With years of experience in creative management and industrial design, our new creative director, Paul Taylor is a talented, dynamic design leader who brings valuable experience and deep design knowledge to the outerspace team. He’s passionate about creating positive experiences for people through product design.
For Paul, an interest in psychology, human behavior and observing how people work and do things, is fundamental to informing the design process:
“The way observation informs product design and helps designers to understand how people interface with products, is a fundamental element of the design process,” he says.
“Observation reveals the elements of what the natural mappings for people are and how they react in a particular situation. It can show us if people are going to be empathic or if they’re going to be an island. It highlights what signs and symbols they understand; and how, as designers, we can do a bit of nudging as well. I find this really interesting,” Paul explains.
“I don’t see a distinction between products and people. I see products as a way of enhancing our lives by getting the best out of what we have to do every day,” he adds.
“People shouldn’t be hampered by the products they use. It should feel natural to interact with a product. Life is very complex and as designers, adding some order to complexity for people, is really important,” he explains.
“My approach to design is about finding solutions that make a product intuitive, so they feel natural to use. This is not an easy thing to do. It’s challenging and takes time. It requires deep thinking and sometimes means designers need to do things outside very linear processes. Design can take a convoluted path to achieve great outcomes. It’s really critical and important to create a product design that works perfectly,” he says.
Paul explains that while providing people centered product design solutions is fundamental to good product design, now more than ever, designers need to do this within a broader, holistic and responsible context.
By using a universal design mindset, product designers find solutions that are not only valuable to people, but are good for communities and the world we live in. They are sustainable, socially equitable and inclusive solutions.
“At outerspace, product development is a very agile process with buckets of things to do and there’s creativity within all of those. A lot of people don’t acknowledge the true meaning of creativity. Creative thinkers have an innate ability to see other ways of doing things that are outside the norm. They have that ability to challenge the status quo,” Paul adds.
“Creative people are talented observers. They are like sponges. They question what is happening in the world and how people function in the world. They see the bigger macro trends that are happening that drive the way people need to use products, and the way they need to interact with products, purchase them, be inspired by them, and be attracted to them. This emotional connection is really critical. People need to feel that the products they interact with are a natural fit for them,” he says.