9 May, 2023

Shoaib Mahmud – Product Designer

Table of contents


Denislav Jeliazkov
Founder @uilearn

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🇧🇩 Bangladesh, Product Designer

Shoaib Mahmud


What was the turning point that led you to design?

I experimented with many jobs to find out what suited me the most. I worked in digital marketing, business development, and as a front-end developer and support engineer. After my graduation, I started my career as a front-end developer, but I soon realized that coding was not my strong suit. However, I was good at connecting with clients and understanding their psychology. During this period, I also started learning graphic design and became familiar with tools like Photoshop and Illustrator. The co-founder of that company also was my reporting manager who introduced me to the term “UI/UX Designer” and suggested that I would be a good fit for it. He encouraged me to give it a try. I started learning about UI/UX and fell in love with it. I found it to be a perfect combination of tech, business, design, and user psychology. As I had explored many industries, I could connect better with UI/UX. I enjoyed learning new things and that’s how my journey into design began.

What does your typical day look like?

I start my day with a 60-minute walk in nature early in the morning. My cousins and I go for walks in different villages. When I come back, I start my daily design tasks. As I’m currently working with Toptal, the client is a YCombinator startup called Inquery, I have a set of design tasks to complete each day. In my spare time, I watch YouTube videos on design, scroll through design inspiration sites, and read articles on UILearn, Medium, and NNGroup to sharpen my knowledge. I also hang out with a few designers, developers, and CEOs online, which helps me stay updated.

Why did you decide to enroll in UI Learn?

I enrolled at UILearn at the beginning of 2022 when I was working as a Lead Product Designer in a Bangladeshi startup. My portfolio and presentation skills were quite weak, and my UI design wasn’t sharp enough to impress recruiters. Around that time, I found a blog from UILearn that I found very helpful. After reading the course outline, I felt a connection and decided to join.

What it’s like being a student of UI Learn?

I’m thankful to UILearn for the opportunity. Denislav Jeliazkov, my mentor, was incredibly helpful throughout the journey. I practiced design by watching recorded videos from UILearn and then posting my task on the Slack channel.

Denislav pointed out areas for improvement and I also had the chance to meet other students from different parts of the world who are currently working in big tech companies. Denis mentored me personally as well. He sent personalized videos about how I could improve, and we even had discussions on Google Meet. He suggested ways I could improve to achieve the expected results.

Denis motivated me by teaching me how to present myself, how to write a compelling pitch, and how to create a great portfolio to impress clients. His advice really helped me work with Toptal.

Even now, I’m still connected with my mentor Denis. We even talk about personal topics, which is quite amazing.

What does your setup look like?

Where do you get inspired?

Real applications, Mobbin, Nicelydone, SaaS UI Design

What product have you recently seen that made you think this is a great design?

I recently experienced Headspace’s mobile app. I think it’s a great design in terms of Simplicity: A minimalist design approach. Well-balanced whitespace, which makes the app feel uncluttered and straightforward.

Intuitive User Interface: Features and functionalities are self-explanatory, which means users don’t need to spend a lot of time learning how to use the app. Use of Colors: The app uses a calm and soothing color palette Animations and Interactions: The subtle animations and interactions are delightful and engaging, which enhances the overall user experience.

For example, the breathing exercises include visual cues that are animated in sync with the audio guidance. Personalization: The app offers a high level of personalization, offering courses and exercises tailored to my needs. Content Presentation: The audio and text content is presented in a way that is easy to digest.

Consistency: The design elements remain consistent throughout the app, including typography, icons, and layout.

What music do you listen to whilst designing?

Any advice for upcoming designers?

Understand the fundamentals of design and practice user-centered design. Become efficient with tools that will speed up your work, but don’t focus too much on perfection. Design is a journey; it has no final destination. Always strive to make it better. Learn about new technologies, see which companies are getting funding.

Explore their businesses, watch their product videos, surf their websites, and connect with other designers. Expand your network. Enjoy the process of learning.

Be consistent, it’s a superpower.

Anything you want to promote or plug?

Connect with me on LinkedIn.

Lastest blog posts

Designing an iOS App from Start to Finish