Who are you?
Hi, I'm James, a Storyteller, Lifelong Learner, and Designer of experiences.
Since I was a kid, I’ve had a proclivity for recognizing patterns, drawing connections, and identifying areas for improvement. I wasn’t quite sure how best to use these gifts until I found UX.
From concept through high-fidelity prototypes, I work with businesses to identify design problems and devise delightful, elegant solutions.
I believe that digital products can (and should) be easy, dare I say, fun to use. In everything I do, I bring:
As with anything on the web, no one element makes UX Design work. It involves smart layout and typography, good copy, beautiful imagery, strong research, and so much more. I've dipped my toes in many of these elements, and come prepared to bring them together into a beautiful experience.
An Eye for design
Ever since my first photography class, I've had a keen eye for what works, and what doesn't. Over the years, I have developed these skills into a tasteful design sensibility.
Smart design happens when we pay attention to the nuances that affect people. As a former military leader and then a personal money advisor, I feel I have a pretty good grasp of people. Still, I am always striving to learn more about what makes people tick and what makes them happy.
Throughout all of my experiences, I've learned the importance of communicating assumptions, process, and solution—both verbally and in the form of deliverables.
How did you get into UX?
My background spans several industries and roles and affords me valuable knowledge and experience useful to the UX process:
Penn State Sociology Degree
Provided me with foundational knowledge of human behavior and statistics.
U.S. Naval Officer & Bomb Tech
Developed leadership and teamwork skills, attention to detail, stress tolerance and a strong work ethic while managing projects and leading team of special forces operators.
Learned market research, financial analysis, sales, business development, customer service, and behavioral psychology in order to help people make smart decisions with their money.
Photographer & Outdoor Guide
Constantly hone my eye for design, use digital editing software, maintain a website/blog, and use marketing strategies to sell my art.
What began as a seemingly random assortment of disparate experiences turned into a proper education in people and the ways humans interact with the systems we face every day. In 2016, I began looking for a way to combine my previous experiences with my obsession for improving people's experiences. I volunteered to help a design firm on my company's website redesign...and the rest is history! Since then, I’ve successfully finished several cutting-edge programs in human-centered design.
DesignLab’s industry-leading UX Design Academy
Google's Design Sprint Nanodegree
Malcolm Gladwell’s Creative Writing Masterclass
HubSpot's Inbound Marketing Certification
You can see my specific Design Thinking process here.
What else should we know?
As mentioned above, I photograph landscapes and lead photo hikes in the outdoors: