Where to move for ID jobs?

Hey all, long time since I last posted in here. I’m in a unique situation, to my life thus far. For a little over a year, I worked at Milwaukee Tool designing power tools and power tool accessories, which was challenging and rewarding. However, my life got extremely “upset”, when my wife went nuts and started worshipping the moon, divorced me, then my grandmother died (who I grew up living with), and then I got laid off. I was pretty messed up, so I refused to move at the time, and instead focused on freelance work. I wound up doing work for Harley Davidson, and Briggs and Stratton, but since November, there’s been nothing. Seeing as how I now have no family, and I’ve already worked at the major companies in the area, I’m really jonsing to get out and see the world. I feel I have a decent skill set that is fairly well rounded, and a fun personality, but I’m just not sure where I should head. I’d REALLY like some consultancy experience to give me a wide variety of projects, instead of corporate work, purely because I can broaden my portfolio and skill set.

I hear NYC is great, due to the hundreds of small design firms, but I also hear Portland is amazing. I’m not afraid of moving overseas either. If you had decent talent, and no real ties to anybody or anything, where would you move for a career in ID, and why? I’m also very passionate about skiing, so I considered Denver/Boulder, but I’m really not seeing much work out there. I’m definitely not afraid to just sell everything, pack the car up, move, and schmooze my way in at some IDSA events.

Why not try out Europe for a while? There’s a lot of companies around middle/south Germany and also around the borders of austria and switzerland… With snowy mountains everywhere…

If I didn’t have any reasons to stay, that would be where I’d be going.

I’d actually love to, but the issues I’m seeing are that I currently don’t have a Passport, and I’m not sure how I’d travel around europe looking for a job. I’m not even sure I’d know where to start. I don’t know any contacts there, and the language barrier might be impairing. I would definitely be game should the opportunity arise though.

You’ve got an amazing situation. Don’t worry about the cities. Research companies, firms, etc. Go to them. You can live and work anywhere if you’ve lived in Milwaukee (zing!). But, really there are hundreds of thousands of companies out there. Most people are limited to their job search due to family, housing market, etc. If you’ve got nothing holding you back, hit coroflot for the best job you can find and go for it.

I’m jealous.

Yikes man, crappy situation.

Any of the above cities would be worth looking at.

Like people said if you’re not limited just start running through Coroflot and see if any jobs interest you and go for it. You can always move and potentially arrange for relocation if you move afterwards.

NYC is nice if you’re into the big city. Cost of living can be outrageous but since theres no need for things like a car, you can cut out expenses that way. Just have to get used to living in a 10x10 loft over a pizza joint. :smiley:

I’ve heard lots of good things about Portland and Seattle as cities - again depends on the job market.

Frankly if you’re willing to get up and go, then just find a job anywhere that sounds interesting and just do it. If it doesn’t work out theres nothing stopping you from bouncing somewhere else down the line.

Here’s what I would do.

First: Get a passport.

Second: Get this position. job details -- error encountered (Or the senior position if you can swing it.)

Third: Get a rewarding life experience where you will grow more than ever as a person and as a designer.

You’ll have to figure the stuff out in between. I haven’t had the opportunity to travel abroad yet and if I was in your situation, that’s what I would do.

“I’m really jonsing to get out and see the world”

Good Luck!

Hi cash68, I am a chinese designer, major in ID, as a major manufacture country, I prefer you to come to china, and
here has lots of ID firms in ShangHai and Beijing, so you may also go to http://productdesignforums.com/ to
find you needs. Things will be turning around!
Hope you good luck!

My own site: www.creative86.com

FYI, I just saw three industrial design positions on the Nokia web site today…

Good luck, I been though some similar stuff all at the same and it can suck - but in my experience, things ended up pretty good afterwards and I’m sure it will work out that way for you too

Don’t forget to do some traveling and cultural experiences on the way to your next gig, it’s a great time to do it and you never know where it will lead

I think there are two basic places to find design:

  • Where there’s industry: Places like the Midwest, where the manufacturers are
  • Where there’s designers: Places those manufacturers go to look for designers

I started out in Milwaukee, and there’s a LOT more ID work there than there is here in San Diego, where there is neither industry, nor designers. Despite being a more modern city, we don’t even have an IDSA chapter. I’d take a look at survey’s that might show where the designers are. The IDSA member directory is a great start.

