Principal at Steelcase
Industrial Design + Experience Design
Grand Rapids, MI
OXO 'on' Illuminating Digital Hand Mixer and Immersion Blender
The OXO 'on' project was about designing a line of kitchen electrics for OXO that focused less on the product and more on whatever it is the user is trying to make/cook in the kitchen. This approach caused the team at Smart Design to create 'enabling features' in each product that would help give the user that extra bit of nuance and expertise in the cooking process. For example, with the mixer and blender, we saw in user testing that most people had dimly lit kitchens AND, did most of their mixing on the kitchen counter under cabinets that would block most of the light needed to see the mixture. This observation was the impetus for a built-in spot light that allows anyone, even my grandmother with low visibility, to see the consistency of the batter while mixing and get it 'just right.'
My favorite part of the design process is finding the right problem to solve. It's one of the most critical points in the process, because if you choose the wrong problem to address, then countless hours, days and weeks ($$$) can be wasted on 'polishing a turd.'
I'm most inspired by the mundane, day-to-day living that humans take for granted. People watching is one of my favorite things to do.