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Steve Jobs, a designer at heart

By Walter Apai | Inspiration, Resources, Web Design | Oct 6, 2011

We at WDD are deeply saddened by Steve Jobs’ passing… And while the Internet is buzzing with people’s heartfelt emotions about his life’s impact and legacy, we’d also like to pay tribute with this modest homage.

A designer at heart, design was at the core of Steve’s life and that translated to revolutionary and yes we can also say ‘magical’ products. But he says it better: “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”

And we can only imagine how many lives have been influenced by his vision and how deep he reached into all the corners of the world…

In this post, we’ve collected some rare photos of Steve as well as some famous quotes that depict his visions and personality.

Comments are open for you to share how he impacted your career as a designer and as a person, we sure know that he has deeply influenced us! What did you learn from him and how has his legacy impacted you? Where will YOU take his legacy next? Please share your candid thoughts below…

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.”


“In most people’s vocabularies, design means veneer. It’s interior decorating. It’s the fabric of the curtains and the sofa. But to me, nothing could be further from the meaning of design. Design is the fundamental soul of a man-made creation that ends up expressing itself in successive outer layers of the product or service.”


“Innovation has nothing to do with how many R&D dollars you have. When Apple came up with the Mac, IBM was spending at least 100 times more on R&D. It’s not about money. It’s about the people you have, how you’re led, and how much you get it.”


 

“We’ve gone through the operating system and looked at everything and asked how can we simplify this and make it more powerful at the same time.”


 

“It comes from saying no to 1,000 things to make sure we don’t get on the wrong track or try to do too much.”


“It’s better to be a pirate than to join the Navy.”


“Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me … Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful… that’s what matters to me.”


“Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.”



“It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.”


“The only problem with Microsoft is they just have no taste. They have absolutely no taste. And I don’t mean that in a small way, I mean that in a big way, in the sense that they don’t think of original ideas, and they don’t bring much culture into their products.”



“People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully.”



“My job is to not be easy on people. My job is to make them better.”



“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.”


“Look at the design of a lot of consumer products — they’re really complicated surfaces. We tried to make something much more holistic and simple. When you first start off trying to solve a problem, the first solutions you come up with are very complex, and most people stop there. But if you keep going, and live with the problem and peel more layers of the onion off, you can often times arrive at some very elegant and simple solutions. Most people just don’t put in the time or energy to get there. We believe that customers are smart, and want objects which are well thought through.”



And one more thing…

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  • Anonymous

    An insanely great man, those photos brought more than a tear to my eye.

  • http://twitter.com/ladyfromsun ladyfromsun

    “Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me …
    Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful… that’s
    what matters to me.”,a genius he got it for eternity…… i got his advice i found that i love ..for me is be designer.

  • http://www.facebook.com/penio.dachev Penio Dachev

    R.I.P. Steve Jobs

  • http://www.facebook.com/penio.dachev Penio Dachev

    R.I.P. Steve Jobs

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sid-Perovic/747895349 Sid Perovic

    was he concerned about chinese people assembling his iphones for like a 1$ per day? i’m not putting in question his talent and effort he invested in apple. just those things that make someone a great man, idol to others. and as i can notice, he is.

    • http://twitter.com/BrennyCarroll Bren C

      Apple are one of few western companies who demand annual audit reports from their Asian counterparts. So, yes you could say he was.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sid-Perovic/747895349 Sid Perovic

        Over the time, I came across titles like: “Tenth worker at iPad factory commits suicide”, “Concern over human cost overshadows iPad launch”, “Apple factory in China erects net to stop suicides!”…etc. And I really doubt in those annual audit reports. They wouldn’t be there in Asia at the first place if they actually cared about people. They ditched Americans and took their jobs for more profit. Sad.

