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CeeLee
 
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Joined: July 12th, 2016, 5:20 pm
Variant- you and I seem to be in the same boat! I moved from the east coast to Portland, OR for a job last year and was laid off during a period of restaffing. I like the culture in Portland but I'd prefer to live somewhere with more sun. The gloomy winters and chilly summers here aren't where I want to lay down roots.

I'd love to work at a design agency making consumer products. My background is largely retail displays with some consumer products and electronics. From what I've seen and heard, there's a huge need for UX designers at design agencies but ID positions aren't in demand now.

Is there much of an ID market in Austin? That's one of the cities I'm seriously considering but it doesn't look like there are many design agencies down there, and my ID friend who lives there went into web design.

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cwatkinson
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iab wrote:2 months and counting.

Still haven't filled 2 senior positions.


iab - im ave problems with my account. if you did pm me i got a email saying i had one but cant access - can you send me the info to chevis.watkinson@gapac.com

thanks.


bradfordagill
 
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Joined: June 17th, 2015, 10:00 am
Have you considered San Diego? The design scene is growing here with things like Makers Quarter and The Design Lab at UCSD (where Don Norman heads the department). We just had a big event called DesignForwardSD where they released a nice directory/website of design-oriented organizations in the SD area. Maybe something to consider...

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Variant
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Joined: November 4th, 2008, 1:11 am
Location: Trying to escape Arizona
bradfordagill wrote:Have you considered San Diego? The design scene is growing here with things like Makers Quarter and The Design Lab at UCSD (where Don Norman heads the department). We just had a big event called DesignForwardSD where they released a nice directory/website of design-oriented organizations in the SD area. Maybe something to consider...


Yeah, it's come to be suggested a couple of times... thanks for putting it in the top of my brain. A lovely city. My only trepidation is the cost of living is pretty lofty there.

I'll def check out your suggestions. :D

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orrkwankit
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Location: San Diego
Variant wrote:
bradfordagill wrote:Have you considered San Diego? The design scene is growing here with things like Makers Quarter and The Design Lab at UCSD (where Don Norman heads the department). We just had a big event called DesignForwardSD where they released a nice directory/website of design-oriented organizations in the SD area. Maybe something to consider...


Yeah, it's come to be suggested a couple of times... thanks for putting it in the top of my brain. A lovely city. My only trepidation is the cost of living is pretty lofty there.

I'll def check out your suggestions. :D


Cost of Living in SD is pretty steep but cheaper than SF (if that means anything). I've been here almost 10 yrs as IDer. There seems to be more opportunities in other CA cities in comparison.
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engelhjs
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Joined: April 22nd, 2007, 10:07 am
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
orrkwankit wrote:Cost of Living in SD is pretty steep but cheaper than SF (if that means anything). I've been here almost 10 yrs as IDer. There seems to be more opportunities in other CA cities in comparison.


I recently left the SD area specifically because of the lack of opportunity after being laid off. You'll be hard-pressed to find a better place to live (I miss the hell out of Encinitas,) but I found demand for ID work to be pretty low.
Jeff Engelhardt
Industrial Designer - Footwear & Softgoods
Giro Sport Design
Santa Cruz, CA
http://www.jeff-engelhardt.com

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Variant
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Joined: November 4th, 2008, 1:11 am
Location: Trying to escape Arizona
engelhjs wrote:
orrkwankit wrote:Cost of Living in SD is pretty steep but cheaper than SF (if that means anything). I've been here almost 10 yrs as IDer. There seems to be more opportunities in other CA cities in comparison.


I recently left the SD area specifically because of the lack of opportunity after being laid off. You'll be hard-pressed to find a better place to live (I miss the hell out of Encinitas,) but I found demand for ID work to be pretty low.


Yeah, this thread is pretty old at this point. I've eliminated California completely off my list.

I'm moving my focus away from trying to find anything design focused in general, and I'm just too much of a piece of shit to make enough to live out there. I can't even get pingbacks on $15/hr. CAD, estimator, or whatever jobs. I'd be homeless in San Diego.

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AndyMc
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Location: Australia
As far as I have seen, you haven't yet posted a portfolio for review and feedback. This would be the very first thing to do to move forwards. In any case it would give you a baseline to work from, and still won't stop you from moving industries if you wish.

I understand that it seems difficult to post your work if you don't feel like your skills are good enough, but the feedback helps you to at least know what is and isn't working. I've posted my portfolio a few times, and frankly they've been complete pieces of crap that, as it turns out, weren't up to scratch and wouldn't have gotten me a proper ID job, let alone the dream job.

