From building with Legos to constructing full digital experiences
Long Island, February, 18, 2015
Jeffrey Gapinski defines himself as a builder. He started expressing himself creatively at a really young age, when drawing and building with Legos was his hobby. Life was beginning to show him the way. Then he studied to be an art teacher, but he discovered his passion in design and technology.
Jeff founded Huemor with one of his best friends, Mike, and it became a real success. He speaks enthusiastic; he can never get bored in this continuous learning and exploring process he is immersed in.
Where do you find inspiration? Where great ideas come from?
Ideas can come from anywhere. Actually, I’m most creative when is less convenient for me to be creative. It can be in the middle of the night when I’m trying to sleep for the meeting I have the next day, or driving to work when I don’t have anything to write my ideas on. I find inspiration in randomly ways. For example, I might go out to dinner with my friends and get inspired just by a cool beer label.
Which person inspires you?
There are definitely people I find inspiring. Paula Scher is a really influential designer of the late 80s- 90s. She started to set the ground work for most of the designers now, by the way she approached problems. Besides, I always like to look at big technological breakthroughs in science and know what’s going on there.
What was your most creative project?
Our most creative project was the evolution of our own brand. For ourselves, it was our opportunity of pushing not only what we can do with web pages but also in the way we can promote our work. Joining with the team, drawing out the concepts and coming up with them was probably the coolest thing we did.
Leading a team in a creative field must not be easy. What’s the most challenging part of it?
Making sure everybody is heard is probably one of the most challenging things. Knowing when to adopt an idea and when to discard it and making sure you are constantly moving forward is quite important. The most complicated thing is that what you are building with your team, you are creating it for different personalities, and under different perspectives. We always try to make the best for the client and that’s our team dynamic.
What was the most difficult thing a client asked you to do?
In 2013, custom clothier Martin de Tours contacted us to launch and mobilize their men’s fashion brand. We were pretty young as a company and as a team but everyone were very talented. Not only we designed and developed their website, but we did their branding, their marketing, their photography, videography, we did everything for them. Coming together as a team and managing this whole process was challenging for us as a company and individually. Click here to view this case study.
Which stages of the designing process you find more important?
The most important step of any process is the planning: sitting down with the client and coming out with a structure. Before starting to build something, is necessary to count with all the information that needs to be highlighted during the process, like the company goals, what are they trying to achieve and what’s the site overall structure like. If you don’t have all this clear, you will be wasting lot of time down the line. The most important second step for us is coming up with a wider brand, an overall basic structure of how the site will look like, focusing on the user experience. Once you start to get into the design, the fun stuff happens and ideas come to life, but if you don’t get the first steps right, you can’t start designing.
Technology and digital communication are constantly mutating. I would like you to take the risk, and predict which important changes will take place in the near future. What it’s like to work on something that is constantly changing?
I really enjoy working in a field that’s always changing, because it forces me to continue learning and valuate what we are doing and what’s going out in the industry, and this constantly improve ourselves. I also like that in this industry, people that are able to adapt are the most successful ones, because this really forces the industry to be competitive and it also makes everyone improve their work.
In terms of technology changes, I’m sure that mobile devices and touch devices won’t go away. People like the tactile feel of a mobile device in their hands and there is stuff coming out that’s starting to bridge the gap between technology and personal interaction. People are looking for experiences that blurred the line between the device and real life experiences. Digital will come a bigger part of how people live their daily lives.