I am currently looking into pursuing a degree in Industrial Design and I have been researching the different things that a Industrial Designer does.

But what characteristics or interests should a person pursuing Industrial Design have?

(eg. likes to draw or create things with your hands or always wanting to make things better)

And like what is the process of an Industrial Designer as far as making things does it involve alot of auto cad, drawing and hands on making?


I think that to be successful in ID you have to be passionate. If you are into it, you’ll go out of your way to learn what you need to learn… which is pretty much no different from any profession.

ID jobs vary greatly in responsibility and skill requirements from industry to industry, and even within those industries. It is kind of a general guide that you will get hired to do what you are best at (logical), so manage that. If you enjoy CAD, there is no shortage of CAD based jobs, if you enjoy sketching and ideating, build these skills, if you enjoy tinkering and building things with your hands, research creative ID positions that will let you do this all day…

Yo wrote:

“if you enjoy tinkering and building things with your hands, research creative ID positions that will let you do this all day.”

Where or how would one begin to look for these positions? How man designers tinker and build things all day? I’d like to hear examples of positions that do

I believe that auto cad, drawing, making prototypes, etc. are all skills you have to keep on practicing. However, these skills are not the design, rather skills are just methods for designers to express and communicate their design.

Product design is very much about user research. Being observant in your everyday lives really makes a big difference. It’s about noticing the little problems and behaviors. And tackling these little things can lead to great design.

The processes as I understand include…
Research (into users, context, market, brand, manufacturing, etc. and from that you find the problems)
Concept generation (in which you try to tackle the problems with your design)
Concept development (when you choose a concept and develop the details and usability of a product. also look into the manufacturing processes)
Concept refinement (in which you resolve the form, scale, usage, materials and finishes of the product)

Of course you can be doing different steps simultaneously and the process does not neccessarily go through that order.

Hope it helps.

It’s really a lot of hard work. And you definitely have to enjoy it to be able to get through.

  1. Good critical thinking. Do you frequently see things that could be better?

  2. A passion to create. Do you enjoy art or computer science over subjects like math, history, english etc.?

  3. A heightened sense of style. Do you go beyond the mainstream in your tastes for music, fashion etc? Are you in awe of certain artists, architects etc.?

  4. A passion for learning new things. Do you devour museums, read a lot of special-interest magazines like National Geographic, Popular Science, etc? Do you take field trips seriously?

  5. Talent. Do people consider you gifted?

thanks guys i think this gives me a better perspective on the career path I’m looking at.