These are the tools I continually refine to serve as a conduit for design thinking and as an advocate for design action. I strive to respond to creative challenges with common sense, humanity and innovative daring.
No design is ever perfect or complete.
User needs, client considerations, market trends, and societal constructs are always changing. Even the most successful designs should be reassessed periodically in order to maintain their relevance.
Empathy is essential in design.
Successful design originates from a personal concern that eclipses any skill, talent, or creatvity. It should be possible for a user to notice care and attention in the products they use and interact with.
There is no replacement for process or proper research.
Good designers are good listeners. Informed questions prevent assumptions from being made. Furthermore, it is only when good ideas are tested and iterated that they become excellent realizations.
Material choice and treatment is as crucial as form.
Surface treatment, texture, and color either work for a design or against it. Careful consideration of materials or manufacturing processes enable a product to be fully enjoyed as intended.
Design is evolving and experience centered design is the new standard.
As technological development continues to accelerate, fewer things are left to differentiate designs. Functionality and usability are assumed in most of the products we buy. The optimization of experience through design characterizes a critical differentiating edge.
Technology should enable a design without defining it.
Newer, faster, stronger, and more efficient products are not inherently better. Technology becomes irrelevant if it interferes with a product's usability.
Anything can be made beautiful.
No man-made item is too complex or too mundane to benfit from a sensitivity to aesthetic. While cost considerations play a large role; they are not the sole perpetrator. Everything from the high end to the entry level deserves thoughtful consideration if possible.
Sustainability should not be a badge of honor...
... but rather a realistic goal that shapes design decisions throughout the development process. It should not be viewed an after-thought or an obstacle to creative purity.
Multidisciplinary collaboration is vital to success.
When engineers, marketers, and other designers participate in the development process, a rich environment of different perspecitves emerges. A cooperative design approach creates checks and balances that promote success and result in designs that better serve the client and consumer.
A good designer is more than his / her job.
Designers are citizens and advocates for a better world. Design thinking relies on an awarness that never "clocks out". A dedicated practitioner hones their craft by being involved in their community and serving those around them. Design by itself can't make the world a better place but it can encourage people to repond to their world differently. The best designers are those who see and act.