Insight and experience, concentrated


Is Your Design A Pile Of Garbage?

  This video made the rounds on the internet a while ago.  I later realized that it inadvertently illustrated a pitfall many young designers fall victim to – in this instance exploited in reverse as a wonderful surprise. Many of the tools we use in product design are 2D in nature, with many that purport […]

Take A Step Back, Squint If You Must…

  Architect Eliel Saarinen once stated: “Always design a thing by considering it in its next larger context – a chair in a room, a room in a house, a house in an environment, an environment in a city plan.”  This is wonderful advice for designers, and an important principle to keep in mind for […]

Being My Father’s Son (why you are no longer the typical user)

  I was at a design conference in Seattle talking with a colleague when it arrived with a buzz.  Instead of the sweet note of longing I hoped for, I received this vaguely foreboding statement – and I deserved it. A little background… My father had a way with cars.  He had the intuition and touch, […]

Brand Is A Melody

  Defining a visual/emotional target for a new product is at the heart of what every designer does. It is one of our “bread and butter” skills.  Things get exponentially more interesting when the challenge shifts to a line of products instead of simply one.  Does the line of offerings have similar basic forms to […]

Insight Steers The Ship

  A while ago, I attended a talk by James Ludwig of Steelcase. This event was presented as part of the MIAD Creativity Series, and it was a wonderful opportunity to hear a design leader share some insights. Discovery World’s inspiring surroundings and mission certainly didn’t hurt the evening’s proceedings… While James shared several interesting […]

Am I Constructivist Or Am I Memorex?

  As discussed previously, in order for a Visual Brand Language (VBL) strategy to be applied successfully across a diverse line of products, we understand that there needs to be some level of mutability to it. The “amount of stretch” required may vary depending upon the nature of your product line, but it is always […]

Mirror Mirror, On The Floor…

  There’s an oft-quoted product development story involving “slow” elevators.  In this story, passengers are complaining to building management about the lengthy waits for elevators in a tall building.  Most would-be problem solvers, when presented with this situation, attack the readily apparent source of the pain: slow elevator mechanisms.  The hero of the story decides […]

New Beginnings, Familiar Faces

  This Independence Day holds a special place in our hearts, as it coincides with our own statement of independence. This July marks the start in a new chapter of our professional lives, taking over two decades of experience and collaboration to a new venue we can call our own. We love the creative process […]