This post is part of a series of interviews with UX professionals actively working in the industry. They discuss how they got into UX, what they’re working on and offer advice for aspiring designers.

picture of interviewee

Today, the spotlight is on…

Kenny Chen, Lead User Experience Designer at Wallaby Financial in Los Angeles, California.

1. What are you doing these days?
I’m the Lead User Experience Designer at Wallaby Financial where I create delightful experiences through thoughtful design for their mobile, web, and wearable apps.

2. What tools do you use?
I use a 15″ Macbook Pro. For wireframing I use OmniGraffle. For mockups and visual design, I use Photoshop and Sketch. For HTML/CSS, I use TextMate. I also sketch and take notes in a Moleskine.

3. What is your background?
I’ve worked in User Experience for almost 10 years on various products for different industries and companies ranging from small startups to large fortune 500 companies.

4. When and how did you get into design?
I got my Masters Degree in Computer Science at the University of Southern California but it was always the Human Computer Interaction and Psychology classes that were most interesting to me.

5. How did you land your first professional UX job?
Since I knew I was more interested in design than coding, I looked for positions that focused on design but had a technical aspect where my degree would come in handy. My first real job out of college was writing requirements and designing car navigation systems.

6. What is something you’ve worked on that you’re really proud of?
One of my New Years resolutions was to design and code an iPhone app and I was able to create Posterized – a Dribbble Design Inspiration client. You can read more about it on Medium.

7. What advice do you have for new or aspiring UX Designers?

  • Check out Whitney Hess’ article So you wanna be a user experience designer — Step 1: Resources
  • Join UX meetup groups or discussion boards.
  • Read The Design of Everyday Things, About Face, Designing for Interaction, and Don’t Make Me Think
  • Work on a project or improve an existing design. It’s more important to show the process and how you got there. UX is a multidisciplinary field so learning new skills never hurts. Always keep learning.

8. Where can people go to learn more about you and/or see your work?

Do you work in design? I’d love to have you on the blog! To be featured on the blog, simply fill out the UXD spotlight survey and I’ll be in touch.

Hi! I'm Jon, a UX Designer.

I’ve always loved design and technology. I enjoy the challenge of manipulating pixels into things useful to humans.

This site is both my lab and a career accelerator. I try to create the best products and experiences I can, all while helping you to do the same in your own work. Ready to get started?

  • http://www.matthewgoldman.com/ Matthew Goldman

    Thanks for featuring Kenny! He is the ultimate unicorn UX designer. Great design, great experience, great coding skills–the whole package!

    • jonizquierdo

      No problem Matthew! Happy to feature him on the blog. His work definitely stood out.