I think a lot of what makes a designer good is being an active and conscious consumer of all products and services, thinking carefully about the design decisions that other people made (or didn’t make) when creating a product. The parallel tasting challenge was particularly useful in helping me develop this awareness, and it definitely influences how I perceive food now.
In terms of my practical design skills, I definitely need to spend time practicing and improving them. However, I think I’ve learned a lot about my personal design philosophy. One important aspect of it is a focus on practicality and usability, while also trying to infuse emotional and sensory aspects. I also feel strongly that much of a person’s emotional experience of a product comes from their past experiences, and I’ve started to learn how to grapple with that and incorporate it into the design of a product. For instance, the sneaker design challenge forced me to get into somebody else’s head and try to create a product that would appeal to a target consumer. I think a part of my design philosophy is starting with an extreme concept and changing it to make those extreme features more subtle, which is also reflected quite heavily in the sneaker design challenge. Another related aspect of my design philosophy is the importance I tend to place on the little details, which I believe really define a product design wise (for instance, the passive radiators on the JBL Charge 2+ speakers). I think Apple really exemplifies this philosophy, in that their product are both quite simple and intricate in terms of small but important details.
I think my representative image reflects certain aspects of my design philosophy. I took it in Copenhagen, Denmark: