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  1. #26
    Mazel tov! bronze trophy kohoutek's Avatar
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    I completely agree with that. What sometimes feels like a curse, though I would see it as a blessing in many ways most of the time, is the fact that learning never ends.

    To the OP:

    No matter how far you are, you're always behind. It has a bit of a masochistic touch to being a passionate artistic designer. And not everything you do will feel rewarding. Many things will not. You'll have to go through that as well. And you'll have to learn that you are chronically dissatisfied with your work. You'll have to learn that you'll always find artists you consider a lot better (allthough good/bad are horrible terms in this context) and you'll look down at your work and have many questions to which you may not immediately find the answer. All I can say is, be passionate about what you do. It'll help you overcome many of the less good times, it'll help you develop a strong will to learn anything to help you improve. Be thursty. Having a great deal of passion and thurst for knowledge can get you a long way. At some point you might want to specialize in certain areas. With time you'll be able work out your strengths and weakness, you can better define your goals and your aesthetics. You'll develop a style of doing things that you can call your own. It takes time. Do not look at what other artists can do and compare it to what you can currently do. I think it's the wrong way of looking at things. You can study art, design, illustration at Uni/College. You can also learn these traits yourself. It is important that you learn. You can learn something else, too. It does not have to be in the field of webdesign or graphic design or any other IT field for that matter. In fact I think it's good to get some experience in fields that have nothing to do with art itself. You'll find out for yourself. With 18 you're still young enough to experiment a bit. I just would not worry about what you feel you may never be able to do. That's like killing an idea before it's come to fruitition.


    Quote Originally Posted by Datura
    Danke schön, kohoutek. You have quite a string of interests in your bio there, a true indication of an artist. It is this deep interest into so many areas of the human existence that makes for a rounded designer/artist. One must be familiar with many things, one must be an observer into the smallest objects and into human behavior. That is at the core of creating -- Datura
    Maleika E. A. | Rockatee | Twitter | Dribbble



  2. #27
    I Love Licorice silver trophybronze trophy Datura's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kohoutek
    No matter how far you are, you're always behind. )
    Very true indeed. The critical self evaluation never stops. Sometimes all you see looking at one of your own creations is the mistakes. Mistakes will always jump out at you first and you might get embarrassed and want to crawl away. When you put out a piece that you have done you lay your soul open for the world to see, even if it is just a logo or some such thing, the way it was done reveals a lot about you and you recognize that deep inside without even having a conscious thought.

    But the courage to keep on doing this will lead to becoming a good designer/artist. Just push on and hone those skills. Seek out objective opinions that are based in the principles of art and design. A remark as in: "I do not like it" or "I like it", is of no value in the learning process. Ask people why. Often they can not identify what it is, but some will and that can be very helpful to you -- Datura
    Ulrike
    TUTs: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

  3. #28
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    yes! you must be an explorer/observer to become a creator!

  4. #29
    Non-Member the baldchemist's Avatar
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    Art and business

    It's fabulous to see that young people with an art interest wishing to enter the world of design,devlopement and to merge their skills with business.
    "cause that is what it's all about. Someones business. Your skills are to artistically put your clients company in the finest showcase around. To do that you must have some understanding of your clients business. Where they want to go with it and what you need to do to get the most out of his/her investment in you. Without art, culture dies completely. art is seeing the world through your eyes and then articulating it to enhance the viewers perception. Getting the mesage across. That's the art in what we do. But recognise WHO you are designing/writing for!
    Now almost every businessman, irrespective of how succesfull they are ALWAYS had a longing to be an artist.
    I sang opera for many years. Once in Torino Italy, Gianni Agnelli the boss of Fiat said to me" Raymond I would give anything to do what you do". How amazing! Why do you think the first four rows of the theatre are full of the rich? Why do the rich buy art? Because they cant do it themselves!
    They want to understand your art. Now you try to understand theirs. Business!
    It's getting verbose now and I apologise, so try to see what I aim at.
    Take great care and dont give up on your loves. The reason you do what you do is "you cant help it". Stay true to yourself and dont compromise your values.
    The Baldchemist
    Ps Dont listen to all the sad well used cliches from those lacking in imagination.Know the rules and best of all how to break them to advantage. The sad pragmatics and perfectionists are the first to jump onto any mistakes. ignore them.DS

  5. #30
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    yeah... business is art too. business and art has got a lot in common. both demand love, passion, hard working, ideas, creativity and understanding the world around yourself. i'm between an artist and an entrepreneur in my heart. i love both worlds.

