The idea that I can take my mind to whatever extent I desire and create what I want is one of the most riveting feelings that continuously propels me to create genuine work. Whether I am designing an infographic or programming an application, I imagine how the user would experience it. Studying design at The University of Michigan has put me in the hot seat to help pave a better future for the world around me through design.
It is easy to get lost in our schoolwork, become selfish and block anyone else’s needs out, but as a designer that is all I seem to think about. Through the needs and desires of those around me, I have the power to alleviate stress, evoke creativity and inspire those to join me in the process of improving the world’s design. Being selfish is never in the equation for me, I consistently create for myself in order to enhance my skills to create for others — it’s a never-ending cycle. My work is undefinable, yet understandable. I don’t believe one piece or even a presentation of my work can put a cap on the depth of thoughts and aspirations I have for the good of the users. I refuse to be defined by the opinions of others, but rather I rise above and prove myself through design.
What is unique about being a designer is I can essentially help shape the user’s life, their experiences and their mood as well as give certain scenarios context and stir up conversation. The user’s mindless day-to-day tasks and encounters are all shaped by design, and I am grateful to be a part of that everyday bustle. The paper you are reading, your alarm clock that went off this morning and the credit card machine at your coffee shop are all shaped by design and gave your day meaning and context. Without your alarm clock, you would still be in a deep slumber, and without your morning coffee, who knows where you would be. It is beyond fascinating how every single thing around me was intricately planned out through design.
Though I often joke about being in a relationship with my computer, the reward is unlike any other. Behind the screen there are big dreams, ideas and plans to enhance certain products and interfaces that are flawed for the user. Behind my screen there are multiple Adobe Create Suite applications running at once and a notebook flooded with sketches and mockups of potential designs. Behind my screen there is a plethora of written thoughts and emotions to keep track of how certain experiences affect me. The users shape my life too, and watching them interact or experience my work is extremely satisfying. The timeless hours I have spent “in a relationship” with my computer, the countless nights my wrists and neck have been sore and the endless contemplation of ways I can better my work suddenly become worth it for those brief seconds I experience the user interacting with my work with ease. The feeling of being a part of this ease is one of the greatest gifts, and it is all through design.
Devoting my fingertips to the user will never get old. Taking my mind to whatever extent I desire for the future of design will help me remain in tune with the quick demands and desires of the user. No matter what it is I am designing, I am designing for myself to enhance my abilities for the user to pave the way for the future of design. My design experiences will allow me to be a part of the users’ everyday life. I realize what a blessing it is to be able to experience life from both the eyes of a designer as well as a user, and I know this will only put me in a better place to design the future.