A great designer & framing design

31 Oct 2010 - 7:49pm
5 years ago
3 replies
1257 reads


Just read that Tim Brown will be in Singapore - http://designthinking.ideo.com/?p=506#content and he wrote:

"I am off to Singapore in a week for my first visit. I have been invited by the government to give a talk on design thinking and meet with various government and business leaders to talk about the role of design thinking at a national level."


Then I read this recent post from Dan Daffer on "Design Titles and Levels of Experience" and it got me thinking about these questions:

"What are the skills required to be a great designer?" 

"What do you look for in a great designer?"

I believe its challenging to find good designers and in Asia there is a call/challenge to move the people we present to from understanding design as "visuals" and "eye candy" to something else (people who are not in UX or XD). So I find myself educating about how to frame design correctly.







1 Nov 2010 - 9:36am

Pet Peeve Alert

When you say 'designer' to someone outside of our domain, they invariably think http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THYkMUD_JOE

Which, can wrong-foot your audience and leave them playin catch up to your points as they try to figure out who/what you're talking about or worse, it leads down the rat-hole of 'what is design?' A conversation we're very familiar with here and something yet to be answered.

I think it's just good practice (even within our domain) to frame any discussion on Design with appropriate specialist roles such as visual/interface/information etc.  Draw upon examples the audience recognizes and then how mastery & mix of sub-domains is what differentiates good from great.

I don't know much about art but I know what I like and similarly most people today might not know what makes a good 'experience' but they know one when they see one and will have an opinions on the specifics such as visuals, service, ease of use etc.  

Start with concepts people understand when building their understanding of the big picture.  Avoid trying to convey abstract notions such as 'the designer', or worse, 'the experience designer'.  http://www.informationarchitects.jp/en/can-experience-be-designed-2/



6 Nov 2010 - 7:39pm

Thanks Pauric and good points.

In and around the specialist roles, what skill sets are required to make a great designer? 



6 Nov 2010 - 9:05pm
Christian Snodgrass

I think one of the most important skills any interaction-type designer needs is to understand how people think. If you are able to think from the viewpoint of your audience, you'll be able to design in terms of how they would use whatever it is you are designing.

Along with that, a designer should also have a certain artistic sense. An interaction designer doesn't necessarily need to be a great artist because you always bring in a visual designer to "pretty up" the interaction design, but I think if you have those skills it helps you create an attractive and functional design.

- Chris

On Sat, Nov 6, 2010 at 9:07 PM, dszuc <dszuc@apogeehk.com> wrote:

Thanks Pauric and good points.

In and around the specialist roles, what skill sets are required to make a great designer? 



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