As projects develop and during our internal design thinking process, our Creative Director Joseph Nother guides our design output forward with critiques, comments and insightful suggestions. The Lexington, Kentucky, chapter of the American Advertising Federation recently appointed Joseph to share that same creative and critical thinking as a judge for the chapter’s ADDY Awards competition.
Here, we share a quick Q&A and recap of his trip:
DS: Overall, how was the experience?
Joseph: There’s a lot of amazing design, branding and creative talent in and around the Lexington area and, as judge, I was able to see the positive direction of the creative community. I feel like my role of judging, in a small way, helps the Lexington AAF members celebrate their successes. I certainly enjoyed meeting professionals on the AAF Lexington board and learning about the area and their community. Good times, food and drinks were had at deSha's!
Also, it was an honor to both see the work and judge it on creative merits against hundreds of other work, ranging from visual identities, to interactive, print, TV, radio, billboard and other integrated campaign efforts. I’m excited to be able to bring some of those inspiring ideas home and share them with our team.
DS: Why was judging the ADDY Award competition significant for you?
Joseph: Michael Bierut, founder of Pentagram, said it simply and succinctly, “If you do good work for good clients, it will lead to other good work for other good clients. If you do bad work for bad clients, it will lead to other bad work for other bad clients.” It was clear to me that the teams behind the submitted work are passionate about delivering good work to their clients.
I believe in creating better work through better relationships--among clients, internal teams and with our communities. Organizations such as the American Advertising Federation and the ADDY Awards prove their value by helping to bring everyone closer together.
Along with this participation as ADDY judge, I’m a former president of the Knoxville Chapter of the American Institute of Graphic Design, and it’s easy to see the value these organizations and awards can bring through camaraderie, education and, ultimately, inspiration of students and young adults eager to enter the field to pursue their passion and join our creative ranks.
DS: What was your favorite piece?
Joseph: I really enjoyed the branding ecosystem developed for the Alliance For American Manufacturing from "Shatterbox Studios"---simple, clean and bold with a postmodern aesthetic evocative of powerful nationalistic messaging.
DS: What was in your hotel gift basket?
Joseph: What can I say? Bourbon, of course...and some great candies. They didn't last long:)
The ADDY® Awards spell accomplishment and triumph for a creative community. Winning work happens because of clients who possess courage, commitment and leadership, and who inspire and guide our designers, content and tech teams to take creative to an award-winning level. These awards recognize our creative as among the best in the area. Gold ADDY Award winners' creative will go on to be entered into regional and national competitions. So, stay tuned!
The American Advertising Federation's ADDY Awards represent the true spirit of creative excellence by recognizing all forms of advertising from media of all types, creative by all sizes and entrants of all levels from anywhere in the world.
Designsensory's 16 GOLD ADDY Award Winners
• Altar'd State
• Carton Services
• Flip Fest
• Knox County Health Department
• Knoxville Symphony Orchestra
• Patricia Nash Designs
• Radio Systems Corporation (Bark for Your Park; Sportdog)
• Tennessee Department of Tourist Development (Spring; Winter; Trails; State Parks; Civil War; Vacation Guide: Cover Design, Behind-the-Scenes Video, Landing Page)
• University of Tennessee Athletic Department
Designsensory's 9 SILVER ADDY Award Winners
• Foxfire Mountain
• Medal of Honor Convention
• Miller Energy Resources
• Outward Bound
• Radio Systems Corporation
• RIVR Media
• Tennessee Department of Tourist Development (Triptales; Summer)
• United Way of Knoxville
Designsensory's Bronze Citation of Excellence
• Pest-Ops LLC
Designsensory's Judges' Choice Awards
• Patricia Nash campaign
• Designsensory holiday cards
And, we congratulate all 2012 Addy Award Winners!
Photographing and designing the cover for the official Tennessee Vacation Guide was an amazing creative experience. After collaborating with our friends at State Tourism Office on the overall concept and developing moodboards and draft compositions to test the idea, we scouted several locations across middle and East Tennessee to see what would work best as the setting for what we had in mind.
Gearing up for the shoot involved the entire office and help from the Department. We asked everyone in the Designsensory office to pitch in with camping equipment to be used as props in the shot. As the shoot day neared, our halls looked more like a base camp than a brand consultancy, with backpacks, lanterns, oars, sleeping bags, mountain bikes and a colorful assortment of gear for staging a wonderful outdoor adventure.
