Designing an Experience

By: Tim Walsh
painter

Over the years I have attended a lot of concerts, probably too many to count. Perhaps enough to make me deaf in the near future. One thing I’ve realized - I keep going back for the experience.

A good concert is one where I’ve stood witness to the construction of a musical composition, built piece by piece from each member of the band, materializing into a single living, breathing entity; emblematic of those who devoted the time and energy into building something bigger than themselves.

Good design should mirror this experience. It should be collaborative. It should be defiant and intelligent, original but cognisant of the past. It should set expectations for any and all future interactions. It should make the person say, “now that was the best show I’ve ever been to.”

Because when it comes down to it, who would want the alternative? A bad performance is like something designed in Microsoft Word. It is obvious and unbalanced. It is “too loud” and often “has way too many drunk people.”

So control the stage while designing. Give people an experience that not only captures their attention, but gives them a reason to listen.