However, it gave me a starting point to work from, and the feedback provided gave me some goals and helped motivate me to improve my skillset. I practise a lot in my own time now and will hopefully get into the right groove soon. Everything gained and nothing lost.
Andy McIntyre
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Variant
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Joined: November 4th, 2008, 1:11 am
Location: Trying to escape Arizona
^
I'm no longer looking for design work, thanks. It's too competitive and neigh impossible to even find stuff to apply to. At my age (40), it's not worth the immense frustration and downtime looking for work.

With my experience as the Sr. ID (the only, actually) position at my last gig, plus all the ancillary R&D work, prototyping, testing, market research, packaging design, and coordination with manufacturing, marketing, & trade that I took part in... and I'm still an unemployable piece of shit? Seems the more knowledge and experience I gain, the harder is is to get work. So, nah I'm out. It's a thankless profession. I've got great references though, so there's that. :?

I'm open to any suggestions for career shifts if you got them though. :|


Sarah-Flieger
 
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Joined: May 8th, 2017, 10:09 am
Location: schloggebach am main
hmmm i reaally dont know where to do that

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Cyberdemon
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Sorry to see this took such a pessimistic turn, in terms of possible career moves have you considered teaching? There are a lot of growing design programs around the country where you could put that experience to work if you're not looking to be hands on anymore.

I see SCAD has a couple openings for their next semester. Savannah might fit your bill for nice weather and low cost of living. Beautiful town if you haven't been, as long as you're fonder of the small scale.

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Variant
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Location: Trying to escape Arizona
Cyberdemon wrote:Sorry to see this took such a pessimistic turn, in terms of possible career moves have you considered teaching?


Honestly, I don't know how to find an optimistic perspective on things. :| I'm already over a year into my layoff and I haven't had a single pingback or interview. I really thought my relatively high level position and broad interdepartmental experience at my last job would finally kick my career off and put some wind under my wings. I'm still the same boat as I was back before 2012: Invisible to employers.




There are a lot of growing design programs around the country where you could put that experience to work if you're not looking to be hands on anymore.


I've given a few guitar lessons in the past. I am definitely not a teacher type personality, whatever that entails.

Is it even worth sinking back down into a CAD monkey career? Keep in mind I'm not an ME. Maybe spend some time learning Solidworks (I'm a Rhino guy)? Frankly, I have zero interest in investing in a skillset in a different part of the market that's impossible to get any employment in. Whatever new software I learn, I'm still not going to have shit for experience in it. Heck, no one considers me for CAD work in platforms I already have experience in (aforementioned Rhino, AutoCAD). :(




I see SCAD has a couple openings for their next semester. Savannah might fit your bill for nice weather and low cost of living. Beautiful town if you haven't been, as long as you're fonder of the small scale.


Not a fan of small scale. I'm a unmarried guy more into the gentrifying parts of big cities.


LeggoMyEggo
 
Posts: 13
Joined: July 14th, 2016, 1:25 pm
Sorry to hear about your circumstances, I can imagine it is really tough and discouraging what you are going through, but you should re-read your posts. People have made some sound suggestions and you just keep calling yourself a "piece of shit". As others have suggested, post your portfolio so it can be critiqued, be open to moving to new areas (instead of focusing on the "gentrified cities") and most certainly focus on building your current/new skillset, it might very well pay off, or maybe it won't, but that is the risk you have to take right now.

There must be something in your resume that is turning away employers if you haven't gotten a single hit, if you haven't already, have someone look over it and do the same with your portfolio. Seriously, if you want to get yourself out of this rut, you'll do this.

I highly encourage you not to throw in the towel yet, but if you decide to, look at community college programs that have an easy-to-get degree in: IT, medical fields a lot of industries out there take minimal or no training to get your foot in the door, but that should be your last option.

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Cyberdemon
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Variant wrote:Is it even worth sinking back down into a CAD monkey career? Keep in mind I'm not an ME. Maybe spend some time learning Solidworks (I'm a Rhino guy)? Frankly, I have zero interest in investing in a skillset in a different part of the market that's impossible to get any employment in. Whatever new software I learn, I'm still not going to have shit for experience in it. Heck, no one considers me for CAD work in platforms I already have experience in (aforementioned Rhino, AutoCAD). :(

Not a fan of small scale. I'm a unmarried guy more into the gentrifying parts of big cities.


There are CAD jobs out there, and if you've been mostly using 2D or surface software then knowing a proper solid modeler like Solidworks or Pro E would be important to a lot of fields.

