Creative Director, UX Innovation - Hattery Labs / Digital Design Alumnus (1996 Graduate) & Advisory Board Member
March 2, 2012
the journey of UX continues’¦ or momentarily re-thinking child labor laws.
30 minutes ago—whoa
you know, writing this blog post was a lot harder than i thought it would be.
the time with the students and staff at VFS last december, reaffirmed that extraordinary people, ideas and dreams go through that place.
how does one encompass and express all profoundly the good people and experiences that happened during that brief week? or all the events that have happened afterwards? there are just too many people i want to thank, thoughts and stories that i want to share.
let’s begin with that:
“thank you. meeting you, getting to know you—witnessing how you craft utter delight—made me see thing differently, and for the better”
I’m very happy to write about my lunch with Peter Jin Hong. Amber Bezahler sent an email to all Digital Design students telling us about this amazing opportunity, and we had to write back to her explaining why having lunch with Peter was important to us. Matt Dale, Steve Neweduck, Owen Chen and I won this great opportunity. We shared breakfast in a beautiful place in Gastown where we spent almost three hours talking and eating a lot!
During this time, Peter shared insights about his professional life and gave us a bunch of tips and pointers. I will share one of his tips with you. The magic number for us that we always have to remember is 2. This is the number of years to be in a position, where we can grow, build a network, face conflicts and have the time to resolve them. After two years, we can move to a higher position within the company or move on to a new opportunity, but no less than two years. This is the best way to build our career paths.
I was so excited when I opened my email to find out that a Google employee was on their way to our campus. To be able to even set eyes on someone from the magical land of red, green, yellow, and blue letters was cool in itself. Not only was Peter Jin Hong actually going to spend an entire WEEK with us, he was going to be going out to lunch with four lucky students who won a draw. With my hunger to learn more about user experience, I saw this as a prime opportunity to sit down and hear what a seasoned veteran had to say on the matter.
I must say meeting Peter was very interesting. I had my images blocked on my email throughout this entire time, so my idea of a “Lead User Experience Designer” was an older grey haired male with tales of user experience past. I was standing with the three other students who had been picked for the lunch when suddenly this below shoulder length straight hair walked through the VFS doors. This hair was attached to a younger male wearing a leather jacket, scarf, big smile, and an extended hand saying “Hey guys, I’m Peter”. All my nervousness of not being able to hold a conversation with this magical grey haired UX master had instantly faded as I said, “Hey, I’m Steve, nice to meet you!”.
Peter Jin Hong, a graduate of the digital Design program, has carved out an incredible career for himself since leaving VFS. His resume includes the highest profile agencies, such as Blast Radius, Tribal DDB and Organic, and currently sees him holding the title of User Experience Designer for Google+ Photos in San Francisco. As part of his artist in residence visit, Peter gave a presentation to the students. The content was riveting. But what he did after the presentation ended was even better.
Peter is a humanist. He designs from the perspective of enriching the human experience. This came through in every aspect of his presentation. He chose to stand away from the podium, presenting in front a black background with minimal images and text behind him. He simultaneously unraveled a mystery about his own personal experiences (including a horrible but life-changing motorcycle accident) while providing interesting and relevant information regarding the science of how people interact with and react to the world around them. The presentation culminated in showing us how these narratives apply to the work that he does on a daily basis as a user experience designer.
It’s our great pleasure to welcome Peter Jin Hong as an Artist in Residence! Peter, a graduate of both the Foundation and Digital Design programs, will be returning to these hallowed halls (or our hip warehouse) as both a VFS Digital Design Advisory Board Member and UX Lead at Google+ Photos.
Peter will be visiting with us from December 12th to the 14th. During his time here, Peter will inspire and collaborate with students. On Monday, Peter will sit in on Interactive Design 2 final presentations in the morning and join the Portfolio Preparation course in the afternoon to review the portfolios of our upcoming graduates. He’ll provide insight and guidance on how to package projects for interviewing success.
Tuesday starts with Peter participating in the Information Architecture 2 course to consult on user experience and IA project considerations. Then, it’s off to lunch with some very lucky students. In the late afternoon, Peter will be speaking at the Motion Showcase on his inspiring experiences as a UX professional.
On Wednesday, Peter will be conducting a Project Guidance Workshop in which term 4 students can show him initiatives in any state of completion to get conceptual, aesthetic and technical guidance. That evening, we’re proud to announce that Peter will be the keynote speaker at Appetizers talking on the topic of “Remembering We’re Human — Elusive Perspectives on a Career in UX“.