Please give a warm welcome to Ryan Schrader — an original Gold Coaster, UX/UI specialist, a true agency veteran, and a brilliant addition to Guerrilla’s senior team. Ryan holds a genuine passion for creating exceptional customer experiences, dancing and celebrating Fridays with some RnB and strawberry doughnuts. We interviewed Ryan to get to know what makes him tick, here’s what he had to say …
Tell us about your experience and your position within Guerrilla?
I’ve been working in digital for 15 years, I started off doing everything –– as everyone did back then. I’ve specialised over the years, based in Melbourne, and now I’m here. My role at Guerrilla is Senior Experience Designer, so at a top-level, my priority is to make sure the digital products we create feel intuitive, easy to use, and hopefully enjoyable.
What made you want to become a UX designer?
Well, I was originally a digital designer and then it was kind of like a calling really. I love learning about people and behaviours and I also love design and technology. So the fact that I can merge all of that, and give design new meaning, was something that I connected with.
What do you consider is the most rewarding aspect of your role?
Moments when I get to witness someone having a really engaging experience with something I helped create.
How do you get your ideas? What sorts of things inspire and influence your work?
That changes all the time. It could be anything from where I’m at at the moment, it could be a book, a new piece of software, or even conversations I’ve had.
What are some of the coolest projects you’ve been involved in?
That’s a tricky one. A few years ago I designed a game for Adidas to promote their new shoes which were very fun, they gave me a lot of creative freedom and the response from users was great. But what I’m working on right now is definitely very exciting too.
What are you passionate about besides your work? If you weren’t working as a designer what would you be doing?
I dance! I worked as a dancer in Melbourne for years. I started as a modern jazz dancer, then moved to commercial, then I got into Latin as well. I still do that. Actually, I’m flying back to Melbourne next month to do a show.
What’s your favourite place you’ve ever visited? Why?
There are so many great places I’ve been to but I have to say Madrid. Just because of the people and the culture. I’ve made so many great friends and I just loved the lifestyle –– I’m a big fan of the siesta.
What is one thing that people don’t know about you?
I have a fear of heights.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Probably “Less is more” or ”Simple is beautiful”. I remind myself of that about five times a day.
What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?
Strawberry doughnuts. There’s a place just down the road that has them only on Fridays, but that’s probably a good thing.
What’s on your playlist at the moment?
I have a Classic Soul/Funk playlist, a ’90’s RnB’ playlist because every day should be ‘RnB Friday’. I also have a ‘Mykonos Summer’ playlist for when I need to hit a deadline — it gets me pumped.
Homecoming has never looked so good — welcome to the team, Ryan Schrader!
Interviewed by Živilė Mikalauskaitė, Digital Producer Intern