There are draftsman jobs which are just about creating 2D drawings etc, but most of those are fairly low paid and more about supporting an existing business outside of a design career (a friend of mine moonlights by doing CAD drawings of commercial electrical boxes and then having a mechanic friend fab them for him after hours for example).

At the end of the day though, people in this industry get hired based on a portfolio, and attitude. Saying you have zero interest investing in a skillset is not the right attitude to have. I regularly invest in skillsets I may or may not ever use because I enjoy learning new tools, processes, programming languages, just for the technical challenge. As it turns out, eventually those skill sets can become valuable and you don't need to worry about ramping up, you can jump into a project and say "oh by the way, I know how to prototype this from that weird time I learned Arduino in 2012".

Investing in those skill sets also has the side effect of allowing you to grow your portfolio organically. Side projects that you do can now become showcases of your process and skills, making you more interesting of a candidate.

I interview a lot of people, and I've sat across the table from rock start designers who I've let walk out the door because their attitude was shit, and it comes across as very apparent. I had a recent candidate get mad at me because he was clearly the most qualified, but simply put I couldn't see myself dealing with or interacting with him on a regular basis - he acted like employment was a drain to his life energy and he was doing me a favor by even offering to come in. Likewise, I've given under-qualified or inexperienced candidates position based on a clear sense of them being outgoing, optimistic, and eager to learn and grow.

I can't make you to change your lifestyle and attitude over the internet, but it may be worth some soul searching to see what would actually make you happy in life and figure out what steps you need to take to get there. Slumming along in a low level CAD job just to pay the bills isn't going to make you any happier in the long run.

Serious side note: Anyone who knows me in real life knows that I am a sarcastic SoB who spent most of my early life dealing with substance abuse and depression. So it's extremely ironic for me to be preaching an optimistic attitude, but I have had a lot of time to reflect on myself, my career, my actions and use all of those as a means to grow personally and professionally. Looking back now I simply wish I had realized more of that sooner.

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Variant
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Cyberdemon:

Let me clarify: I think my attitude stems more from pragmatism and life experience than any stubbornness. I reiterate: I looked for work for four-and-a-half-years between mid-2008 and early-2012, and was willing to take (and be enthusiastic about) even fairly meager work. That drought has quite literally scarred my psyche. Now, once again, I'm already a year into finding nothing. I'm 40 years old, and I'm pretty damn sure I don't want to spend the rest of my life like this. You say I have an attitude, but I can pretty much guarantee all my previous managers are still great references and will say good things about my attitude, work ethic, and contributions. I've gotten 90% of the jobs I've ever interviewed for, but in "this industry" interviews seem impossible to come by. It's most definitely NOT that I have any disinterest in gaining new skills, I just don't have any interest in gaining any skills that won't do me any good and leave me here living at my fam's place until I'm retirement age. I'm on the clock and not interested in anything that will waste my time.

Maybe you didn't see my other thread (apologies if not) but I'm very much okay with the idea that I don't want to be in "this industry" anymore. I definitely don't want to be an industrial designer anymore. It's never even felt like an "industry" to me to begin with. You just bounce around from doing one completely unrelated thing to another (I've been in telecom, motorcycles, swimming pools/landscaping, custom laser manufacturing, and the vape/e-cig industry) and get hired on just because you know some software and can make pretty renderings. It's hard to leverage knowledge and experience about something into growing a career when you don't know what's going to available around the next corner. I've never, ever minded the diversity of challenges, but if you can't add them to your quiver of tools to make you more desirable to the next job, what's the point, really? I think I'm just over it. I want to do something that I can be considered "better at" over time.

And, yes, I believe there has to be a lifestyle balance in there. I get that it's the ID way to throw all of that to the wind, and grinding away in some place you hate to the behest of everything else in your life. But I've learned a lot coming of age too, and that's not for me. I really didn't know that was the thing coming into it. The monk-like suffering for your art thing just isn't me. It's the same reason I stayed away from music as a career. I want a little flexibility in my life. I've made good money, worked at the top of an organization, and you know what? It's way overrated. Granted, I don't want some doldrums grade, low-paying work life, but trying to win the career game and becoming CEO or whatever just doesn't have the same appeal to me as I'm sure it does for most of you guys. I guess I'm shitty at being a competitive American. Sorry about that. I'm a smart guy with a lot of complex interests, but a simple man at heart.
Last edited by Variant on May 30th, 2017, 9:26 am, edited 2 times in total.

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