I should be devastated, the feedback was raw and direct, but my skin has grown thick. On some level, every creative person is waiting for someone to tell us we are rubbish, waiting for the day that someone calls us out for the fraud that we are. But we are also egotistical, so I had to suppress my need to explain every single decision that was made in a condescending tone.

Creative work is never simple. By its very nature it demands a new effort from us — not once, not twice, but every time. Creatives by our nature:


Too little and it induces anxiety, too much and it feels empty. It is discussed deeply, with each qualified person sharing strong opinions on it, while even the unqualified tell me how it makes them feel. And it isn’t as simple as just adding more or taking away, it needs craft and consideration. If I get it wrong, the impacts can be monumental yet go totally unseen.

Space is the dimension of height, depth and width within which all things exist and move. The importance of space is immeasurable. …

Today I told my mum I wouldn’t be sad if my dad died. I told her I would cry but I don’t think I would miss him. He heard every word.

I said it because my grandad had just died and my grandad was a special man. A simple, kind and loyal man. He was 10 days from turning 101 when he died. I missed his 100th birthday, I was not allowed to fly home due to the pandemic, but I video called him and spoke to his cheek with much joy.

I had seen him the year before and…

I do not often think of my youth. It is tucked away at the back of mind, lost to the darkness, where I wish it would stay. But sometimes a light reveals its shadows and through clenched fists I reenter it.

I’m with my brother and sister, the tent pitched in the garden, after all sleeping in your own bed is not half as much fun. But it is cut short, marched inside and demanded to tell the truth. Alcohol swirls in the air, eyes are glossy, a stolen cigar, or simply a lost one. There, down the side of…

Photo by UX Indonesia on Unsplash

I’m going to say something controversial here, Human-Centred Design (HCD) sucks. OK, maybe it doesn’t suck entirely, but, wait… let me explain.

I have recently begun to write a book on inclusive and accessible design methodologies. As I began my journey, I was of the opinion that if I was to implement an Inclusive Design approach, HCD was the best methodology to follow. After all the goal of employing HCD is to develop solutions that meet the users needs. …

Women are on the warpath. We are seeing more and more women fight for what is rightfully theirs: an equal position at the top. However, still only about 11% of design leaders are female — why is that and how can we change it?

In Part 1 we explored some of the issues preventing women from gaining positions in leadership. We reviewed the biases and facts and we now know there is an abundance of female design talent that just isn’t filtering up to the top. In part 2, we take action, explain the benefits of female leadership and provide…

Women are on the warpath. We are seeing more and more women fight for what is rightfully theirs: an equal position at the top. However, still only about 11% of design leaders are female — why is that and how can we change it?

At the time of writing this, there is heartbreakingly only 37 female CEO’s in the Fortune 500, and that is reduced to only seven for the top 100. This is shocking, this is 2020.

In design, 53% of entry-level designers are female, but only 11% are in leadership roles. Women in leadership is therefore not a…


“Keep it simple.”

Three words that are used every day, across every industry. Complication, it seems, has become the enemy of the modern person: we are busy people, after all. Time poor and duty heavy, we need things to just work. You know, a one-stop-shop where we can get everything done quickly and easily, all in the one spot.

Wait a second. Can you see the problem here?

For things to ‘just work’, a level of complexity is required
Basic functionality is simple — but it’s also useless. These days users want it all, in one place. …


The value is in learning, not failing
Fail fast forward’ is a common phrase throughout entrepreneurial circles and most digital agencies. Most team leaders have been exposed to the concept many, many times in many different forms. The extolling virtue for failure has permeated more than just the walls of the industry; fail fast, fail forward, fail cheap, increase your fail rate, move fast and prepare to fail. The general consensus is clear, it’s OK to fail. Without failing you aren’t innovating.

Fail fast forward can apply to many things. It could be a feature, it could be a product…

How to be more inclusive through ungendered design.

I started thinking about gender stereotyping in design after writing my latest blog around diversity in design and how it is our responsibility as designers to be as inclusive as possible through our designs. While gathering material, I was astounded by the lack of available guidance on how to design for a better gender neutral online experience.

In a world that is increasingly digital, human connections happen online as much as offline. Online spaces are used as area of expression. Most people are used to their online options — from gender markers to avatars — matching up with how…

Bronwen Rees

Design Leader

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