A guide to starting a career in design

A career in design allows people to use their creative flair and do a day job, generating something that they’re proud of, whether it’s a printed promotional material for a business or a graphic for a website. So, how can you secure a job in this sector? Together with Where The Trade Buys, specialist providers of pop up displays for business events, we take a look at the different roles that are out there and the best way of starting a career in design:

The job roles available in the world of design

How about working within a design team in a marketing agency to illustration company? Designers are a highly sought-after prospect, therefore making a career in design full of opportunities. It’s true that you could find yourself in any sector, but what roles are out there?

A branding role within a design team

Some companies have in-house design teams and others outsource to marketing and design agencies. The design element of branding plays an important role in any company. It helps them project their message to a target market and create a memorable brand image. It’s down to you to decide which environment you think you’d enjoy most. In an agency role for example, you could be working with a variety of businesses and projects all at one. As part of an in-house team, you’d work solely with that brand.

But how exactly does branding function within a project? Here, you’d work closely with the company to determine target markets and talk about how the brand can be best represented visually.

Could you see yourself in typography?

To become a typographer, you need to undergo training in the design of type and lettering – another very important part of creating visuals. As you’re probably aware, a logo or the typography of a company can become widely recognisable by customers — take Coca Cola for example.

This specific type of role is well suited to people interested in lettering styles and getting creative with words. This is quite a niche aspect of design and therefore, many designers specialise in this, alongside other areas.

Editorial design: choose online or offline

Editorial design describes work designing magazines books and newspapers — for both online and offline publications. This type of design requires an eye for composition, layout and aesthetically pleasing typography.

Here’s a bit more about the skills required to become an editorial designer:

  • The ability to recognise attractive content
  • Understand what the reader wants to see on the page
  • Be skilled in the layout of images and content

The roles within illustration

Become an illustrator and you could find yourself working in animation. Or, you might find yourself in a company role who require illustrations to spread their brand message or inform their audience.

As an illustrator, there’s a wide range of mediums you could be delving into:

  • Designing posters
  • Creating storyboards
  • Producing images for books and book covers
  • Designing merchandise products
  • Getting involved with film and cartoon creation
  • Video game and app design

Land a job in illustration and you could specialise in various areas, such as science, technology and medicine. Here, they create imagery for text books and material to help readers understand the subject. These jobs are only a selection of what you could be exposed to as a designer. Conduct plenty of research to find the job that you’re most interested in.

The academic route

Although a lot of design roles are about your natural creativity, you can also increase your credentials with the help of work experience and studying.

If you choose to take the academic route, you’ll find that there are plenty of undergraduate degrees in the field to consider. The first thing to consider is a university degree, perhaps in graphic design. Each course is different, depending on the university but most of them cover the following topics:

  • The influences of graphic design
  • Styles of typography
  • How branding and design comes together

In order to be accepted onto an undergraduate course like this, you’ll need to produce a portfolio of your work to demonstrate your style and skills. Through an Art and Design related GCSE or A-level you can start to discover your own style and use the work to create a portfolio for the future to help you towards securing your perfect career in design.

Work experience can be useful in helping you decide which areas of design you enjoy the most and perhaps want to explore further. Why not get in touch with a local design agency or local business? If you don’t mind working unpaid, it’s likely that businesses will take you up on your offer. During university, take the opportunity to do a year in industry too. You’ll hopefully learn more about the industry you’re most interested in and can gain some extra experience to add to your CV!

You Might Also Like

No Comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.