Having worked in customer centred design and research for almost twenty years, former colleagues Amanda Palmas and Sophie Ellis decided to branch out to form Kickstand, in early 2018.

Working in the green tech startup space for the past few years, the Kickstand team have seen first hand the transformative change that a customer centred design practice can have on a business in those early years.

By keeping people at the centre of the product development process and exploring their needs, we are able to craft solutions that solve real problems.

Specialising in research, user experience, visual design and brand and content development, the Kickstand team has the experience to get your project off the ground.

Amanda Palmas

Amanda Palmas – Director

Hi! I’m a Senior Visual Designer/Art Director with over 18 years of experience across a wide cross section of creative disciplines.

In Kindergarten I was asked to design the cover of the school newsletter, my first commission! From that moment I began my lifelong love affair with design.

Since then I’ve worked with some of Australia’s largest media companies, startups and in a freelance capacity. I consider myself versatile, passionate, reliable and still get the same buzz out of creating beautiful designs as I did back when I was six.

My main focus lies in digital design from web to mobile apps and wearables, interface design and video. I also enjoy graphic design work in the form of branding and corporate identity, print design and packaging.

For me, a human-centred approach to my work is essential. Listening to user’s needs informs the creative design process and ensures the work I do is not only visually appealing but also usable and useful.

“Amanda and I have worked on a broad range of projects covering editorial, commercial and innovation. Her design work is effective and surprising, her process is thorough and professional. Amanda has gained a well deserved reputation for bringing not only best-in-breed design and creative energy that lifts the project, but also a positive spirit that empowers the team.”

Martin Egan, Product Owner – News Corp

Sophie Ellis

Sophie Ellis – Director

If you were to ask my mum, she’d be the first to tell you that I was that annoying child who continually asked ‘Why?’.

(Well, she might not use the word ‘annoying’ because she’s my mum, and she obviously thinks I’m wonderful. But, I’m pretty sure I was totally annoying.)

Watching and talking to people about what they do and why they do it continues to fascinate me. With over 20 years of experience in the digital space, in both Australia and the UK, I’ve been lucky enough to work on a wide range of projects with some seriously talented people. From eCommerce sites, financial service websites and apps, media and content management solutions, and renewable energy product development.

Starting out my working life as a Digital Producer when the web was shiny and new, I learned from the ground up. I now specialise in designing research to answer questions: whether it be about exploring new ideas, to testing and validating existing products. With my strong foundational skills I bring together strategic and tactical research with information architecture and content design, human-centred UX design and functional definition to create products that work.

In this ever-changing technical landscape we face, it’s so important that we remember who is going to be using that tech and what they need to use it for. Humans are a fickle bunch, always changing their minds, and never making logical decisions. They’re a tough crowd to please, but they are what I love most about the work I do.

“Sophie has this superhuman ability to turn around well thought through user experience solutions with incredible attention to detail as well as speed, without compromise. She had a great sense of humour, compassion and empathy that is essential to any top notch UX professional.”

Scott Maywood-Bryant, Principal UX Researcher – ANZ