viaJustine: A Collaboration Across Worlds

Helping businesses create a website that they are proud of is an extremely rewarding experience. Elevating a product or service with a website is a nearly essential part of owning a business in today’s economy. That’s why we were extremely excited when we had the opportunity to partner with Justine Shapiro, former host of the show GlobeTrekker and Academy Award Nominee.

Justine had recently begun showcasing pieces that she had brought back from her travels around the world in small sidewalk sales. Doing this helped her get to know the people in her community by attracting people to come talk, while also opening up discourse about the various communities where the pieces originated, and the skilled artists who created them. Hoping to increase visibility of the event, we helped her create viaJustine, a small site with exhibit dates, as well as a gallery and history of the pieces on display.

One of the greatest challenges of working with Justine came from the intersection of our experiences. Justine has years of experience working in film and television and is well versed in the world of art. On the opposite end, we at Geekbears have much more experience in web and technical terms. Finding a middle ground would be crucial to creating something that Justine would love, and that functioned how we needed it to.

By taking the time to meet frequently with Justine in person to discuss not only the website but to see the pieces in person, we were able to gain a deeper appreciation for them. It inspired our design and color palette to match the earthy, warmer, and more tactile fabrics that many of the pieces had. We listened to the amazing travel stories that Justine told us, and worked with her to find a font style that worked to reflect the spirit of travel. At the end of the day, treating the website as not just another project but something that we understood and loved helped viaJustine to be one of our favorite projects yet.

Check out the beautiful pieces Justine shows off every month in Berkeley at!

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