jennifer.figueroa@ac4d.com

Student

Jen Figueroa

Professional things about me, in no particular order: I have a nearly 20-year career as a graphic designer/art director. I used to dog- and house-sit as a side hustle. I was a chalkboard artist at Whole Foods Market for 3 years and eventually moved up to Regional Art Director. I worked at an Apple store as a side hustle. I won several Addy awards the very first year of my career. During college, I was a camp counselor every summer. I’ve rebranded a gym.

Other things about me, in no particular order: I have 2 dogs, a greyhound and an Italian greyhound. I love to read. I love to eat. I’m a high-fuctioning introvert. Other than college, I’ve lived in Texas my whole life. I love having a jigsaw puzzle in progress on my dining room table. My favorite hobby is planning my next vacation. I recently started a watercolor painting practice to counterbalance the pixel-perfection of graphic design.

I’m excited about starting at AC4D for a myriad of reasons but these are the main ones: For a long time I’ve wanted my work to have more meaning than just being pretty. One of my biggest frustrations in past jobs is when the “why” makes no sense. I want the “why” of why I’m designing things to make sense again. And with my background in print design I’ll not only be learning new ways of thinking, but new design software. It’s been too long since I’ve been at the bottom of a steep learning curve and I’m very much looking forward to learning, stumbling, recovering, growing.

Recent blog posts

What limits what we can imagine?

Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve been reading about the limits to imagination. And outside of school, I’ve been reading this book: In this book, Kat Holmes talks about how many designed products reject their users, e.g. a computer mouse and can openers for right-handed people or maybe an app that only iPhone users…

Failure is hard, sharing it is good

Since our last update… We met and discussed the feedback from our presentation last week and further defined our success metrics. We posted a personal and current story of failure to Instagram stories and over half of our followers viewed it to the end and we got several positive responses. From that story we gained a…

Jen Figueroa had Some Power

What is even the point of me being the oldest person in this class if I don’t share my wisdom? Over the past few weeks, we’ve read articles on ethics and power: who has them, who should have them and what are they doing with them? As we did these readings I thought about things…

Roadmapping + Trimming the Fat

Which is not what I tend to do on road trips, for the record. At this point in the process, we’re taking the banking app wireframes we’ve designed, using the development plan we created with the developers last week and designing two roadmaps for launch. The first is an “ideal” roadmap, with all the bells…

Reframing Failure: Our Journey Continues

How many women connect with the idea of celebrating failure? What does the full customer journey look like for an ATX Fail Club member? These are the questions we tackled this week. Since our last update… We crafted social media posts to test our messaging and gauge the number of women open to celebrating failure.…

Making a Banking App (Somewhat of) a Reality

Last week we took our wireframe flows from our banking apps and began to work with developers to start the process of building them out. In a perfect world we’d have all the screens built out and then present them to the developer to answer any questions and explain anything that wasn’t clear. I had…

Failure as a Form of Synthesis

In our capstone project we’ve been doing a lot of research on failure and reframing it not as something to regret, but as something to celebrate as part of success. In reading many of these articles this past week I was reminded of my own failures.  Order Muppet Am I an Order Muppet? Let me…

Team Impostorism Update

Last week Laura, Vicky and I narrowed our three design concepts down to two. Here are the three we’ve been working on this quarter: DESTRUCTION BOX: Self-care, self-reflection, and stress relief, all tied up in one monthly box. Instead of nurturing, pampering, or creation, subscribers are encouraged to express anger, rage, and destruction by symbolically destroying…

Let the People Have Numbers!

the ask Our assignment over the past couple of weeks was to add financial modeling to our banking apps. I literally use You Need a Budget every day and still thought, “What’s financial modeling?” (It’s an abstract representation of a real world financial situation.) my approach I added a few functionalities to my Capital One…

Break.

It’s been a minute (since Q1) since I wrote a reflection post. And at the time I was full of nerves and had quit drinking coffee because it was making me too anxious. Q2 was much better because I realized I was in charge of my own success. And failure. So I made sure to fail…

User Testing Wireframes

After getting critiques on our wireframes last Monday, we made edits to our wireframes and did some think-aloud testing with users. This was my first time doing user testing so I wasn’t sure what to expect. It was my very first test with my very first user and she couldn’t get past the first button!…

Wireframing the Capital One App

Our assignment this week is to create wireframe flows based on the banking app concept models we’d made for Assignment 1. It’s at this point that I understood how lacking my original concept map was. (The grade I received on it was also a good indicator.) If someone were to try and build an app…

Here/Not Here

Last Sunday I was trying to brainstorm on my 5 business ideas that I needed to make Lean Canvases for. I had 2 ideas so far and wanted to brainstorm with fellow students. But I was at home. Was anyone at school? How could I know? And I thought, if only there was a Marauder’s…

Concept Map of Capital One Mobile App

The assignment was to choose a banking app (why am I actively using 3 banks?!) and create a concept map of the current design and a concept map of how it could be improved. I chose the Capital One app over my other banking apps because recently I’d logged into the website and couldn’t find…

Jen, Laura & Vicky’s Capstone Project Kickoff

Last week we learned the topic for our capstone project that will carry us through the rest of the year: College Persistence and Completion. We met as a group for the first time a few days before our first class and brainstormed on topics that interested us and questions we had surrounding the project. During…

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