  6. #31
    Non-Member the baldchemist's Avatar
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    Pragmatics and Perfectionists

    if I might add a bit more. "Can't beat a captive audience can you and I have the microphone"? Listen, You are who you say you are. you cannot share your time and talent too much. If you are trying to juggle ten things at once, guess what? Ten things get about ten percent each!( OK dont get too semantic a bit of license is allowed eh?). Concentrate on what you do best! Develope the skills you have recognised in yourself and dont be shy about letting others know who you are. Dont be frightened to make decisions for yourself, ( after asking for advice here of course). Remember, Pragmatics and Perfectionists never make decisions. They are too busy analysing others mistakes and looking for something that doesn't exist.Just get as much JOY out of everyday and clients will Q for your services.

  7. #32
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    Make yourself a portfolio. Save everything you make. Then it's always someone you can impress!

  8. #33
    SitePoint Zealot cdndesignz's Avatar
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    Even if you end up designing newspaper ads for a living, if you know how to use all the right sofware and have a certificate, you can find a "job". It may not end up being as artistic and cutting-edge as you would like, but you can always make a living at it. There are a lot of magazines, newspapers, printing companies, advertisements etc in the world - someone has to create them.

  9. #34
    Non-Member Musicbox's Avatar
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    no comments there are enough of post with ideas posted above.

  10. #35
    Non-Member buzzfretz's Avatar
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    Art School

    Whenever the subject of art school comes up it always brings to mind the story of a young man who lived in the first half of the 20th Century.

    He had a great love of art and aspired to be an artist himself. He applied to a prestigious institution in Vienna-- a city with a long and glorious history of cultural and artistic innovation.

    Unfortunately for him (and for the rest of the world) his application was rejected. His name was Adolph Hitler.

    I sometimes wonder how different our world would have been if he hadn't been rejected. Perhaps the pain and anguish of literally millions of people could have been avoided completely. No one can say for sure.

    I'm not sure what the moral of this story is. Except maybe this: If you don't make it as an artist please don't go into politics.

  11. #36
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    Dear theindustry,

    I believe I could shed a little bit of a different light on the subject. I personally went through a community college program in graphics and animation. Then my Dad told me to "go get a real degree" so I ended up going to a university and completed much more of a technical bachelors degree. Now I am a developer for the same community college and I feel I have a satisfactory and stable job where bills, kids, etc. can be taken care of relatively well.

    HOWEVER, I have been spending my time opening up a side business in graphics and web design. I miss design. I believe that's where my passion lies. I believe that's where my strength lies.

    There's the conventional wisdom that "you can do anything if put your mind to it". And I agree with that to an extent. I have had a couple jobs as a developer in the past but this is the first one where I am in a team. I have come to realize that although I can program professionally, I have hit a limitation in my ability to take programming up to the next level. Some of my co-workers still program on their own when they have time off. I can't get myself to touch one of those hard core programming magazines on weekends.

    I read a book called "Now Discover Yourself". One of the best books I've ever read. It's about strength. Each person is different but everyone has their own strengths. Sounds obvious but from the foundation of strength, a lot occurs. When you have a strength, your rate of improvement is faster than other things you do. When you work on your strength you are energized instead of being exhausted. When you use your strength you are able to output professional quality consistently. When you have a strength, even if you don't use it for a long time, you can come back to it and pick up where you left off.

    When I program, I get much more tired than when I design. I improve faster with design. I output consistent quality with design. I have had months or a year of break from design but find myself not losing skills where I left off. With programming, I don't do it for two weeks and I feel like my skills get dull.

    So my advice to you is to stay attuned to your strength. If you find yourself in the top of your classes in interactive design, rapid improvement, energy, and all signs of strength, stick to it. Try other things openly like programming or engineering (which tend to be more stable) with an open heart and see how you do. You never know where you might find your strength.

    And while you are young, you want to take on the bigger risks. I agree with all the designers who have posted here in that design fundamentals come first. The people who ended up the creative careers from my graphics and animation program was the people who really had raw talent in drawing, art and design in the first place. I attest that it was because the people who ended up in those careers followed their strength. Most others had just jumped on the bandwagon, or was in the program because they thought it might be an easy, or fun career change.

    So stick to your strength, because that is what you will be able to depend on both passionately, and financially.

  12. #37
    Non-Member buzzfretz's Avatar
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    Perfrectionism

    Quote Originally Posted by the baldchemist
    Pragmatics and Perfectionists never make decisions.

    In my experience, perfectionism is not just a character trait but may be a sign of clinical depression. If you're a perfectionist find a good anti-depressant (as I did). You'll be amazed at the difference.

