Nearly two years ago, I published Permission to Launch, where I welcomed everyone to Authentik.
At the time, I planned to share what I have learned on my journey. I hoped that it would help creative entrepreneurs navigate their way through the challenges they might face.
I had spent the better part of the previous decade running StudioPress—a WordPress theme company that had done millions of dollars in revenue.
I was also in the middle of running No Sidebar—a website dedicated to intentional and purposeful living, with a splash of minimalist design—and had built the community on Facebook to over 200,000+ folks.
In short, I felt that I had established the credibility to take on a project such as Authentik, and thoroughly planned on doing it alone.
I realized early on that I didn’t want to do #AllTheThings, and that my journey wasn’t going to be a solo one. My first thought was to outsource the help I thought I needed to build the brand, but that quickly turned into a full-blown partnership.
Meet the Team
At the core of our team is one essential thing: a passion for helping creators build an honest brand and successful business.
Darrell Vesterfelt is the director of growth at Authentik. He specializes in business development and growth, and has had the privilege to work on some amazing projects in the past several years,
Rafal Tomal is the creative director at Authentik. He has been designing and coding since 2005 and likes to teach others how to design beautiful websites that work.
Chris Hufnagel is the technical director at Authentik. He uses his mantra, “Simple Rarely Breaks,” in his life, code, and design. It keeps him focused and enables him to stay productive.
Allen Vesterfelt is the organization wizard at Authentik. He has a Master’s degree in organizational psychology and is a ninja at project management and keeping things on track.
It has been six months since we officially launched the Authentik Studio—a design and development agency for creators.
We have been there, and each one of us understands the challenges (and excitement) of running an online business. Competition is fierce these days, and we feel our experience and approach can help anyone in the space.
Our client list is one of the things we are most proud of, as we have launched brands and website designs for some of the biggest names in their respective industries. Here are just a few of them.
Nathan Barry, the founder of ConvertKit, is a close friend of ours, and we recently designed a brand new look for his website. Each page is uniquely designed, from the homepage to his about page, from his blog to a page where he offers books and other related products.
Courtney Carver’s website, Be More with Less, is about simplifying your life and living. Earlier this year, she created a course called Soulful Simplicity, and we helped design a beautiful landing page for her. The course is currently not open, but you can see some of what we did here.
The power of social media never ceases to amaze me. One morning I was scrolling through my feed and noticed a thread that included Stephanie Kelton, a professor of economics and author of The Deficit Myth. She was looking to redesign her website, and just a few months later, we launched it.
Dave Stachowiak helps leaders discover wisdom through insightful conversations. His website, Coaching for Leaders, is a wealth of knowledge and includes the latest guides, his podcast, a free membership library, and Academy—an exclusive, year-long leadership development cohort.
We have had the pleasure of working with other creators, such as:
- Michael Stelzner — Social Media Examiner
- Gretchen Rubin — The Four Tendencies
- Brian Clark — Further
- Erica Layne — The Life on Purpose Movement
- Rob Walling — Rob Walling
- Shaye Elliott — The Elliott Homestead
- Joshua Becker — Becoming Minimalist
Are you looking for, well, a new look?
I am a champion of minimalist design and believe that white space is where the magic happens.
Last summer WP Engine acquired StudioPress, which opened the door for me to focus on Authentik full time. I now have more time on my hands to do things that I love to do—mainly designing websites.
My passion for creating honest brands (and digital platforms) is stronger than ever. I want to help folks present themselves and their businesses as the most beautiful and the best solutions for their respective markets.
This summer, I had the pleasure of working on an extraordinary project with an industry leader that has more than 5 million followers on YouTube. We will be launching it soon, but in the meantime, here’s a sneak peek.
I am excited to share that I’ll be taking on another custom project in August.
This process will be a bit different than our typical projects. It’s not just a website redesign. It’s a one-on-one experience where you and I will work together to build a site you love, and that works for your business.
If you are interested in upping your brand game, have a budget of $15,000, and want to work with me on a “new look” for your website, fill out the form here and I will get back to you right away.
The Future of Authentik
A lot has happened over the past six months. The road ahead of Authentik is a lot longer than the road behind it.
We will continue to grow the Authentik Studio and look forward to serving the creative community. If you are a creator (aren’t we all?) and looking to take your business to the next level, let us know.
Our development team is busy working on some tools that we think you will love. They should help you do the things you do, and look forward to sharing more about that later in the year.
Three years ago, I was in my backyard, thinking about life beyond StudioPress. I knew that season of my life would be drawing near, and wanted to start making plans for the next season.
The name Authentik came to my mind, and I immediately knew that would serve as the foundation of things to come. I felt so strongly about it that I knew no other name would suffice. It was the perfect one.
So here we are, each one of us excited as ever to be fulfilling the vision I had years ago. Each one is using our gifts to work with (and for) the people we love, all while doing the work we love.
Here’s to the future of Authentik—ours and yours. Let them shine as brightly as we know they can.
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