Tips for starting UI Design exploration

One of the hobbies of UI Designer must make exploration UI design. Whether it's exploring a navigation solution that facilitates thumb to operate an apps. or visual explorations like Dipuse shadow or trying to create a clean app design with large typography.

But sometimes it will start the exploration of the design is constrained by the start from where, how to make what.

Here are some tips that can help you in starting your design exploration.

1. Prepare the theme.

Choose a theme you like. For example, Travelling, food, music, movies, sports or more. With themes that you like, you will be more interested to explore further.

2. Determine the problem

For example, we have selected the food theme. Then imagine a food-related problem. For example "I'm a hobby to eat but can not cook, it seems fun if there is a simple service and can help me in terms of cooking"

3. Select Platform

After discovering the themes and problems, now select the platform. Do you want to make something based iOS app, Android application or Desktop/Website.

Because I want to explore about food and the problem is about cooking cook where I will often be in the kitchen. So a suitable exploration is something that is easy to hold and operate, so I choose to explore the mobile application. And I have an iOS application.

4. Think about the solution

Selected theme: Food

The problem was chosen:
I can not cook and want to have a simple service and can help me in terms of cooking.

Selected platforms: iOS Apps

After that the next step is to create a solution of the problem we choose.

From the themes, problems and platforms that I chose... Solution that I imagine is a simple and clean cooking Guide application. Where can I easily see the tempting cuisine and I easily know the ingredients and how to cook them in detail

5. Create the Wireframe for the Exploration guide

Create a wireframe that contains any information/content that will be displayed in the app/website that you will create.

In this case... Because I'm going to create a cooking recipe app then I'll create a wireframe that contains: food photos, food names, a little info about the food (derived from where, it tastes like, etc.) then surely I will also display the info of the material and the marinade and how to cook it

6. Find references to Inspiration

It's time to hunt references according to the platforms and themes we choose. References can be from anywhere. Dribbble, Pinterest, Behance, Uplabs, Pttrn or through Google Images.

I personally lately are often looking for references on Pinterest. I think Pinterest is more of a variety of UI variants and often I find UI design out of the box.

Remember.... Don't look too much reference. Because if too many references will make us confused will refer to which reference.

7. Time to execute

Once you've gone through all the above, it's time to start exploration. Do not get too much consideration, just direct execution.

Instantly make an Artboard or Canvas, directly drop the rectangle, instantly write down the text. By starting out as quickly as possible you will be spared from a "clean" illness when starting designing

Symptoms of "clean" disease when starting the design: exhausted making Artboard or Canvas then think better to start where, imagine the layout and 30 minutes later the Artboard/canvits still "clean" aka white clean.

8. If the middle of your exploration runs out of ideas, rest

Running out of ideas is one of the symptoms that the brain is tired of. You should not impose to continue exploration. Better rest first. After the break will definitely be fresher and the idea will come.

I never run out of ideas and continue exploration. And for 3 hours, I didn't even design anything, just shifted the padding to the right and left.

Exploration is not a waste of time, thus exploring will develop our skills. And Skill is one of the best investments is not it?

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