Colour Me Good: Brewhouse Adds a New Product Designer to the Mix
As Brewhouse Software continues to grow, we’re finding more and more of our hires seem to have music in their souls. This certainly isn’t a prerequisite but if this developing tasty software thing doesn’t work out, we’re definitely forming a band!
Meet, Lee. He’s our new Product Designer. And his former life as a DJ enables him to fit in perfectly with our musically inclined bunch. This coupled with the fact that he is an ace designer makes him the perfect addition to the Brewhouse team – we couldn’t have designed this better ourselves!
“Lee joining the team is a huge milestone for us; it signifies the continued investment we’re making in our efforts to promote design within the process of making products people love.” - Pat, Design Director
Let’s learn a little more about Lee.
Q: Describe your educational background.
A: I was one of the lost souls who jumped into post secondary without knowing what I really wanted to do. I studied Business Administration for a couple of years and then decided travelling sounded like more fun. I later ended up taking some design and development courses at BCIT, which steered me in the right direction.
Q: Nice. So when did you know that design was your passion?
A: It was 2009 and I had an epiphany, or maybe it was just the late nights. Either way, I had been a resident DJ for nearly three years and I remember asking myself, “Is this what you want to do for the rest of your life?”. I always knew that one day I would like to lead a more conventional lifestyle and I was only getting older. At the time I had been making posters for various shows in town and I always enjoyed messing around in Photoshop. I knew I had a passion for digital media so I made the move to Vancouver and studied at BCIT.
Q: Good move! What is the most embarrassing professional screw-up as a DJ or designer? What did you learn from it?
A: As a DJ, this has happened a handful of times; having the music cut out while mid-set. Whether it’s a loose cord, faulty needles, or your computer crashing, it inevitably happens. Hearing a venue full of people “boo” at you is not the most wonderful feeling in the world. You learn to just shake it off. Sometimes things happen that are out of your control.
Q: Out of control, like your DJ skillz! As a designer, what single project or task would you consider your most significant career accomplishment to date?
A: Medeo was the last project I worked on and I consider it to be a great success. Not just because I got to work with a fantastic group of people and learn from some impressive mentors, but because it taught me so much about myself. One of the cool things about working on products is learning the domain of each industry. Working on healthcare from a professional level directly translated into my personal life. I became proactive about my health and was a regular user of Medeo myself. When working on a product improves your wellbeing and increases your understanding of society, it truly is a great feeling.
One particularly memorable project from the past was the day we decided to add secure messaging to Medeo. Up until then, Medeo had been built for desktop resolutions. Messaging is inherently mobile, thus came the challenge of making the web app adaptive. Designing a new yet simple experience, with just the use of media queries and some Angular magic was a fun challenge.
Q: Sounds like that project had quite an impact on your life. What made you interested in working with the Brewhouse team?
A: The team and culture are what appealed to me most about Brewhouse. They are built on transparency and understand the importance of working relationships. They aren’t afraid to test contemporary approaches to building a healthier workspace. I had met most of the team before joining. I knew they were masters of their crafts with great ambitions.
Q: You’re already hired, Lee! ;) So looking out 3 - 5 years, beyond the obvious trends, what do you think will be the next big change in our industry?
A: Advancements in voice user interface will be interesting. Programs like Siri and Google Now will become very sophisticated and begin to replace trivial interfaces. They already are, but I feel that in 3-5 years society may start to overcome the social anxiety aspect of regularly talking to your phone. Virtual assistants will literally become virtual.
Besides that, I am very excited about all of the new advancements in the health sector. “Your doctor is a lifeguard, not a swim instructor” – Greg Glassman. I hope there will be a fundamental shift in the way society thinks about their health. The combination of affordable hardware and software will allow us to become proactive about our health and begin thinking about preventing diseases rather than curing them.
Q: Maintaining health seems to be very important to you, too. I’m sure working at Medeo had something to do with that as well. What publications or blogs do you read to stay up-to-date about issues important to you?
Q: And do you have a favourite twitter handle?
A: @_happy_gilmore Self explanatory. It makes me chuckle.
Q: And one last question – what is your favourite quote?
A: Or anything by Dale Carnegie
Lee’s focus will be on leading the design effort of various client and internal projects, and collaborating with our Developers and Design Director to create irresistible experiences for our users. Rest assured, the music playlists for future Brewhouse events just got an upgrade as well!