How to “Be Bold.”

“Be Bold.”

That was the last sentence for my entrance challenge to Huge’s XD School. When I read it, I was very confused. What does that mean? Does it mean VR?!

Fast forward six months.

I am one of 9 lucky student for Huge’s XD School this summer. My first two weeks have been filled with design challenges, amazing lectures, and the best design mentorships you could ever get. The really cool part about being in Huge School is that we’re able to create designs in an environment insulated from client expectations. Because of that, there is more freedom to experiment. Through the lectures and design challenges, I’ve finally began to understand what it means to “be bold.” Here are a few things that I’ve learned.

Zoom out and look at the big picture.

When defining problems, it’s easy to fall for low hanging fruits. I’ve learned that while surface level issues are important, they often lead to only incremental improvements. Without client expectations, this is the perfect time to break free and examine bigger picture issues like social trends rather than button positions.

Do the research, make informed decisions.

Before jumping directly into a solution, find out the Who, What, When, Where, and Why. Having the solid research helps narrow down the right problem for the right users. Once the problem and user are defined, thorough research provides the boundaries for ideas grow as ambitious as possible while still being grounded in reality.

Don’t be scared of a challenge.

Following conventions may help users quickly understand how a design works but sometimes new and better solutions become available. When appropriate, it may be better to break conventions rather than sticking to the what people are used to. By grounding decisions on well-researched facts and data, the fear of going against established trends can be minimized.

Finally, be confident and see it through.

If the foundation and research backing up the design decisions are solid, go all the way. Commit to the idea and see it through.