Life Outside of STACK: Kristyna Horankova, Senior UI UX Designer

Kristyna Horankova is featured for Life Outisde of STACK. In this image she holds a large bird of prey.

Life Outside of STACK is our feature series that introduces you to some of the faces behind the brand. Today we are featuring our Senior UI UX Designer, Kristyna Horankova.

Tell us your job title, how long you’ve been at STACK, and briefly describe a typical day at work for you.

It’s been eight months since I joined the STACK family as a Senior UI UX designer. And a typical day for me? I try to keep routines, so the first thing I do in the morning is check my schedule & tasks of the day with my cup of coffee (super strong shot of double espresso with a piece of 90% chocolate). This gives me an overview of how busy I’ll be and how much I can get “lost” in creative thinking. Then I work on my mocks while listening to some good music, lunch at noon, walk with my awesome dog Tedy to refresh my brain cells, and back to work…

What do you love about your job that would surprise most people?

I am a big extrovert so my friends would be surprised how happy I can be alone, lost in my thoughts in front of the screen. I love designing and finding solutions to make complex ideas easy to digest for our users.

What is the best piece of career advice you ever received?  

Small steps lead to big changes. Be patient, girl, and always do your best.

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Do you have any funny or embarrassing stories related to work (and safe for work)? 

Once I had a Zoom call on my cell and I had to use the restroom while being connected to the call. Unfortunately, at one point, my cell phone fell into the toilet. It was hard to find an explanation for why I logged out from the meeting so suddenly…

We know you’re great – hey, that’s why you work at STACK! Tell us about the great things (in detail) you do outside of work. Hobbies, interests, secret lives…

I am a part-time teacher of UX/UI design and front-end development and I really love to code, paint, and produce things. I learned how to code and created some very nice websites, and when I coded too much, I realized that painting is very refreshing for the “coding” side of the brain…so I started painting more.

I also like to create things. Once I found a rare but old and partially burned Gibson guitar on the street, so I renovated it and created a wall decoration. I learned how to sew, and I love pickling – that’s the real end-of-summer activity for me. Also, whenever I have extra time, we do a lot of hiking with my Tedy and I have a bull named Bedrich.

Kristyna Horankova bull named Bedrich.

What song have you completely memorized? Will you sing it for us? What about playing it on an instrument? How about a little dance instead?

My friends tried to convince me once to sing karaoke. I told them I would rather eat a live frog than sing in front of people.

What’s your favorite local spot and why (restaurant, bar, music venue, whatever you want to share about your hood!)? 

My favorite local spot is the forest next to my place. This is where we walk with Tedy around 8-10km per day and no bar can compete with that 😊.

Kristyna Horankova walks in the forest with her dog.

If your life was a movie, what songs would be on the soundtrack? 

Nirvana – Smells Like Teen Spirit
Outkast - Ms. Jackson
Fugees – Ready or Not
Coolio – Gangsta’s Paradise
Telepopmusik – Breathe
Lou Reed – Perfect Day
Morcheeba – Enjoy the Ride
Vanessa Paradis – Joe Le Taxi
Portishead – Glory Box
Men I Trust – Tailwhip
Milk & Bone – Pressure

What makes you truly happy?

My dog wagging his tail when I come home and a hug from my mom.

Kristyna Horankova's dog Tedy.

If you could choose your own nickname, what would it be?

Ahh I am not sure if I would give myself a nickname at this moment of my life – I am very myself, I am Kristyna 😊.

What causes are you passionate about?  

I desperately love my dog and any abuse against dogs is just something I can’t stand. I am a member of multiple organizations to help abandoned dogs. I also participate as a speaker at events organized to support Women in Tech in Montréal. And of course, I am doing my best to help to preserve the Earth for future generations.

What is the most courageous thing you’ve ever done?

I was working in marketing for large international corporations like L’Oréal and Coty, in Prague, Paris, and Geneva…and one day I decided to quit my job and travel the world. I traveled for almost two years. I’ve visited more than 40 countries on all continents. Believe me, when I was quitting my job I was very scared. Also, I jumped out of a plane once… that was also a bit scary 😊.

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