At the end of last year, we welcomed Dave Parry to the team. He’s our digital product designer. He has a keen eye for detail and a methodical approach design. He loves nothing more than a terrible joke and was into D&D way before it was cool.
Alex Ryder: So to honour the tradition of starting at the beginning, what gets you out of bed in the morning?
Dave Parry: It’s my alarm, but only after I’ve snoozed it once (maybe twice). Then it’s my instant need of a cup of tea, breakfast and Twitter.
AR: What did you want to be when you grew up?
DP: My career choices varied but for a while. I always loved science as the use of evidence to make decisions has always appealed to me.
AR: How did you end up being a designer?
DP: I came to the arts quite late in my academic life. After falling in love with photography while living in South Korea, I decided to apply for a Masters in photography. I learned the basis of print and digital design and have been more interested in design than photography since!
AR: How would you describe your job to a child?
DP: I help to make websites and apps look and work the way they do, so they look good and are easy to use. It’s certainly not just “colouring in”, like everyone keeps saying.
AR: Most embarrassing work-related experience?
DP: The very first time someone tried to do the business air-kiss thing I did not understand it at all, got confused at the last second and smooshed my nose into the side of their cheek.
AR: If you could live anywhere on this planet and take everything that you love with you, where would you choose to live?
DP: It would absolutely be Melbourne in Australia. My partner and I lived there for four months in 2016/17 and we loved it. It’s got everything – countryside, beaches, city life and brilliant food. Plus, the weather is perfect and there is a huge, engaged UX community too.
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AR: What’s your biggest achievement to date, personal or professional?
DP: I have taught myself to love to learn new skills. I seem to pick up a new hobby every few months, from balloon modelling, baking sourdough bread, speaking Korean to more useful stuff like coding for the web and how to crochet.
AR: What TV show are you watching at the moment?
DP: My favourite show I saw recently was the Netflix documentary about the ill-fated Fyre Festival. I remember the debacle happening at the time and as the documentary shows, it was a whole lot worse than we knew about, especially the bottled water moment. I need to find a way to watch the Hulu one too.
AR: Share a description of your favourite material object that you already own.
DP: It’s probably my pencil. It’s a Faber Castell Grip 2011 mechanical pencil. It has great balance, feels good in the hand and is perfect for sketching ideas, doodles and wireframes. I’m on my third though because I keep losing them!
AR: What advice would you give to your 18-year old self?
DP: Get really good at what you love doing, rather than wasting energy on something you don’t. There’s always a career out there for people who are passionate about what they do. Oh, and maybe spend less time playing Halo, you will never be any good at it.
AR: What is your favourite website and why?
DP: I have Dribbble open most of the time, it’s an amazing resource for people learning about digital design, especially, as was my case, transitioning from mainly print to mainly digital. I also enjoy using twitter to chat about design and UX.
AR And finally, if I gave you £10,000 right now what would you spend it on?
DP: A fraction of a house deposit, though I may keep a small amount (certainly less than £1,000) back as a snack fund.
Connect with Dave on LinkedIn to talk all things UX design.