While The Design Center taught me design fundamentals and techniques whilst working with a team for real-world clients, the greatest value came from learning to take the chaotic ideas in my head and turn them into strong clear concepts with distinct messages.
I now find myself working on global designs from music festivals to some of the largest online entities with a wide variety of people across numerous and varied disciplines from every corner of the globe. Knowing that my designs will be shipped and used by millions of people around the world is both rewarding and humbling. And it is exciting to know that after all this time my imagination is still working in overdrive!
Alt-Fest mobile web viewed on an Android device.
...that was the magic moment when I realised, "Holy crap! I can make money doing this stuff!?"
For my entire life, I've loved doing everything and anything creative. And even now with my childhood in the distant past my imagination is still running wild. I will always be a kid at heart. Being intimately involved with the creative industry has allowed me to challenge that imagination and translate it into reality.
From an early age I learned to play the trumpet and was constantly sketching the endless ideas in my head - I would even write copyright information on my elementary school drawings.
My earliest memories of design are rooted in the fifth grade when I created the page layouts for the school year book and continued this through my high school years.
At university I was the graphics editor for the college radio station print material as well as the morning DJ on the Pete & Larry show. Whilst attending the college of art at Western Michigan University I discovered the School of Design and applied to the inner sanctum known as The Design Center. After a gruelling interview and portfolio review I was
So whether the final outcome is a compelling user experience, detailed specifications, interactive prototypes, photography, music, writing, websites, video games, or something in between I'm always excited about the challenge of trying something new.
This is a but peek at some of my recent and past visual work - there are some projects so top secret they can only be seen in person! Why not get in touch to find out more about all of my design related skills including interaction design, people management, user experience, process, thinking, conceptual and future thinking, and much, much more!
Bachelor of Fine Arts Graphic Design
Bachelor of Fine Arts Photography
Art History Minor and Music Theory Minor
Macromedia Director and Lingo
Computer music and theory using MIDI software
Various training courses ranging from design to personal, management and people skills.
Various training courses ranging from design to business and financial regulations, management and people skills.
awards & organisations
I received a variety of awards throughout my Microsoft career for being a crucial team member in shipping products at services at Microsoft. These include:
MSN Entertainment v2.0, June 4, 2004
MSN 8, October 24, 2008
MSN International Channels v2.0, June 1, 2008
MSN Wave 12, November 2008
MSN Wave 13, June 2009
MSN Wave 16, November 2010
MSN Denver, June 30, 2011
MSN TMX for Windows 8, October 26, 2012
Awarded in 2011 by my peers as "Most Influential Designer".
Awarded in 2012 for my work with my peers and teams across Microsoft.
Awarded in 2002 for design excellence in the service of MSN UK.
Given for innovation and creativity in the field of graphic design.
Grids and typography rule supreme in great design and this reminds me of an old saying, "A word is worth a thousand pictures."
Roll: Senior UX Design Consultant
Tools/Skills: User experience, UI & interaction design; UX leadership, evangelism & mentoring; GDS and GOV.UK prototyping (Git & Heroku); Adobe Creative Cloud, Bohemia Sketch, InVision, Marvel, sketching & prototyping in code; Negotiating, planning, operations & team infrastructure
Detail: As a senior UX Design Consultant on the UK Governments HMCTS Crime Programme I was involved in a wide range of projects spanning all areas of justice from automating court systems to the digital integration of real-world courts across the UK. This was growing on the foundational framework I helped to create in my previous role at the Ministry of Justice and HMCTS.
Roll: Senior UX Design Consultant
Tools/Skills: Business development, stakeholder management & strategy, product roadmap; User experience, UI & interaction design; UX leadership, evangelism & mentoring; GDS and GOV.UK prototyping (Git & Heroku); Adobe Creative Cloud, Bohemia Sketch, InVision, Axure & sketching; Negotiating, planning, operations & team infrastructure
Detail: During my time at the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and HM Court & Tribunal Service (HMCTS) there was a massive revolutionary digital reformation of the justice system. My involvement was across all levels the Criminal Justice System (CJS) Common Platform Programme organisation as a senior UX leader with a small and dedicated team of User Experience team. An important part of this role was to evangelize and raise awareness of UX and Design in what has traditionally been a business and technical focused organisation. My initial task was around creating a detailed UX timeline to align with the business that lead into the creation of a UX framework and a pattern library partly taking the form of a Design Manual that encompasses UX, interaction and visual design as well as accessibility, research, GOV.UK prototype, UI, LESS/CSS, design and content patterns and more. I'm also consulted on a wide variety of projects - working closely with both front-end UI and back end development, creating solid design and front-end pattern libraries. I was also involved with user research and testing and site visits to grow our understanding of all the various roles in the Justice system that include judges, barristers, defense and prosecution, police, administrators and all the thousands of back-end office workers that keep things moving. All of this not only supported existing projects and teams but also encompasses a foundation for the Common Platform that unified and brought consistency across the British Justice systems and ultimately all UK government entities.
