305 - Benten Woodring
Benten Woodring is a Lead UI Designer. He has recently built a web design course in partnership with ADPList, where students learn how to create a portfolio-ready landing page in Figma from start to finish.
He also participated in the first e-sports for web design with Relume Design League.
Twitter → twitter.com/bentenwoodring
Inside Benten's Workspace
- Monitor: Dell Ultrasharp
- Monitor Light Bar: Phillips Hue Light Bar (x2)
- Laptop: MacBook Pro (16-inch, 2021)
- Headphones: Nothing ear (1)
- Keyboard: Keychron K3
- Mouse: Logitech MX3
- Mouse Mat: Ugmonk Natural Premium Leather Mousepad
- Chair: Herman Miller Aeron
- Laptop Stand: Rain Design mStand
- Docking Station: Brydge Stone Pro Docking Station
- Web Camera: Logitech Brio 4K
- Microphone: Shure SM7B
- Microphone Stand: Elgato Wave LP Mic Arm
- Desk: Uplift V2
- Walking Pad: UMAY Under Desk Treadmill
What is the most challenging aspect of teaching web design?
I'd say anticipating issues. We launched with a platform called Thinkific and ran into a few issues with getting students on our live streams due to some questionable UX on Thinkific's side. Even though we tested as many things as we were able ahead of launch, you can't always predict what might go wrong. Luckily we found a workaround and all of our students seem to be really enjoying it and finding the course valuable so far.
How do you spark creativity?
- Look to other industries (art museums, industrial design, architecture, wandering around your city, print design, etc.)
- Start with the problem you are trying to solve instead of looking to inspiration sites
- Collaborate, share your work, and get feedback from others
- Go on frequent walks
How do you manage work-life balance?
Working from home makes it pretty easy. I never work more than 8 hours a day at my day job, and limit freelance work to early mornings. I also use cues to help with context switching, like using certain lighting when I'm working, done with work, and winding down for the evening. My wife and kids are home most of the day as well, so I love being able to interact with them frequently throughout the work day. I also work out of different coffee shops several times a week, which helps break things up.
What does your daily routine look like?
Several days a week, I get up at 4:30 and head out for a group ride and get coffee with Dawn Patrol, an early-morning cycling crew.
After getting home, I get ready and have breakfast with my family before starting work.
A normal work day typically consists of short calls, Slack messages and Looms with clients and team members as I work on web design projects. We work specifically with science-based companies in the biotech industry.
I just finished teaching my first cohort as part of a web design course I created -- writing scripts, recording videos, and preparing for live streams. I really enjoyed getting to share my experience and watch students create awesome work with their newly acquired skills. I also have the occasional live stream collab with other agencies and communities, like Relume and Flow Party.
On days I don’t ride, I usually walk to a nearby coffee shop and work on side projects before shifting into my day job.
Throughout the day, I try to get a few walks in, and spend as much time outside as possible. I recently bought a walking pad, which has done wonders for my productivity and my weekly mileage.