The founders of Surfr came to Futura with a vision to make a more social surfing experience. A way for Surfers to share where and when they'd been in the water and keep a log with surf report data, photos, and the people they've been surfing with.
I designed the UI for Surfr from top to bottom. They had some UI concept work done previously that we took a few cues from, but ultimately restarted from scratch.
Our first pass was working out all the different views and connecting them together. We've found that starting from the "Storyboard" level of iOS design, we're able to get a good head-start on the development process as well. After initially proposing a flyout nav, together with the client we decided that a Tab-Bar navigation pattern would be helpful for containing the main views to certain boundaries.
Once we had the views defined, we started working in the stylistic preferences. Building an app for a client, you learn how to move in certain paces - I was pushing pretty hard initially for no gradients, circular profile images and less data connected to each share. But, ultimately - I think we found a direction that worked best for the client and they were really happy with it. We received lots of great feedback sending Flinto prototypes out to end users and working in iterations.
A constant struggle through the UI design of Surfr was balancing the levels of "Surf Data" with the social aspects of the product. We felt both were valuable to the experience of Surfr and didn't want one to trump the other. We ultimately decided that the photo's were the most socially and "surf data" empowering data on the share block and wanted to feature them heavily.
We were in the final stages of finishing the Surfr iOS Application when iOS7 was announced. We were excited and bummed at the same time. The massive overhaul Apple made when announcing iOS7 took lots of people by surprise. It was a lot of fun and a huge learning experience about designing under the dependency of a larger system. We did the best we could to match our already established design with the iOS7 look and feel and still stay in budget. Some things worked well, others we wished we had more time for.
One of my favorite things to come from this project was LocationPickerView. A cocoapod that Chris open-sourced that is based off a view we developed for the "Discover" tab. It combines MKMapView and UITableView and adds some fancy parallax scrolling effects.