Design + Banter 18

See ya later, suckers permalink

Rik Lomas (@riklomas) Founder, Steer & SuperHi

  • Moving to NYC. How do you move there and be self-employed?
  • Google says it's a nightmare.
  • Rik got a lawyer, went to see here.
  • She asked, “What is your job?”
  • He rambled, she asked, “What is a developer?”
  • They went over and over it and came up with a single sentence: “I teach people to make websites.” User wants complicated thing --> simplify --> User can do that thing (Applies to both the lawyer and to building websitess)

5 problems that SuperHi solves permalink

Learning to code is scary

  1. Have sensible defaults
* Get simple stylesheet when you open SuperHi
  1. Remebering difficult concepts
* Colour: small color next to hexcode that brings up colour picker
* Make margins and paddings easier: again a hover state that shows the margin and padding
  1. Technical copywriting
* Making Git easier to use for normal users
* Two buttons: Save to history, go back in time
* Try to keep copy as simple as possible
  1. Getting a site online
* "All you need is an FTP program, and hosting platform, and a domain..."
* Make it easy to get a site online: create an account, create a project, publish.
* Most tools are aimed at advance users. For beginners, be opinionated.
  1. If a tool isn't there, make it
* Example: making background videos easy

Our job is to help people do the things they want to do, and not get in their way.

Use your words: talking about your work permalink

Camilla Grey (@camillagrey)

  • Was head of content at Wolff Olins. Brand strategist before that.
  • Does both brand & content.
  • Likes to help designers write.

Make friends and win work and get promotes and influence people permalink

There is a need for articulating the thinking behind a design. Things she keeps hearing: * “We keep losing work to F***** ****” * “We need to editorialise our process.” * “We want to be a part of a community of digital leaders.”

  • Make friends: - Assumption that a blog post needs to go viral. The most important thing is connecting with your peers.
  • Get promoted: - Every agency: the designers that get promoted fastest are the best at communicating why their idea is the best.
  • Win work - The ability to talk about your work in the frame of a brief you've been given.
  • Influence people - Talk and find other ways to communicate your visuals means you can help shape the future of thinking in your field.

Five things to help you get going permalink

  1. Practice - you don't have to publish the first thing you write
  2. Read - identify who writes well, and unpack why their writing works for you
  3. Plan - get someone to “emotionally spot” you. tell your boss you want to do more writing. get them to read it and give you feedback
  4. Respond - if you can't think about something to write, write about something happening in the world around you
  5. Move the last bit to the top - The place where you land at the end of it all is where you should probably start.

The Anti-Complacancy Design agency permalink

Neil Cummings (@NeilCummingsEsq) Creative Director, Wolff Olins

Big D permalink

  • Design is getting a seat at the table.
  • No longer a part of R&D, product, etc.
  • Bigger customers, bigger challenges, bigger questions design needs to answer
  • Big companies are bringing design in house
  • Young talent want to work for big brands as much as big agencies
  • The type of agencies that are being brough in house are agencies taht have a specialist function (mobile, service design, ux, innovation agencies)
  • A big agency shouldn't be seen as a specific function. Wolff Olins is disassociateing themselves from “brand.”
  • Wolff Olins needs to be seen as an “and” business
  • Briefs come from big and fundamental business challenges, WO needs to be able to attack those and draw on a broad range of skills.
  • Spirit - Wolff Olin's spirit is “push it” - designers should be open to push every aspect of what WO does
  • Push ambition - use this to drive your work forward
  • Push people - this is about getting the user into the conversation during the development process
    • testing is often about validating pre-formed ideas
    • how do you involve users to make design more radical, more thoughtful?
    • example: sent a box with a button around the world, and asked people: “This is what a box that is going to do one thing for you. What is it?”
  • Listen - this opens up how you can make your brand come to live. It comes to life with the tiny interactions people have with your business.
  • Lessons from Tim Allen
    • about participants not audience
    • experience design is about people, and those people aren't you
    • experience design is about making (brining in and integrating a development team)
  • Push craft - this isn't just about typographic craft, finding new ways to find visual effects that you want, how to make your ideas more relevant, make your vision replicable by others,
  • Push culture - when you create ideas for business, it's hard for them to replicate it. They are kind of anti-design. You have to teach them how to design. Give them the tools and create spaces where it's comfortable to be creative.
  • Push process - you have to be serious about how you design the process of your project. Better ways to design things aren't in the brief.