Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 16th, 2014, 3:38 pm

iderryan
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Joined: August 16th, 2011, 12:17 pm
First, I started my ID ed at 23 after drifting a while. I graduated at 28, and got a paying internship. Most of my classmates were the same. In fact, the majority were like me. I don't know anyone who got an unpaid internship. My internship turned into a 7 year job. I suspect that an unpaid internship probably means a high level company, which can be very difficult to find, much less get.

Second, I feel a bit slighted that you think you can jump right into design without education and compete at our level. Certainly, there are people who have done that, but I doubt they asked for direction from other professionals. Maybe I'm reading you wrong.

Third, I know several students who ran their own company, or designed their own product while in school and were at least somewhat successful. Doing one does not eliminate the other.

Fourth, it's 2014. No one cares that you'll be in your late 20's finishing a degree that you actually like. I pity those who are in such a hurry to get through school that they pick what's popular or what their lackey high school counselor thinks they should do. If you're going to do something, do it right. The fact that you would consider being a designer without taking at least some classes implies you don't take the right steps to reach a good final outcome (the basis of all design). If being a legit designer is important to you, take the steps.

Good luck.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 16th, 2014, 3:52 pm

flambuoyancy
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I've always wondered whether it was my vast array of interests that made me never commit to following through on all the steps, if I never had discipline, or if I didn't actually enjoy something enough to do it.

I just like getting opinions on something before I take action, I think it's a fault. It could be a way to rationalize not thinking for myself.
Maybe I'm not cut - out for this route if I need to hop on a forum and ask people what they think about everything.

Or, maybe not. Maybe someone who isn't cut out is the one who asks himself that.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 16th, 2014, 4:29 pm

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IDAL
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flambuoyancy wrote:I've always wondered whether it was my vast array of interests that made me never commit to following through on all the steps, if I never had discipline, or if I didn't actually enjoy something enough to do it.

I just like getting opinions on something before I take action, I think it's a fault. It could be a way to rationalize not thinking for myself.
Maybe I'm not cut - out for this route if I need to hop on a forum and ask people what they think about everything.

Or, maybe not. Maybe someone who isn't cut out is the one who asks himself that.
I didn't have much discipline until I started ID, I felt it was the right thing and it wouldn't matter how many hours I would spent on it. It didn't matter whether it was sketching, modelling or prototyping, I just wanted to whatever I was working on in a good way, in a way I'd feel proud of the result.

I think it's good that you are asking questions and probably this is the right place, we have insights that maybe will help you choosing the right path. At the end, the decision is up to you, but at least you'll have more information to back what you decide.

Now that I saw what Greenman said, he made a good point. Do you really wanna be an IDer or create your own stuff and set up a business? In my opinion, one is quite different from the other.
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Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 16th, 2014, 4:31 pm

flambuoyancy
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Joined: May 15th, 2014, 11:27 am
Well, shit.

What's the difference? I just want to make stuff, whether it's for me or someone else's company.
That being said, I do have a lot of ideas of things I'd like to build for myself and/or to sell. But I'd still like to have knowledge in ID and be able to get a job as a designer if I wanted or needed to.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 16th, 2014, 4:47 pm

iab
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flambuoyancy wrote:What's the difference?
Money.

At someone else's gig, you can be a specialist in design of the npd process.

At your gig, you either do everything or you pay other people to do all of the other crap involved with npd. Design is only a small part.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 17th, 2014, 8:10 am

flambuoyancy
Posts: 16
Joined: May 15th, 2014, 11:27 am
Let's put it this way: I've been an entrepreneur since I was young up until today. Unfortunately, it hasn't made me a ton of money and I'm accepting that I might need to find work. ID looks like something I'd enjoy doing quite a bit, but it's not my "dream" job. I don't think I have a "dream" job since my interests are extremely varied, and I work on things ranging from software to packaging. I still need a trade. I'm skilled at the things I don't enjoy (programming) and unskilled at the thing I do enjoy (designing objects).

I don't want to have not given myself the chance to at least be extremely good at one thing. I don't want to spend the rest of my life wondering how I'd turned out if I channeled my energy into one thing. I think ID can be that channel.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 18th, 2014, 1:01 am

Sketchgrad
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You also have to remember that going to university isn't just about what you learn in those four walls of the institution. It is a place to make great contacts, be it your classmates and where they end up, your tutors and who they have previously worked with, the alumni and also other courses who might have a great referral.

I wish I could start my degree in ID now at age 24 as I am much more focussed and driven than I was at 18. Back then I was just a kid living away from home for the first time. You'd 100% get more out of it now.