Shot at scenic Fall Creek Falls State Park, the cover image captures a family enjoying the fun of the outdoors, music and memories that only a vacation in Tennessee could bring together. To achieve this cover image, the Designsensory team collaborated with the Miles Media for the overall concept, locations and talent, bringing together photographers, stylists and the rest of the creative crew.
To further generate buzz about the new cover design and to push the physical cover to a digital setting, Designsensory conceived and developed branded content in the form of a short video showing a glimpse of what it took to capture the essence of the state in this single image for vacationers everywhere. This behind-the-scenes video shares some of the process and passion to bring everything together—from models and props to learning about setting up the location and getting that perfect shot. A user can scan the QR code on the cover with their smartphone to view the video and then continue planning on the mobile website.
Guiding our work and inspiring our design is our curiosity to always ask what’s next and what will tomorrow bring for design, content and technology, and for our clients and their customers. As we move into this new year, we’re looking ahead at trends for 2013. Each year, we ask individuals from the Designsensory team, “What are some of the big topics in design, content, technology, business growth and branding you see making an impact this year?”
How do these fit into your branding, and what are some other trends relevant to your business? Please, let us know. And, join us for Part Two in February.
Joseph Nother | creative director & principal
Content Marketing starts with Brand Honesty
Brands will need to stop posing. They will need to be honest with their purpose, solve real problems and stand for something ideal, not in the dated sense of corporate responsibility, but as an organization exuberantly and positively involved in people’s lives. With an “honest” brand strategy in place, these brands can then embody and express their ideals in all forms of relevant content and engage in conversations that are customer-first (relevant, valuable, validating) regardless of media.
Josh Loebner | strategist
Branded entertainment, sometimes known as product placement or in-show branding, is something many of us have seen on TV shows and in the movies. Now advertisers are collaborating with content publishers, media outlets and brand consultancies to create native advertising.
This online form of in-show branding integrates high-quality content into the organic experience of a given platform. Examples could include longer form video, web films, photo streams and interactive graphics among others. This article from Mashable shares more on what native advertising is and how it can better engage and connect with people than traditional online advertising.
Susan Napier-Sewell | content developer, writer, editor
Crossover & Collaboration
We all have skill sets upon which we don’t necessarily hang our organizational hats. Staying compartmentalized can deprive an organization of mining/nurturing in-house assets. Regard each person in your organization as a content resource, with uniqueness of voice, perspective, expertise, and you’ll see a spike in creativity and cross-department collaboration.
Erin Slattery | content strategist
From SEO to loyal viewership, content that is meaningful and useful will offer a return on investment far greater than tactics and formulas aimed to boost search results. As leading search engines work diligently to make robots think like humans, it is our responsibility to cater our content to humans, not robots.
Make it Memorable
Static, wordy content has fallen to content that is snackable, easy to consume and experiential. Getting your audience involved by offering an entertaining immersive experience proves key in making your content memorable and return visit worthy. Gamification, video and engaging visuals will continue to grow in importance. Focus on content that is concise, interactive and easy to share and you will find your content more than earning its keep.
Paula Solomon | director of business development
Integrated digital solutions, including specialized video content, are currently on-trend in our business development efforts. Usage of video, specifically on commerce-based websites, is growing exponentially, and I expect sales of the specialized content to grow exponentially as well.
Susan Napier-Sewell | content developer, writer, editor
Red-hot Social Curation
Social curation took off online in 2012. To innovatively engage customers, Pinterest launched its business accounts in October. Brands big and small have joined the social scrapbook that is potentially morphing into The World’s Greatest Shopfront, now 40 million strong.
Social curation is just getting started, given its meteoric rise and the mind-boggling number of new platforms. Take a peek.
Erin Slattery | content strategist
Our marketing islands are no more. Integration between networks and media will prove key in 2013. Already, we see promotions intertwined between Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram and others. As the year plays out, expect to see businesses leverage their strength on one platform to extend their reach on others.
Joseph Nother | creative director & principal
Whether as accessories to mobile apps or separate devices altogether, technology will continue to embed, integrate and augment human beings. Think fitbit, Quantified Self, Nike+ FuelBand, tracking devices, precursors to the Star Trek Tricorder as next steps to embedded and cybernetic technology (particularly if you put stock in Kurzweil’s singularity).
Justin Hudson | designer
The Elevation of the Smartphone and Friends
I believe we will see smartphones move beyond contemporary use of onscreen apps and sites to an essentially functional role in our lives. Phones are teaming up with other gadgets to streamline and refine daily existence into a digital experience we control with one hand.
