Michelangelo Capraro

Digital Experience Design

Contact Me

I am currently booked for work

Available for work September 2014

My passion for designing digital experiences began in the early 1990s when I embarked on writing my first interactive adventure story on an old 386 computer. Since then, I've worked in many seasons of the interactive industry - from the CD-ROM heyday, to the dot-com bust - and my goal has always been to create memorable and engaging digital experiences and bring delight to anything with pixels - whether it sits on your desk or in your hand. More about me...

Kidoodle Apps: Pirate Scribblebeard’s Treasure

for me!

Conceptualization, Visual Design, Technical Design: This is my first product for the iPad and other touchscreen devices and part of a collection of apps called Kidoodle Apps – apps for kids designed to encourage creativity and imagination through drawing, doodling and just plain silliness! In this first volume, children draw to complete the page, then their drawings come to life as part of animated cut scenes. Listed on Creattica Inspiration Gallery

Goodby Silverstein & Partners Mobile Site

for Goodby, Silverstein & Partners

Conceptualization, Visual Design, Technical Design: Goodby, Silverstein & Partners needed a mobile-friendly version of their Flash-based web site to display their award-winning creative work on the go. I designed and built this HTML and CSS mobile site to feel app-like and fluid. It borrows from the Flash site’s visual language, but is something new and mobile friendly. I built it to take advantage of the existing assets of the Flash-based site and display them in a mobile-appropriate way on-the-fly. This includes scaling and optimizing images and conversion of video to mobile-friendly formats. An FWA Mobile Site of the Day.

Diagnostics and Analytics iPad Demo

for BMW/DesignWorksUSA

Conceptualization, Visual Design: BMW/DesignWorksUSA needed to design an engaging future vision piece for a large energy analytics company. I worked with DesignWorksUSA and their client to envision a mobile, touch-based potential future for their main product offering. The client was able to tap through the demo in mock-use on an iPad for several energy conferences and presentations.

summitonthesummit.com

for Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, HP

Technical Direction and Design, Art Direction, Strategy: While I was the technical director and a creative director at Number 9, I lead the team as we worked with Goodby, Silverstein & Partners to create an interactive chronicling of 15 celebrity climbers as they ascended Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa to raise awareness for the clean water crisis. To tell the story, we created a Flash web site that was as tall as the mountain itself, 3.5 miles high – over 16 million pixels tall! I worked with the climb team to understand their limitations from the mountain and developed an architecture for getting video, photos, blog posts and tweets from the mountain to the site within hours of receiving it. My duties also included co-art direction and, helping plan and facilitate a social media strategy. An FWA Site of the Day.

Toyota Mobile Hybrid Experience

for Toyota, CreativeEngine

Creative Direction, Technical Direction: I worked with CreativEngine to develop 15 digital experiences for Toyota’s Mobile Hybrid Experience – an interactive exhibit built into 18-wheel big rigs that educated people about hybrid engine technology. I lead the front-end development of the Flash-based networked trade-show experienced as well as creative directed the visual design of the the kiosk experiences and the web site.

hyundaiusa.com

for Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, Hyundai

Art Direction, Innovation Driving: As a creative director at Number 9, I worked with Goodby, Silverstein & Partners and Hyundai to develop the next generation auto maker website and elevate the auto brand in the minds of prospective car buyers. My main role was as innovation driver – to help generate innovative ideas that would make online car researching more helpful, effective, and fun. I also co-lead the design of the visual experience of the site, helping to further upgrade the brand and coinciding with the broadcast and print campaign.

Music Republic

for Music Republic, Inc

Product Visioning, Creative Direction: I was creative director and product designer for Music Republic’s consumer-oriented digital music station, AKA The Bebop. The goal of the project was to create an experience for CD lovers that would help them transition all their music, digitizing it to the cloud. I designed the user interface for the product which included extensive research with both touch and non-touch enabled delivery platforms. I developed hardware mock-ups, directed the industrial design and helped develop the product vision, strategy and market offering.