I'd also suggest digging around the forum a little bit, especially in the portfolio section. Take a look at what is getting a great response from some of the more seasoned people on the boards and then what is not hitting the mark. Those not hitting the mark have still got a degree in ID under their belt and are finding it hard. Can you say that your work is even up to that standard?

I admit a lot of the skills I have now aren't things I learnt in school, but my degree gave me the foundation and opened a few doors. I then got the experience I needed doing internships and being thrown in at the deep end. Trust me though employers won't want you to be learning from scratch on their dime.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 18th, 2014, 8:46 am

flambuoyancy
Posts: 16
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I have a problem. I want to run a software startup, design electronics, finish my novel, improve that algorithm that I know can be improved, and just a whole litony of stuff.
Everything has been started, nothing is finished. It's getting to a point where I just can't balance all of these things.

I'm at an odds between what I want to do and how I can make money. ID the only way I see myself making money as a function of the time I put into it. Everything else is just a series of shots in the dark. Still doesn't mean I only want to be a designer.

Guess it means I shouldn't?

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 18th, 2014, 10:10 am

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hiower
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I don't think you should go back to school and study ID as a fall-back.. which is what it sounds to me like you are considering. Rather, I think you might enjoy and benefit from joining a new startup... I'm a frequent reader of quora, and a highly upvoated answer suggested that 9/10 of the first employees at a tech company should be "jacks of all trades" (link for reference: http://www.quora.com/What-roles-should- ... company-be ).

Now, that surely means you'll have to do things you say you don't enjoy at times, like programming, but you'll also certainly get involved in the design, execution and strategy of the product or service you'll be part of making. You might not be the one doing the photoshop work or the sketches, but you'll very likely be part of brainstorms, reviews, testing, etc. It also means you can get started right away.

Please note that I don't have much personal experience from startups, but I've heard and read quite a bit since it's a path I'm considering for myself.

Just my 2c.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 18th, 2014, 12:34 pm

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Hiower's idea could be interesting. Probably it could also be interesting for you to check introductory ID courses, I've only heard about this one in UMEA, but you should be able to find more.

http://www.dh.umu.se/en/education/cours ... intensive/
Alejandro Lara
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Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 18th, 2014, 12:45 pm

flambuoyancy
Posts: 16
Joined: May 15th, 2014, 11:27 am
You're both right. It's so silly to do this as a contigency plan.

I'm running my own startup right now and it's pretty much what I want to be doing for the rest of my life. Marketing, selling, programming, designing, finance, etc.

I think even if it doesn't pan out (pre-orders say otherwise!), I'll be able to show a lot of the work I've done this year.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 21st, 2014, 6:20 am

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Then it looks like you have it figured out. If you still wanna learn some design skills you could try to find some workshops, get some books or use this forum.

Best of luck!
Alejandro Lara
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Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 21st, 2014, 10:08 am

Waxy
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flambuoyancy wrote:Jump in. No time for school.I don't want to be doing my unpaid internship at 29 or 30.

edit: I'll go to school if I can't find work in any position that's design related before the next year is up.
Just saying it's not my first choice since I just feel really old .
I did my exchange semester in a different country, when I was 21 and most of my classmates ranged from 25-30 years old, normal for that year (3rd year undergrad) in that country. There's no shame in being 'old'/older than everyone else. And for what it's worth, I always found the graduate students in my school far more interesting to talk to.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 21st, 2014, 10:13 am

Waxy
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flambuoyancy wrote:I have a problem. I want to run a software startup, design electronics, finish my novel, improve that algorithm that I know can be improved, and just a whole litony of stuff.
Everything has been started, nothing is finished. It's getting to a point where I just can't balance all of these things.

I'm at an odds between what I want to do and how I can make money. ID the only way I see myself making money as a function of the time I put into it. Everything else is just a series of shots in the dark. Still doesn't mean I only want to be a designer.

Guess it means I shouldn't?
Keep in mind there are different types of ID jobs- corporate, consultancy, etc. What does 'doing' ID mean to you? That might be another good place to start.

I agree with Sketchgrad-- if I had started my ID degree at the age of 24 vs 18, I'd be much more focused and get 100% more out of it.

Re: Becoming a designer at 24

May 22nd, 2014, 3:39 pm

flambuoyancy
Posts: 16
Joined: May 15th, 2014, 11:27 am
When I think of doing "ID" I think of being presented with a problem , and having to take a pre-existing product and shape it differently, or come up with something completely new that will be more efficient, more ergonomic, and nicer to look at and use.
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