you turn a basketball superstar into an urban icon in a place where he’s known as just another American?

The answer: you grab a pair of sneakers, 10 feet of air, and 24 seconds.

The result: an unheard generation turned into poster icons by one of the largest brands in the world.

This is a great story of knowing your audience, researching, and understanding them deeply, reflecting on what’s important to them, then creating a piece of work that resonates with them.

2. The inner lives of dogs: what our canine friends really think about love, lust and laughter.

Learn from a zoologist, evolutionary anthropologist and dog neuroscientist on what our (animal) best friends really think of us.

“Attuning ourselves to the desires of another species has a profound impact on our own cognition”, according to philosopher Donna Haraway.

This piece reminds us that our furry friends may know us better than we think and that we have much to learn from them as well.

3. Looking inward to see outward: the 4 keys to personal growth.

Looking back on the year (and forward to the next), this article helps us to think about the different ways we can show up in our leadership and personal development.

Providing guidance as to how we can uncover our passion and how we can embrace the spirit of continuous learning, this piece is filled with tips and tricks to help set us up for future success.

With the new year almost upon us, it serves as a welcome reminder that a small dose of introspection can go a long way in working towards our best self during the year ahead.

4. The busier you are, the more you need quiet time.

  • Read the full article here. 
  • Article by: Justin Talbot Zorn and Leigh Marz.
  • Contributed by: Rachel Antoniadou.

The proverbial saying ‘silence is golden’ is used to articulate that it can sometimes be better to remain silent than to speak—but if you lead a busy life, the saying takes on new meaning.

Recent studies show that taking time for silence restores the nervous system, sustains energy, and conditions our minds. But silence isn’t just eliminating office chats or Twitter threads.

Real, sustained silence facilitates clear and creative thinking and quiets our inner chatter as well as outer. As the world gets louder, we must make time for quiet. This piece offers a few practical ways to do so.

5. How to rest well.

For some, resting does not come easily. But downtime is one of the most critical skills we can hope to master.

Have you ever laid down on the grass under the shade of a tree on a warm summer’s day and simply done nothing? Did you feel at ease? Or as though you’d wasted precious time? The art of idleness is not lazy. In fact, it’s inspiring us to become more creative, productive, and happier. It’s never too late to take a break, even if it’s just for one day.

This article serves as a lovely reset, with some helpful tips on treating rest as a skill to learn—not just as a way to lie there and look at the clouds.

6. Adaptive, accessible and automated colour for Design Systems.

Part of our reflection this year has involved a deep consideration for making the world (and in our case, the digital world) more accessible for everyone.

This is one that we thought you might find interesting, an algorithm for mapping accessible colours—this fascinating read provides insight into a whole new world that we must absolutely understand and design for in order to create the future we want to see (literally).

7. The musical time machine.

For some of us, reflection often involves music of some shape or form; as if it is a soundtrack to our thoughts.

Imagine being able to listen to music from any specific country, at any specific timeframe, just by browsing a world map and a timeline. Fancy some 1950s Oklahoma honky-tonk? Or how about Indian folk music from the 1920s? Or maybe, you’re feeling nostalgic from a trip you took in the 80s to SoHo.

You’ll be eternally surprised and delighted by the discoveries you make on Radioooo.

8. The 36 Best (Old) Books We Read in 2021.

Sometimes our most profound insights and discoveries come from re-examining things from a different angle. The new information and life experience you didn’t have at the time you first looked at it can mean you see things through an entirely new lens.

The same can be said for books—a tool many of us use for reflection and self-improvement.

Here is a list of purposefully chosen (not new) books. They are non-2021 books, lovingly re-discovered during the course of 2021 for your own re-discovering pleasure.

Books can be “revisited, loaned out, traded, forgotten and found. They can have strange, long lives.”—May you also have the same kind of life as we enter this new year.