Looking ahead into 2018, with the ever-evolving evolution of the brand experience, designers and agencies need to evolve and embrace all new skillsets and roles so as not to be left behind in the dust.
I invited Gregory Itts, our Creative Digital Director, for a fika and asked him about digital design in the post mobile-era.
We all know brand experience is king, but the huge push toward more engaging experiences of advanced interaction and motion is becoming increasingly more important day-by-day. That kind of constant change excites me as a creative. Now, we’re starting to see how designers need to evolve and embrace whole new skill sets and even multi-discipline roles. Brand, UX design, prototyping, code, animation – or all of the above. As a creative, if you step aside or become complacent … poof! You’re left in the dust.
What’s your recommendation to stay ahead?
For the agency, I think the key is to have a well rounded, motivated and excited team. Not just brilliant creatives who live and breathe brand, but a team built around all of the disciplines of creative, UX design, interaction design, animation, and development. A couple of shops on the right track are HUGE and Instrument. Of course, they have small armies of resources & people, but they still inspire ways to help build our team as we move forward as an agency.
And for the creative individual?
Personally, I feel like you should focus on something that brings you joy or inspiration but that also challenges you as a creative. That could be code, animation, UX design or motion. But yeah, keeping your skills sharp or learning new stuff is key. Bootcamps, courses, freelance projects, pet projects. Even at home, I’m always tinkering and working on projects to keep my creativity alive. In short, never stop learning. Embrace the new, the unknown. Don’t be afraid to fail. Life is an iterative process, embrace it.
If we look at the development process, what is next in that space?
I think the most significant changes in the development process will continue to evolve between creative and development. You know, not just dreaming up static mockups with a bit of prototyping. As more platforms come online – such as InVision Studio, they will definitely give designers more robust tools to really push the interaction or experience design and help translate our vision to clients, stakeholders, and, of course, development. Another big one is design systems, but that could be a blog post in itself.
You have indeed talked a lot about InVision Studio lately.
I’m sure our team is tired of hearing me yapping about that one! I have such high hopes for that platform – or any platform at this point – that can bridge visual design, interaction, user experience, and motion – and deliver it all in presentation form. Maybe that would shock someone like Adobe to step up their game as well.
How will this evolution of digital design change how Sköna works?
We know what we need to do to stay on top. In our case, the change will come organically as we bring on new clients and new talent with new skill sets – along with the evolution of digital tools and adapting our processes. I find it all very exciting and inspiring – and feel very fortunate to be part of a team that gets to play in this space in the Bay Area. It’s a unique time to be a creative.