Ask Me Anything on April 19th

I’m excited to be online for Ask Me Anything powered by ManageWP most of this Wednesday, April 19th, to ask any of your questions about Design & User Experience, Client work, and work flow. I’m also happy to chat about WordPress, how I contribute to the Open Source project, and the upcoming WordCamp Europe in Paris.

Other topics I’d be excited to talk about are Impostor Syndrome, working remotely, and work-life-blance.

I’ll see you online at ManageWP.org from 6:30am to 2:30pm EST. I’m currently in Europe, so it’ll be my afternoon.

I hope you’ll join me and Ask Me Anything!

WCUS: Designing without Color [Video]

We as designers are visual creatures. Some of us tend to dive right into design without fully understanding the goals of a project, the audience we are designing for, or the content at hand. To create a truly engaging experience for our users, we need a solid foundation, not just a beautiful design. My bold proposal is to design without color.

If you want to learn more about this and missed my presentation at WordCamp U.S., you can find it on WordPress.tv and below.

Title photo taken by Luca Sartoni

UX and Storytelling Resources

Complementary to my talk called “Designing without Color” at WordCamp US, I’ve put together some resources around the fundamentals of UX design and storytelling in web design:

I hope these are useful to learn more about the topics.

Designing without Color

I have a crazy idea – let’s remove color from design! No, I’m not talking about designing in black and white. I believe we should take color out of the equation, completely. Because it is quite irrelevant. No, no, no, hear me out. I’m talking about the early stages of a project and everything that comes before visual design. That is when we need to forget color exists. This will allow us to focus on what’s really important: Crafting an engaging experience while solving problems for people. So we need to focus first and foremost on the user and the content, not the design.

Visual design is important, yes, but it’s only one piece of the puzzle. We ultimately want to achieve IMPACT. I argue that a visually beautiful website isn’t really worth the pixels it occupies on the web, if it isn’t usable, useful and speaks to it’s audience.

Let’s explore the most important fundamentals of designing an engaging experience that creates impact. Continue reading “Designing without Color”

CritiquePress – WordCamp Denver

I was honored to be invited to speak at WordCamp Denver for CritiquePress. I’ve shared the stage with the amazing Meg Delagrange, a local designer extraordinaire. We’ve given valuable real-time feedback for designs that have been submitted in advance in a hybrid town-hall / panel discussion format.

I understand that getting your website or the design you’ve created critiqued can make you feel vulnerable. Especially in front of an audience. I however believe it’s important to share your work and get feedback. There is always something that can be improved. Sometimes the smallest change can have the biggest impact.

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As designers we sometimes tend to be perfectionists. But perfect is the enemy of done. Websites are a living thing, it’s better to iterate as content grows. Over time we learn more about our audience and how they interact with the website. It’s always recommend to ship early and continue to iterate.

Meg and I critique each website based on the following categories: User Flow, Storytelling, Layout, and Accessibility.

We’ve gathered some resources on the topic we’d like to share with you:

Design & User Experience

Accessibility

Slides of presentation can be found on Speakerdeck.

Join me at WordCamp Denver

My travels over the past year and a half have taken me to many beautiful places. One of those incredible places was Colorado. I’m excited to return and meet the local WordPress community.

I’ll be on a Design panel with the wonderful Meg Delagrange. We will be reviewing websites and give constructive and actionable feedback on how to improve the User Experience and Design of a website. This will give you an insight in how we approach projects, solve problems for the user, and help clients to better connect to their audience.

Join us at WordCamp Denver November 5-6 and submit your site for review during CritiquePress.

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Lost in Translation: What I learned by Contributing to the Polyglots Team

I’m going to tell you why you should care about WordPress Translations, even if you don’t speak any other languages besides English.

Today WordPress powers 26% of the Internet. It is now a teenager and has been growing constantly over the past 13 years. It was created here in the U.S., so it’s “native” language is English. But for a CMS to grow globally, English is not enough.

So how many languages does WordPress speak?

WordPress speaks more than 100 languages and is learning new languages every day by it’s amazing community, the Polyglots. It has 162 locales, and 56 locales are translated at 100%. That means that every string in WordPress, the dashboard and default themes are fully translated. Continue reading “Lost in Translation: What I learned by Contributing to the Polyglots Team”

I’m speaking at WordCamp New Orleans next month

I’ve passed through New Orleans once two years ago during an epic road trip from Orlando to Seattle. The two nights I’ve spend in Nola were barely enough to soak in the amazing and very unique culture. I’m excited to return to New Orleans to listen to lots of Jazz and speak at WordCamp Nola next month. It will be great to meet the local community and talk about translating WordPress.

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My friend the Impostor Syndrome

Four years ago I was working in New York on a project. It was a strategy project for a big media company. They got 10,000 visitors a day. Whereas all my previous projects would get 1,000 hits a day or less. So it was 10 times bigger than anything I’ve ever worked on.

One day I went to work, I approached the huge silver building in Midtown Manhattan, walked through the revolving door and into an empty elevator. Even before I reached the 46th floor I found myself crying. But I pulled myself together, walked into the office and started my day. A few days later the same thing happened again and only after I found myself crying in the elevator for the third time I knew I had to do something. Continue reading “My friend the Impostor Syndrome”

I’ll be speaking at WordCamp NYC again this year

The very first time I spoke at a WordCamp was in 2012 at WordCamp New York. I spoke about Responsive Design back then, which was the hot topic at the time. This year I have the honor to share the stage again with so many amazing people in the community. I’ll be speaking about my experience with the Impostor Syndrome and how I am overcoming it. I hope to inspire others to talk about how it is effecting them.

WordCamp NYC is happening July 15th to 17th. It is hosted at the United Nations during OpenCamp, a week of events organized by different Open Source projects. I’m very excited to see how OpenCamp will bring different Open Source communities together to foster conversation and hopefully we can learn from each other.

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