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I think you need confidentce. I would love to know how much confidence people have/had when they come/came out of university.

Testing123

you also need the right tools corresponding to your talent so you can use the full potential.

a designer to function = getting a job…

If you mean above,
I will say skills, skills,skills.( 2D,3D)
It is frustrating how most often design studios in hiring can not see
ideas come first. Skills are something you acquire by repetition.
If you have finished design education, I will say you have the basic skills
which you can build up by training and working.
What you can’t learn by repetition is your orginal thinking.
But it doesn’t matter. In getting a job, unless you have lots of photoshop
renderings and some 3d alias stuff in your portfolio, no matter how original
you are, you aren’t functioning!

a designer to function = to design

ideas… an ability to discern what is a good idea direction to pursue and come up with a problem and a solution formula.
observation… to notice what is going on in the world.
visual manifestation… it doesn’t have to be an awesome 3d alias. Just commnunicate your ideas.
a healthy dose of ego… you gotta stick to your idea and design. There are
lots of people out there that will tear you down by just being who you are. ( even just reading this forum, you can tell ! )

When will there be the intersection of those two?

lots and lots of meth.

I prefer Crank…it’s totally CRUNK!

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I’d have to add that the ability to sell your ideas visually, textually, and orally have to figure into what you need to function as a designer - if you would like your designs to come to fruition. Sometimes selling the idea to those with the decision to make is key, especially if the idea is non-convential.