Digging Up the Roots

Everything above ground is just style

You have to attack the root of the problem. That’s how you win.

In school I was told something like this and just until now I realized how well it has stuck with me all through the years. I overlooked, though, one single word that would start an analogy of designing a better user experience.


The message was always clear. When you solve the true and right problem you have a winning experience for change and/or resolution whether that be politics or a productivity or social networking app. What wasn’t clear at the time was why the word, root, was meaningful.

I was oblivious to why it mattered. At this time I thought design was just a form of art. I loved sketching. I loved building and rebuilding with Legos. Then came Dribbble and my likes were just from pure beauty in style. How can you not like a beautifully dressed up icon or a new website that just captures and begs for attention. You can’t.

Design is not just a form of art. Design should digg up the roots. The roots being the core functions and concepts of what’s about to be experienced and exist. This just might be why we don’t have design galleries, but have art galleries where strangers gawk and find sometimes unexplained admiration.

I believe everything above the ground or in the spotlight is just style. Just art.

Style is great when it’s beautiful. But, beauty isn’t always what is before our eyes. A much more impactful beauty is the overall experience. The colorful leaves and the roots we don’t see beneath the soil. When I see something beautiful in style I then wonder how functional the experience is or will be.

Designing just with style frustrates me. And when style covers up or weakens the experience for the user it pains me. When a designer designs this way they are just wanting to create something. Not necessarily solve something.

Let’s digg up the roots. Expose what either might be beautiful or dull up top. I created Resimplify to do just that. I want to explore, examine and rethink how a user’s experience can be better, can be resimplified.

Design is more than an art. Design is a practice of iteration from comfortability to something new and better.