Current feels of a designer who hated working from home before the pandemic.

Like many of us in corporate America, we’ve been thrusted into working from home the past few months — a move that some of us office socialites dreaded. I was definitely one of those people who didn’t mind others working from home, but personally preferred to be in the office myself.

The simple thought of working from home 100% of the time sounded like a lonely existence (and technological nightmare), but once Covid-19 hit the world in full force my perspective on this work-from-home lifestyle changed for the better.

A laptop computer on a table.
A laptop computer on a table.
Photo by Christopher Gower on Unsplash

Before I continue, I do want to point out that I…

Conducting user interviews can be incredibly valuable but also a bit scary to start

Photo by Nik MacMillan on Unsplash

Product designers have a lot of techniques and tools in their back pockets when it comes to researching and understanding the people (users) they design for. A tricky thing to get designers to do is actually spend time having conversations with their user base — because let’s face it, a lot of us are introverts and the idea of having a Q&A with a stranger is terrifying.

I understand, I’m one of those people who gets nervous talking to strangers.

However, the benefit of stepping out of our comfort zone and engaging with the people who use our products far…

Designing digital products for people over 65 years old has some very valuable lessons.

Product designers are obsessed with the people we design for. No, I’m not talking about our internal clients (though we should be in tune with them as well), but rather we’re obsessed with the end-user of our products. For three years my world has revolved around senior citizens — working as a designer for a health and wellness company who’s focus is around bettering the lives of the aging population in America. What I never expected was that designing for seniors was one of the best crash courses on becoming a product designer.

Photo by Christian Bowen on Unsplash

These are some lessons that the amazing…

You might be jumping into the product world for the wrong reasons.

With UX jobs on the rise and the digital product design world getting much more attention, there’s a lot of current and aspiring designers looking to make a big break into a UX career. I was one of those designers and I’ve been fortunate enough to understand then pursue that dream of working in product design — happily practicing as a UX designer for the past year and a half.

The question you have to ask yourself though is if you’re chasing after that UX career for the right reasons.

You might be thinking, “Wut…why are you trying to crush my dreams!?”. I can assure you I’m not, if anything I’m trying to validate your ambitions. Don’t panic.

One thing that has bothered me is that many designers…

The total mindset makeover.

This is a multi-part series around a designers leap from being a visual designer to a product designer. You can read the first part of the series here.

In the previous part of this series I talked about the first few days (and weeks) of my career switch from being a graphic designer to a UX designer. It was an exciting time as everything was new and shiny but also a bit scary. Fast-forward a few months to a full year in this position and it still feels exciting, but a little less scary. …

Listening, learning, and the fear of imposter syndrome.

This is a multi-part series around a designers leap from being a visual designer to a product designer. You can read the first part of the series here.

Before diving into the first days, you should know that by this point in the series I’ve accepted the offer for my first job in product as a UX Designer. However, the job was at the company I was already with as graphic designer. …

Design Chat with Josh is my personal design podcast where I ramble about anything design related. This episode I share my thoughts on whether or not designers should learn to code.

Photo by Fatos Bytyqi on Unsplash

The answer isn’t so cut and dry.

For some reason we’re still asking this question in 2019, but people want to know! Should designers learn to also develop the sites and apps they’re creating? My own personal experience and take on this is not just a simple yes or no. There’s a lot of consider like the fact that development goes much deeper than most designers want to go. …

How many times have you heard the following?

“Ugh, another rainy day.”

“It’s too hot, I can’t wait until summer is over!”

“I can’t stand the people in this town!”

“I can’t wait to move out of this city…”

I’ve heard these and many other negative comments over the years — some even from myself. Growing up in a military family then finishing off my middle school and high school years in a small town in Upstate New York, I experienced two very different worlds: a world where everyone moved every 2–4 years and though they didn’t want to leave…

Design Chat with Josh is my personal design podcast where I ramble about anything design related. This episode I share why it’s important to share a little of that knowledge we designers all foster.

Don’t be greedy.

We all have something to share as designers, and knowledge of what we do is usually top of mind for us. Why not share what we know or think about design?! This episode explores why I think more designers sharing their thoughts and experience will only help us all become better, more well-rounded creatives and problem solvers. So get out there, make yourself a little uncomfortable, and share what you know with us!

It seems as though there’s a constant battle between visual design and UX design. The struggle is simple: UX designers think usability is the most important thing, and visual designers tend to think aesthetics are the most important thing. If you ask me, I believe usability is by far the most important part of any good digital product. It doesn’t matter how pretty something looks, it’s worthless if it‘s frustrating for the user to operate and doesn’t serve a purpose.

However, just because usability is the most important thing in digital design, it’s not an excuse for half-baked visual design.

Photo by Charles 🇵🇭 on Unsplash

Joshua Reach

UX & Visual Designer. Usually visiting random national parks I find on Google Maps.

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