As with any career, the first steps can sometimes be the most difficult, and design is no different. There is no definitive set of rules when embarking on a career in the creative, but there are many ways to strengthen your case. I've created a list of four tips that are easy to implement, no matter your current status, and will help assist you on your journey to design success.
If you know a specific sector of design you want to get into, look at job adverts and requirements - do you have the skills already or do you need to brush up in some areas. Sometimes it can be as simple as teaching yourself new skills, and with the internet you will always find a blog or YouTube tutorial to help you get started. In design I find that you can learn a lot by just doing, so the more you explore your skillset the more you can improve them.
Speaking to people in the industry is the best way to get honest insights and find out if it's definitely the right career for you. You can meet people at design events and fairs or even start a conversation in blog comments online. By talking to working designers you can make great connections that might even result in a mentorship or work experience.
If you want to get into the design field, you need to have a portfolio of work to show and projects to talk about. If you are really at the beginning of your journey, set yourself projects or even see if family friends need any design work needing done - this way you have experience of working to a brief. As I said before, I find that I really learn by doing, so the more creating you do - the better designer you will become.
Share the joy
Love design and show it. It's an industry that is filled with real enthusiasts for what they do, and that's what makes it a really great environment to work in. You should be absorbing the design you like, going to design talks and exhibitions, tweet about it or maybe even write a blog about it. It's wonderful to be in a career you really enjoy, so share your passion and convince an employer to be passionate about...
The Picture of Dorian Gray is one of those stories that everyone knows and placed its author, Oscar Wilde, firmly in the history books. At the time of it's first publications critics were outraged by its vulgar nature, describing it as 'a poisonous...
I heard recently that it's believed that humans now have a shorter attention span than goldfish. Can you believe that? Well, actually I can. With social media, television and technology - distractions are all around us - so it's increasingly hard to keep your concentration. So I've compiled my top five sure-fire ways to stop procrastinating, which are easy to implement and hopefully help to keep you on the right track.
Turn it off
To stop getting sucked into watching endless TV, record the shows you want to watch. This way you don't have to sit through the endless adverts and only watch the one show you want to, rather than starting to channel hop and getting drawn into more
Start things. I've said it before, starting is really the biggest hurdle, so set yourself a short time of 15 minutes on a task. This way you'll at least have begun - and sometimes that can lead to you completing it without even breaking a sweat.
Find out what's stopping you. If you've been staring at your computer for the last hour and not done anything - what have you been doing? If it's social media, log yourself out. If it's web browsing, can you turn off your internet? If you are getting distracted by the same things, you have the power to stop yourself. I believe in you.
Break it down for me
If it's a huge task, you're not going to know where to start. So work out the steps it will take you to get to the ultimate goal and do them in bite size chunks. It also means you'll have more little jobs to check off on your to do list along the way.
We need to talk
Tell people about projects your doing. This opens up discussion and allows you to think out loud, which can lead to receiving some insights or even someone wanting to collaborate with you on a task. Even the simple action of telling someone, means the next time they see you, they might ask - " how are you getting on with it?". And that in turn will motivate you to give the people what they want, and do...
A stones throw from Buckingham Palace, nestled in the luxurious Belgravia district, stands The Halkin. A hotel with an effortlessly stylish interior, superb service and a culinary gem in the form of Ametsa. The combination makes for one out-of-this-world experience and...
Every summer, New Designers lands at the Business Design Centre in London's Angel. And within it's walls are over 3000 graduate talents from leading design courses across the country. As a past exhibitor at New Designers myself, it's a show I return to each year to witness the...
The Stephen Sondheim Society Student Performer of the Year takes place once a year, celebrating the talent of students from top drama schools across the UK. This year's competition culminates with the top twelve finalists taking the stage at The Garrick Theatre to perform in front of key...
This festive season, Trafalgar Studios is offering up an alternative look at the work of Charles Dickens, in the form of 'Dickens with a Difference.' The double-bill incorporates the London premieres of Miss Havisham's Expectations and Sikes & Nancy. The latter...
At the beginning of Urinetown, you are told that this isn't your typical musical, and they're not kidding. After a three year run on Broadway, this unconventional toilet-based musical has arrived at the Apollo theatre; bringing it's host of odd characters...
Powerhouse performances, sensational songs and dancing that'll blow you socks off - Memphis knows how to make an entrance on London's West End. After months of anticipation, the Tony award-wining musical has landed at The Shaftesbury Theatre and raised the heat...
Wingman explores the relationship between father and son, in a two-man show laced with warmth, awkwardness and wit.
The story begins with the character of Richard (Richard Marsh) being confronted by his estranged father, Len (Jerome Wright), while visiting his dying mothers...
The city of London has a lot to celebrate, but without doubt one of its biggest assets are the West End stages that inhabit it. On June 21st-22nd 2014, performers swapped the spotlight for the sunlight, and took to the stage in front of thousands for the amazing West End LIVE.
The annual event is completely free to visit and has performances from almost every show currently on the West End, as well as a few sneak peaks of what's coming soon. In the absolutely stunning setting of Trafalgar Square, it's a great way to experience theatre for the whole family, and plenty of stalls to keep everyone suitably entertained. This year sees this event turn the ripe old age of 10, and seems to grow bigger and better every year, having to move from it's first home of Leicester Square because their were just too many people.
As I approached West End LIVE 2014, I could hear the stunning harmonies of "Who Loves You" coming from the Jersey Boys, filling the London air with a great atmosphere and excitement. With the sun in the sky, Trafalgar Square was bustling with crowds singing and dancing along. Mamma Mia was a particular favourite and certainly brought the energy with their strong troop of dancers. For The Bodyguard, Alexandra Burke, seemed very at home on the stage and gave us a taste of her Rachel Marron. The concert atmosphere really lends itself these shows as it lets the music play for everyone to enjoy, and showcases the wide range of talent that is on the West End today.
Regent Park Open Air Theatre gave a sneak peak at their upcoming Porgy & Bess, with unmistakable tunes from the George & Ira Gershwin. One of the stand out performances of the day came from Cedric Neal with "There's a Boat Dat's Leavin' Soon for New York", which brought the house down, or whatever the open-air equivalent is. Serving up some serious vocals along with the rest of the cast, this was a great introduction to their July 2014 run.
This year West End LIVE also returned to Leicester Square at the West End LIVE Spiegeltent, which contained an array of costumes, scripts and sets from shows such as Wicked and Matilda. It is a real rarity to see items like these up-close, and they even offered up the chance to try on some of the costumes yourself. Throughout the weekend, they had a schedule of talks from directors and actors alike, which was wonderful in such an intimate setting and offered a real insight into London's West End.
I left West End LIVE with a solid list of shows I would like to see, along with a few I'd like to see for a second and third time as well. With the wonderful weather and brilliant performances, it's a really special event and I look forward to returning again next year.