labels

Posted on Jul 15, 2015 in Thoughts and Ideas, User experience | No Comments

I’m not into labels. People are people. I’m a people too. People do things and I like to make it easier for them to do the things they do.

I like to solve problems. You can call me a problem solver. Some people call me a UX designer. Some interaction designer, web designer, project manager, front-end magic creator, graphic designer, artist or jack of all trades.

My friends and family call me Amanda.

I’ll probably call you a user if you use my products, but that’s just for ease of conversation. Sometimes you just need to categorize people into groups and generalizations so you can build better stuff for them, you know?

Losing to gain

Posted on Jun 21, 2015 in Thoughts and Ideas | No Comments

Sometimes you need to make space for something new.

My original intention during highschool was to be a fashion designer. I backed out before classes started only losing my deposit on residence.

My next move was to take a fast pace 2 year computer programming course because that was the way of the future. I dropped out after a semester and lost a four year scholarship.

I finally settled on a graphic design program the following year which I successfully completed and worked in the industry for four years. Nothing lost here other than my patience for passionless people tied up in internal politics.

I headed back to school at VFS because I wanted to be a motion designer. I lost that idea half way through the program and decided I liked flash programming better. Yeah, I kinda lost my mind at this point.

I was hired at Microsoft for a game design job after sincerely trying to convince them I was an entry level programmer. I had a kick ass time here, but lost my health as a result of pushing myself too hard.

I learned how to heal myself while working as an interaction designer at ICBC. Now that I’m feeling better, I’ve lost that need for a safe place to work and I’m currently exploring new opportunities. (I’m looking in Victoria, BC if you know of anything, hook a sister up)

While I’ve been perfectly happy the bulk of my life, the point is that sometimes you have to give yourself 100% to an idea, only to lose it later so that there’s room for the next to take hold. Kinda makes the failure rate on startups seem a little more palatable.

I can’t wait to see what I lose next.

 

double zipped pouch

Posted on Jun 7, 2015 in Fashion, Personal Projects, Tutorials | No Comments

I dropped by Dressew this morning to pick up some needles and bobbins and emerged a couple of hours later with three new projects in my bag. The first one is this cute double zipped pouch that I plan on using as a (temporary?) replacement for the heavy wallet I’ve been lugging around. I removed the cash and cards that I use most often and have been carrying them around in a pocket for the last three weeks and haven’t missed the extra stuff or weight at all.

While I’ll take credit for the sewing, I won’t take credit for the pattern. If you’d like to put your own double zipped pouch, you can find great details on how to do that at japanesesewingbooks.com.

double zipped pouch

Work/work balance

Posted on May 15, 2015 in Thoughts and Ideas | No Comments

I ran across this interesting blog post a while back. It’s short, sweet, and exactly to my point. It’s written much more concisely than I could have written it, so go ahead and take a look yourself.

High Dive hits one million

Posted on May 13, 2015 in Client work | No Comments

A couple of months ago I worked with Frosty Pops Corp to create a game trailer for their game Ten Large. I had a great time getting the ol’ motion muscles limber and offered my services for future games.

Fast forward to the present and I’ve created a second trailer for their biggest hit yet, High Dive. It’s already hit over a million downloads and hasn’t been even a week yet. After the trailer’s lured you in, you can download the game for free from the Apple App Store.

Bee and honey comb

Posted on May 12, 2015 in Photography | No Comments

I went home for a visit over Mother’s Day weekend and was helping my mom with a few home reno’s while I was there. I was up a ladder switching out a light fixture when I saw this little guy and climbed back down for my camera. I’m sure she thinks I’m pretty nuts, but when she’s afraid of heights, she takes the help she can get 😉
bee and little honey comb

Connection

Posted on May 11, 2015 in Thoughts and Ideas | No Comments

I’m always trying to define what this word means to my friends. Outside of dancing, I really like the way Brené puts it.

“I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship.”

― Brené Brown

Taking the time to do it right

Posted on May 1, 2015 in Thoughts and Ideas | No Comments

I fully realize i don’t have all of the time in the world to do everything and anything my heart desires. I try not to spend too much time worrying about where I’ve been or where I’m going. Instead, I try to use that time to create more value and increase the quality of the time I have.

I found an article on medium about building out a lifestyle business in your own little corner of the market that shares the same sentiments that I’d like to share.

Real-world skills from a game

Posted on Mar 22, 2015 in Thoughts and Ideas | No Comments

I’ll be the first to admit I belong to the generation that wants it all and wants it right now. Ok, I’m willing to work hard for a little while, but I like to see results as I go. I don’t want to spend 5 years of my life making something that barely makes a ripple when released into the marketplace. Fortunately that works for me in my line of work – continual feedback, as much from the user as possible through all stages of development is what keeps me employed and produces a better end product no matter what I’m creating.

The great thing about the last few years (few being relative to the many that have come before) is that we don’t need to spend so much of our time surviving, and we have so much more free time to do the things we want, and options to choose from. The best part for me in having so many interests is the permutations of potential career directions and specialties that I could and have found myself in.

At the moment I’m keeping the doors wide open, exploring what’s out there and where I could fit next. In a regular skim through of friends and liked page’s posts, I came across an article detailing the surprising effects of the game Minecraft.

The idea isn’t so new to me, but it may be to you, that games aren’t always a waste of time for non-social young adults in their parent’s basement. The can also be used as a safe ground for exploration and educational exercises, beyond math quizzes and match games. Minecraft’s open ‘sandbox’ allows youth and adults alike to explore a world with no instructions, and make the game their own as they spend more time in that world.

I love how the the article blends some of my experience and current interests together in a way that no highschool guidance counsellor could have ever forecasted.

Children, education, games, design, unstructured play, function over form, creating tools for others to learn from… it’s all in there. It’s more than motivating me to dig a little more around the interwebs to find a passionate team building something entirely different but wholely similar in their values, and luckily some place that has decent weather where I’d want to live 😉

Checkout the article to learn more, and as always, if you’d like to discuss, feel free to leave a comment below or contact me via email

Fishes and Barrels game trailer

Posted on Feb 1, 2015 in Client work | No Comments

I recently had the opportunity to work with a local indie game developer, Frosty Pop Corps. Some of that know me might think I’d be working as a project manager, game designer or designing the UI. In actuality, I was flexing my visual design skills in a short game trailer promoting their most recent release, Fishes and Barrels. You can download the game for free from the Apple iOS store.

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