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  1. #51
    Non-Member the baldchemist's Avatar
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    And learn how to write captivating copy!!!!!!BC

  2. #52
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    The (Unconventional) Way I Did

    Me: Damn-Near-40-Year-Old Interactive Designer

    This is my story:

    In high school, I was on the Journalism staff (school newspaper and year book staff). I excelled in writing and graphic design and enjoyed both. After graduating from high school, I wanted to go to school for design but was discouraged and told to do something practical - when all I really wanted to do was design and write.

    Well after years of dancing around my passions - writing and design - and going to school for and received degrees and certificates in everything from medical to legal careers - I decided, in 2004, to do what my heart has been wanting to do all along - write and design.

    In a few months, I will not only have completed a B.A. degree in English but an A.A. in Graphic Design (different schools) - and I'm still planning on going to Grad School.

    Recently, I landed a prestigious interactive design position - after only one year at a Web design house. There, I am responsible for branding, interactive marketing and devloping unique eCommunications.


    Here's how I got there:

    Study design: Not just at school. I looked at all designs that caught my attention and tried to recreate them. I study the color, shapes, balance and asked what made these such powerful communication pieces.

    Get real-world experience: I used every opportunity to practice my craft both in writing and design. I did pro bono work for charities and/or organization that couldn't afford a designer. This will give invaluable design experience and also how to deal with clients - something you can't learn in a classroom. Try http://www.volunteermatch.org

    Network: Network your behind off. Join design and interactive associations in your area. Get your name out there. And, above all, uphold your reputation because, as a designer, it's the only thing you have.

    I believed in myself: As an older person breaking into design, I had a unique set of challenges. Would the design world accept me? Could I compete with young, fresh talent? Would I like to be in a youth-oriented environment? The answer was YES! I believe that I can do anything I put my mind to and have been rewarded richly with two extremely well paying design jobs

    So my advice to you, young-one, is to follow your dream and passion now. Don't waste time doing something that you will not enjoy. Do everything so that you create opportunities in the design world - after all, only we can create our destinies.

  3. #53
    Non-Member the baldchemist's Avatar
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    Interactive Chick. That;s ma Gal. Go get 'em. Just by the way. You ain't no older person at forty> Let's get that clear. I'm an older person at sixty. But I lived through the sixties and seventies. ( and remember them). I reckon that is about as well qualified as it gets.
    Plus a career as an opera singer/ film maker/ actor/ writer and general piss taker. Love humour, write about it, with it never leave it out.
    Listen Culture dies without art! Life and culture is art. Always leave your own behind as something you will be remembered for. Remember you never se a statue to commitees.
    Your on your own as an artist. BC

  4. #54
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    Take this with a grain of salt, but this is my experience:

    1) Degrees don't matter
    2) Learn everything you can about everything in the field you are going into
    3) Talk to and network and offer services to as many people as you can
    4) Innovate, create new products, have a few startup ideas, develop as many things as you can
    5) Create as many opportunities as possible for yourself however you do it
    6) Don't restrict yourself geographically
    7) Branch off into business / marketing / SEO / blog design / whatever other related fields are out there
    8) Attend as many conferences / social events / organizations as possible
    9) Face-time with clients still counts
    10) The more you think of yourself as an 'Interactive Multimedia Designer/Artist' the less opportunities you will find for yourself
    11) Develop specialized skill sets and teach workshops to others
    12) Learn hardware / software hacking
    13) Get an online book account on O'Reilly (cheap) and read as much as possible
    14) People don't really look at resumes, people barely look at sites you've done, they already have a clear idea of what they want / who they want to work with
    15) Once you get bored with doing multimedia art/design do something else with your life that is even more interesting

  5. #55
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    excellent points made! the best post posted here so far!

  6. #56
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    My ,

    About me:
    I'm young, aged 24, so I'm fairly close to your age. Though young, I manage a creative services team at a world-wide learning company for nearly two years. I have never entered a classroom for design; I'm completely self-taught. I have a BA degree in Journalism with a minor in Theater from Penn State. Everyday I work in print, web and interactive design and development. I use Photoshop, Illustrator, Flash, HTML, XML, CSS, PHP, JSP, MYSQL, PostgreSQL, AS 2.0 (gotta get into AS3 soon..) atleast once a day. In my spare time I do freelance work for the extra buck and personal projects.

    My Recommendations:
    1) Degree doesn't matter.
    2) Expand your portfolio every chance you get.
    3) Get a job: Freelance is a great way to boost your portfolio, but at least one year in your field will gain you more experience than you could get from 5 years of freelance. Get a 9-5 job or internship and hold it for at least a year.
    4) Learn more skills than you need (or even want): Now-a-days every job description wants a designer who can program, or a animator who can write, etc. You don't need to master your auxilarly skills, but some comfortable knowledge can go a long way.
    5) Never think you are an expert. You are not. I am not. No one is. You always have something new you can learn. You can always become better or faster.
    6) Know the entire line of completion, not just your contribution; know what the people you hand your work off to are going to have to do with it. The easier you make it for them, the better things will be.
    7) Keep up with your field and it's technology. A webengineer must know the W3C Standards, cross-browser validation, etc. I can't begin to tell you how many web-design firms websites break in browsers other than IE.. why? A flash developer shouldn't be satisfied with working in Flash MX and knowing only AS 1.0 in todays market.
    8) Don't leave bad-blood. Don't create bad relationships with clients because of a disagreement and don't quit your job in a poor light. These things reflect poorly on you and you will lose business and future opportunities.
    9) If you are going to have an online-flash-portfolio, make it your best work. Your flash portfolio should demonstrate your best skills--you get to make this all by yourself. Show what you can do with complete control, creative and otherwise.
    10) Leave time for yourself.
    11) There's more, but they all come with experience... again, gain the experience you want. Never say no. If you don't know how to do something, that is not an excuse to not do it, that an excuse to learn something new!

    Hope that helped.


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