Born in Haarlem, the Netherlands. Raised in Velserbroek and Nieuw-Vennep. Moved to Lisse right before the pandemic started. Lisse is near Keukenhof, Europe’s largest flower garden. And to where we are now: just recently started working at New Story, based in Noordwijk aan Zee. The shores of the Netherlands.
Previously, I studied Interaction Design at Media College Amsterdam. Some subjects were oriented around UX-UI design. After my first introduction to the subject, I started researching more via self-education.
After I graduated, the learning didn’t stop. Kept reading articles, books, and continued my study via online courses. Also trying to actively participate in design communities - like the awesome Memorisely!
Now that I have tasted design in a professional environment, I never want to go back.
I have this vision where the user experience of a product will be the decisive factor, whether a person chooses product A or product B. The combination of humans, design and technology has the future.
Starting the uneven mornings with an early gym session. For the even mornings some mindfulness exercises. A firm breakfast and an ice cold glass of water follows. Right after, I jump in my blue car, or on my blue bike (the blue was not planned though), straight to work.
Once I arrive at work, I have a short discussion with my team lead, talking through the planning of the day. Also performing a quick review session on design work, project and product backlogs, and general topics for that day. When everything is discussed, I continue designing user experiences and interfaces in Figma. Parallel to that, learning how to compose effective design guidelines and patterns for our clients their design systems.
To keep the battery filled, Lunchbreak x Beachwalk at the middle of the day!!! Right after continuing the design work. Cross-collaboration between strategy, concept, content, marketing, design and development takes place continuously.
After work, I always try to eat together with my family. Once we dined, I tend to spend some time on my design related courses.
The rest of the time, you will find me on an adventure with friends; playing competitive games; raving (only in the weekends, no worry!); or busy with my cats.
Occassionally, I get confronted by the fact that lots of design choices are substantiated by hypothesis, and not by research. From my perspective, this happens since UX design is less ‘tangible’ compared to UI/visual design. Since research isn’t immediately tangible, the value isn’t instantly seen.
It’s a returning topic. Conducting research. Whether it’s appropriate for the project, whether the client sees the value and/or wants to commit to it, and similar. What makes it even more challenging, is the fact that at some point, research actually IS too time-consuming and not appropriate. It’s all about finding the balance.
This brings us to the next challenge, the process. Smooth transitions between the different departments, when working on (non-agile) projects. Besides UX-UI, I have an enormous craving for process optimization. Endless meetings or discussions are a thorn in the eye. They stagger creativity and innovation. I heavily believe that process optimization, starts with close collaboration and shared understanding.
When these are established, many things start to smoothen. There will be balance. Maintaining it is hard. But hard things don’t come easy. You have to keep your drive, and stay curious!
This project streamlines the business administration process of multiple, close-collaborating, but yet, individual companies.
During the pandemic, I’ve build my very first hybrid gaming PC with the help of a close friend (”NO MAC??? And you call yourself a designer?”). Built it so that it would be suited for both designing and gaming. At the office, I work on a MacBook Pro (”Pfieeww, you got me worried there for a sec...”).
Figma. Without a doubt (only been a month now). But I have to give kudos to Slack their onboarding process. It literally feels like: ‘Clickedyclick, up-and-running!’
Another that’s already loved by a bunch, Spotify. But especially their ‘Go to song radio’ function. My heart is with Techno, but thanks to the ‘song radio’, I’m exploring the realms of Jazz-RnB!
Well, my taste for music is somewhat... extraordinary.
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Be sure to maintain the drive you have for design. Stay curious, be eager to learn. Participate in communities. Gain hands-on practice, preferrably real life projects. But fictious are a great too! There are tons of affordable online courses about design. Reflect on, and learn from your own work.
Learn, learn, learn!
Practice, practice, practice!
But the most crucial thing: believe in yourself!