Design Log – June 2017

“The extent to which you have a design style is the extent to which you have not solved the problem” — Charles Eames

Today I got an amazing amount of things done. I started early, so maybe I should rethink this “not being a morning person thing.” I got to this coworking space at almost 9 AM! I got some school “paperwork” stuff done immediately and then I started on the MVGEN end of things.

John and I discussed his desire to do more outreach starting this week and I suggested I could whip up some quick and friendly example/boilerplate emails for the verticals he’d like to reach out to. I offered to help with this because at the moment I’ve got time to help out where I can and I need to keep my writing muscles in shape because it’s a skill I don’t use enough these days. I got 3 of the 4 “press” templates cranked out faster than expected. These are: Soundcloud, Youtube Channel(indie) and Tumblr GIF creators. I haven’t started the 4th one, the generic “Press” template because I need to think more about it and maybe look at some good examples. Once I emailed and slacked those to him I pivoted and started on the MVGEN mobile redesign in Sketch. It’s weird because I’d been so intimidated by that software for as far back as I can remember. It’s amazing how much reading the instructions will point you in the correct direction :).

We’ve needed a mobile interface for aeons now, but I didn’t have the headspace for it. I realise that’s an excuse but at the time I’m being idle it feels reasonable not to even start without the appropriate motivation. At any rate, I’ve started (finally) on mobile (iOS) views for all the desktop pages on

I’m embarrassed to say this but the thing that really put the fire under my ass was finally looking at our Google Analytics (GA). Lo and behold, a cursory glance at a pie chart and some percentages and it became abundantly clear: the vast majority of our users create videos from their mobile devices. GA is granular enough that it shows which screen resolutions are most used. A quick search later and I learned a great many of our users are on the iPhone 6 plus.

I won’t be done quickly with this, but it does feel good to start the process finally. So now I know I need to make an iPhone 6 Plus friendly interface (phablet) and a smaller screen interface and larger format (tablet) interface. I sent John a quick screenshot of my progress so far and he seemed good with it.

Likewise, I finally get why designers extol Sketch’s praises from the mountaintops. The steep learning curve I’d convinced myself of is just not there. Especially if you’ve used Photoshop/Adobe apps to any depth. Everything is laid out cleanly and all the components you need to build a wireframe or mockup or prototype are laid bare, in easy reach. I got all the views for MVGEN mobile started in what seemed like minutes. So for anyone that’s been hesitant or unsure about trying Sketch or moving from Photoshop or something similar, I highly recommend it.

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