Collaborating on Design

Posted by  admin —June 9, 2009
Filed in Creative Stuff, Yes!And Improv

I work for myself and vowed last year to collaborate more with other people. It can get lonely and sometimes you fool yourself into thinking you can do it all!

Design and art is a growing passion of mine and, through my sister (Janette Derrick who’s Organic Fabric business website is very cool), I met Kieren Tobin and Melinda Chapman of 3D Model Studios.


Mel and Kieran are graphic artists with a long history in 3d art, computer games, architectural visualisations, illustration and 2D design.

I approached Mel and Kieren to help me turn my ideas into a design for my website. I had no idea where it would end up.

The process of collaboration …

We decided to meet over a coffee and using felt tip markers and a big piece of Butchers Paper, we started to talk … and draw our ideas (By the way, Mel makes a great brew of coffee!).

At the outset I said that I had no pre conceived ideas on what the design could/should look like. It was to a process of trust and we used “Yes!And” as a principle of accepting each other’s offers and building on them. In that 90 minutes I can’t remember a single “block”.

“Accepting an offer is usually accompanied by adding a new offer, often building on the earlier one; this is a process improvisers refer to as “Yes, And…” and is considered the cornerstone of improvisational technique.” from Wikipedia here

I offered my ideas to Mel and Kieren which included the values that drive my work as a facilitator. I wanted the design to visually display concepts like collaboration, network connection and a sense of playfulness and fun.

I also wanted something different and unexpected and a site that invited visitors to explore. I needed to connect my Tangent Consulting space with my other online spaces – the Yes!AndSpace blog, Winkipod and the Training I offer.

Viv McWaters is a facilitator I collaborate with regularly and I wanted to show my connection to Viv through the design.

I love Rob and Gary’s On Your Feet website and the clever use of movement, color and interaction they have achieved.

I also needed a design that could be added to over time … as new strings to the Tangent-Bow get added … I wanted to refelct this is the design.

And so the design evolved like this …

and ended up here …


with a series of banners for the consulting, training and blog spaces …


Once we had the design sorted, it was all sent to Ron Rogers at Weby who did all the Flash animation and got the whole thing to go-live last week. Thanks Ron!

All in all and really enjoyable process … it’s much more fun working with others on design and the end product is always better.


Leave a Reply