UXFT — Week 3 and 4

The last two weeks have been a whirlwind. The portfolio project and exhaustion completely overwhelmed me, and left me with a huge writing block.

Here’s a quick summary of what’s happened:

In week 3, we moved on from UX strategy to user stories, task flows and finally dabbed into wireframing. Like the majority of designers in the industry, we learned the fundamentals of wireframing on Sketch. For a non-designer such as myself, I felt like I had hit a wall. Everything prior (UX research, strategy, and developing a solid problem space) made sense to me; I felt comfortable and capable. Designing the way the solution would look on sketch, however, felt foreign and unsettling. That feeling of opening up a fresh new artboard is quite intimidating. I was slow and clumsy, and my wireframes turned out amateur and defied many design rules. It definitely affected my confidence, and made me question my solution. Nevertheless, I scrambled to finish the wireframes and began usability testing with my peers in week 4.

The user testing sessions were constructive but daunting. My first iteration cause a lot of confusion, in that it was way too busy, way too many distractions, and had terrible copywriting. It was tough because I had spent so much effort trying to finish a working prototype that I became really attached to it. Thus, when users commented on some of the confusion on my page, I couldn’t help but feel personally critiqued as well. Nevertheless, I went through the revisions, and did a second round of user testing, which yield better responses. By the end of week 4, I felt better about how my main epic was being addressed in the wireframes.

I feel the need to reiterate this yet again — my biggest lesson so far is to embrace the oscillation of being uncomfortable and comfortable throughout the design process; the alternation of diverging and converging, ambiguity and definitude.

Week 5 is a design sprint — so time to switch gears, get a good night’s sleep, and beast through this sprint with the goal to make this into a portfolio piece!