We’ve got another interview for you this week with Rumiana Williams, a Product Design Manager at Adobe.
Tell us a bit about what you do.
I am a Product Design Manager on the Components team at Adobe. I manage a team of designers working on a system of mobile components inside the Adobe Creative Cloud apps. Some of those components are offered as part of the UI components in the Creative SDK to third party developers.
What do you love most about your work?
I love that we create tools for creative professionals and for people who want to be creative. It’s very exciting to provide the medium for that audience and see the work that is being created using the tools we make. In general, the theme behind our mobile apps is that inspiration could happen anywhere and you should be able to capture and start the creative process on your phone or tablet. Also touch devices provide natural gestures that creatives use when drawing, for example. Today with tools like the iPad Pro and the Apple Pencil creating on a mobile device is easier than ever before and feels very natural.
What made you initially decide to become a designer?
I was trained as a traditional Graphic Designer but very early on in my education I discovered a passion for anything interactive. I enjoyed creating brand identity and print projects but what excited me the most was being able to prototype my designs in Action Script and think about the whole user experience. I enjoyed the design research phase and figuring out what a product should do and feel like. At some point in my career I started designing for mobile devices and I enjoyed the challenges that the small screen presented as well as the context in which it was being used. It was much different than designing a website.
What’s the coolest thing you’ve worked on recently?
I am currently working on a new tool for letterform creation called Project Faces. It allows adjustment to the whole alphabet simultaneously. The app is a starting point for creating quick designs which can then be perfected in Illustrator, InDesign or Photoshop. We are in the very early stages of development, user research and design but so far the project has been received very positively by the design community. Brand designers are really excited since it provides the ability to do quick ideation and gives them the ability to create letterforms to use in logotypes rather than modify existing ones.
What excites you about the Creative Cloud ecosystem?
One thing that is very unique to the work we do is that we don’t only create individual apps and components, we actually create an ecosystem of apps and experiences. All the work that we create is synced and goes with the user anywhere they go including the desktop apps. Our mobile apps are often a starting point for continuing creation on the desktop. The UI components that my team produces provide the building blocks of the app experience.
Designing a system at this scale is challenging and requires a lot of collaboration between product, design and engineering so that the apps feel like a family with similar look and feel and common interaction models.
Where do you see the future of mobile creativity going?
As mobile devices become more powerful, the tools that creatives use have to become more complex too. The separation between where and on what device you create is disappearing. Creatives and people who want to be creative have the ability to start a project on one surface but finish on another and not focus too much on where they are creating but rather on what they are creating, which is exciting!
Thanks for talking to us, Rumiana!