Visual Design

Brand Attributes July 19, 2020

Novice

Brand attributes are chosen which are basic or generic. They don’t create a strong sense of personality or brand unique to this product, or they are simply inappropriate to the product.

Competent

Brand attributes are specific and appropriate to the product, and some thought has been given to make these strong, rather than generic, choices.

Proficient

Brand is well-defined and differentiated within its market.

Expert

Multiple brand positionings have been considered, with clear reasoning for the chosen direction in consideration of the market, business strategy, and user expectations.

Amount of Design Variations July 18, 2020

Novice

Only 2 variations were explored

Competent

3–4 variations were explored

Proficient

5–6 variations were explored

Expert

7+ variations were explored

Android Icons July 18, 2020

Novice

Icons are inconsistent, or applied unconventionally according to Material guidelines for Android.

Competent

Icons are well-chosen and follow conventions appropriate to Android and the product.

Proficient

Icons have been considered and designed to match intended users’ mental models and understanding.

Expert

Multiple icons have been considered and tested, with clear evidence for how the chosen iconography matches up with user expectations and mental models.

Android UI Elements July 18, 2020

Novice

UI elements are inconsistent, or applied unconventionally according to Material guidelines for Android.

Competent

UI elements are well-chosen and follow conventions appropriate to Android and the product.

Proficient

UI elements have been considered and designed to match intended users’ mental models of interaction.

Expert

Multiple UI elements have been considered and tested, with clear evidence for how the chosen approach matches up with user expectations and mental models.

Color Palette July 18, 2020

Novice

Grayscale is used with one primary branding color, OR a more complicated color palette is attempted with too many colors or with colors which are unlikely to work well together.

Competent

The color palette has a limited number of colors, including more active and more neutral colors, which are chosen to work well together.

Proficient

The color palette has an extended range, with variations on colors for different contexts, such as rules, text, or surface areas. In addition to dominant primary and secondary colors, select supporting colors are available for added expressivity.

Expert

The color palette creates a strong brand voice, with consideration for how the color palette helps position and differentiate the product within its market.

Design consistency July 18, 2020

Novice

Consistency is attempted but some things feel “off” without justification—maybe new type treatments or color.

Competent

Design matches look and feel throughout—color, type, iconography, pattern, sizing, spacing, shape.

Proficient

Design is seamlessly integrated. Everything joins together in a single unifying overall aesthetic.

Expert

Design is consistently applied throughout, but also coherent: the look, feel, brand, copy, interactions, and animations all harmonize.

Desirability Testing July 18, 2020

Novice

Desirability testing is mentioned as having taken place, but it’s not clear what the findings were, or how those findings translated into improvements to the design.

Competent

Desirability testing has resulted in some clear findings, which are addressed in iterations to the design.

Proficient

Desirability testing has been done on the product itself, as well as with potential competitors or comparable products, to paint a more complete picture of how users would perceive the product. The connection between testing findings and design decisions have been made obvious.

Expert

Desirability testing has been thorough and yielded deep insights into user perceptions, resulting in clear improvements throughout the product. The product itself leaves no doubts about its desirability, as even small details have been considered.

iOS Icons July 18, 2020

Novice

Icons are inconsistent, or applied unconventionally according to iOS guidelines.

Competent

Icons are well-chosen and follow conventions appropriate to iOS and the product.

Proficient

Icons have been considered and designed to match intended users’ mental models and understanding.

Expert

Multiple icons have been considered and tested, with clear evidence for how the chosen iconography matches up with user expectations and mental models.

iOS UI Elements July 18, 2020

Novice

UI elements are inconsistent, or applied unconventionally according to iOS guidelines.

Competent

UI elements are well-chosen and follow conventions appropriate to iOS and the product.

Proficient

UI elements have been considered and designed to match intended users’ mental models of interaction.

Expert

Multiple UI elements have been considered and tested, with clear evidence for how the chosen approach matches up with user expectations and mental models.

Presentation Slides Design July 18, 2020

Novice

Slides are too busy or too empty of information.

Competent

Each slide has an appropriate amount of information.

Proficient

Slides also had good attention to typographic hierarchy and a fantastic balance of image to text.

Expert

Slides are 🔥

Quality of Design Variations July 18, 2020

Novice

Design variations are attempted, but lack in variety, or are otherwise lacking in quality to consider as a good option.

Competent

Design variations show good variety in design direction, with at least two options that could have been viable.

Proficient

Multiple variations have been tried in a wide variety of potentially strong directions, so that the emerging design feels like the strongest choice available. Reasons for choosing certain designs over others is connected to user needs and branding goals.

Expert

High acuity for choosing a design direction from multiple options is demonstrated. Multiple reference sources have been incorporated into the design variation process.

Style Tile July 18, 2020

Novice

Style tile covers a couple of basic elements, but it’s either too generic, or doesn’t convey the given brand attributes.

Competent

Style tile communicates the intended brand attributes, and includes basic elements as well as some interface elements specific to the particular product.

Proficient

Style tile also includes patterns, photography, or illustration styles appropriate to the overall product and brand.

Expert

Style tile is detailed and leaves no doubts about its choices and intentions. It could serve as a good starting point for a more complete style guide.

Typography July 18, 2020

Novice

Usage of type doesn’t follow some basic best practices in terms of legibility, hierarchy, contrast, size, line length, line spacing, padding, etc. Font choice could be improved either for legibility, consistency, or branding reasons.

Competent

Design makes good use of type, with attention paid to legibility, hierarchy, contrast, sizing, and spacing. However, the font choices are “safe” in some way—it’s not clear that bolder choices and combinations were considered to find a typographic voice that works with the product.

Proficient

The type is well used and also well considered to align with the brand voice of the product while maintaining clear usability. Multiple typographic styles have been tried until an appropriate combination has been found with a good “fit” to the design.

Expert

Micro-typographic details are all carefully considered throughout. Attention is paid to treatment of proper punctuation marks, alignment is adjusted for tabular information, text grades are considered for “knocked out” text, alignments are optically correctly, fallback fonts are considered for web use, language support is considered as needed, etc.

Usage of Color Palette July 18, 2020

Novice

Color palette is used and applied throughout, but in ways that aren’t working well. For example, text color on top of a surface color is inappropriate, colors may be overused, contrast may be insufficient in places, etc.

Competent

Colors are used appropriately throughout, with attention to color contrast. Color is applied consistently to mean certain things to the user.

Proficient

Colors are deployed very intentionally and meaningfully throughout, with attention to accessibility.

Expert

Colors are used expressively without distracting from clarity.