Paola "Wap" Mercader

Digital Product Designer | Creative Director | Optimizing digital customer experiences for innovative brands

Parañaque, Philippines
I make things easier, fun, and simpler for people to understand and engage with. I enjoy building brands, creating delightful intuitive experiences, and enabling or growing forward-thinking businesses sustainably through optimized processes and strategic design.

I love to work on things that empower and inspire. My curiosity and passion about making lives better drives me to get to know the world more and more each day. This informs the way I work, collaborate, the perspectives I may bring to the table, and solutions I'm willing to explore. It's very humbling to keep on learning, connecting, and discovering new things everyday.

Being a work-at-home mom to 2 kids makes me ever more determined to work smart, play hard, and dream big.

Work Experience

Manulife Financial

Senior UX Designer

I'm part of the Regional Experience Design team who is responsible for building the company's digital products in Asia and a core member of the Connected Design System global team, which is in charge of the maintenance, adoption, and governance of the company's design system.

I help enhance our digital design assets and contribute to our design system by making sure that it is optimized, sustainable, and dynamic to better serve our design team.
June 2020 - Present Philippines

Bootstrap Ventures

Digital Product Designer / Creative Director

Heads the design of digital products, create branding collaterals for sister companies, and makes engaging pitch decks and presentations for FAME (Futuristic Aviation and Maritime Enterprise, Inc.).
May 2015 - Present Philippines


Creative Director / Chief Creative Officer

Creative Lead who directed and managed the creative and marketing team in coming up with strategies, branding, and multimedia content for its clients and brands--Intellis, AwayTeam, AwayTeam Teach, and AB Partners. I also design user experiences and interfaces for websites and web apps for Entuent's various clients. I started in the company as an Information Architect for Intellis, designing digital products and writing its project specifications for documentation and proper quotation.
July 2016 - November 2019 Philippines

The Nest Attachment Parenting Hub

Freelance Creative Director

I did their rebranding and created its visual identity and content for its social media channels while working closely with their Marketing Director. Directed their in-house graphic artist as well as creative service providers in crafting the brand's visual materials.
June 2018 - November 2018 Philippines

Whitespace Technologies

Freelance UX/UI Designer

On-call designer for Whitespace's projects. Worked mostly on local startup websites.
July 2014 - November 2016 Philippines


UI Designer

Designed user interfaces, icons, and graphics for Slickplan, a premier sitemap builder packed with the tools to make planning websites easier and beautiful. Have also designed the branding and identity for Honeypot, another SAAS offering of Awmous.
April 2015 - October 2015 United States


Information Architect

Crafted user experiences as wireframes for websites and digital platforms. Also wrote specifications for an overview of the scope of work and for a proper quotation to be presented to clients. Such documentation serves as a design and development guideline for the team as well.
November 2014 - April 2015 Australia


UX & UI Designer / Illustrator

Improved UX design for tenminutepages/funnels web app, which makes it easy to create beautiful and effective landing pages. Re-designed its interface, assets, and branding as well as made landing page templates. Conducted usability tests and assisted in the production of marketing materials for the launch of the improved version of the web app.
June 2014 - November 2014 United States

Various Clients

Freelance UX & UI Designer/Illustrator/Graphic Artist

Got clients mostly from oDesk/Upwork and Behance where I worked on various projects from websites to e-commerce to mobile apps and games to quality assurance of UX designs to illustrations to branding and identity for various companies and startups from all over the world such as Singapore, US, Australia, France.
May 2013 - June 2014

Bazinga Inc.

Web & UI Designer

Designed UX and UI for web and mobile websites/apps. Also did some marketing and advertising materials including logo design for their partner brands.

February 2013 - May 2013 Philippines

IGen Technologies, Inc.

Web & UI Designer

Designed websites, icons, and UI for mobile sites and apps for iOS and Android.
August 2012 - January 2013 Philippines

Game Services Group, Inc.

Web Team Lead & UI Designer

Designed websites and did front-end development in HTML and CSS. Also designed UI for an e-learning iPad app. Was initially a Junior Web Designer from December 2011 to June 2012.
December 2011 - August 2012 Philippines

AEON World Group

Freelance Web Designer

Designed website for SynApps E-Media and AEON World Group. I also made business collaterals and print ads for AEON.
March 2011 - March 2012 Philippines

SVEN Ingenuity

Senior Graphic Artist

The SVEN Group is a marketing and advertising agency which engineers creativity with consumer-driven strategies. SVEN creates and manages brand-building campaigns from print ads and P.O.S. materials to web and applications to audio-visual presentations.