Roll: Senior Design Consultant
Detail: I was deeply involved with the global Experience Design Team at Barclays Design Office based in London. The focus was on fintech and included a wide range of projects covering internal colleague facing experiences to customer and client products including apps, websites, and a variety of banking and finance technologies that span from the digital to the physical space. I was in involved with not only consumer facing experiences but also products and services in Wealth, Investment Banking, and global banking. I consulted on strategy, planning, building creative teams, prototyping, user experience, visual and interaction design as well as mentoring. In addition to design, I'm also drove the direction for creative software, hardware and methodologies used across the global design function company-wide including standardisation and systems for rolling out and maintaining tool sets for both the design function and other areas of the business.
Roll: Founding member, Director and creative guru
Detail: We Have A Plan has a variety of business units including 1) newtongrads, a collection of services focused on STEMS graduate recruitment including digital and real world exhibitions; 2) Olio, which is involved with social app experiences; 3) Ear Kandy, which deals with hearing protection and education; and 4) Struktures, covering bespoke property acquisition. As a founder and member of the board I have been and continue to be involved with everything creative from the corporate branding and design language do working hands-on with designs, prototyping and development. I am also concerned with the long-term and "big picture" issues whilst dealing with regulatory and intellectual property issues. I'm also acting as Chief Technology Officer and engage regularly with developers and engineers.
Roll: Founding member and Head of Design
Roll: Senior UX Designer
Detail: My history at Microsoft spans from being a humble web designer to a senior UX designer with a wide variety of project and team related responsibilities. Including UX, IA, Usability, UI and Graphic Design. Near the end of my time at Microsoft I was a Senior UX Designer of the global AMP Design and Research team working in a fast-paced Agile Scrum environment with a wide variety of global projects for MSN, Windows 8 and Windows Phone. Duties included design from initial conceptual explorations, brainstorming and ideation to the final output for desktop, mobile and apps - working with both internal and external teams and partners both locally and around the globe; branding support and evangelism; user research; testing; design documentation including design guides for a wide variety of products as well as the CMS tools design and branding consultation globally; visual and interaction design and consultation, design and product concepts, project management and developing new products. I was also involved in training both internal and external resources including the use of the latest design technologies and image editing software as well as best practice. I also had experience working on and leading real and virtual teams; working with budgets, mentoring and building teams as well as managing contractors and designers both in-house and externally (and globally).
Roll: Founding member, Director and creative guru
Detail: Black Monday began in 1996 as my personal creative output for all things design, photography and music composition and continues to this day where I work with clients such as Barclays and Ministry of Justice. These days our focus is on all aspects of User Experience and visual design from initial concepts, usability, research, wireframes, prototyping through completion, for digital and print. This has included Black Monday magazine (print/online) and SinZine Magazine (online), album covers, digital illustration and a variety of clients; User Experience design, UX research, web and app design and development; photography; music composition; journalism primarily for the independent music industry. Black Monday is also involved with non-profit organisations including RecommendMe and Hillsong, for the later we are very much involved with the both the London and wider European region. Our client list continues to be varied and global including the UK, Switzerland, Belgium, Canada, Germany and the USA.
Further work history available upon request.
skills, experience & more
Highlights: Building and leading design teams in the UK, US, India and China; Mentoring both designers and non-designers in the UK, US, India and China.
Detail: Interviewing, hiring and managing both full-time and contract designers for both small and large teams. I also regularly collaborate with others on a wide variety of projects from small internal designs to large-scale global experiences and can get those with the right knowledge and expertise aligned and involved. I strive to build a positive team environment by modelling best practices and behaviours that promotes good morale. Being both a mentor and mentee is also something I enjoy doing.
I've been involved with print design from my high schools days and even through my focus is more on the digital world, these days I still find the physical world of print to be immersive and rewarding. Grids and typography rule supreme in great design and this reminds me of an old saying, "A word is worth a thousand pictures."
Mac hardware is my core visual creative tool and I have been an active user since 1988 in design, development and production. Experience includes the complete Adobe Creative Cloud, Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Edge, Fireworks, Axure, InVision, Marvel, Omnigraffle, Sketch, QuarkXPress, Freehand, Illustrator, Acrobat, Ableton Live, Native Instruments, Logic Pro, Final Cut Pro, Fontographer, Premiere, Cubase, Rebirth, Swift3D, Brackets, BBEdit, Office, and more. I'm adept with both MacOS and iOS.
Active PC user since 1985 (MS DOS before that); including the complete Adobe Creative Cloud, Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Edge, Fireworks, Axure, Omnigraffle, InVision, Marvel, QuarkXPress, Acrobat, Ableton Live, Native Instruments, Painter, Premiere, Expression, VisualStudio, Office, and more. I'm adept with all Windows desktop and mobile operating systems.
I have extensive nuts and bolts knowledge and experienced with the workings of all the various Apple and Windows hardware and peripherals. This includes deployment across both small and enterprise businesses and building PCs from the ground up; also experienced with setting up and managing both PCs and computer networks for both Mac and Windows; also experienced with setting up and maintaining servers and also have a good understanding of Android and iOS.
I'm also interested in back-end coding and programming and have a good understanding (but I'm not expert... yet!) of languages such as AngularJS, C# and what seems a very long time ago now I studied Pascal and Assembly Language.
I'm not a rugby fan but I have been in my fair share of Scrums...
For a more in depth case studies please visit my audacious addendum.
Case studies (PDF - includes content not found online)