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Life lessons for designers.

The most important thing that you should remember being a designer is to value your work and yourself. Design is an incredibly valuable service for businesses. Show it to your clients and expect respect. What you do really matters.

Deliver a solution, not options.

If your work is in any way client-based, there will inevitably come a point where you are required to communicate what you aim to deliver. Whether this is a campaign, illustration or logo, young creatives will be tempted to show a range of options that the client can choose from, a nervous symptom of wanting to ‘show your workings’. Don’t. Remember that you are being hired to offer a solution, not to engage in a debate.

The unspoken law of all client-based design is that if offered a choice, your client will pick wrong. Don’t give them the chance. You should have been living a breathing this project know what the best solution is. Sell with confidence and listen with humility.

Keep your creative eye open.

Another way of keeping up with what is trending in graphic design is to keep your creative eye open to unexpected possibilities. Visit open air markets where young designers are selling their handmade holiday cards or take a lettering class in a weekend fair.

Trust your instincts.

This is perhaps the most difficult life lesson to acquire. Most creatives spend their whole lives questioning themselves and weighing up their relative successes. It is an inevitable component of the designer’s DNA to suffer creative anxiety.

But the better we get at listening to our inner voice — however irrational, contradictory or seemingly arbitrary — the better we can harness the power of our instincts. Education, training and logic are vital essential skills but our instincts often provide the magic.

Know the current trend.

Graphic Designers that stay up to date with graphic design trends have an advantage over designers that stick to what they learned in college or design school. By knowing what is trending in the design industry, you can offer clients innovative ideas for their needs instead of relying on the basics. Constantly creating new design work that melds current trends with your personal style, will make your online portfolio into a unique visual destination for designers and clients alike.

Learn from your mistakes.

Analyzing what went wrong with a project is often more instructive than trying to explain why something works, and experienced creatives learn from their mistakes and apply these lessons to subsequent work, rather than erase it from their memory.

Recognizing the value of our mistakes is difficult to accept early on in our careers, but it’s a fact that is better embraced than agonized over. Be open-minded and listen to different perspectives.

Stay playful.

A desire to be taken seriously early in our career can often inhibit us, but experienced designers remember how important it is to play, as well. However, much we rationalize our work, the reality is that many of our critical justifications are written in hindsight. The actual unlocking of the imaginative processes is usually mysterious and instinctive.

Finally, I would like to conclude that “you are better than you think”.

In the field of psychology, the Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias in which people assess their cognitive ability as greater than it is. It is related to the cognitive bias of Illusory superiority and comes from the inability of people to recognize their lack of ability.

Written by

…fascinated with how a creative outlook plays a vital role in life. Find me at- lakshman.me

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