• To stream your favorite shows to any TV, anytime, from your phone, try the Plair app.
• fitbit, mentioned above in Joseph’s trend, keeps track of your well-being and autosyncs so your data, such as calories burnt, steps taken and sleep quality, is always current.
• With Delphi’s Vehicle Diagnostics downloadable app and a plug-in module, you can utilize your smartphone to monitor and control your car, including mimicking car remote functions and translating trouble codes.
Some apps are already in place to benefit our lives, but much of what’s out there in the form of appcessories are novelty items. I expect life-essential devices, such as those mentioned above, to become a seamless integration into our daily lives.
Kristin Eubanks | content assistant
QR Codes; Physical-to-Digital
Businesses are head over heels about QR codes and the changes QR codes can effect. Currently, consumers have to scan the bar codes on their smartphones with an app, unfortunately. Many do not know how to use QR codes, and countless others still have not caught up with technology and do not have smartphones. According to comScore Inc., in June 2011 14 million Americans scanned QR codes with their mobile phones. Unfortunately, this was only 6.2 percent of the mobile phone audience.
QR codes are a brilliant idea, just a little too advanced for their time. Once the generation catches up with the technologies, QR codes would be more affective. A new trend for 2013 would be to keep pushing QR codes to educate people on their effectiveness and raise awareness of what they offer. Although QR codes are taking awhile to catch on, their value is incredible—not just for businesses, but for healthcare as well.
Matt Montgomery | graphic designer
Near Field Communication
Though strangely absent in the latest iPhone 5, Near Field Communication (NFC) in smartphones and tablets is right around the corner. Several flagship Android phones including the Nexus S and Samsung Galaxy S II are already using this promising technology. Though it might take some time for NFC to fully take off, once it doesNFC-enabled devices will be able to perform as your mobile wallet, get tickets for boarding passes or even act as your car keys.
Tuyen Ho | designer
Tactile-enhanced Print Design
I think in order for print design to survive in this digital world, it has to become more tactile and “interactive” to compete with all of the digital media out there. People still like to use their senses (touching, feeling, etc.), so flat print is evolving into intricate visual pieces that encourage people to pick them up and spend time with them. Some print pieces may be traditional flat print, but their designs have textures and shadows creating dimension or a cut-paper-look, making one believe he or she could lift it right off the page. Other designs involve die-cuts, folds, flaps, scratch-and-sniffs, embossing, glossy, e.g., something that will push the experience further. Many think print is dying, but I think now that the day-to-day print clutter is falling to the wayside, making room for beautiful print pieces to be noticed and appreciated.
Ian Fitz | web developer
I believe 2013 is the year that responsive web design becomes firmly widespread. Ideologically, responsive design has been building steam for many years now, but web browser and cellphone technology has been holding back truly beautiful and graceful design. As more designers and developers dive headfirst into creating flexible pages and as Android development, which requires a responsive mindset to work on the myriad devices and screen sizes Android supports, reaches critical mass, responsive design in new websites will start to outnumber traditional, static web design.
When people come together at celebrations and gatherings this time of year, festive drinks can bring smiles, start conversations, and keep them going. Did you know that if you want to be more creative, a drink may actually help?
We’ve done the research and, believe us, we’ve been thorough in our studies! If you want to dive into some scholarly reading, reference a recent CBS News article, "In a piece of research called ‘Lost in the Sauce,’ researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and UC Santa Barbara describe plying their volunteers with vodka and cranberry juice. What they found was that these volunteers saw more solutions to word puzzles—and they saw them faster. The less fortunate, sober, volunteers, subjected to a placebo, were more focused but not as creative.”
So, let’s raise a glass (mind you, in moderation) to connecting creative power and happy hour. To give you some ideas, at least for the drink recipes, from wassail to whiskey, find out what some of our favorite liberating libations are.
THE 12 DRINKS OF CHRISTMAS*
Joseph’s Heavenly Hot Cocoa
It’s comfort food with an edge. Take your favorite hot chocolate and kick it up a notch! Start with a base of hot cocoa and add Irish cream whiskey—or for the bold, just bourbon.
1 cup sugar
2/3 cup baking cocoa
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 cups 2% milk
2/3 cup water
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
In a large saucepan, combine sugar, cocoa and salt. Stir in milk and water. Cook and stir over medium heat until heated through. Remove from heat; stir in extracts. Yield: 10 servings (2-1/2 quarts).
