Be professional or be authentic

What does an Italian pop-folk singer has to do with my professional writing?

Since I’ve started writing my blog, I wanted to present myself in the most professional way I could. I knew the more professional I’d be, the more this blog would help me in the future. After I started working at Inkod Hypera Ltd., using the skills I earned and also the blog, I had another perspective about the blog. Working with talented UX & GUI designers makes me learn a lot every single day, but I noticed I can’t find a topic to write about, and I don’t have the same motivation I had before. Why is that happening?

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Freedom vs. Commitment

Why sometimes it’s needed to be committed to an external constraint in order to achieve greatness

I’ve just ended a long month of basically not doing anything, and not being committed to anything, but myself. It’s no wonder that I didn’t achieve much in this period of time and didn’t feel I was making any progress, although I wanted to. To be precise, I was mostly focused on immediate goals like having fun, meet friends, rest, but not on long-term goals like learning new things or writing about things I wanted to write about (there’s well-written coding crash-course for designers, just waiting to be written by me). Magically, as soon as I finished my long vacation and started working, my mind switched to FOCUS mode, and I started learning new things, as I was getting payed for this time. Oh wait, I am! So, is that why I was so focused? Because I had a boss and needed to prove myself?

Well, yeah.

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5 Lessons I learned from job interviews

After a long service at the MOD, it was finally my time to get my shit together and start looking for a new job. I have a diverse experience of both UX and programming, but I focused on UX because that’s where my heart is. After a couple of months of on and off job searches and interviews, I finally found my next job as a UX designer. Here’re the lessons I’ve learned during this time period:

Why and how should you focus on good storytelling

Every once in a while I read an article or listen to a lecture that really sweeps me off my feet. I try to determine the unique element that keeps me so focused on the information I’m getting, and I think one of the most important ingredients of this success recipe is good storytelling. So, what does the word “storytelling” mean? Why is it so important? How can we use it? I took these questions for a little online reading aside my coffee and I’d like to share with you my insights.

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Insights from building my portfolio from start to end

 It’s 2:00 AM and I’m done building my portfolio. Wait. Let me just fix this minor little tiny issue here. Oh crap. It’s 2:30 and I’m done building my portfolio. I’ve had two very busy days of the last minute edits and now I’m finished. I accepted and accomplished HackingUI and .design’s one month portfolio challenge, while in the beginning of it I wasn’t even sure I have something to show in my portfolio. I know I have a lot of things to fix and a lot of things to improve in, but I’m happy — I wrote thousand lines of code in HTML, CSS and ReactJS, and I designed my own site and didn’t let myself down. My last posts were mostly about insights from the process of creating the portfolio. Now I can sum it up with some insights from the whole experience, from the perspective of the one who’ve accomplished the task.

Why designers should code

Lately I’ve been working on my portfolio. I haven’t programmed for a long time and I decided to code my portfolio from scratch, with no help of any automated site builders. I wanted to prove to myself I still got it, and also show I can code, as a crucial part of the portfolio. This got me wondering whether a designer should know how to code or not. Many designers have shared their thoughts about this topic and I wanted to share some of mine.

TL;DR: They should.

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What film photography taught me

I've started photographing with film and it taught me a lot about life

As I mentioned in the weekly newsletter (sign up!), lately I’ve been trying photographing with an old Nikon 35mm camera. I wanted to learn about the whole photography and development process and make the best out of it. So, after I shot about five films, ruined a whole film by not inserting it right, had high hopes and some disappointments, I learned some things about life.

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How I shaped my design character with non-design experiences

I’ve never learned proper graphic design. I studied fine arts at high-school and then learned programming and started working as a programmer. In some part of my career I decided to change my role and study UX design, to become a UX designer. This personal path shaped my point of view as a designer. Some points in this path are more design-related and some are less, but every one of them shaped me in a certain way that makes my whole design “character”. These points are:

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