Q+A with Joél Valdez, UX Designer

Joél Valdez is a Los Angeles-born, Wisconsin-raised creative. Growing up in a bilingual household, Joél often turned to drawing to effectively communicate unfamiliar words, which led to his passion for graphic design. When he’s not working as a UX/UI designer at Worrell, he can be found exploring the local food, music and art scenes, shooting lifestyle photography, practicing yoga, hip-hop dance, painting and drawing.

What books will we find on your bookshelf?
I really enjoy books of poetry. My current favorite is Andrea Gibson’s “The Madness Vase.” I recently purchased Warsan Shire’s “Teaching My Mother How to Give Birth,” after seeing her work beautifully adapted for Beyoncé’s visual album, LEMONADE. In terms of design, “Designing for Emotion,” by Walter Aaron is a great source of inspiration, providing everyday examples of swoon-worthy interface designs.

Outside of work, what’s the best thing you’ve ever made?
I’m really proud of the work I put into redesigning the Aster Café website. I was tasked with matching the restaurant’s website with its beautiful space, iconic atmosphere and unique food and drink. I redesigned the site with an entirely new look and feel, while providing a new art and photography direction that better represented the brand’s aesthetic.

How do you stay current on UX innovations?
I’m constantly trying to keep a pulse on emerging technology and UX/UI design trends. Fast Company, the UX Design tag on Medium, Mashable, Motherboard and A-List Apart are among some of my favorite sites for sourcing inspiration and staying on the forefront of the industry.

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