Presenting design like your life depends on it: The Melbourne Edition featuring Mike Monteiro.

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Can’t fly to San Francisco for one of Mule Design’s highly sought-after workshops? Well we’re bringing one to you, Melbourne.

Our dear friends at Mule Design Studio in San Francisco have been doing some brilliant and engaging work in the past few years — above and beyond the excellent work they do for their clients.

Starting with Mike Monteiro’s “Fuck You, Pay Me” talk at Creative Mornings, through stirring and career-shifting books and talks by both Erika Hall and Mike Monteiro, they’ve been sounding a clarion that says “we can do this much better”. And people have been listening.

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Mike Monteiro of Mule Design, who will be facilitating a workshop on presentation skills at Floate on 28 January 2016.

But nobody from Mule had ever come to Melbourne, despite our constant encouragement. But we at Floate kept persisting (hassling, really)and now we are extremely pleased be hosting a Mule workshop by Mike Monteiro “Presenting design like your life depends on it” on January 28.

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Generalists and Specialists

Over at Dear Design Student today, Ross has a piece on the value of both specialists and generalists.

Generalists and specialists each approach the world from opposing viewpoints. Specialists often think of generalists as focus-free dilettantes, while generalists can’t think of anything more boring than going through a career with a single area of interest.

Pop over and have a look.

Ross Floate

Dear Design Student, we’re here to help.

Design can be a difficult job to get a hang of. There are no apprenticeships, hardly any mentors, and people guard their experience jealously because it’s a competitive advantage.

Now there’s Dear Design Student, a new publication featuring working designers (including yours truly) who take the time to answer the questions that have been on your mind. The writing team includes Erika Hall, Jennifer Daniel, Dan Mall, Mike Monteiro, and Liam Campbell — all very talented people with a wealth of experience to share.

If you’ve got questions about the business and practice of design, head on over and ask a question.

 

Building Sustainable User Personas

We’ve done a lot of work over the last 12 months for sporting codes, energy companies and banks. (Maybe plural is overselling it. It was one of each.)

As part of that we built user personas.

Creating user personas is hard work but totally worthwhile. They give us a sense of who it is we’re really designing for: an audience to target. They help us ask questions like: “Is Jamie interested in getting the latest scores while at his desk?” and “How important is it that Sonja see an incident report immediately.”

The personas help us make the myriad decisions that we might not otherwise be equipped to make. They boost our empathy.

But there’s a hole that clients and colleagues often fall into when it comes time to create personas. Read more

Know your giants.

If we want to build, we have to know about our foundations.

The standard of work was very high at last week’s graduate exhibition for the Tractor Design School in Melbourne.  Some of it was exceptional. Tractor is getting good work from its students and, obviously, from its faculty.

I asked the graduates I spoke to the same series of questions I always ask young designers: What are you excited about? Where do you think the next three years will take you? Which designers have been an influence on you so far?

The last question always flummoxes people. Only one graduate had an answer for that question. That’s not good enough. It’s akin to saying you want to be a writer but haven’t read a work of Shakespeare, or a physicist who can’t be bothered learning the rules of thermodynamics. Read more