Work inspiration with Chen Blume

Generic placeholder image

Chen Blume

Designer at Blume Studio, founder of Specctr App

My name is Chen Blume and I’m an independent designer at Blume Studio and founder of Specctr App. Specctr was created to help design teams work better together.  I love solving problems and thinking of ideas and solutions for work processes, visual designs or products. Currently my concentration is in interaction and graphic design. I split my time between freelance work and personal initiatives like Specctr. 


My set up at the studio a 27” iMac and a Macbook Pro at home, a wacom intuos tablet, and a photo Epson 1400 printer. Most importantly I use pen /pencil and a blank notebook. I find that more and more I like to balance time in front of the screen with working with my hands. 


I use Adobe Illustrator for prototyping and graphics, InDesign for publication and print design, and Photoshop for everything and anything. Dropbox helps my home and studio computers stay in sync. 

Research/ Documentation:

  • I’m an avid user of pinterest for cataloging inspiration. 
  • Evernote is also useful to help catalog thoughts and notes. 
  • My favorite mobile apps are Instagram and VSCO for photography and documentation. 

Project Management:

  • Google Docs and Trello. These help to keep projects and team members on the same page. 
  • Pancake App is installed on my server to help me track my time and invoice clients. 

Social Media:

  • Twitter - is my favorite social network
  • Mailchimp to engage with our users. 
  • Hootsuite for scheduling tweets to our followers. 
  • Tumblr for both BlumeStudio and Specctr blogs.


Ideal work environment

An open studio, where I can focus and have time to work independently as well as collaborate and get inspired by the people and work around me. I feel extremely lucky to be a member of Fringe Union which is a multi-disciplinary co-working space that includes artists, developers, videographers, letterpress printers, product designers, illustrators, florists and green roofers. 


Inspiration comes from everywhere, movies, nature, programing but also from everyday critical thinking. Many time my ideas spring from being frustrated with a process. Whether I’m listening to the news, standing in line at the supermarket, or helping a friend with a broken leg get up the stairs, I stop and ask: is there a better way? 

There has never been a more exciting time to be an independent designer. Technology makes is possible for all of to come up with creative solutions that can have a significant exposure and reach, hopefully with a large positive influence in our communities and beyond. 

Admire most

There are just a few designers/artist that i admire: Paul Rand, Stefan Sagmeister, Casey Reas, James Victore, Jessica Hische, Sonnen and Zimmer.

More recently my studio mates and collaborators have inspired me greatly like. They include Sosolimited, Q Fotos, and all of the creatives that work by me at Fringe Union.