Updates Coming Soon!
Hey folks, my loyal (and patient!) followers,
I’ve been busy with a lot of stuff over the past few months (9 months according to my last post), and haven’t been keeping this thing, or my main website www.bryanhowelldesign.com as up to date as I would have liked to have. First priority, to get my portfolio up to date, (as of now, there are at least 4 new project pages nearly finished, but still hidden from you all), then I’ll be sending out resumes (and cover letters) to a million places (I said it, so it shall be done). If anyone knows of any places that may be a good match for me, please send them along to me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
That’s most of the news for my design updates, but I’ve also been busy with a handful of other non-design related things, which I’m really excited to share with you here on blog.bryanhowelldesign.com!
Thanks for your attention and stayed tuned!
Professional Practice - Guest Speaking
Recently I was asked to be a guest speaker at my Alma Mater, Drexel University (Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design) to speak on life after graduation. Rather than put together a lecture that could potentially strike fear into the eyes of the future graduates (who graduate today! Congrats everyone!), I chose to present as a peer, which is what I am. I explained that I had graduated two years ago, and that the adventure that is life is quite an up in the air journey. Nothing is set in stone, and that’s not a bad thing. Their degree signifies that they learned how to be a designer: how to conceive and conceptualize an idea, how to organize all the pieces and to brainstorm, how to create and fabricate the design and all of it’s elements, and then how to sell the entire package to an audience (in their case, their classmates and professors).
I explained to them that I’m not an expert by any means, but that I have learned a few things along my journey, and I put together a little list of things to think about as they enter the gigantic mapless world after college as well as a list of random thoughts and inspiration. Below are the things I gave them.
Things to Think About
GETTING YOUR NAME OUT THERE
- Web Portfolios: Cargo, Coroflot, Behance, Wordpress, Tumblr,
- Design Inspiration: Coudal Partners, FormFiftyFive, Brand New , Smashing Magazine, Feedly, StumbleUpon, Digg, Reddit, etc.
- Design Resources: Tuts+ Network, W3 Schools, Lynda, http://freelancefolder.com/5-time-management-tips-for-freelancers/, Freelance Switch
- Networking: Linkedin, Dribbble, aiga events, people who have worked with you and have had a good experience will most likely consider using your services again and tell others as well!
- Collaborate: Drexel has a wide range of majors with infinite possibilities of collaboration. The people here at Drexel with you will be among the ones running the world in the future…make connections and friendships. Sometimes, a job will lead to another job! Work with Graphics Group-make connections with “clients”.
- Resume: organization, simplify, have some personality to stand out, but nothing too extreme.
- Interviewing: organizing portfolio, preparing your thoughts beforehand, be calm, be yourself, be polite! Ask questions. If you are genuinely interested in a job, be excited about it and ask questions about it.
- Finances: Mint, TurboTax
- Job Organization: So1o (or some form of time management), Pending Jobs and jobs in Progress (some way to organize them. I use Behance’s Action Method).
- Forms: Contracts, Quotes, Questionaire’s, Invoices, show students how to use Acrobat features to create forms.
- Find a mentor: AIGA program…runs in fall and spring
- Index Resource Fair: Paper samples, Meet local printers, vendors
- Portfolio Reviews: A nice fresh eye to offer insights on your work and it’s presentation
- AIGA Student Membership Discount: Take advantage of the student membership rate for AIGA if you are interested
Random Thoughts (I have not perfected all of these myself just yet)
- Don’t do any work before you’ve received an approved quote! It’s not being mean, it’s making sure you can eat
- I believe in the philosophy of doing something you love for work, though also, I believe it’s important to not let your job make you not enjoy that thing that you love, so that you can continue to do it in your free time. For me this is illustrating. If you let the things you love become chores, you won’t enjoy them so much anymore.
- Don’t let yourself shy away from things because you feel you are too inexperienced; get experienced by doing tutorials or take a class (community college to save $)
- Create projects to do in your free time. Come up with stories and characters or made up companies or products and design for them.
- Research often to see what is going on in the world and the world of design and your other interests.
- Don’t bring stress from work home with you. It’s your job, not your life.
- Look for jobs at companies that interest you. Even if they aren’t hiring or you aren’t looking for work, just make a contact so that you have one down the line.
- Know your strengths and weaknesses. Play up your strengths to your advantage, and create goals to strengthen your weaknesses.
- Learn how you work and make that your norm. I can’t work with the tv on (as much as I want to) so I know that if I really want to focus and get my work done, I need to turn the tv off. I play music in the background as an alternative.
- If a client says “You can have complete creative control, have fun!”, ask some questions. I suggest making up a questionaire that asks things like: What is your budget? Timeline? Who is your audience? etc. You may have “complete control” but that doesn’t mean the client is going to like it, and that is the main objective.
- Learn how to manage your time! Set a deadline and learn how to stick to it!