      • http://twitter.com/BrennyCarroll Bren C

         I agree, it’s really tragic. That news makes me sick too! The factories in question have been regulated since that news , Apple continues to monitor and put them under significant pressure. China are the biggest industrial nation in the world, Apple have phenomenal product demand. China is a brick wall when it comes to human rights, complex working culture, business as usual. That’s just how it works. Sad I agree with you on that… but blame the system, not Steve!

        Separate note; amazing tribute page, thanks for sharing.
        Rest In Peace Steve…

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sid-Perovic/747895349 Sid Perovic

        Point is, Steve was able to do something about it, but he didn’t. He was able to stop that in it’s tracks. Now as a result of who knows how many deaths, he died with a couple billions more on his bank account. They have all the money in the world and it is never enough.
        And since he is glorified for his talent in design and innovation, I can tell that he is just one of many. There are tons of people that can match him. But they had a successful company and good media coverage, so you got to know who is Steve Jobs.

        Agree on the page thing. Nice coverage. 

        P.S. I like your work. :)

  • http://www.logoblog.org Logo Design

    Great photos, its reminding me that moments when he was alive…
    R.I.P. Steve Jobs

  • http://naturelogos.blogspot.com William Martin

    Steve Jobs a man with full of creativity and a great man. May his soul rest in peace.

  • http://www.perfect-icons.com/index.htm?ref=ch Adam Chen

    I left tears over my keyboard while reading this article, how sad it happen to our technology, losing a greatest, innovative and tech pioneer of all. The one started iPhone, iPad, and Mac and we are hoping that someday our technology won’t die, please be with us. You left hundreds of memories you shared. I’m absolutely an iPhone lover, have 2 here! 

    R.I.P Steve Jobs

  • Anonymous

    iSad

  • http://www.fehlpass.com Yalcin (fehlpass.com)

    Thank you, Steve!

  • http://420creative.com Angie Herrera

    Great tribute. Nicely and elegantly done. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Fredda-Cassidy/630645459 Fredda Cassidy

    The entire line of Apple products changed my life, from way back to the first MacPlus. Suddenly I had the opportunity to use all my design and artistic knowledge in a totally new way. More importantly, I had the chance to teach each newly acquired skill set … and believe me there were many! …  to others. I had the good fortune to build great design tools into classrooms way before it was common and chic—and to encourage people to become good designers— to use these tools to learn, to experiment, to concept, to work and to rework, and ultimately to GROW and create. Thank you so much Mr. Jobs. I’ll miss you.

  • http://wparena.com/ Wordpress Arena

    the man who change the designers life…Love for Steve’s knowledge :)

  • http://twitter.com/ahenqs André Henrique

    Nice quotes and pictures… He’ll be missed!

  • http://twitter.com/GanimeCreative Anthony Ganime

    This is a sad and terrible loss. Thank you, Steve, for your inspiration. Thank you for everything…

  • http://twitter.com/kmaleondg Eliot Ceballos

    Everyone can feel that empty and sad sensation in the stomach. We have lost something important in our lives… Rest in peace Steve Jobs and thank you for everithing.

  • http://www.AdventuresofaGoodMan.com Greg Goodman

    As a ardant PC-guy, I was a bit surprised at how much the news saddeded me. Then again, he was a revolutionary human being – a modern DaVinci – and the entire world has lost an innovator, leader and genius. RIP Senor Jobs.

  • http://twitter.com/dhemley Debbie Hemley

    Thank for sharing this beautiful tribute to Steve Jobs 

  • Dave Colantoni

    I was talking with someone who didn’t know alot about Steve Jobs, or technology for that matter, and called him “that apple guy”. She told me how she didn’t even know what he had done, but it just felt like there was a huge hole in the world today.

    It’s amazing how many people don’t even realize how deeply their lives have been touched by this man. That loss, that “hole in the world” will be felt for many years to come.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Dawn-Drury/1737379749 Dawn Drury

    Thank you for sharing. RIP Steve Jobs.

  • http://twitter.com/sueevans2 Sue Evans

    Some great pictures of an outstanding man. Somehow the world feels a poorer place for his passing.

