Hi, José! First, let me thank you for accepting this interview.
Q: Exploring your website, I could see you call yourself a web developer but a digital content creator as well, as you have worked on different communication agencies.
Some months ago, we asked Luis Mirandela – how front-end developers and designers are supposed to coexist – and guess what? Here you are, someone who has worked as a front-end developer and graphic designer.
Do you think there is still a conflict between these two roles* (front-end developer and graphic designer), or does the toolset available (Adobe XD, Figma, Sketch) nowadays have the power to bring everyone together for the same goal?
*The memes trolling this relation are massive and hilarious, by the way.
A: There is no conflict at all… I think that the perfect scenario is having a designer that knows and understands HTML and CSS, UI/UX and a developer that know how to create a mock-up and understands the basics of design, for example, colours, typography and has a good visual culture. It’s pretty much like frontend and backend developers, its always good to understand at least, a little bit what each role does, so we can be a better professional and evolve at the same time. This happened to me, because like you said I started. So, this being said, I really believe that these two roles can coexist and should, if we meet this criteria.
No doubt that tools like Adobe XD, Figma and Sketch or even Invision, help get the designers and developers together, and I think is the best methodology for both to have an understanding of each role processes.
Q: Can a past experience as a graphic designer help in a frontend developer role ?
A: From my experience, all I can say is that I have started on graphic design and did the natural evolution to web development and I can see major differences in the work I do daily as frontend development, that I would notice if I hadn´t done any design work previously.
For me, graphic design serves the purpose of solving a problem with attractive visual elements. I believe that problem-solving design thinking can and should help deal with some of these issues. Of course, I was only trying to layout something beautiful the first time I opened Photoshop/Illustrator.
There’s no doubt that I’m aware of the power and importance of great design. But most of the time, designers are only allowed to deal with the client’s problem, instead of handling real problems. Designers spend most of the time guessing what the client really wants with no data to help on that.
Being a developer with design skills allowed you to have way more control and over each case and client, because you have more data to work with and concrete goals to achieve. Besides, working on web development or applications allows you to efficiently propagate information.
Q: Before this interview, I came across some awesome CSS animations, and I thought you might be interested in this theme, as well.
It is fascinating the multiple ways web designers have to capture users’ attention. What are your favorite techniques or cool-looking animations?
A: In my opinion, one of the most important aspects to capture users attention is to apply an effective use of the white space. Since I came from a design background, I think this is really important because it will create a sense of balance within the web application. Balance is key. White space is can create a visual hierarchy, telling the users where to look at.
Q: How would you describe your style of animation? Would you consider yourself minimalist, or do you love creative visuals?
A: I guess it depends on the project itself. Some projects require a minimalist approach, while on others we have the possibility to get more creative and bold. I tend to like the minimalist ones because they work well on any project and they help to achieve one of the goals we already talked about, and that is users attention. You can have a minimalist animation and be awesome and creative at the same time.
It´s all about the purpose or goal.
Q: Which trends would you mention as the top web development trends of the year?