Explain your job as a product designer.
As an Advanced Color Finish Material Designer for Whirlpool Corporation’s Global Design Team, my role is focused on creating emotional visions and identifying the appliance aesthetics that resonate most with the design trends and preferences of today’s consumer. To do that, developing new colors, finishes and materials involves identifying socio-cultural and aesthetic trends, understanding the changing home environments in which our appliances live, and defining a long-term vision for how those trends can be reflected in the design of our products.
How do you find inspiration for your designs?
By keeping an open mind. Whirlpool Corporation’s portfolio of brands reach far and wide, encompassing a variety of consumers influenced by a myriad of things. I try to keep an eye on art, food, fashion, interiors, transportation, politics, economics, the environment, and more. When a theme pops up in multiple fields, that’s when you know you’re onto something. The most interesting ideas have come from the mashup of seemingly unrelated but truly complementary categories, such as avant garde accessories and the ugly food movement.
How do you go about improving technology/quality in products?
It starts by prioritizing what will make the greatest impact for the consumer. Technology allows us to tell the right product stories, whether that is simplifying an experience to take some stress off our consumer’s plate, or enabling more personalized use to let his or her creativity flow. Everyone on our team – from advanced engineering, to procurement, to industrial design – contributes connections between the technology we are developing and our product visions to deliver meaningful stories.
What is your favorite part of your job?
How many things do I get to list? I love my job. First and foremost, I get to sit next to incredibly thoughtful and talented designers every day, each of whom offers up different insights and opinions. Aside from the community, I am lucky in that I get to not only study the patterns of our culture, but also turn those insights into beautiful, useful, daily companions that can emotionally connect with people across the globe.