Founder / UX Junkie
Pioneering Design’s Evolution from ‘Make it Pretty’ to
‘Make it an Unforgettable Experience’
Eris graduated from Brandeis University in 2005 in Fine Arts and Political Economy. A week after graduation she moved to Northern California and worked at a few galleries in Carmel-by-the-Sea and Monterey while taking classes in web design and development at Cabrillo College in Santa Cruz. A few years later she moved to San Diego and continued her design studies at MiraCosta College in Oceanside, CA. Upon graduation, she launched her freelance web and graphic services under the moniker Lose The Box Design, which grew and evolved into the the current full-service marketing agency Chatter Studios.
Websites were already taking center stage in the world of marketing and advertising when Chatter Studios launched about 8 years ago. During this time, online presence had grown well beyond its meager beginnings as a few pages (or one very long rambling one) about your business into a multi-faceted marketing machine. This dramatic growth was largely shepherded by the User Experience movement that began around the same time. Studies in CHI (Computer Human Interaction) began to connect the substantial influence of visual design over human interaction with computers (including websites and apps).
Eris joined the User Experience (UX) movement in its infancy and played a major role in cultivating and educating other designers and clients on its importance and application. She began learning about ‘user’ behavior while living in Northern California’s Bay Area as a member of BayCHI (http://www.baychi.org/). Then she moved to San Diego and joined UX Speakeasy (http://www.meetup.com/UXSpeakeasy/) back when it had only 20 or so members. UX Speakeasy is now one of the largest and fastest growing social UX meetup groups in California, and most likely anywhere. The group currently has over 1,600 with over 300 active members. In 2014 she moved her business to San Francisco. Today she uses her prolific knowledge in User Experience and her creative roots to provide clients with engaging websites that feature custom animation, powerful and clear communication, and a strong online presence.
What is ‘Good Design’ and ‘User Experience (UX)’? Good Question…
The term User Experience (UX) and UX designer has carelessly replaced the terms ‘design’ and ‘designer.’ But not all designers or graphic artists are UX designers and most, frankly, know very little about it. To clarify, User Experience (UX) research is the study of the psychological and behavioral influence of visuals and interaction on humans. UX Designers then use these studies to influence and manipulate web and app audiences to perform preferred functions (click a button, sign up for a newsletter, buy something, click on an ad, etc.).
The importance of the placement of visual elements over human behavior on websites and apps is amplified today with the advent of drag and drop website creation tools and sites. Anyone can essentially create a website that ‘looks good,’ but it may not necessarily work well, create leads, or make sales. It is important that more people are aware of the true meaning and implication of User Experience. Ultimately everything we do is influenced by our experience. If we had a great experience somewhere we’ll want to return. If it was a poor experience and we didn’t find what we were looking for, then we won’t return. The same rule applies to websites. That’s why it’s essential to learn what’s considered ‘good design’ and what visual elements placed where attract the right audience and influence desired user behavior.