Every relationship with a tool or service is situated within a larger story. I consider how moments flow into each other, carrying an audience between scenes or a user through a process. I look at the causality present in systems and sequences as I research problems to discover what lies beneath the surface. I consider the emotional journeys people take, building empathy during design research and understanding how a product or service makes people feel.
Theatre gives me the freedom to design worlds that are not constrained by reality. When a new production begins, everything's on the table and anything's possible. I take a similar approach to designing systems and experiences. I imagine radical new possibilities before limiting the solution space by constraints. Through world-building and visioning, I paint a picture I can collaborate to modify and operationalize. My confidence and conviction when exploring unconventional ideas is one of my biggest strengths.
Playful & Scrappy Experimentation
By devising new theatrical works, I've learned the power of playful and rough experimentation to quickly refine and test ideas. Paper prototypes are used in the UX design iterative process not only because they're cheap, but because they allow a team to work through ideas and generate them quickly before getting attached. In theatre there's a process called "devising" in which actors, directors, writers, and designers work together to compose new dramatic works without a script. The piece is created in the rehearsal room, on your feet. This "exquisite pressure" gets the creative juices flowing through improvisation and quick problem solving. Just like the bodystorming method, by getting an idea on its feet, you learn a great deal about it.
Collaboration & Leadership
Given the hands-on, rapid nature of putting up theatrical productions, I've learned how to collaborate, communicate, and lead within challenging circumstances. Whether you have four hours and five people to put up three projectors or ten minutes until showtime, theatre teaches a fast pace of working and leading. You're constantly in contact with large teams (think 30 people minimum) and the project will fail unless everyone is on the same page, working towards the same vision. You have to fluidly switch between aesthetic discussions to the nuts and bolts of technical troubleshooting, all while keeping the team's energy high. What could better prepare a person for Agile?
In order to communicate video and scenic designs, I've learned a number of skills that have proved useful to me when it comes to creating and prototyping visuals, products, services, and environments. I use Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Premiere, and After Effects regularly in both arenas. I'm fluent with AutoCAD and Vectorworks for drafting physical spaces and Maya and Cinema 4D for rendering them. I can create complex live audio & video manipulations in TouchDesigner or Max MSP/Jitter. I'm fluent in Python, Processing (Java), and HTML/CSS/JS. I'm familiar with Unity, C#, and Google Cardboard for making VR experiences.