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Office tale of Bergþóra Jónsdóttir, graphic designer

Office tale of Bergþóra Jónsdóttir, graphic designer

Published by Leonardo Calcagno

Who are you :
My name is Bergþóra, I’m a 28 year old Graphic designer from the North of Iceland. I’ve studied design in Denmark, Iceland and Austria, worked in Switzerland, and am about to move to Vancouver to do my Masters in design there. I also dabble with jewellery making and sell my stuff in Hrím, an Icelandic design shop.

Your current job :
Graphic designer at Jónsson & Le’macks, Art director at Le Pourquoi pas and a freelancer. Currently working on the third edition of Le Pourquoi pas, a paper for French speaking tourists in Iceland. The paper is donation based so all donations are welcomed! (

In which city are you located?
Currently in Reykjavík, but packing up for Canada. Just got back home from Switzerland, where I worked at an agency called Maxomedia in Bern doing both print and screen design.

A word to define what kind of worker you are :

What tools are essential to your life (app, software, etc..)
InDesign, Illustrator and Photoshop. Dropbox. Spotify for my music, Pinterest for inspiration, Notes and Calendar on the phone to organize.
I love sketchbooks and notebooks, I’ve got piles and piles of them and keep buying new ones. My friends tend to buy them for me as gifts as well. You can never have too many pens and markers either.

What does your office space look like?
Sketchbooks, pens, coffee and a few well placed objects.

What kind of music do you listen when you are working ?
Depends on which stage of the project I’m at and what time of day. Mostly electro and indie, also rock, hip-hop house etc. You can find me on Spotify!

Do you have a way to organize your day to maximize your work ?
I make a lot of to-do lists to have an overview of what needs to be done and try to prioritise stuff.

What tips would you give to improve productivity ?
Work in blocks, take little breaks in between to get a bit of distance from your work, you’ll look at it differently afterwards. Listen to good music, try to keep disturbance at minimum. Also – don’t forget to get inspiration, go to exhibitions, lectures, travel etc.

You’re better than your colleagues to :
We’re not big on comparing each others’ skills. We’re a good team.

What is the best advice anyone has given you ?
Mistakes happen, and you’ll be better for it.

What is your best tip for saving time ?
Don’t overcomplicate things and make sure you and the client are on the same page – or as close to it as possible.

What is your routine start and end of the day ?
Cup of coffee while going through emails and the latest news. Work to around 5 or so, then freelance stuff if any after that.

Aside from your computer and your phone, what gadget can you not you go ?
My headphones. A sketchbook and a pen. I’d love to get my hands on a 3-D printer.

Bergþóra Jónsdóttir