  • Alex B.

    Steve Jobs leaves an awesome legacy. As a child, he was given up for
    adoption and not abortion. Oh my, what lessons we can learn from this.
    Because of his mom’s unselfish decision, and another mom’s unselfish
    decision, the entire world has benefited by his brilliance. And his
    brilliance shone very bright.
    He never saw himself as a victim. He
    saw what could be done and did it. He saw beyond where we were and took
    us to places we had yet to imagine. His light burned very brightly.
    May the God of all grace bring peace and comfort to his family
    who
    lived with the man and knew him better than most – and we are all
    envious. Thank you Steve Jobs for being a shinning light on a path most
    have yet discover and blazing a trail that illuminates the potential
    for man when his eyes seek the far horizon and beyond and his spirit
    soars to the challeng

  • darrin breen

    Great post. 

  • http://techgyo.com TechGyo

    A loss of a great visionary, a big loss for the world of technology. Without him the world would’ve been a few years backward. His speech at Stanford was very touching, and many would’ve shed tears after watching it.

  • Anonymous

    An amazing man. One of the most important people of our time. Not only our time but i think he’s the most important person in history. Not because of his inventions and apple. Because of the guy he was. He beamed with delight. You can tell he loved his life and what he did. He embodied what it meant to be a good person. He cared about the world. He’s influenced my design career greatly. Even before i started to follow apple and steve i had always looked at the details. When i would get products and if they came with a scratch on them i would freak out. I loved that he was all about perfection. He wil forever be the heart of apple. No matter what his vision is deeply embed into apple’s core and i can’t see that ever going away. Because it will always be his company. So the folks at apple have to live up to steve’s standard. And they will. I’m sure he left a plan that will over the next 10 years or more for apple. Steve would have eventually wanted change at apple. For a new young aspiring person to take the spot. Maybe one of his children will have interest in technology and lead apple in the next direction years to come. Apple will always be steve. But steve picked the team that helped make apple what it is today and that team is still in tact. 

  • Anonymous

    He was a designer for sure. Apple didn’t kill graphic design that’s silly. Nothing has killed graphic design it’s a very large field and a great one to be in. Speaking as an artist and designer i can say i most definitely think steve was a designer. Apple is extremely creative. I mean type faces and fonts came from steve. I don’t think their design is minimal at all. What makes graphic design bad is that any ass hole who has photoshop calls them self a designer.

  • rick bernabe

    there’s only one original within the past 35 years…..iconic, focused,great task master,master marketer,super facilitator/briefer,when steve jobs presents something everyone listens from investors,wall street, it world,silicon world,ordinary students,kids,apple die hards,et/it tinkerers you name it.
    his influence is so contagious he broke all records of persuasion. the cardinals at the farm will remember him forever……….RIP &GBY and the whole IT universe

  • AJ Says

    I’m sad.  Really sad.  Sadder than I would have imagined.  We all knew this was coming, yet, somehow that does not make the news any less gutting.  Almost every aspect of my day-to-day life is directly effected by his work and passion.  I admired the man and I’m bummed to live in a world without him.  Godspeed Steve Jobs and thank you.

  • http://www.maulanurulkhakam.com Maula Nurul Khakam

    good bye steve..

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1045480249 Fiona Chaniago

    Rest In Peace :( You’re everywhere in my life..

  • http://www.facebook.com/myenergy.lifetimevalue Myenergy Lifetime Value

    The energy , awesome lifetime value , and insights of Steve Jobs . Ty :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/myenergy.lifetimevalue Myenergy Lifetime Value

    Steve Jobs created designs targeting  our hearts  :)

  • http://www.squidoo.com/top-logo-design-contest-sites Logo Design Contest Sites

    Wonderful article on steve’s life! Appreciate this sharing :)

  • http://www.sullysrants.com Sully

    I am not the creator… I was unable to find the original artist.