My humble beginnings start in Armenia with a green-card lottery and my parent’s pilgrimage to the fabled land of the American Dream. I grew up in New Jersey, had a fantastic childhood playing manhunt and foursquare with the neighborhood kids (a hodgepodge of ethnicities) then moved and attended high school in a posh suburb.
At school I was quiet and a bit awkward. I was far from popular, but I had my beloved crew of misfits. Art was my passion. I took art classes every year from kindergarten to senior year. And rather than sports, I went to private art classes after-school and took an early interest in digital art. I started painting digital art on MS Paint with a mouse at eight and was painting on photoshop with a tablet ten. By the time I was in highschool I was known as the sole go-to person if you needed anything designed.
I have a degree in product design from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute program called “Design Innovation & Society”. Universities are notoriously late to the party when it comes to designing programs for new industries, which is why there are so few UI UX design degrees in 2021. I was lucky. My design program taught the principles of UX design in eight project-based studio courses. I completed over 32 projects over my studies.
It’s important to note I originally enrolled as a mechanical engineering dual major, and completed two years. An engineering background gave me the groundwork for process oriented thinking while my design education taught me the user-centered design process and best design practices.
I got involved in UI UX design, my second semester of college, around 4 years ago. I worked on creating smooth user experiences for an AR smart room. I became employed for an IBM research lab called the Cognitive Immersive Systems Lab (CISL) in its inception and was pivotal in helping the lab get off the ground. My infographics and storyboards helped the lab communicate their research aspirations and secure funds. I've also been credited in over five research papers for my contribution in designing interfaces and experiences for research in machine learning, intelligence analysis, and augmented reality immersive rooms.
Afterwards I joined Nfluence as their brand director and lead product designer. For them I designed an influencer marketplace app and novel contracting platform, which gained several users (5 highly active users) before the impacts of the pandemic brought the project to a regrettable end. I freelanced for a bit after that. I designed the company websites for a software company and a bathroom & glass company.
Now I'm hustling the startup life with Caper, as product design lead for a computer vision checkout machine. The Caper Counter is a badass magic machine that uses image recognition to let checkout shoppers instantaneously. Since joining Caper I’ve entirely redesigned the interface for a faster checkout experience, facilitated field observations to investigate issues, and ran user tests to validate designs before implementation. My interface is actively used by hundreds of people a day. I’m also currently redoing their logo, branding, and website ahead of series B funding.
Interested in working with me? I’m open to consulting with interesting people and working on side projects. Don’t be shy!