Co-CEO/Chief Technical Officer
You may not realize you’ve already heard of Cleland, but if you’ve ever had an eye exam, purchased LED lighting accessories for your car, or called the Apple customer support line, you’re most likely familiar with his work. His signature can be found in machines such as the Zeiss Humphrey Autorefractor Keratometer, which most of us know as that machine at the eye doctor’s office with the chin rest and the flashing lights. And if you remember seeing anyone driving around town with those sporty Fast-&-Furious-type lighting
accessories on their cars before that became a mainstream market, chances are they were hand-engineered and assembled by Cleland. While working for Apple, he created in a single weekend the first version of iLog, a software which later became the foundation for Apple’s entire worldwide customer support system, and is still in use today.
Not surprisingly, his love for computers and machinery started early on. At 10, his teachers excused him from class to write code. He worked with his dad refurbishing CRT monitors and building custom computers. By 17, he was offered a job as a computer store service manager. When he started working for Zeiss, Humphrey Division, he had already been knee-deep in technology for the majority of his 22 years. As an optoelectronic assembly technician, he worked with engineers in a static-free ESD clean room to verify the tolerances of various machine parts prior to production. These machines would later be used in Optometrists’ offices worldwide.
His work at Zeiss erupted a passion for lighting technology. That, along with his insane love of cars, is how the 23-year-old came to form a company that imported LED diodes to create automotive light kits for fellow car enthusiasts. The company created many of the first LED fiberoptic lighting kits to hit the market, which became an overnight hit when The Fast and the Furious was released in 2001. After the Hollywood excitement died down, and after expanding the company to include other after market performance parts, Cleland sold the company in good standing and rejoined the computer world as lead Mac, PC, Linux and Unix technician for ARRC Technologies in Bakersfield. From there, it was a short leap to working at lifelong bucket-list job, Apple Computers.
His enthusiasm for the job at Apple caused him to climb the ranks quickly. Within a year, he led his own team as a Tier 2 Senior Support Agent. Infinitely seeking to improve the team’s efficiency, he took it upon himself to create iLog, a logging software designed to improve the Apple customer support process. This, combined with his team’s excellent Jedi skills, plastered their office walls in Apple internal awards… and pirate flags. Oh, and he’s an OSX Ninja Samurai.
And so, after 5 years at Apple, facing a choice between a life of certain success or a life of unknown obstacles, what does a 31-year-old OSX Ninja Samurai do? Well obviously, he retires and moves to Hawaii. There, he found a niche for himself as the Aloha State’s highest-qualified Mac technician, running award-winning service departments on Maui, Big Island and Kauai. His OS-level expertise with Mac products make him a person of interest in Hawaii’s island communities, who depend heavily on their iPhones and MacBooks to be their gateway to the outside world.
He co-founded Island Pixel Works with Jul3ia Richard on the island of Kauai in 2012. The multimedia production company was born, mostly, from Cleland’s obsessive desire to play with lenses and light in one of the most beautiful places on earth. From there, it transformed into a full-scale production studio, which covered the office walls with awards once again. Within two years, the company expanded into coding and software. Cleland now has six universal iOS apps and one tvOS app on the App Store.
Co-CEO/Chief Creative Officer
Jul3ia (Richard) Astatkie has been involved with digital media production for nearly her entire life. Born and raised on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, she took her first studio production class at her local public access TV station when she was only eleven years old. At that point, she dove headfirst into digital animation, art, music and video. In 2006, after 13 years of study, practice and volunteering around the studio, she eventually became the programming and training coordinator at the same station. Over her time there, she found herself involved with hundreds of projects,
ranging from documentaries to music videos to sketch comedies to web comics. Working both on teams and on her own, she directed and produced over a dozen award-winning videos, including two Emmy-award winning original music videos, "Reality TV" (2009) and "OMG LOL" (2010).
In 2011, she moved to Hawaii and became the media educator at Ho'ike: Kaua'i Community Television. During one trip to the Hawaiian immersion charter school to teach video production, she noticed that despite the school's dirt floors and lack of shoes, almost all the children had iPhones. It was this realization that initially caused Jul3ia to join the Apple developer program, tinkering at first with projects designed to connect iPhone-carrying community members with the public access station. She met Cleland in 2012, and they co-founded Island Pixels Works. In the following 4 years, she honed her coding skills with client projects ranging from SpriteKit games to iBeacon ranging systems for the visually and accessibly challenged.
In 2015, Jul3ia shifted her focus once more into the Unreal Engine, and is now developing an 8-level 2D side-scroller in UE4, scheduled for release later in 2016. The game, Myrbius, follows Jul3ia's web comic character Myrbie through the existential trenches of unreality, and will include a soundtrack also produced by Jul3ia. She keeps up to date with Apple development as well, and recently released universal iOS and tvOS apps, Christmas with Jul3ia, written entirely in Swift 2.