The “Heavenly” Part
To hot chocolate, add Kahlua, Bailey’s and peppermint schnapps. Or, try these: Grand Marnier, coconut rum, amaretto, Frangelico, Irish whiskey, butterscotch schnapps, white cream de menthe, and the possibilities continue. Dollop with whipped cream and nutmeg, too, if you like.
Brandon’s Glogging Good Mulled Wine
It’s “Glogg” in Sweden, but we call Mulled Wine a delicious tradition here. Boil red wine with cheesecloth-wrapped fruit and spices, including dried orange zest, cinnamon sticks, cardamom seeds, cloves, blanched almonds and raisins. Don’t forget the sugar cubes and brandy!
12 oz. vodka
1 bottle (750 ml) dry red wine
1.5 tbsp. mulling spices
1 tsp. fresh orange zest
2 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. blanched almonds
4 tbsp. raisins
Wrap mulling spices in cheesecloth. In a large saucepan, combine the wine, vodka, cheesecloth with mulling spices, orange zest and sugar. Allow to very lightly simmer over medium heat for at least 30 minutes (do not boil). Discard mulling spices. Drop a few raisins and almonds at the bottom of each mug and top with the hot liquid.
Merry Manhattans by Design
Holidays beg for something simple as 1, 2, 3. Here you go. Design decision: Brandied cherry is a must for garnish.
2 oz. rye whiskey
1 oz. sweet vermouth
2 dashes bitters
Place liquids in cocktail shaker with cracked ice. Stir or shake according to preference until completely chilled. Strain into chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with brandied cherry. All set.
Anne’s Homemade Happiness Kahlua
Whether your holiday festivus demands White Russians or Mudslides, start with a base of this candy ’cohol.
1 cup of honey
1/2 cup instant coffee (nongeneric is better)
1/5 grain alcohol (recommend Everclear)
2 cups dark brown sugar
6 tbsp. real bourbon vanilla
8 cups water
Heat water, sugar and honey until melted (do not boil).
Add coffee crystals and simmer for 30 minutes.
Cool to 110 degrees and add vanilla.
Let set for at least 30 minutes, stirring frequently.
Add alcohol and stir well.
If you’re feeling risky, try mixing it up with different varieties of flavored coffees, like French vanilla or hazelnut.
The Grinch Who Stole Content
Things are not always as they seem. Take The Grinch, for example. Sip bold green, melon-flavored Midori mixed with lemon juice and simple syrup. Drop a cherry in to symbolize the Grinch’s changed heart.
2 oz. Midori melon liqueur
1/2 oz. lemon juice
orange or melon slice for garnish
Pour ingredients into cocktail shaker along with cracked ice. Shake well. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish and consume!
Alexander and the Peppermint-Twisted Techies
Hands down, when chocolate and peppermint collide, something’s going right. This chocolate concoction with a touch of blissful peppermint bliss will enchant your winter palate.
1 shot vanilla vodka
1 shot white crème de cacao
1 shot milk or cream
1 Hershey’s kiss
1 small candy cane
few drops peppermint schnapps
In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, mix vodka, creme de cacao and chocolate liqueur. Strain into a cocktail glass. Drop Hershey’s kiss into the glass, and hang candy cane off the rim with the stem in the glass (to add flavoring.) Alternatively, rim glass with crushed candy canes, using peppermint schnapps or creme de cacao to adhere candy to the glass.
Matt’s Honking Happy Eggnog
Over time, the origin of eggnog has been the subject of serious debate. We give the nod to England, since we can go along with “noggin” deriving from a Middle English term used to describe a small, wooden, carved mug used for serving alcohol. Eggnog calls for cream, cloves, eggs, vanilla, and don’t forget the nutmeg. A little rum lightens things right up.
3 1/2 cups milk
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
generous pinch of ground clove
6 egg yolks
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup rum (optional)
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Over low heat combine milk, vanilla extract and clove in medium saucepan. Bring to a slow boil. Once milk mixture starts to boil, remove from heat.
Combine egg yolks and sugar in mixer. Whisk together until pale and fluffy. With mixer on low, pour hot milk mixture into egg yolks; whisk until well mixed. Pour mixture back into the saucepan and heat on med/med-low for about 5 minutes, continually stirring, until thickened and creamy. Do not let it boil, or the nog will curdle.
Stir in the rum, heavy cream and nutmeg and refrigerate overnight. When ready to serve, garnish with a sprinkle of nutmeg.