    PS I spelled the summary title wrong on pupose--to show that I'm much better now!
    Last edited by buzzfretz; Nov 12, 2006 at 15:02.

  13. #38
    Non-Member the baldchemist's Avatar
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    humour in action

    Nice one ! Cant beat a bit of humour to get attention and your message across.
    Adolph didn't even have the pleasure of spray can graffitti did he?
    You know on the subject of pragmatics and perfectionists, the more analasys you do the more you are likely to find areason not to do something. Over cautious. Dont be afraid to run with something thats 85%. Calculated risk taking with a few variables is what great entrepeneurial business is about.
    How many times have you created a fabulous site been very very pleased with it and then said I could have done that or this. See, this striving for perfection as you say is a sickness that gets in the way of advancement. Know when to say" thats brilliant" 'cause you will never be able to say it's perfect. Just like love and happiness they might not exist, so just get all the joy everyday that you can from your life and from your work.BC

  14. #39
    Non-Member the baldchemist's Avatar
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    What is this? Self indulgence. Khoutek and Dtura pissing in each others pockets about how much they know about art? Where is your exhibition? Where can i see your contributions to world art? How have your contributions changed the way we see things?
    "Standing on Principals, In life and design" whose principals? Get real you two
    "One must be an observer into the smallest objects and human behaviour"? Here I see delusions of grandeur, megalomania and probably an inferiority complex. What are you two on?BC

  15. #40
    SitePoint Enthusiast theOC's Avatar
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    I was a business major who worked for large money-center banks and could have gone into many areas and been well situated by now.

    My mistake was to hang my hat on the web and being a "designer" because I was good at it in 1999 while taking an HTML class.

    Fast-forward and I'm awash in a sea of other "designers" who aren't good and dramatically drive down the price of work because they are willing to do it (albeit bad) for a fraction of the price.

    The perception I've seen is that you'll be viewed as an "artist" and not a business person. Its sad but true. A lot of people don't respect creative people and pay them accordingly.

    My plan is to perhaps be a designer on the side and focus on starting a business or changing fields altogether. This can't be applicable in every situation but, its what I've seen in the real world. I didn't write this to start a debate or be a bummer.

    Bottom line... go to school for business or something and develop your "multimedia" skills for your enjoyment and make money on the side. If you notice who's making money in the "web world" it isn't the designers.

    best of luck,

    M

  16. #41
    Kiwi Fr00t jylyn's Avatar
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    Specialize.

    I did a multimedia paper during the second year of my communications degree and decided I wanted to work in web design. That was the only multimedia paper I ever did. Everyone was surprised when I chose to major in radio instead of multimedia. My reasoning? The multimedia major consisted entirely of things I could teach myself in my own time at my own computer. On the other hand, a fully functioning radio studio and the opportunity to manage it is a lot harder to come by! So as well as learning the ins-and-outs of commercial radio, I also spent my own time creating the coolest website the student radio station had ever seen.

    I never intended to go into radio as a job. What I could have done is specialize in creating websites for radio stations, because I was in the perfect position to bridge the gap between the two businesses. As it turned out, I didn't follow that path, but that's another story.

    I guess what I'm trying to say is invest in a secondary interest as well as your primary one. Go out there and get a reputation as the best designer of interactive museum exhibits or 3D virtual try-before-you-buy jewelry or scientific cross-sections of exotic mushrooms or whatever else tickles your fancy. OK, maybe you'll have to specialize a little more broadly than the mushroom example or you'll be living on the streets, but you get the idea.

    I know it sounds counter-intuitive when you're worried there's not much work out there, but I think what you really need is something that sets you apart from all the dime-a-dozen designers, and if you can convince someone from a totally unrelated industry that not only can you make things that look good, but you understand their business, you're streets ahead of the competition.

    That's my 2c anyway. At today's exchange rate it's only worth 1.3 of yours, but I hope at least it gives you something to think about...

  17. #42
    Non-Member the baldchemist's Avatar
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    Nah!!!! Put 100% into your passion. Sodding around with hedged bets only means you give bits here and bits there. Do it proprerly or dont do it at all.

    Designers are not a dime a dozen. People calling them selves designers are a dime a dozen.
    Now I dont know him, but Robert Warren is a guy who knows where he's at. Just by his great contributions here. he stands out a measured mile above some pretenders. He puts his all into his work and you can tell he is 100% dedicated and passionate about his business. Now there is a designer ( says he.s a writer too).

    See the difference? BC
    Just by the way, Learn how to charge like a wounded bull and how to get paid!
    Last edited by the baldchemist; Nov 15, 2006 at 02:49.

