5 Valuable Lessons for Young Designers

N2Q is proud of the fact that we have some of the best designers on our staff. There are those who have had a decade of experience, while some have just begun their creative journey. As with other professions, there is a lot that the old can offer to the young. Perhaps, that is the essence of teamwork. We have had several occasions where our senior designers mentored and helped our junior designers to get a project right. So, collecting the most essential and insightful advice given by our senior designers, we have come to understand several important pointers that should be taken into consideration by every new designer out there.

Five Valuable Lessons from Seasoned Designers to Beginners:

Be Original – There’s No Compromise On That

Fresh creativity is the premium requirement of this field and cutting, copying and pasting from other’s work is making young designers lose their personal touch on design. With the availability of templates and endless ideas on the Internet, very few designers try to spend time in sketching out an idea.  Templates are fine to build on as a foundation, but they lack personal investment in the project. Being original is what establishes identity, confidence and the ability to establish a personal brand. Also, it should be understood that graphic designing is not synonymous with Photoshop. Graphic designing is facilitating visual communication with the help of creative aides.

Respect Your Skills and Build Your Portfolio

Newbie designers are ready to sell their skills cheap with freelance gigs. And since it’s cheap work, these designers would not want to put in much effort either. A few decades ago, designers were respected for their insight and their art. They had strong portfolios that not only built their credibility but also established them as serious designers.  Their advice to the younger ones is to maintain a strong and diversified portfolio. Graphic designers get the best jobs when they have an awesome portfolio.

Produce Innovative Work

Design software is becoming increasingly flexible and easy to use – so much that no formal training is required for a newbie designer to master the tool. But, it’s not much about the tools – it’s about the need to produce innovative work. Yesteryear designers did not have the luxury of using advanced tools and programs, yet they created exemplary work. Take a look at popular logos like Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, Apple and many others. They are innovative works of art that define iconic branding. While old designers weren’t as lucky as we are now to have access to advance programs, their creative intellect were constantly challenged and thus exceptional work was produced. As Daniel Mall, a reputed art director says, “Technology over technique produces emotionless design.”

Be Loyal and Honest with the Profession

This takes us back to the third point. If you sell work for cheap, you will produce low quality design. This means you are not loyal and honest with your profession and thus, you can never establish yourself as a competitive designer. The most important thing is integrity. It’s O.K to take inspiration, but it’s terrible to copy ideas as they are. For experienced designers, this rise in the trend of doing template work on crowd-sourcing channels is a bane to the profession itself. As Hans Hoger, an art historian, said “Designers have a dual duty; contractually to their clients and morally to the later users and recipients of their work.”

Be Confident but Stay Humble

Thinking that you are the best at what you do is great, but thinking that no one else can do better than you is unrealistic. Honor the designers who’ve gone before you. Recognize their strengths. Ask questions to glean from their experience. And build on what they’ve done well.

We love connecting with designers and those who have a passion for design, but have a hard time with Microsoft Paint. Drop us a line and say hello. We’d love to learn from you.

Kyle Willis

Kyle is the Founder of N2Q and makes a personal investment in the management of each project. Kyle is an SEM/social strategist with over 10 years experience in optimizing websites, finding audiences, building websites and using organic content and digital advertising to create engaging social communities. He will be your expert on social media platforms, display advertising, and marketing collateral. He has worked for large companies like Microsoft, Salesforce, John L. Scott Realty, and Farmers Insurance as well as small businesses locally and as far as Africa and Switzerland.

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