In 2014, Google unveiled its bold, colorful plan to make unified interfaces a reality for web and mobile platforms. Material design, founded on the principle that interface elements should behave as predictably as physical objects, has been well-received by designers and adopted faster than any of Google's previous guidelines.
But even as developers and designers adopt and evangelize the new design language, there's still the nagging question of just how branding fits into the picture. Designing for the user while keeping your brand in focus is more important than ever, so how can brands strike the right balance?
This talk will unpack the question of branding in material design, examining current practices, what it means to "go material" and how to effectively and appropriately brand your product while fostering a cohesive, delightful user experience.
I'm Liam Spradlin, a visual designer working on the web, iOS, and Android. In the past few years I've worked in both agency and freelance contexts with clients including GE Appliance, the National MS Society, and a number of independent developers with apps like Nova Launcher, AllCast, and Today Calendar, creating compelling interfaces, experiences, print layouts, and visual assets. My approach with any design, whether it's a brand new product yet to be shaped, or an existing one with millions of users, is to figure out the essentials - what does it do? What does the audience expect? How can we best facilitate the former and satisfy the latter? I like to explore areas where designs can delight their audiences in invisible ways, and I think there are tons of these opportunities in modern design, especially on mobile devices. My main hobby is also my work - whether it's typography, interface, or illustration, most of my free time is spent designing. Outside of that, I'm a freelance photographer (most recently shooting the Kentucky Derby for Churchill Downs), a writer, and - occasionally - a glass blower.