Let’s be perfectly clear: I am not a designer (and I have no intention or desire to become one). Besides the general lack of skill, I simply don’t have an aesthetic that functionally works in most of life. I’m fine with that and it doesn’t hurt my feelings.
But, it can make it tough as an indie developer when you’re trying to keep costs low and not be bogged down with any develop or engineering needs (i.e. waiting on designs to be created, etc.).
What’s nice is that I’ve been around long enough to have encountered a ton of great design toolkits and frameworks that allow me to essentially fake my way to great success. I combine this with a penchant for keeping designs simple and approachable and… voila! I don’t have much “design” work to do.
Take, for instance, Desk App, which keeps the design so simple that I essentially don’t have to do any design:
Or even my last major project, Pressgram, an iOS app, I kept the design “flat” (per iOS 7 guidelines at the time) and didn’t have to work much at it:
With that in mind, I’ve begun estimating what it might take me, time-wise, to get things done from a UI / UX perspective:
- 6hrs – Working with analogs, choosing colors, and overall general structure (paper-napkin sketches)
- 8hrs – Onboarding screens, education-centric info (I hope to create something simple a’la native OS X apps so new users can quickly understand the flow of things)
- 4hrs – Main window and interface
- 8hrs – Sidebar animations, resizing, and other features
- 10hrs – Sidebar output settings, app settings
- 16hrs – App Icon, design, iterations
- 6hrs – Specs and slicing of core collateral
- 10hrs – Misc. fuckups and me not being awesome at design
Total: ~68 hours of work
We’ll see how close I get. Typically this is where I’m really, really off.
I will admit, though, I do have a ton of fun with the design stage.