After four years working in the tech industry in Silicon Valley, Andrea Hock found herself at a crossroads in her career. So when presented with the opportunity to become Adobe’s 2018 Creative Resident in Experience Design, she took the leap. “The Creative Residency is every designer’s dream: a year to focus on whatever project you’re passionate about,” she says. “Truly your own project. What an idyllic way to spend a year!”
What first drew you to visual experience design?
I knew from a young age that I wanted to be some sort of graphic designer, because I’ve always loved being in that sweet spot at the intersection of tech and design. There’s just something cathartic about hunkering down at my big monitor or cozying up with my laptop on the couch and creating away. I love that visual design can completely sway people’s perceptions of a product. If an app or website is well-designed, you trust and believe what that company is telling you — but if it’s poorly designed, it loses all credibility. I’ve always loved being able to create aesthetically pleasing but also user-friendly work, and seeing my designs out in the world in apps, websites, and other platforms gives me a great sense of accomplishment.
How did you become an Adobe creative resident?
The residency is every designer’s dream: a year to focus on whatever project you’re passionate about, without the creative suppression or financial anxiety of working for a company or doing freelance — truly your own project. Adobe gives us the tools we need to work on that project, in order to help us build a career we’re passionate about. This year we have four residents from the U.S. and three from Europe, and each of us is focusing on a different medium. I applied in January of this year after having heard of the residency in previous years, and knew it was an amazing opportunity. My application laid out my project proposal, a breakdown of how I would accomplish it, and why I thought it was important. I went through a few rounds of interviews, and when I got the final call that I was in, it was one of the proudest moments of my life.