We Wish You Wassail
With wassail, It’s a matter of what came first: the drink or the gesture. “Wassail” means “to greet someone,” so when a group comes “wassailing,” hand them a fragrant concoction of cider, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. You may, of course, opt to add your favorite alcoholic beverage.
1 gallon apple cider
2 cups orange juice
1 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 orange sliced
Mix juices, sugar and seasonings together. Slowly bring to a boil in large saucepan. Boil 1 minute. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Serve hot. If serving from a punch bowl, float sliced oranges in wassail.
Michael & Kelly’s Cranberry Crackle (nonalcoholic)
There’s something about fruit that thrives in boggy places that’s so irresistible. With cranberries, you’re getting an antioxidant benefit in your punch, as well as a cup of deliciousness. Feel free to use any variety of cranberry juice. It’s all good.
1 bottle cranberry juice
2 (2 liter) bottles ginger ale
1/2 quart sherbet (your choice of raspberry, pineapple, orange or lime)
Mix cranberry juice and ginger ale in punch bowl. Add 1/2 the sherbet to punch bowl center and allow it to melt slightly. Enjoy!
Paula’s Fizzy Pom Punch (nonalcoholic)
Party goers love the fresh taste of pomegranate juice, and the juice is loaded with antioxidants. Perfect for providing hip taste options to those who prefer not to drink alcohol or for midday office parties where employees need to return to work. Serve with a fan-shaped orange cross-section.
1 bottle pomegranate juice (16 oz.)
1 cup nonalcoholic triple sec
2 bottles (750 ml. each) nonalcoholic champagne, sparkling cider or sparkling water
1 tbsp. lemon juice
Mix pomegranate juice, lemon juice and nonalcoholic triple sec in punch bowl. Add nonalcoholic champagne, sparkling cider or sparkling water. That’s it!
Josh’s Jolly Jello Shots
A work of art, these jolly holiday trees take jello shots from lime to sublime. We’re inspired!
1 (3 oz.) box lime jello
1/2 package plain Knox gelatin (one teaspoon)
1/4 cup cold water
3/4 cup vodka (use a flavored one, if preferred)*
miniature Christmas trees-shaped silicone mold
star confetti (little candy stars, found in supermarket baking section)
assembly gelatin (1/2 cup water and 1/2 envelope gelatin)
*to make trees stronger, you can use one cup of vodka and no cold water
Lightly spray molds with cooking spray. Blot with clean paper towel, leaving just enough residue to help loosen trees later. Set mold on a cookie sheet.
Pour 1 cup of water into small saucepan. Sprinkle with 1/2 envelope of plain gelatin, and allow to soak for a minute or two. Heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until gelatin is dissolved (about 5 minutes). Add lime gelatin and stir until dissolved. Stir in 1/4 cup cold water, and then the vodka.
Pour in molds and refrigerate several hours or overnight.
For garnishing trees: For garnish, we used coconut (for snow) and the little candy stars.
An hour or two before serving, prepare the assembly gelatin by pouring the water in a saucepan and sprinkling with the 1/2 envelope of gelatin. Allow to soak for a minute or two. Heat over low heat, stirring occasionally, until dissolved. Allow gelatin to cool to room temperature.
Using a fork or tweezers, dip stars in assembly gelatin and onto tops of trees. Sprinkle with coconut and return the trees to the refrigerator for about an hour before serving.
*If you noticed that there’s only 11 drinks, it’s time to even things out. Pour yourself a happy glass. There, now it’s twelve. :-)
Early last year, we surveyed our expanding client partnerships, additions of new team members and considered how we could expand and improve the working environment. Blueprints were drawn and, five months ago, construction began on an office plan that would cultivate conversation, foster ideas and build bonds. The new digs include additional write-on walls, brainstorming rooms, an open kitchen, design library and team-oriented work stations. With a full flight of stairs leading to it all, there’s the promise of daily exercise of our legs and minds!
Beyond adding to our office space, we’re adding ideas, with what we hope to be monthly seminars focusing on educating, enlightening and inspiring our staff, clients, students and community. The largest of the upstairs rooms will double as a photo studio and community gathering space.
We’re still putting on final touches but, if you’re in the area, feel free to join us upstairs for a meeting, coffee or conversation.
We love festive occasions and, of course, designing beautiful salutations, so we couldn’t stop at creating just one Designsensory holiday card. We made eight, for you to receive and to pass a warm message of joy on to your friends.
