Why I'm Interested in UX Design

This post is essentially a glorified answer to the typical job interview question, "why are you applying for this role?". I'll discuss what initially peaked my interest with UX, and why I feel like it's the right career for me.

As I mentioned in my last post, I first started looking into UX Design when I realised that more and more employers were listing UX as one of their most sought after skills. So I did some research about the industry and the first thing that really peaked my interest was when I started to discover the portfolios of various UX Designers. Actually, first it was UI Designer portfolios that looked really cool to me - then I looked into UX portfolios. I saw that people were designing entire apps without having to write a single line of code. And that was cool.

Up until that point, I had never really thought about the design side of app development. My understanding was that an app developer would be responsible for both designing, and then developing a functional app, all in one go. I had no idea that designing and development were two entirely separate roles. Like, people can make a career out of simply desiging how an app should look? Why has nobody told me this before?!

I'd always liked the idea of being able to create my own apps. But the barrier of learning how to code to achieve that was always too much for me. I remember a time when I did try to learn some coding when I was in secondary school. But I quickly lost interest in it at the time. At that age, my priorities were to have fun, not to learn. So yeah, I never really got into coding and so the desire to create apps and websites quickly faded away.

But fast forward to when I discovered UX last year, and now my interest is peaked again. Looking at those portfolios was really making me want to learn how to do the same. But why specifically UX? What is so appealing about it?

Well, to be honest, I think I've always in a way been applying certain UX principles in my work. An example I always think about is all the project work I did at university. For me, one of the most enjoyable parts of writing up technical reports for my projects was when it came to formatting everything. Writing the content itself was boring to me (that's what happens when you're not so passionate about the subject you're studying). But formatting my reports and making it all look pretty was really fun! I'm pretty sure I spent more time formatting my graphs than I did analysing the graphs in the first place. The same applied to all of my lab reports, research posters, and presentations. I always made sure that they looked good and were easy to read. I cared about the design.

Something else that comes to mind is how often I would find myself critiquing the websites and apps that I would go on. "This font is too small. The layout is ugly. These colours don't match. Why is this setting hidden away over here?" I didn't know it at the time, but all of those phrases are exactly what a UX Designer would be thinking. I suppose I already had the fundamentals of UX in place.

Another reason why UX is so appealing is because I think it provides the perfect balance between creativity and being techincal/logical. I come from a very academic background so I've never had the chance to really express my creative side. UX provides that creative outlet, and yet it doesn't sacrifice on the technical side of things. There's a nice mix and match of the two. Also, the psychology behind human-centred design principles I think is super fascinating.

So yeah, that concludes this rambly post about why I'm into UX. I'm really grateful that I've finally come across a career path that I can be passionate about. And I absolutely cannot wait to get stuck in and start learning.