RedBull Copilot

for Odopod

Technical Design, Design Conceptualization: Working with Odopod, I lead the technical development of the first RedBull Copilot series of sites and helped create an experience for fans of some of the most extreme sports (in this case, Super Moto and Acrobatic Airplane Racing). The resulting technical challenge was nearly an impossible one: synchronizing up to 9 different camera angles, several music tracks, audio commentary tracks by the racers, heart rate, stress levels, and other biometrics, g-forces on the racer, and vehicle telemetry – and all these fully controllable by the user for the ultimate in-race experience. Having built a similar system in years past, i was a natural candidate for this fun project!

Palm

for Palm, PalmSource

Interface Design, Usability, Product Development: While I managed the UX group at Palm, I lead the interface design explorations for future versions of the Palm OS as well as updating the existing OS interface elements for licensees like Sony and Acer. I created over 30 different fonts for the device, thousands of icons, and worked with internal groups on user experience issues ranging from the introduction of higher resolution screens and the integration of phone capabilities (this was the dawn of the smartphone) to handling handwriting input for Asian languages and d-pad integration for single handed operation.

wearyellow.com

for Odopod

Technical Design, Conceptualization, Flash: When Odopod was developing the web site for the premier launch of the Wear Yellow campaign, they needed a community building experience to get people engaged. Initially expected to gather 20,000 entries, I built this virtual peloton that allowed cancer survivors, their friends, family, and supporters to add a virtual rider to the cause. The site was a tremendous hit and the peloton gatherd over 250,000 virtual riders!

Skip Intro

for New Riders Publishing

Book: In 2002 I embarked on co-writing a book with long time colleague Duncan McAlester. The book, Skip Intro, is designed to help educate the Flash community specifically and designers/programmers at large that usability isn’t a dirty word. It doesn’t mean making boring pedestrian web sites, and it doesn’t mean abandoning Flash. Quite the contrary, Flash offers advanced usability elements that traditional HTML websites could never hope to achieve. The book showed designers how to start thinking about their users and, more importantly, how to translate that understanding when they start designing or coding.
Skip Intro: The Book

Plantronics Gaming

for Plantronics

Art Direction: As Number 9 creative director and technical director, we delivered several projects for Plantronics, the headset manufacturer. Over our years of collaboration with them, we worked with them on several projects including a site for their gaming headsets – specially designed headsets for XBOX, PlayStation and other console systems. Here are some early concepts for that site.

Creative direction, conceptulization, product vision, visual design, technical design, user-centered design, coding, strategy, planning, writing, teaching…

Over the 15+ years of my career I’ve worn many hats: I’ve founded and run design and development shops. I’ve designed products, web sites, mobile interfaces and consumer devices. I’ve worked with many types of clients, from ad agencies to mobile device manufacturers. I’ve written a few books, given talks, held lectures and taught courses. Digital design has always been the core of all of these (ad)ventures.

My passion for designing digital experiences began in the early 1990s when I embarked on writing my first interactive story on an old 386 computer. Since then, I’ve worked in many seasons of the interactive industry – from the CD-ROM heyday, to the dot-com bust – and my goal has always been to create memorable and engaging digital experiences and bring delight to anything with pixels – whether it sits on your desk or in your hand.

My work has been chosen for several Communication Arts Interactive Annuals, won Flash Forward, One Show, SXSW and Cannes Cyber Lions awards, and has been featured in design magazines and books.

I have recently returned to independent consulting to explore designing ways of making digital technology a force that connects people in personal, more human ways through mobile devices and emerging touch-screen technology.

Michelangelo Capraro

Contact me to design your digital experiences.

Michelangelo Capraro

Articles & Posts

Ludum Dare #29: Beneath the Surface (Post Mortem)

My son (9 year old Oscar) and I participated in our second Ludum Dare Game Jam, #29, and it was, once again, a really rewarding and insightful experience. (Click here to read about our first game jam). As a refresher, the premise of the competition part of the Jam is to create a video game… Read the Rest

Ludum Dare 28: Bowerbird Quest (Post Mortem)

the Ludum Dare #28 game jam is over. it was an amazing time actually. surprisingly fun. the 48 hour constraint is just so awesome! (you can see the final entry here) i think the constraint appeals to me as a designer, where constraints seem to fuel the creativity, it seems to give me an obstacle… Read the Rest

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