Design is an explorative career. Perhaps, this is why we often find designers debating about different fonts, styles, and hundreds of trends that revolve around design. This has shaped design to become a flourishing profession. Although the design may have multiple definitions and use cases, people have begun to notice its impact in the sectors of interest. It is still considered an emerging profession in developing countries. On the other hand, most developed countries have nurtured their people to leverage a career in design for better outcomes.
When people think of a career in design, they mostly associate it with visual assets like pamphlets and advertisements. Some people are often inspired by witnessing different forms in and around their everyday lives and wish to pursue design as their career. However, when looking to begin a career in design, you might be confused about the journey. Even if you are switching careers at some point, you might ask the same question: "But where do I begin?"
Fear not! We are here to share a beautiful path to begin your design career today! This guide shall assist anyone looking to kickstart or switch their careers to design. All you'll need is enthusiasm to discover your niche, and you'll be making moves in the design world in no time! With that said, here's all that you need to know:
1. Understand the basics
Design is all about visual artifacts. However, visual elements are just one part of it. Design is also concerned with how things work in some disciplines. Which was the thing that led you to pursue Design? Perhaps, asking this question can help one discover the field they are interested in.
Not all design disciplines work with software to publish visual elements. Some design fields also emphasize research as their core criteria. No form of design encapsulates an all-in-one experience, but an exploring person can always find the right niche after understanding each field's differences.
The best way to discover various disciplines is to go about reading books and blogs. Additionally, exploring projects carried out in a discipline can further aid a person in making the right choice!
2. Learning design fundamentals
Irrespective of a chosen niche, learning design fundamentals is essential to succeed in the design world. Design fundamentals lay the groundwork for design and complement principles of design. Design fundamentals cover everything about elements and principles used in most design disciplines.
Basic design elements:
Balance: It is all about bringing stability to a design. Concepts like visual weight and its distribution in a space help form the basis of structure in design.
Alignment: This design principle is concerned with the organization of elements to build visual relations.
Contrast: Mixing opposite elements to build a design help brings contrast to a design. It is primarily utilized to highlight points of attention in a design.
Proximity: It is a design principle that helps build a relationship between different elements in a design. This relationship is based on the focal point and helps form a connection amongst elements.
Repetition: The concept of repetition helps form a design by replication of design elements. It helps create a rhythm and builds a consistent and associative relation among elements in a design.
The ideal way to go around learning these topics is to go through blogs that explain design basics. Additionally, one can also go through some good reads like Universal Principles of Design by Willian Lidwell and Exploring Visual Design by Jack Selleck.
3. Emphasize your learnings
Once you are acquainted with all the design fundamentals, it's time to churn that knowledge into applications. Earlier, design resources used to be quite scattered all around the internet. Thankfully, this problem is solved, courtesy of top self-learning design platforms. From the comfort of your homes, you can upskill and take one step towards learning the world of design at a time that suits you.
4. Test your skills
This is probably one of the most challenging parts of learning any design discipline. Putting all those learnings to practice will enable a person to polish their skills for a professional environment. One can start by exploring a title of interest and work their way up to a professional gig.
For example, if you are interested in interaction design, build a prototype demonstrating an app's prototype. The point is to get started and polish your skills over time.
5. Showcase your work
Once you are confident enough to apply to professional jobs, prepare yourself to showcase your work. This can be done with the help of developing a portfolio. The design has one of the most supportive communities all over the world. Hence, chances are you might get an opportunity to receive essential feedback to improvise your work while applying for jobs.
If you wish to master your portfolio design skills, enroll in the brand new Portfolio Design Course on ProApp today! It features end-to-end coverage on all you need to design an ideal portfolio and outshine yourself amongst the competition.
It is crucial to eliminate fears of showcasing your work and get ahead of yourself. Activities like joining a design community and hosting or attending design meetups can further help designers to improvise their skills and embrace the path of becoming better designers every day!
Rajat is an industry veteran with 10+ years of expertise in the Design industry. He is a software engineer by education who successfully and profitably runs a Digital Design Agency as the CEO at ProCreator for 6+ years. He has trained more than 100 designers and scaled his bootstrapped business to a team of 50. He takes care of product thinking and leads the strategies at ProApp.