Casper Wolters

What does the work of a graphic designer at Marpower look like? Casper Wolters talks about his role as a translator of technology into user-friendly interfaces. As a Graphical User Interface Designer, he brings clarity to complex systems, which requires creativity and problem-solving skills.

Upon finishing his studies in architecture, Casper accidentally stumbled into the graphic design profession in 2006 when he took on a job through an acquaintance at De Keizer Marine Engineering, now part of Eekels. The company requested that the graphical representation of the alarm, monitoring, and control system (AMCS) have the same look and feel as the sonar system. Casper had never considered working in shipbuilding, but he dared to take on the challenge. This project would ultimately be the first of many for the company.

“There’s plenty of room to learn on the job. Eekels is good at facilitating that.”

Thinking from the user experience

As a graphic designer at Eekels, Casper creates the graphical interface for the AMCS for yachts, he explains. “You can compare this to the display in a car.” For this, he collaborates closely with software engineers: What they develop, Casper translates into what the user sees. “When you press a button, something has to happen on the screen. And if it takes a while, a loading screen is needed.”   This involves, in part, standard components. “Even on a boat, you need an alert if a door is open when you’re about to sail. These are things the insurance requires.” At the same time, Casper’s job demands customization, as every boat and every user is different. This keeps his work challenging. “I once had a client who was colorblind and couldn’t distinguish between red and green lights. Then you have to come up with other solutions, like using flashing lights.”   Other times, certain solutions aren’t possible if the necessary data is missing. “To me, it’s very clear that something can’t be done, but to others, it’s not. You need to clearly communicate what you need; otherwise, you end up with a ‘not quite right’ result,” Casper explains.
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Strong problem-solving skills

The complexity of the systems on a yacht requires creativity and a strong problem-solving ability, Casper says. “On a yacht, you don’t just have one battery but maybe fifteen. You need to make that comprehensible for the user at a glance.” Creating order from that complexity is something Casper enjoys about his work. “The AMCS consists of various systems. You start by designing one component and build it up step-by-step into a comprehensive system that influences the entire yacht.” Casper derives great satisfaction from completing these projects, especially since he creates a product from start to finish.

The uniqueness of working at Eekels

Casper describes Eekels as a reliable, solid employer and enjoys his department. “I’ve worked in places that were a lot duller!” he laughs. The staff association organizes activities with colleagues from different Eekels locations, like ice skating or a trip to the zoo. “These activities strengthen the bond with each other. It’s a good way to create and maintain unity in your company.”

Casper also enjoys the unique assignments he gets as a graphic designer at Eekels. Recently, he worked on a very specific issue. “When you fill a yacht with liquid, it tilts a bit,” he begins. “You need to pump liquids through the ship in a certain way so that it stays more or less horizontal in the water. We created an automatic system for that.” He is proud to successfully complete such unique projects with his colleagues. “It’s also exciting to create something like that for the first time. You have no reference.”

You must be daring

To work in shipbuilding, you need to have a passion for technology, says Casper. Basic knowledge of the industry is also helpful, but not mandatory, he believes. “There’s plenty of room to learn on the job. Eekels is good at facilitating that.”

The most important thing, however, is to just try, he says. “It doesn’t matter if you make a wrong step in your career, but you have to dare.” You never know where you might end up!

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