In the Beginning 

In 1998, the year the first 56K modem was available for purchase, I graduated from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2000 with a Master of Fine Arts in Visual Communication. I interned at Thinktank and Schafer Condon Carter during my graduate program and joined Morningstar, Inc, an independent investment research firm, right after graduation.

Graphic Design and Advertising was the first industry I joined at the time of my undergrad, but I was forced to quit my Art Director job in Bangkok to join my sister who was studying in Chicago in 1997 in order to save cost of study abroad. It was in Chicago where I began to learn many new forms of multimedia, deep typography, Bauhaus, Swiss Graphic, and art installations that have formed who I am today. Additional curriculum included filming, video editing, 3D arts, laser cutting, hand book-binding, neon sign glass bending, monument design and more.

It was through those HTML/FLASH websites where I began to learn using tables for layout is like playing the LEGO constructor, CSS, interaction design, animation, site optimisation, and making application in CD-rom. Designing for financial data helped me to understand important of typography and information design(inspiredby envisioning information by Edward Tufte).

From 2000 to 2006, I was fortunate to work at Morningstar, a global financial investment research company headquartered in Chicago. I had the opportunity to learn from Philip Burton, a professor who was a part-time design consultant at Morningstar at that time and is currently developing UIC’s graphic design program. He taught me design that was essential and timeless, including graphic design with data and Swiss Design.

After five years, I moved into designing for mobile in Motorola in Chicago HQ, where I defined hard-key and soft-key behaviours, navigation schema, haptic and widgets for different form factor from slider, swivel, dual-screen, to candy bar — all of which have become part of the touchscreen phone we use today. The last phone that I designed for was Motorola Rokr, the first mobile phone with Apple iTunes pre-installed. Thanks to the first iPhone debut on June 29, 2007, my career was suddenly warped into a new world. I began to learn about terms like GUI(GraphicUser Interface) and UX(UserExperience), plus several new design jobs including UI Designers, Interaction Designer, Visual Designer, UX Writer, Motion Designer and many more. 

In 2010, I moved to Silicon Valley in order to feel the new digital world and experience startups and big tech firms. I started to lead a bigger team as a User Experience Design Manager in PayPal HQ with new design development, design culture, and global organisation. Along the way, I was also inspired by Tadao AndoDieter RamsMUJI, and Vitra

Because of the nature of the Internet and global expansion, I had the opportunity to relocate to Singapore and build a design team for PayPal APAC in 2010. I adapted to the new environment through personal skills, and learning how to deal with day-to-day business, decision making for finance, attract talents & hiring, and managing performance. By the time I left, PayPal APAC expanded with two design teams in both the Singapore and Chennai Office.

You can see my old works here.



I am proud of my current User Experience & Design team at DBS which has grown from 2 members in April 2014 to about 50 people in 2018. I enjoy building and shaping our design team into becoming one of the best in the region and perhaps even the world. I contribute to the company’s overall design strategy, create our design vision and values, design guidelines, and oversee design needs for a growing list of channels (Internet banking, consumer apps, tablet apps). As a key member of DBS Consumer Banking Group’s Regional Digital, I focus on designing best-in-class digital channels, creating vision for core banking, payments and wealth management experience, and levelling up design maturity and leadership within DBS Bank.

Beside design management, I’m also learning and designing for digital products/services with User Interface and AI-based experiences, as well as exploring Zero Interface(VoiceRecognition, Voice Assistant, Natural Language, Chatbot, etc.).


Contact Me

LinkedIn message is the best way to reach me.

Feel free to follow me on Twitter @chooake or LinkedIn as well.

My frequent hashtags include #thiswilldo #lessbutbetter #dbsuxd.

Do One thing. Ship Delightful Products!
— Chooake W. (part of 2014 Goals—Pursuit of Simplification)

• Recent Interview With Invision App •

April 2014

April 2014


• On the Web •