What is your personal Design Philosophy? Do you have one?

almost 4 years ago from , Four Kitchens — Creative Director

I do a lot of self-exploration to try and better understand who I am and lately I've been reflecting on what kind of designer I am.

My personal design philosophy isn't about following fads or the cool new thing. I want my designs to have staying power. I want a design to stick. And so I have a post-it on my computer with the following on it:

Thoughtful Design with Longevity

What is your design philosophy or guiding lights?


  • Nelson TarucNelson Taruc, almost 4 years ago

    tl;dr - Focus. Boost signal, kill noise. Solve the first problem. Embrace uncertainty.

    For how I got to that, a long-winded explanation below. Hope this helps!


    6 points
  • Andre CabralAndre Cabral, almost 4 years ago

    For a few years now I have been trying to put it into words. I am not sure I have gotten to it's final version, but my Design Philosophy is:

    Identify the genius within the obvious.

    5 points
  • Jon .Jon ., almost 4 years ago

    I love Charles Eames quote: "The role of the designer is that of a good host, anticipating the needs of his guests". I live by that.

    4 points
  • Frédéric AudetFrédéric Audet, almost 4 years ago

    Do what's right, honor my own values and personal ethics. That simple.

    2 points
  • Taylor PalmerTaylor Palmer, almost 4 years ago

    This is a good question. Not sure I have one, but if I had to muse for a minute it would probably be something like:

    Every design is the result of its creator(s). The creation serves its purpose to accomplish a task or influence a behavior. I hope my designs always serve the purpose of making someone's life easier while being a joy to use or experience.

    How's that?

    2 points
  • Martin Ahe, almost 3 years ago

    Having worked with corporate and startup clients, I believe that the most important thing is to set up a proper design workflow, rooted in agile principles. This means prioritizing delivery over trying to make the designs perfect and working together with your teammates and clients rather than trying to make a good impression with a big design reveal. Frequent delivery and testing with users will often reveal that you have bigger fish to fry than those drop shadow properties.

    1 point
  • Richard Bude, almost 4 years ago

    "Anyone can make the simple complicated. Creativity is making the complicated simple."

    • Charles Mingus
    1 point
  • gustavo cramez, almost 4 years ago

    I didn't come up with it but once I read it for the first time it clicked: "Make hard things simple. Make simple things fun."

    1 point
    • Benny Jien, almost 3 years ago

      Thanks for sharing this. Mine is similar to this: “Keep things thoughtfully simple.” Because keeping things simple alone is not enough most of the times, I learned this the hard way. Sometimes simple alone can be too plain or easy. “Too” is never good, design must be balance. Sometimes we need fun, sometimes we need a necessary extra step — but whatever it is you need, design it thoughtfully.

      0 points
  • Ray Mierau, almost 4 years ago

    Personally I always start with common sense. I have worked with many clients that want to reinvent the wheel when there is absolutely no need to do so.

    You'll get the looks as if to say "are you even a designer tho?" because of keeping it simple but once they get their chance to explore the radical way they envisioned a solution it soon comes back to "we have to simplify this"

    Once the basics are solved we can then add the bells and whistles.

    (Thought I'd add that a lot of my product design is targeted at internal software used for business operations)

    1 point
  • Sherizan SheikhSherizan Sheikh, almost 4 years ago

    Keep it simple.

    1 point
  • Kyle WyattKyle Wyatt, almost 4 years ago

    Here are some ideas that seem to have remained true throughout my career. You could call it a philosophy, but I wouldn't since I'm willing to drop or revise any tenant as needed. Still, the work I'm most proud of usually touches on all five of these.

    1. Treat people well.
    2. Lead culture (as best as you can) rather than following trend.
    3. Keep it to a human scale.
    4. Opportunities look a lot like risk until you see it in hindsight.
    5. You are responsible for the objects and ideas you help put into the world.
    1 point