Dear young designer,
If you feel like your designs are more like strung-together hacks, you’re on the right path.
If you’re waiting on feedback from your creative director, don’t wait. Keep exploring other options. Move on to the next task. Never sit around.
If you want to be a better designer, don’t study design books. Study sculpture. Study paintings. Study cars, watches, philosophers, movies, fiction, music, people. Study the world.
If you feel annoyed with your project manager or account manager, become their friend. You’ll both be happier and better at your jobs because of it.
If you're wondering if everyone in the room is bullshitting, they are.
If you keep hitting a wall and don’t know how to go forward, don’t go forward at all. Go the opposite direction. Do something different and come back later. The door will open.
If you’re discouraged by someone else’s success, or you worry that you’re not part of the design in-crowd, you’re spending too much time online. Sign out of Twitter and make something for yourself. The rest doesn’t matter.
If you hate everything you’ve ever made, congrats. You’re a designer.
If you feel like the design would be better if you had three more hours to spend on it, spend the three hours. Respect your time, your team’s and your client’s, but take the time you need to do the best job you can.
If you're given a small task that nobody else wants to do, put everything you can into it. Even the small stuff can be a big opportunity, if you make it one.
If you want to code, code. If you don’t want to code, don’t.
If you see another designer or studio’s work and think you could have done better, maybe you could have. But you didn’t.
If you feel one day that design is the best, most exciting, most luxurious job in the world – and the next day that you’ve been cursed to move boxes around with a mouse accomplishing nothing truly meaningful – then good. You’ve kept your edge.
A fellow designer