04 May Geelong-based design studio – The Zephyr Lab
On site and uncut with WILL & KATE STEVENSON of THE ZEPHYR LAB
Will and Kate Stevenson are the creative masterminds and joint tour de force behind Geelong-based website and design company, The Zephyr Lab.
Q – What’s in a name? First thing that comes to mind is the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ The Zephyr Song?
Will – Naming things is always difficult. We do a fair bit of design work alongside our website work, so we didn’t want our name to be too specific to only web design, allowing us to branch out as the business grows. Zephyr is a nice-looking word and something that we felt would stay with people, so it started there. No relation to the song.
Q – So, what ARE you listening to?
Will – Tender Buttons – Broadcast.
Kate – Smoke Ring for My Halo – Kurt Vile.
Q – And reading?
Will – The last book I read was The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. I’ve also been reading some old Astro Boy comics, which I think are great. I’m finding it more and more difficult to make time for reading. I need to switch to audiobooks.
Kate – I’m currently reading The 5 Love Languages of Children by Gary Chapman and Ross Campbell. It’s helping me navigate through the toddler years with our little one.
Q – And watching?
A – We recently finished The People v. O. J. Simpson: American Crime Story, and are looking forward to the new Twin Peaks airing in May.
Q – We’re betting the bent for web design – and design in general – carries over into other areas of your lives?
Kate – Definitely! We have spent the last seven years renovating our family home; and our interest in design in general has played a huge role in designing and planning our home and the way it looks and functions. Also, I think our design ethos for the business is something we inject into our everyday life and our home, which has always been clean, minimalist, functional and unique. I can see all of those qualities in our house and the way that we live day to day.
Q – What keeps the creativity flowing? What inspires you?
Will – Seeing the creative works of others. I’m always envious when I see people making something cool; it makes me want to make things.
Kate – Nature always inspires me. If I’m feeling a bit flat, nothing beats a day at the beach or an adventure into the Otways. Travel is also a great way to broaden your perspective on things and get the creativity flowing.
Q – As web designers, what are the biggest challenges in your industry?
Will – Trying to keep up-to-date. There’s no end to how much you could learn in this field, and it’s always changing. So keeping your knowledge base current is a lot of work.
Q – What are the greatest rewards?
A – How happy our clients are with their new website or design work, and how it can positively affect their business. Our main focus with The Zephyr Lab is to provide our services to small businesses at affordable prices to help grow the small business community in Geelong.
Q – Working full-time in the eCommerce and online profile industry, how hard is it to switch off the technology and social media buttons? And if ever you manage it, how do you do it?
Kate – Ummm…Well, I have tried to implement one work-free day per week, where we put the auto-response on emails and just have a family day. But lately that hasn’t been happening as we have just been too busy with work to allow switching off for a whole day. We are weeks away from becoming a family of four, so some family time will be a priority again when that time comes.
Q – What do you love about where you live? Why Geelong?
Kate – The small-town vibe and community feel. Everyone knows everyone; people love to support local small business; how close we are to so many beautiful beaches; and, most importantly, our family and friends.
Q – When friends visit from Melbourne, interstate or overseas, where on the Surf Coast, or more locally, do you like to take them, and why?
Kate – If the weather is good, then always the beach! Our favourites are Barwon Heads Bridge, as its perfect for the kids, and Point Roadnight in Anglesea. I have lots of fond memories of those two places from going there so much as a kid, so it’s lovely to share those places with others. There’s also a bunch of amazing restaurants in Geelong, so we love going out for dinner with friends.
Q – Finally, the all-important question: do you think the Cats can go the distance in September?
Will – Oh man, I hope so! 5–0 is a great start.
Thanks so much for your time, Zephyr Lab. And good vibrations all round to you both – Will and Kate – for an exciting, fun-filled, no-holds-barred rest of the year ahead.
Oh, and OK…so you know it already, but worth the repeat, Zephyr Lab – My Surf Coast Life & Co really love your style!
Looking for inspiration? Follow the The Zephyr Lab on Instagram.