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More about Konrad (and his cat)

On this page:
So, who the hell are "we"?
What makes us special
  What we don't do
Where's our studio?

So, who the hell are "we"?

We are Konrad Rode and his cat, Spike Nosferatu. Spike plays an essential role in the design process, despite the lack of opposable thumbs. Says Spike, "When I thay Konwad mutht take a bwake, he taykth a bwake."*

* Translates as, "When I say Konrad must take a break, he takes a break." Spike may be past retirement age, but he has fearsome teeth last seen thousands of years ago in the now extinct sabre tooth tiger. This does mean Spike has a lithp sorry, lisp.



What makes us special

Ego vs The Job

Konrad's pragmatic approach to design serves his clients and their markets, instead of his ego (he hopes). It's something designers only learn through experience.


An important distinction is that Konrad's designs belong to his clients – they paid for it, after all. Most design studios like to believe they still own the artwork/website, and so when they lose a client, they often refuse to hand over the original files, or sometimes give only low resolution files.

Once a job is done, we send our clients the original files.

About website development

Konrad's strengths lie in simple web design, characterised by easy navigation and fast loading times, but above all, websites that rank well for their industry on Google. After all, what's the point of having a website that looks good if no-one can find it?

In other words, we create websites that pay for themselves in no time. It's pretty rare for designers to prioritise substance over form, but Konrad knows we all need to first make the money; then we can show off.

In fact, the only form of marketing Konrad uses for his work is this very website you're looking at.

Our clients

Our clients are typically small businesses, although we've had large corporations as clients before - usually for an area-specific division.

We understand what it means to start from scratch, so we advise some clients on cheaper options when they don't yet have the ideal budget, even if it means we don't get any work from them - we've been there ourselves.



What we don't do

We're not superhuman*** yet. While all of the services mentioned on the buttons above are done in-house, other services are outsourced to trusted service providers when needed. Clients are always welcome to use their own providers.

*** Of course, Konrad has witnessed Spike "swim" through a hedge. Twice. That's not human.

So, here's what we don't do:
  1. True 3D rendering
  2. Flash animations and movies (only GIF animations)
  3. Live caricatures
  4. Back-end web development (outsourced)
  5. Professional printing (outsourced)

  6. Business cards and letterheads as stand-alone services

    While our rates are fair, we openly discuss cheaper options with prospective clients who have small budgets.

    For instance, as a rule of thumb we don't design business cards as a stand-alone service, unless the client is prepared to pay R1 000+ excl. printing, for something special.

    We don't compete with instant card shops like Quickprint. They're ideal for super fast, dirt cheap business cards and they'd probably design and print 500 cards for you for only R500.

  7. Dirt cheap websites

    In the case of websites, not everyone has a budget for a proper website either. Some copy shops will design and host a website for you for R400/month,**** no deposit.

    While this is certainly a temporary solution, this is the most expensive option in the long run, and more importantly, when the day comes that you want to move your site to a cheaper and dependable host, or have a proper web designer take over, you'll find that you can't take the website with you.

**** Professional hosting companies usually charge a mere R20/month for entry-level websites, so you can see where this is going.

Contact us for a free quotation.



Where's our studio?

At Konrad's home in Eversdal (in Durbanville), Cape Town, but he prefers meeting his clients in coffee shops or at their place of work. Konrad has clients from other cities like Johannesburg and Pretoria, and has many clients he's never even met. All this is possible because of this thing called thee Interwebz.

Although Konrad's studio moved away from Bellville, and then the Southern Suburbs, he still serves clients everywhere hell, who still sees their clients? En Konrad is Afrikaans, so moenie worry oor die taal nie (Spike leer nog hy's 'n Engelsman).

So, join Konrad for a cuppa somewhere and let's see what we can do you for your business ;-)


Get a free quotation!
  Contact Konrad at or on 082 44 66 526 during office hours.

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Konrad's story

Since birth, Konrad drew and drew, encouraged by his loving mom, Linda, whom he got the drawing talent from. Mother Nature and Asterix would be his greatest influences as an artist.

Konrad's sister Frauke also inherited the talent, but practises as a GP on the other side of the globe. At least we do get to see her every Xmas.

At the tender age of 5 or 6, Konrad got into trouble at the typical, puritan, state primary school he was attending, when he innocently drew a naked man and woman.

The following year he was told he had to stop drawing Jesus in Bible class, although it was decided later on that it's OK to draw him so long as he wears a halo.

As an adult, while working for a small design studio in Bellville in 1999, Konrad's dad**, Erwin Rode, helped him start up his own business called Rode Graphics CC, so Konrad could keep the money bosses would've made off him – at least in theory (grin). They were both members of this company.

Roundabout 2006, Konrad moved his business to his home in Rosebank, and ditched the whole CC idea for simple freelancing – Konrad has a pathological relationship with admin ("I'm an artist, damnit!").



By his teens, Konrad had 2 3 great interests:

1. Science

"Ek wil 'n polisieman / brandweerman word" just didn't cut it anymore. After school, Konrad would take a detour in an imaginary BSc Genetics / Entomology / Quantum Mechanics at the University of Stellenbosch, where he discovered that you actually have to study Organic Chemistry to pass.

Today he still has a huge interest in science, e.g. exotic diseases that make humans look like an afterthought, e.g. the lovely Ebola.

2. Art

Eventually, at age 23 Konrad would get his 3-year National Diploma in Graphic Design. After the compulsory detour of the "finding oneself" kind, he became a fully-fledged "poor artist", just as his old man said he would.

3. Girls

Konrad was too mesmerised by their haloes and wings to make a move while he was at school. He still remembers how, at age 12, he'd walk into lamp poles and trees because his eyes were elsewhere.

Even in his 20's, he'd imagine butterflies emanating from their angelic mouths.

See Konrad's illustration below and you'll get the picture:

Detail from faerie illustration


** About Konrad and Erwin

There's been an ongoing debate in the family about who Konrad's real father is, since he's had little in common with him, at least superficially. Was it the milk man? Anyone that knows her would tell you Konrad's mom is a saint though.

The older Konrad gets, the more he thinks he's becoming like his father (shock, horror – it's a bit like that "Luke... I am your father" moment in Star Wars).

More on Erwin Rode on his company Rode & Associates Property Consultants' website >


More about Spike

Every day, since age 6, Spike would patiently wait for Konrad to come home from his studio.

Spike tried many times to come inside, but every time Konrad would chase him away (not that Konrad is cruel – he had a slight allergy to cat hair, and Spike did have a home next door).

Then, after 2 years of playing this game, in 2006, Konrad finally let him enter his home. From that day onwards it was pure love, and so Spike officially adopted Konrad.

Spike in die bure se turksvyboom

Spike, spotted hiding in the neighbours' downtrodden prickly pear tree


© Konrad Rode 1998–2024
Cape Town, Bellville and Durbanville, South Africa

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