Learn the Design Expertise, Not the Design Tricks

Note: This is Part 2 of the Ruminations for Aspiring Designers series.

Collections of tools, methods and techniques are just a bag of tricks. They don’t represent the design expertise.

Most veteran designers have bags of tricks, and they also have:

  • diverse work experiences
  • wide range of domain knowledge accumulated along the way
  • a personal pattern language of design
  • a unique habit of learning
  • creative drives of curiosity, analysis and synthesis

In other words, the bag of tricks is the easiest part of the design expertise.

It’s tempting to think that a design process is the core part of design, while the truth is that any design process is an unfortunate myth.

Just like empathy, design process is just a very useful design trick.

Acquiring design expertise takes time.

Start with something simple.


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