With each card, you’ll see a bit of personality coming through from each of the designers who crafted them. Whatever message you’d like to share, from playful to kind, funny to meaningful, we hope the assortment of cards brings a smile to your face and to others.
Patricia Nash is bringing high fashion to her hometown with a new concept store in the heart of Knoxville. For us here at Designsensory, creating an online store and virtual showroom for the Patricia Nash brand has been an amazing project, but being able to walk into her beautiful store, to be a part of seeing Pat Nash, her team and family celebrate the grand opening of the store was truly a rewarding experience.
At the ribbon cutting, people were overheard sharing that they felt transported to New York’s Soho district or Miami’s South Beach. From the window display to the mosaic artwork in the store vestibule that spotlights her larger-than-life logo to the in-store displays of gorgeous Italian leather handbags, accessories and other accoutrements, the store brings together the exquisite details that define the Patricia Nash brand. Check out pics from her grand opening, and visit the store to soak in the atmosphere and select a handsome handbag or two.
You may be familiar with an old-fashioned barn raising, where a community comes together, bringing lumber, supplies and manpower to build a barn in an afternoon. Designsensory’s staff collaborated with the PhotoBarn team to put a modern twist on barn raising by building the technically complex site in short order of two weeks. With online orders increasing into the tens of thousands through the help of national promotions such as Groupon, the PhotoBarn team required tech and design help from Designsensory to streamline the online visitor experience and purchase process.
Built on a highly specialized Magento platform, the PhotoBarn site allows visitors to upload photos, select and size materials for printing, and preview the finished custom piece of art. Located here in East Tennessee, PhotoBarn creates handcrafted photo products using your photographs, and prints directly onto aluminum, wood blocks and boards.
“Fail Harder” is a larger-than-life art installation both in size and meaning at the ad agency Wieden + Kennedy. Using over 100,000 pushpins to visualize the message, the art builds on a quote from agency cofounder Dan Wieden, “You’re not useful to me until you’ve made three momentous mistakes.” Failing, or trying harder, is an integral component to the Design Thinking process.
In the FastCo Design article “Wanna Create A Great Product? Fail Early, Fail Fast, Fail Often,” it was reported that inventor James Dyson crashed 5,127 times before perfecting his bagless vacuum cleaner. Dyson’s process is an extreme example, to be sure, but his feelings on failure ring true to any healthy iterative design process: “On the road to invention, failures are just problems that have yet to be solved.” Rather than shy away from failure, prototype and use what you learn to your product’s advantage.
“Utilize failure” is a phrase that’s probably not heard often in boardrooms or business meetings, but embracing failure at the right time can lead to fruitful successes. If “failure” is too harsh a term, “prototyping” is a work-around definition that may ease the introduction of this step within your development processes.
Working through design challenges, creating prototypes, getting feedback, iterating and refining is the foundational Design Thinking process that utilizes failure (prototyping) to create successes.
Professor Dean Keith Simonton at the University of California at Davis shared in a recent Harvard Business Review article that “creativity is a consequence of sheer productivity. If a creator wants to increase the production of hits, he or she must do so by risking a parallel increase in the production of misses. . . . The most successful creators tend to be those with the most failures!”
Rapid prototyping involves multiple iterations of a three-step process:
1. Prototype: Convert the users’ description of the solution into mock-ups, factoring in user experience standards and best practices.
2. Review: Share the prototype with users and evaluate whether it meets their needs and expectations.
3. Refine: Based on feedback, identify areas that need to be refined or further defined and clarified.
Many people look to minimize failure in both life and business and, therefore, avoid undertaking risks. Successful people and businesses embrace or utilize failure and understand the necessity of it to learn and grow. How is your business incorporating risk and failure in its innovation process leading towards success?
Ten Tools for Design Thinking, published by the University of Virginia’s Jeanne Liedtka and Timothy Ogilvie, shares 8 tips on how best to incorporate rapid prototyping, regardless of project or industry.
1. Focus on questions instead of answers.
2. Keep pushing deeper.
3. Question your assumptions.
4. Envision how a negative could become a positive.
5. Create some alternative scenarios.
6. Pretend to be somebody else.
7. Make it a party, but not too big.
8. Make it a competition.
When appropriate, Designsensory employs rapid prototyping as part of our Design Thinking methodology. Although specific to online design and development, this rapid prototyping process definition found in a recent Smashing Magazine article can be utilized in broader design or business contexts.