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Too often, applications either look great or are highly functional. The product team wants a great interface, but balancing aesthetics and functionality is a challenge, often leaving one aspect successful at the expense of the other. With applications becoming the primary means for what people do at work, how they manage their lives, and how they socialize and entertain themselves, we believe the gap in form and function can and must be closed.
This workshop will provide lectures, guidelines, examples, and hands-on exercises to teach you how to make visual design decisions that reinforce usability best practices and create interfaces that people value. You’ll learn the characteristics of “visually usable” apps so you’ll know what to shoot for. You’ll also get an introduction to the visual design “tools” for digital apps – layout, type, color, imagery, and controls and affordances – and learn how to use them to create appealing applications people can easily understand and use.
Tania Schlatter and Deborah Levinson are the co-authors of “Visual Usability: Principles and Practices for Designing Digital Applications” (Morgan Kaufmann, May 2013). They co-own Nimble Partners, a Boston-area user experience design firm specializing in complex applications that help people work, find, learn, and connect.
Tania’s approach combines user-centered and visual design techniques from formal study and twenty years of practice. She teaches interactive information design to graduate students at Northeastern University. Deborah has over sixteen years’ experience as a UI designer, helping designers, engineers, and stakeholders find common ground and build successful applications.