I’m Aviana, Creative Director here at Growth Rocket. You can call me a classically-trained designer; I graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Multimedia Arts. As what most designers will tell you though, it’s not the grades but the experience that hones your skills. I started out aspiring to be an illustrator or animator, but now I specialize in user interface design. I learned how to do it on the job at one of my previous companies, teaching myself by looking at how other platforms worked and reading up on their documentation. Before that, I never knew that such a field existed.
I’ve designed platforms for various industries such as digital marketing, medicine, home renovation, real estate, and childcare. I believe that design is a mixture of art and science. It’s not just about making things look pretty. Design is about building something that can be easily used by its intended audience to achieve their goals, especially when we’re talking about websites and web applications. I like learning about the psychology behind why design can influence people’s mindsets and behaviors and incorporating that into a project. I’m also a big fan of logic puzzles and enjoy the mental exercise of solving those TedEd riddles on YouTube. Maybe that’s why being a UI designer is so enjoyable to me — it’s essentially a bunch of complicated puzzles that need to be ironed out to make sense.
As a self-confessed workaholic, I spend most of my days designing, but I take a break by traveling, playing video games, drawing, or reading.
A battle-hardened marketing veteran, Villar wants you to practice constraint.
“Relationships escalate one step at a time. Selling without a story is like asking someone to marry you on a first date,” he told the dozen startup employees at Saola, an accelerator program run by 500 Startups.
The entrepreneurs come from a handful of early-stage companies; their biographies are combinations of data scientist, Silicon Valley veteran, Ivy League graduate, programmer, competitive gamer, mathematical physicist, computational biologist, 3x founder, and defecting corporate lifer. To some of them, ‘sales’ is a dirty word, an oil slick contaminating the purity of science.
That’s why 500 summoned Villar: a storyteller who’s obsessed with “putting narrative to data.” Villar said f– you to sales (as we know it) a long time ago. He levitates above the content scrap yard. He’s seen the matrix of advertising and he doesn’t want you to flush that precious venture capital down the toilet by buying tone-deaf Facebook ads.