Yes. Every day presents the opportunity to learn something new; this in part can help to fuel your creativity. Life experience has helped me gain fresh new perspectives when designing. I am a very visual person and to fuel the creative process, I always carry a camera with me wherever I go and constantly collect inspiring images online. Each project that you do has the potential to teach you something new no matter how long you’ve been a designer.
With time comes maturity and more defined ideas. I know quite a few people who waited to go to school for design – including myself. If I’d done it when I was 18, I don’t know if I would have appreciated the process as much. By waiting until I was 25 and having already completed one degree, I was positive that I wanted to be a designer. The life experiences up to that point including jobs and traveling made me much more aware and open to new ideas.
Overall, I feel that anything web 2.0 is okay in really small doses and if any elements are incorporated, they should fit into the overall look and feel of the project. Personally, I mostly try to steer away from web 2.0 elements but sometimes they can add some needed dimension. For some great examples, check out 25 Examples of Web 2.0 and Traditional Design Rules Coming Together.
Of course. As a designer, it’s normal to question what you’re doing and to contemplate whether your work is good enough. If you start thinking that all of your output is great every time, it’s time to ask yourself if you’re still growing as a designer.
On some of my biggest projects, I got multiple opinions before sending the work out because I wasn’t sure if it was good enough. Usually, outside sources view things in a different way than you as the creator do; a few tiny tweaks can take a project from good to great. The best designers that I know still manage to remain humble and work really hard at what they do. And, they never quite think that they’re good enough – that’s what keeps them pushing forward every day.
One thing to accept the second you decide to become a designer is that there’s always going to be someone that’s better than you and that has more experience. Once you realize this, it’s easier to just focus on becoming your personal best.
Whether a client is big or small, show up on time, dress the part, do your research, remain humble and deliver what’s been promised. Remember that even when working with big corporations, you’re often still only interacting with a handful of people.
I’ve never done a pitch to gain any of my personal clients – they’ve all found my work online and contacted me directly.
Ultimate dream?? Wow, that’s a lot of pressure! At the moment I am pretty content (you’ve gotta learn appreciate what you have in the moment) but in a few years, I would love to work at Elle as an editorial designer, be an art director at a boutique agency and partner up with my brother on some big design projects. Beyond that, my goal is to publish a book about how to market yourself as a designer and travel around the country speaking to college students about building portfolios and how to make it as a freelancer. To sum up your question, I don’t think I have a singular ultimate dream. It’s a combination of smaller parts.
As for personal projects, I like to collage in my Fashion Notebook and design new business cards. That’s about all I have time for at the moment.
It’s part of the Moleskine Colour a Month Notebooks which I absolutely adore! I’ve been using Moleskine planners for years to keep my life in order and these are especially nice since they’re so lightweight and compact.
It depends on the quality of the project. Overall, a mix of your highest quality work, largest clients and something that really expresses your personality should create a nice, rounded mix. Ask a design mentor or someone you trust what they think of the project – is it strong enough to be included? If not, that’s okay – you could still mention your winning submission on your resumé.
Do you have a question? Ask Nubby.