Industrial design and the single life?

I’ve noticed that many designers don’t tend to stay in one location for a long period of time. I’m a pretty good example. Since I graduated in 2006, I moved to Western Massachusetts, then moved back home and now I’m in Columbus working under contract. What may dictate my next move will be the next full time opportunity, seeing how I need to gain more work experience.

With all this moving around, I feel that the dating life is a little more challenging. I really do enjoy seeing different parts of the country, but I do know that eventually I will have to find a place in which I could call home and start settling down.

Can anyone else here relate? Does anyone have any interesting stories about moving and seeing different areas of the country or even the world?

Well, ID has taken me to foreign lands where it’s easy to meet women but yeah lots of freelance ID guys I know are single cause of the uncertainty of the profession, unpredictible hours, and lack of steady income, etc. Corporate IDers tend to be more settled in lifestyle.

Interesting topic Sachin, I’m like you I don’t wish to stay in one location for a long period of time… as there is so many places to see, so many different experiences and cultural environments to learn form.

I personally graduated in Paris France, and moved to Beijing China 3 years ago, and I’m planning the next move soon. However, we made the last move together with my wife, and we will make the next together. I think as long as you are with the person/the people you love, anywhere can be your home. But you have to be on the same page with your partner from the beginning, otherwise… troubles ahead…

My wife’s born in Thailand and lived in different areas of the world (diplomats parents), I’m French and travelled the world since I’m teenager, so it’s our life, that’s what keep us going and what keeps me inspired as a designer…

Good topic. The design life is quite a strain on relationships from my experience. Depending on your workload and age, it can be pretty difficult to meet someone, let alone build a long-term relationship. That being said, I know plenty of married designers whose spouses simply move with them whenever a job change occurs.

Personally, I think it’s a quite a life to be able to have. As hard as it is with the moving and all, some people never get to move and see the things we do. Like one of the above posters mentioned, it’s an opportunity to meet new and exotic people all over the country/world. Could be worse :stuck_out_tongue:

I’m in the middle of that dilemma myself…

About to graduate, and with a relationship that is 3.5 years going. After being abroad for both an exchange semester, and an internship, I really caught an urge to move around more. Still no solution to the problem, but it looks like it could get a bit messy.

As far as dating goes, I’d bail on ID and get into marketing or even HR. What’s the M/F ratio in ID, as seen at most conferences, 10:1?

When I was a Jr designer, I was going out with a girl I met in Boston, who was a French major about to graduate. The day after I got a new job, she tells me that she’s got a job on Reunion Island to do French/English interpretation, live in a shack on the beach, make nearly nothing paywise, and would I please come with her?

I chose the ‘professional’ route - thinking that Reunion would get old after a while, and I’d probably die in a tsunami, get eaten by sharks, or killed by locals - and stuck with the new job. Mooching off her on some remote tropical island could have been cool, but probably not as cool as it sounds.

Girlfriend returned to Boston after one week, saying “there were cockroaches in my hut” etc. so we stuck it out for a few months more, until it ended badly. There were some beneficial parts though, like when I used her as my ‘secretary’ to score an interview at Citroen, outside Paris.

Oh wow, thats an interesting story Slippyfish! I do have to agree that the ratio is not that great for this field. My graduating class had 25 students and amongst them, 3 girls. Plus, a lot of us were way too busy to maintain relationships or even a normal social life.

I’m very glad to hear many interesting responses on this topic.

I guess I had a really good ratio for my schooling. I was in a class of 34 students, 5 of us were guys :smiley: The program I did was Interior Architecture and Product Design.

Dating and any design field can be rough. As long as the person you date understands and accepts your situation then things are cool. When I first started school my girlfriend couldn’t comprehend the fact that you have to devote so much time and effort into something. She hated having to take a back seat to my work.

Yeah I am 26 and have lived in 13 cities in three country’s, ma vie est comme un fantôme. I’m quite use to it, however I still find it odd when people have only ever lived in one house their whole life. This has also led you my minimalist lifestyle as just me being efficient when having to move stuff. I’d like to meet someone and spend more time with them, the longest I’ve gone in a relationship is like 3~4.5 months and it was real messed up. But designers are stereotyped for having weird relationships, Charles Eames met Ray whilst married to his first wife and Ray was a student at Cranbrook, Chuck was a teacher (high-five to Mr. Charlie ?). There are a few more but I cannot think of them at this time. I know many designers who are older and single.

Any of you guys in a cohabitation arrangement (married or living together) with two designers under the same roof?

Good luck decorating the place. The probability of having the same tastes is slim-to-none. It’s hard enough with one designer and one non-designer, I can only imagine the war between two designers…

I wouldn’t date a designer. I’d date someone who likes design, but never a designer. (somebody has to make some money in the house hold :laughing: )

I’m dating/living with an artist if that counts. We have similar styles luckily. I like my house to be a minimalist museum. she likes to have nice accent pieces. so it works out.

Having an artist as a partner is pretty close to this. It took us 14 years to figure out our aesthetic overlap, but now that we figured it out, it is super easy. Moving a lot can be difficult, but if you both see it as an adventure, it will work out.

I hear that. Dump a kid into the situation and it’s even more challenging.

If I could give one piece of advise it would be to take care of yourself first and accomplish some of your goals before you get into anything serious relationship wise. It sounds easy, and for some it is.
Not to bore you with my life but I met a girl (my wife now) during my first year of ID in college. She’s an awesome person but has never lived anywhere other then one place, and though she likes to travel I’m unable to talk her into relocating to greener pastures (for me anyway), which is frustrating because even though she graduated from Interior Design she no longer works in the field and is not career driven. This makes me the proverbial “bread winner” as she makes peanuts and it’s now financial suicide for me to leave my job and get into something more creative.

Just my 2cents :smiley:

I moved from the UK to Canada to further my career and found myself a top girl too… now my wife. We now have 2 kids so things can be quite stressful at times, my wife works in advertising (a producer not a creative) and so it can be very demanding for her. Me being freelance is actually great because I have the flexibility to pick up/drop off the kids at daycare, get home to prepare dinner and all the usual family chores.

We have talked recently of moving somewhere else but for me my clients hold me back rather than my wife and kids… if we were to relocate somewhere I would need to get a full time position which scares the hell out of me… I don’t know how couples who both work regular jobs manage to juggle it all.

I would love to move to Vancouver but from the research I have done there aren’t the opportunities there compared to what we have here in Toronto.

Wow this sounds just like my life.
I agree completely with your advice to take care of yourself first, this is a luxury you can only afford when your single. I’d love to go back to the days where I could focus on a project night and day without being burdened with daily couple choirs and schedules. Emotionally at this point I’ve never been happier, creatively however I’m at an all time low. The sad part is I know eventually I’m going to leave.

it might be that some of you are in really bad relationships.

I would never want to miss my significant other. There are enough bibles about
good marriage I don’t intend to write another. But one thing:

It is always about what you are able and willing to give.

A lot of couples are in a competition of demanding the most out of each other.
Turn it into a competition of giving.

My role model is an older artist I met as a kid. He painted kids in their holidays
and his wife was his “assistant” or “wing”. Both of them were weird hippies, but they
were made for each other. When I was older I dared to ask them what their “secret”
was. " Oh boy, it took us a lot of time…"

I feel sorry for people being single in their old age. Some of them choose to, but most
of them don’t.

This thread just got a bit deeper…
Nice advice mo-i.

Some one in the long term relationship needs to have flexibility in their location. My girlfriend is a teacher. I told her i would never take a job somewhere that did not have teachers.