Designer, indie hacker & technology enthusiast
I’m pretty sure I became a designer because of Lego; I’ve been playing with it since I was three years old, creating and finding solutions for problems with limited resources. By the age of 15, after making some fake web pages with Fireworks and Dreamweaver just for fun, with a little push from one of my brothers, I began to design websites for small local businesses.
My older brother—Gabriel Ratzlaff—is also a designer, and he had a huge influence on my decision to study Design at college. We even graduated together.
I was creating basic websites all by myself, and as the clients started to demand more advanced features, I had no choice but to learn how to code—at least some basics. It began to evolve into new ideas, projects, and opportunities. By the age of 18, I landed a job as a full-stack developer at an advertising agency. For the most of my career, I’ve worked on hybrid positions between design and web development.
Although I’ve worked with PHP, MySQL and some other backend techonoligies, my main skills are front-end development—vanilla and React. My knowledge on web development allows me to better communicate with engineers and design with coding feasability and constraints in mind.
Using my knowledge of design and development, I’ve been able to create small side projects all by myself. Pomo King is my favorite and I keep it around until today. Like most of the people passionate about side projects, I have a list of ongoing and abandoned, and I’m always looking to collaborate and join people in new and awesome ideas.
At some point, I started the realized how much I enjoyed typography, and studying and practicing helped me get better at the base disciplines of Design. Typography is what sharpened my eye and changed the way I look at things. Since 2018, My brother and I have created, built, and sold fonts at MyFonts; You’ll find us by the name of Ratzlaff Type. Soon, we’ll release a new project with more high-quality fonts as well as other typographic pieces and services.
Not my most frequent hobby but something that I have no intention to stop exploring, photography is something easy to fall in love with. I use it to keep memories of places I’ve been and people I’ve met.