Profile: Software Designer | Stephen Lemay ’93
Steve Lemay ’93 has been a software designer on the Human Interface team at Apple since 1999. He has played a role in the development of many products during that time, including OS X, iPhone, iPad, Siri, and, most recently, Apple Watch. He is the son of SPS fine arts faculty member Charlie Lemay.
At what point did you realize a career in the arts was viable?
Before becoming a photography teacher at St. Paul’s, my father was a professional photographer and graphic designer, so I had role model for a career in art. But I did not know exactly what I wanted to do with my career until the late 90s, when computer-aided design and animation were really taking off. There was a space developing in the tech sector that offered to combine many of my interests in art, technology, and culture.
How specifically can you connect the arts to the work you do at Apple?
The strong arts program at St. Paul’s was one of the key factors that brought me to the School. I had an opportunity to study graphic design (not common at the time) and create logos for the School Bookstore and T-shirts for various school events. These product-focused class projects were all about communication and iconography. These are also the foundations of software design. St.Paul’s is also where I fell in love with the Mac.
What does your work say about the different paths someone interested in the arts can take?
Every time a product is designed and created, it’s an opportunity to build something of beauty and function. For every artist who takes this seriously, there are career opportunities waiting everywhere, and a chance for art to have a positive impact on the world.