Growing up in rural South Carolina, you don't have very many choices in design heroes. There were people like @whale aka Matthew Smith, and his collective of designers and developers in Greenville, and for the longest time, that's all I knew.
Sometime in the Fall of 2011, I discovered Fuzzco. I remember a pretty distinct moment: after finding them, I had been spending a few weeks trawling their Dribbble page, and dishing out Ooos and Aaaahs on the regular. Somewhere in that span, I ended up checking out their website, and finding out they were based in South Carolina with equal parts excitement and bafflement.
They're from South Carolina?!
So I made a mental note and tucked it away as a nugget of possibility. Fast-forward a couple of months to January, and I was starting to think of a what I could spend my first summer between college semesters working on. The list was short, admittedly, and I knew what my main option was… so I decided to go all out for it. I built a dedicated site on my server (RIP ionizemedia.com) and produced it as a letter to Fuzzco. One email, a night of sleep, and an excited dash to check my inbox later, and I had the wheels turning to get myself a summer working with some of the nicest, most talented people working in design today.