The 5 Stages of Design

I'm a terrible designer. Hell, I'm not a designer at all. I can usually tell when a UX is good or bad, and I know what I like, but when it comes to producing designs, I'm useless. My only saving grace is that I know that and let others do the pretty.

Sometimes, though, it's easier to explain something with a picture than a bunch of words. So I bust out the Paint.NET and try to line things up well enough the idea is conveyed, but sloppily enough it's obviously not a final mockup.

In my early days at Crunched it took a few interesting conversations to get that process fine-tuned to work with our designer. I was unaware of the torment I was putting her through. Now we've agreed that...

  • this is not my job
  • it's still ok and moderately useful for me to do graphics every so often to convey an idea
  • it's ok to laugh at them
Inevitably, though, when I present my "work", there's some trepidation about what horrors will be shown, and (legitimate) questions about whether what is seen can ever be unseen, etcetera. So today we identified the five stages of design:
  1. Denial. (e.g. "WTF IS THIS or YOU CAN'T BE SERIOUS")
  2. Grief (e.g. "MY EYES!!!!!!!!")
  3. Mockery (e.g. "LOL")
  4. Acceptance (e.g. "Ok, I see what you're trying to do here")
  5. Improvement (e.g. "I'll make it pretty")
I wonder how common this is for designers.

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