  18. #43
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    Thank you guys so much.
    This has been a great read and really helped me to think things through.
    I have my parents blessing and support (i've grown up in a family of artists), so I think I'm going to take a wack at it.
    Hopefully it all works out.

  19. #44
    Kiwi Fr00t jylyn's Avatar
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    Best of luck!

    From what I've read, it seems you are a pretty good writer too, I'm sure that will stand you in good stead.

  20. #45
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    All you have to do is this. Browse the web, on every site you visit, ask yourself "Could I design better than this?". You'll find the answer "yes" will build up. I find that always boosts my confidence. There are so many **** sites out there, so I wouldn't say there's too many designers or that the competition is fierce. If you're good at it and market your talents only a little bit, you should be alright.

  21. #46
    Non-Member buzzfretz's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by jylyn
    Specialize.

    I know it sounds counter-intuitive when you're worried there's not much work out there, but I think what you really need is something that sets you apart from all the dime-a-dozen designers, and if you can convince someone from a totally unrelated industry that not only can you make things that look good, but you understand their business, you're streets ahead of the competition.
    This is a great post! Your experience is a perfect example of the 'net's ability to sell 'more of less'. Specialization is so perfectly suited to the whole idea of an internet economy-- a system that adeptly puts potential customers in contact with potential sellers.

    Buyers will always appreciate a seller that is already familiar with what they need.

  22. #47
    Non-Member the baldchemist's Avatar
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    You know, as I see this and for what it's worth. The attributes that are required are:
    To have an understanding of business, to have the ears to listen to your prospects requirements for his/her business.Where they want to take it, to who and which image they wish to portray.
    Identify how to create not only images but descriptively place your client in the most fantastic light availible.
    Sometimes you have to put yourself in the clients shoes. Forget your ego! How you want your creation to look. Your job is to assist in everyway possible your client. NOT YOU.
    Research your client, research the type of business, research the competition, research the trends so that when you meet you have some knowledge. Learn how to write clear and compelling copy. I dont give a damm what the "artists" say here or anywhere else. We dont live yet in a purely pictorial world. Most of what I read dismays me. Some cant throw three words together.They are the ones who moan about centering text and whether flash animation is better than the written word and so on.
    Just research who you are writing for and make sure that they identify themselves. That the message is for the reader you aim at. Then you have to validate and maintain your clients site on a regular basis. Write the blogsites for them. If you only do half the job then someone who is prepared to do it all properly will.
    So leave the sad cliches alone and start to listen and look at the succesfull amongst you.
    The real designers are also business savvy and writers otherwise how the hell can you design anything with no understanding of the sum of the parts? What are you going to design for?
    So for all the xhtml, css, java javascript requirements that aint on it's own enough.
    Leave your ego on the doorstep when going for meetings. Look at your clients/prospects business as if it was yours and act accordingly.
    Bloody Hell that was a mouthfull. Thanks BC

  23. #48
    Non-Member the baldchemist's Avatar
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    Wardrop.
    Ask yourself this instead. Did this guy reach the audience? Nothing to do with whether or not you could do it better. You dont know who the site demographic is/was. Dont make that mistake.
    Remember sites are for a specific purpose. If you are just around to show how good you are as an artist your in the wrong business.
    The art here is putting your client where they deserve It's not about using your clients money to celebrate your "artistic side".BC

  24. #49
    SitePoint Member dylanjones's Avatar
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    Whats this!? College??

    Why wait? Learn NOW! Everything in a degree for design can be found on the internet. The only good advantage of going to school for it is if you learn better that way, and want to met people with real experience. However, you dont need to! Read some books from Amazon about Media, Business, and more MEDIA! Than you can get a good understanding of what needs to be done to appeal to the viewer (people with money to buy stuff... ) Than read about design, color theory, color PYCHOLOGY!, and than learn Photoshop, and Illustrator. You can do the app learning, and the reading at the same time.

    Also, start trying to get some jobs so you can get the experience of actually doing a project for someone. Doing a design for someone else is completely different than doing it for yourself. Learn how the client-designer relationship works, and just keep learning!

    Lastly, know the trends of design, and make new trends

  25. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by theindustry
    While all of the coders have ample job opportunities, it looks like us designers are stuck in the trenches...

    If there is one thing you could say to someone considering following their dream to become a web/interactive designer what would you say?
    hi,
    I noticed that you make a distinction between designers and coders. In my
    opinion this mindset won't help you at all. No one is going to hire you
    for just using photoshop, unless you belong to the top 10 designers in
    the world. Try adding some coder characteristics in your skill-set.
    Technologies like html, css, xml, javascript, php and mysql.


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