Another approach you haven’t mentioned is to focus on the type of work you want to do. If you like working on high tech products, you might want to look at Silicon Valley. Medical? Go to Boston. Etc.

I get an impression that it’s very easy to get an ID job in China, is that so? Do Chinese ID firms actually want European/American designers on their team, as well as native ones?

I am wondering the same thing (but as a student). Where do I move to after college. I’ve been talking with a teacher over in Stockholm, Sweden; and from what I here it is the place to be for design. Only problem: it is expensive. The plus though is that the economy is better and people have money so you’d have an easier time selling things freelance or starting your own business. BOL to you!

when I saw the question “Where to move for ID Jobs?” my first thought was ‘back in with your parents’. Heyo!

but seriously kids, I can’t get any traction at all :frowning:

Yeah, only if they live someplace where you could get a job or intern. My P’s moved to the middle of flipping nowhere when I was in school. It is helpful to be near something, anything when you are starting out. If you want that NYC gig it might help a lot to have at least a commutable address. Butte, MT on the top of the old resume will not be getting the interview, but 1287 112th might.

(so lie?)

Yes, I think so, but you know every businessman especially a manager who wants a person that could bring him a business profit, otherwise, he could pick up anyone only in China.

In my point of view, I saw lots of chinese ID firm , they begin to hire more oversea designers, especially after the recession , so many businessmen want to export or input their products to other countries, so that’s definitely need oversea designers, coz they know more about their culture, so it’s easy to make new products adapted to their countries .
This is our teacher’s firm , maybe it could give your some opportunity: 彩神-大发云

Ugh. STILL no responses. I’m getting a bit frustrated. I was easily in the top 5 of my class, and I have pretty extensive experience for a recent graduate. I even have products on shelves, and I’ve won an international design award. But nobody responds! I’ve done freelance work with Harley Davidson, Briggs and Straton, and Volvo, yet still… nothing.

Do you guys think the junior designer positions are being filled by mid-level designers, who have been laid off? Because I really don’t understand the complete lack of interest in my work/abilities.

It is possible that there are no junior positions, and that there are many out of work. Senior staff is taking on more and more of their former responsibilities as people are budget cut. It’s the sad truth of a down economy.

I am a bit curious about the stuff you have in production. Why not show that in your folio instead of 20sec-cartoon-thumbnails? Also your freelance for Volvo and HD… were those actually sponsored student projects? If so, I would present them as such and not climb too high on that horse.

Terribly sorry to do this but I might as well continue on being the a-hole, but unless your international award was Red Dot, IF or IDSA… it doesn’t mean shit unless there’s another recent graduate hiring you. Show your production stuff and how you will make money to your employer.

I’d say fewer mid level, more senior and then total entry level.

No. I did do work while in school for HD and Volvo (my thesis), but the freelance work was a 3 month long project with HD about … well… can’t say. And I was working on new mirrors for Volvo and MCI. Seperate things that I can’t really put in my public portfolio, because they aren’t in production yet.

Compared to other professions ID has always been a tough field to get jobs in and there are generally less job openings in our field than most others. From my experience, jobs tend to go to people who already know someone at the company. They often fill positions within their network or alumns from their school. Some of the top design cities could mean competing with more people as people from all over the world gravitate towards places like New York or San Francisco. One friend went to the boonies and had less competition for jobs but the jobs were for less exciting sounding companies. Working in industries not considered mainstream ID might be a consideration. You might think about going abroad to where the factories are or where it’s not saturated yet with designers… Might consider emerging countries like India or maybe China albeit there are quickly growing numbers of IDers there from the West as well as domestically.