Designer of the Week: Brittany Schade

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Designer of the Week Brittany Schade is an assistant professor of interactive design at Western Washington University. There, you’ll find her teaching UX, web, interaction and graphic design courses. She’s received numerous awards and recognitions for her work and frequently consults as a product designer for tech start-ups.

Here, we feature some of Schade’s best work, which ranges from mobile product design to brand identity design. Join us at HOW Design Live in San Francisco, where Schade will present “User Experience Methods for Design with Empathy,” and where you’ll find many more detailed sessions on UX and interaction design. Don’t miss registering by the Early-Bird Deadline on September 3 to save $200.

Name: Brittany Schade

Location: Bellingham, WA

Design school attended: Florida Atlantic University, BFA and MFA

How would you describe your work?My work ranges from mobile product design to identity design. Typographically speaking my work is mostly witty, retro, and minimal. My interaction work is approached with strategic and efficient thinking and is propelled with emotional design theory.

Where do you find inspiration?Reading articles about new technology and approaches triggers new streams of thought and allows me to think fresh and alternatively. Visually I get inspired from scouring Dribbble, seeing the work that my students are doing, and looking at craft beer labels [Editor’s Note: Psst! Scroll down for details on the coolest beer labels book around!].

Who are some of your favorite designers or artists?At the top of the list are Aaron Draplin and Karim Zariffa because of their abilities to take risk.


Do you have a favorite among all the projects you’ve worked on?My favorite project was an installation I designed in grad school. I wanted to express the sentiment of digital messages in a physical space. So I created a “wall” of conversations between me and my family using vinyl wallpaper and bold typography. It was large and completely ridiculous.


Is there a project that stands out to you as having been the biggest challenge of your career so far?I recently finished a project with a startup company called Switch. It is a job discovery platform that works much like Tinder does, swiping right or left on jobs. As with most startups I was the only designer on the team for six months and was challenged to create a product from scratch that emulated our vision through the beta launch.


What do you hope to accomplish in the future?I’d like to continue speaking at conferences and events [Editor’s Note: Don’t miss Schade’s session at HOW Design Live 2016!]], I enjoy teaching and meeting talented people. Perhaps write a textbook one day—I think there is a great need for more design education books.

What’s your best advice for designers today?Be fearless. Take the risk—every time.


Cool Beer Labels eBook

By Daniel Bellon & Steven Speeg

You’ll love this packaging design book if:

  1. You like exploring real examples of package design

  2. You want to learn more about the growing craft brewing industry


Whether you drink beer or not, the recent growth of the craft brewing industry and its popularity is undeniable. What better way is there to celebrate the increase of breweries than to admire one of the aspects that makes these beers great: their label design? Featuring well-designed labels from craft and small breweries from around the world, Cool Beer Labels by Daniel Bellon and Steven Speeg demonstrates how commercialized packaging design can be elevated to a whole new level. Not only will you get a chance to peruse these label designs, but you’ll also find interviews with those involved in their design process, like the owner, master brewer, or designer of the packaging. Get a taste of quality packaging design, and great beer, and delve into an exploration of fun design and a celebration of the craft brew culture.

In Cool Beer Labels you’ll find:

  1. Foreword by Greg Koch, CEO & Co-Founder of Stone Brewing Co.

  2. Packaging design examples from craft & small breweries from around the world