Liana Modolo

Hi, I'm Liana—a Product Designer based in Melbourne, Australia.

I have spent the past 5 years working with startups and scale-ups in Australia and the UK and am currently, hanging out with the team at Today, designing for people and planet.
I'm equally at home pushing pixels, creating human-centred systems, facilitating a workshop or, in the world researching users. I love every facet of the design process; the discovering, listening, creating, refining and tweaking to make great things that people want to (and can) engage with.
Read on for the back story!

A collection of my experiences

I grew up in a small town in Queensland, AU called Bundaberg. It's the home of Australia's favourite rum, known fondly as 'Sugarcane champagne' or 'The black rat—use your imagination to fill in the blanks. At 18, I escaped to be an Aussie in London; travelled by myself, met people from all over the world and returned to start University a year later (I ran out of money).
Like every student of a business degree ever, I retained only vagaries of management theory and enough knowledge of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs to look smart at a party. On the upside, I learned the exact amount of caffeine my body can tolerate before a panic attack and how to write a killer bibliography in ~15 minutes.
I'm joking (but not). What I did develop at university: the rigour of good research; quick synthesis of large quantities of information; and excellent written communication skills. My highlight was studying Spanish & Anthropology—subjects that opened up various career, travel and neural pathways, including a semester abroad in Mexico. Living and studying in another culture (and language) was exhilarating and humbling, I felt like an idiot 342* times a day and ate way too much queso but the experience helped me question my perspective and appreciate how big and small people's worlds are.
After graduating, I've been fortunate to work in a range of industries and roles. I've been a literal hype girl, function supervisor, researcher, engagement officer, event manager and designer. Each experience has given me new tools to interpret people's wants and needs, listen with empathy and communicate to inform or influence. Equally, the people that I've worked with in those jobs have taught me much: micromanagers have taught me how to up-manage, over-communicate and stay on my toes; entrepreneurs have taught me to be scrappy, aim high and be bold; craftspeople have taught me to pay attention to detail and obsessively do better; leaders have taught me to trust myself and others; and countless colleagues have taught me to be generous, measured and confident.

The things I do regularly

I really want to say that I asana every morning, only buy organic and read 4 books a week but, honestly, yoga makes me irrationally mad, I'm not made of money and I have 5 half-read books scattered around my life. The truth is, I try to stick to these simple habits: I say thank you for the privilege of choosing my own path and having a place of belonging full of food and love; I work hard at things I say 'yes' to; continually question what I think I know; and talk to my fam every day.
I also regularly dream of being asked to dance by Diego Luna while I sip mojitos in a Cuban bar on a sultry summer night—we salsa, banter (my Spanish is perfect) and remain lifelong friends.
If you have managed to read this whole thing—wow, I'm so sorry—you'll never get those 10 minutes back. And if still you want to know more, please get in touch via Linkedin or email. Have a great day ✌🏻