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Chapter 8: Project X-Rays

This chapter will feature in-depth interviews with three industry professionals working in user interface design. For each, I’ll be selecting one project and unravelling it and identifying lessons we can learn. I’ll be interviewing the following:

  • Vic Bell
  • Howard Pinsky; and
  • Val Head

As I’ve noted in the overview, this is a work in progress and I’m sharing it here in draft form. The book isn’t finished, but I hope the draft content I’m providing has some value as I finalise the chapters.

Table of Contents


In this chapter I’ve interviewed a cross-section of industry professionals who are all working in different aspects of user interface design. I've interviewed three different – and very talented – designers who are working in user interface design in different ways.


I’m focusing the Project X-Rays on three people: Vic Bell, Howard Pinsky and Val Head.

Everything’s taking a long time to complete. We might add a couple more X-Rays once the book is published. The beauty of a digital publication is we can update it. I have others I’ve spoken to who are keen to be included, if there’s time we can build them in.

Section 1: Vic Bell (Iconography)

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CAPTION: Caption here.

Interview with Vic Bell goes here.

Things to mention:

Vic's work for world-class clients, including Uber, etc..

Look at the following interview before sending the questions through:

Section 2: Howard Pinsky (User Interface Design)

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CAPTION: Caption here.

Interview with Howard Pinsky goes here.

Things to mention:

In Chapter 2 I explore what I call the Master-Apprentice model of learning. Pinksy is doing this, too. I should highlight this. Something that I should also mention is Pinsky's generosity in crediting the designers whose work he rebuilt as an integral part of the process.

Acknowledging the work of others – we are all building on the shoulders of giants – is an important part of our industry and it's to Pinsky's credit that he acknowledges those from who he's learned.

Pinsky's work on creating tutorials. Also his focus on helping others, in particular through the Adobe XD Slack and Discord groups. Equally, mention his work on Dribbble and how he's undertaking his own Master-Apprentice exercises, analysing, deconstructing and reconstructing others’ work.

Section 3: Val Head (Animating Interfaces)

Placeholder Image

CAPTION: Caption here.

Interview with Val Head goes here.

Things to mention:

Val's workshops, also her newsletter.

Val has moved into animation and really made it her own. What prompted this move into a specialist niche? (Although we could argue animation – especially when applied to interfaces – is anything but niche. Indeed, it's becoming a core skill that designers need to develop.)

About the Author

Christopher Murphy

Christopher Murphy


A designer, writer and speaker based in Belfast, Christopher mentors purpose-driven businesses, helping them to launch and thrive. He encourages small businesses to think big and he enables big businesses to think small.

As a design strategist he has worked with companies, large and small, to help drive innovation, drawing on his 25+ years of experience working with clients including: Adobe, EA and the BBC.

The author of numerous books, he is currently hard at work on his eighth, ‘Designing Delightful Experiences’, for Smashing Magazine and ninth, ‘Building Beautiful UIs’, for Adobe. Both are accompanied by a wealth of digital resources, and are drawn from Christopher’s 15+ years of experience as a design educator.

I hope you find this resource useful. I’m also currently working on a book for the fine folks at Smashing Magazine – ‘Designing Delightful Experiences’ – which focuses on the user experience design process from start to finish. It will be published in late 2019.

You might like to follow me on Twitter for updates on this book and other projects I’m working on.

Copyright · Mr Murphy + Adobe
Design and Build · Dan Gold + Little Thunder