Hello My Friends,
I hope everything finds you well. I’m starting this topic in the hope that I can get some advice on how to transition from the Environmental Design (interior design, exhibition booth design) niche of Industrial Design to the more lucrative and exciting world of Product Design (consumer goods). I know that there are similar discussion topics on this theme, but I don’t want to hi-jack them out of courtesy.
To make a long story short, I recently finished a freelance project that really opened my eyes to this idea. The problem is that 90% of the work that I have completed and documented in my portfolio is Environmental Design. Looking back at my student portfolio, there are a few projects that I could update and re-work. I’m starting to work on several projects that showcase my current abilities (research, story-telling, sketching, modeling, rendering), but I’m having difficulty thinking up of meaningful projects that could get me in the door as an entry-level designer. I know that my goal is to start from the very bottom and work my way up but I feel that making projects up out of my mind’s eye is not the best direction to take.
So the questions that I turn over to all of you readers are the following: What type of projects should I work on to make myself provocative for an entry-level position in Product Design? Should I include the 3 years of experience as “design” experience?
Thanks for your time and I look forward to your replies.
First of all you should get to know the production techniques for products. Because they do have limits. Although that’s not a problem if you can work with them (or around them). It’s no good to draw/conceive a product that isn’t manufacturable (read as profitable as possible). Anyway. There’s a great book by Chris Lefteri to get you started:
And for your projects or ideas: I would suggest to search for inspiration in your everyday life. What frustrates you? What frustrates others? Find a problem and think of as many solutions as you can think of. Doodel them quickly. Try to combine ideas in better ones. Search for inspiration etc… Be curious, seek and you shall find Sketch, sketch, sketch, create mockups and learn by them. sketch, sketch, sketch, sketch, create mock-ups, jada jada jada…
Or try an internship in a product design firm?
Hope this helps ( a little)
Thanks for the advice. I have that book and it’s an awesome source for manufacturing terminology. It’s funny that you bring up the curiousity aspect. I was just reading about it in an different post. It’s how I’ve collected most my inspiration.
A consultancy internship would be great for you.
Many consultancies work with both, environmental and product design.
On one hand you would be very valuable to the company because of your expertise in Enviro design but you could also gather important experience in product design.It would boost you confidence since you to begin with can work with what you know, then you get a shot at a product.
If you play it right, it would in fact be a transition for you.
talking about inspiration: Check my online-inspirational library…It’s there to share
Thanks for putting that together and mad props on your website. I loved the Smellulator page. I really appreciate you sketch layout and the touch of color. I wish it was out in the market. Did you have to write your own code to get your wordpress layout the way you have it? I really dig it.