The Meet The Aptoiders series rolls on, as we continue to feature members of the international Aptoide team who are leading the change in their respective fields, and helping shape the future of Android and mobile technology.
Today we introduce you to Luis Guilherme, which was the very first visual designer that Aptoide had back in 2014 and has played a very crucial role in the recent rebranding efforts of Aptoide. Luis Guilherme is a classically trained hardcore graphic designer, but he's constantly learning about technology - because he feels "obliged to learn and pick up new coding skills every once in a while" and still manages to binge re-watch Warcraft, the movie, every week. Read on!
1. Hi Luis! Tell us a bit about yourself and about your job here at Aptoide.
Hi there! My name is Luis Guilherme, I was born in Vila Viçosa, Évora. I joined Aptoide in the beginning of 2014 and I am proud to be the first designer of this great project. I have a degree in Communication Design since 2011 and came into the design world in 2007, when I had the first larval contact with what would be my future as a professional. Design for me is much more than a job, its a lifestyle where there are days (few) that I feel like everything I'll have is beans, and other days (mostly) in which I'm proud to have chosen this path for myself. Even though I've learned a lot over the years, I still feel like wanting to learn, and only then, with work, effort, luck and humility I will be satisfied and complete.
2. You were our first (Visual Designer, ever). What does visual design mean at a tech company?
It was a huge responsibility, the first months were a lot of work, there was no graphic line and no coherent communication, and because Aptoide was a new and growing startup there was a need to work fast. In my opinion, visual design in a tech company is very important, if we do not have a nice and coherent image we will hardly stand out in a market as competitive as this. In my opinion, the best and most effective way to create user retention and acquisition is to have our platforms aesthetically pleasing and functional so that it is as easy for a 70-year-old to navigate on Aptoide as it is for a 10-year-old. That's what we work for, every day.
3. Aptoide has been in business since 2013, and you joined soon after the official launch. How did you end up at Aptoide? I know there's a funny story there.
I joined Aptoide in early 2014, at that time was made up of about 12 people. Today we're more than 80 people and we continue to grow. When I sent my CV to Aptoide I lived in Évora and I thought that the company was in that city. When I heard that it was in Lisbon, I was a bit upset because I didn't like big cities (now I love it) but I came to the interview anyway. When I was looking for the building, I stepped on dog st and had to clean my shoes before the interview. As they say, stepping on st gives you luck. And here I am :)
4. You were the mastermind behind Aptoide's new branding and new logo. What’s the story and where did you start from?
I was responsible for the creation of the new Aptoide logo, but I didn't do this work alone, it was a team effort where the opinion of everyone was important for the final result. It was a great challenge because we had little time and wanted to launch the new image at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, and the company urgently needed to improve the visual identity. We succeeded and the launch was a success, along with a great booth, designed by us. We've witnessed a really nice impact and feedback at MWC, which is a great technological event.
5. Having a background on hardcore visual design, and given your experience at Aptoide, do you think Design and Coding should go hand in hand in today's tech-driven world?
I, myself, know how to code. But I find myself coding less and less since I have major product design tasks of my own. I still feel obliged to learn and pick up new coding skills every once in a while – but I’m overloaded with the demands of the team to handle product design tasks.
I believe that to become a top notch designer one must know code (to some extent), must be familiar with UX processes (to some extent), must know how to communicate amazingly well with front-end devs, and must do product management (to some extent), but most importantly – focus on improving (and never compromise on) design.
6. Now, on to the question you've been waiting for. How many times have you watched Warcraft? I've heard you're addicted to it and you watch it at least once every week.
Well, I don't know, but certainly more than 20 times. Weekly. I'm pretty addicted to the story, I started playing the game in 1995 when I was 10 years old. The digital actors are the best ever. The orcs are the main characters and the emotions going through their faces are unbelievable. Truly fleshed out, awesome three-dimensional characters. The story is engaging, the action is awesome. This is the BEST movie based on a game so far. My buddy Nilson is persuading me to play World of Warcraft, but I'm still offering some resistance, after all, I really like my social life.