Designed graphics and layouts for various brands' marketing and advertising campaigns in print and web including Facebook apps and advergames. Supervised the design team during the first 3 months as well.
February 2011 - December 2011 Philippines

East West Ventures

Web & Graphic Designer

Was an in-house Graphic Artist who worked on the company and its affiliate's (Tawag Philippines and Signs2Last) identity, marketing collaterals, client projects, and website. This was the first time I learned how to code with HTML and CSS.
August 2010 - January 2011 Philippines

Friendster Philippines

Freelance Junior Graphic Artist

Assistant to the Senior Multimedia Designer. Did web ads and profile banners for various clients, promotional posters for Friendster's re-launch and comprehensive studies for our team's proposed new features of Friendster.
September 2009 - December 2009 Makati, Philippines

Regal Multimedia Inc.

Graphic Artist/ Multimedia Intern

Regal Entertainment, Inc. is a Philippine film-making and entertainment firm, established by Lily Monteverde in 1962. It has produced movies of all genres. In business for over forty eight years now, Regal Films has established its name in making movies that appeal to a broad range of Filipinos.

Full-time Multimedia Department Intern and was hired as Regal's Graphic Artist for December. Took care of the promotional ads for Regal's MMFF movies on the newspapers.

As an intern, I worked with the following departments:

MARKETING. Assisted in promotional events such as mall shows, press conferences and premiere nights. Monitored television and newspaper ads.

GRAPHICS. Assisted the Graphic and Web Designers in re-touching photos and contributing compre studies for promotional materials.

PRODUCTION. Monitored the shot lists and assisted in the making of the movies' Behind-The-Scenes.

POST PRODUCTION. Cured old Regal movies in Adobe Premiere Pro and did offline editing for the BTS of "Nandito Ako Nagmamahal Sa 'Yo" and "Mano Po 6".
July 2009 - December 2009 Philippines


Asia Pacific College

AB Multimedia Arts

Graduated with Academic Distinction
January 2006 - May 2010 Makati City, Philippines

University Of Sto. Tomas

BA Advertising

College of Fine Arts and Design
June 2005 - October 2005 Manila, Philippines


English (Fluent),
Filipino (Native),


Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Premiere Pro , Adobe XD, App Design, Art Direction, Book Layout, Branding, Children's Book Illustration, Copywriting, Creative Content Creation, Creative Direction, Data Visualization, Digital Product Management, E-Learning Design, Editorial Illustration, Game Design, Identity, Illustration, Infographics, Interior Styling, Leadership, Marketing, Marketing Communications Design, Mobile App Design, Multimedia Content Creation, Presentation Design, Product Design, Project Management, Social Media Management, Team Leadership, UI Design , UX Design, Video Editing, Web Design,

What I Can Do For You

+ Digital Product Management
+ User Experience Design
+ User Interface Design
+ Branding & Identity
+ Creative Direction
+ Illustration (children's books, websites, manuals)
+ Infographics
+ Icon Sets
+ Game Art
+ Layout (book, print, learning materials)
+ Copywriting
+ Interior & Event Styling

My Expertise

+ Empathy, keen research, & design thinking to solve problems
+ Strategic & deep creative production work to achieve goals
+ Creating & strengthening design systems for better collaboration
between teams or organizations
+ Enabling scalability for digital products through case study, proper
asset handling, & documentation with keen attention to detail
+ Illustrating icons & stories to create lasting impact
+ Doing interactive presentations that get audiences engaged
+ Business & systems analysis with data/process visualization
+ Clear & organized specification of tasks & project management
+ Effective leadership resulting to team loyalty & executive trust
+ A little video editing in Adobe Premiere Pro & some background in AfterEffects
+ Has background in HTML & CSS

Design Events Attended

+ UX+ Conference at SMX Convention Center BGC, August 2019
+ Create Philippines Masterclass on Communication Design at Globe Tower BGC, September 2018
+ Adobe CC Get MAD with Coffee Talk at Shangri-la BGC, August 2018
+ UX MNL Workshop by UX Mastery at Globe Tower Makati, July 2014
+ Graphika Manila at SMX Convention Center Pasay, June 2011
+ 8th International PALMM (Pro Audio and Video, Lighting, Music and Movie Technology) Philippines Exhibition at SMX Convention Center Pasay, August 2008
+ Cinemalaya seminar at CCP Manila, July 2008