Rapid digitalization of the world and the enormous possibilities of the Internet coupled with such an unstable situation in the global economy result in more and more people trying to reinvent themselves in various areas of online activity.
Learning something new is always a great idea. By exploring fields related to your industry, you add value to yourself as an employee. Also, dipping your toe into the world of design will bring you considerable benefits in terms of both self-development and financial health. But you need to work hard and hone your skills to become a sought-after specialist.
If you have already completed the first steps along this way, and you know what Photoshop (and the rest of the Adobe package) is, where and why to use royalty free stock footage, and how UX is different from UI, you are ready to climb the career ladder.
Career Progression Steps
You should be aware of the three levels of professionalism: junior, middle, senior. As you reach each of them, your income and terms of cooperation with clients will change. To start off as a freelancer, you need to master various programs, tools, editors, etc. That is, at the first level, it is necessary to develop your tech skills.
In addition to vaster experience and advanced skills, the middle level comes with the improved ability to communicate with clients and a better understanding of business processes.
All-round development will help you achieve mastery. At this senior stage, you are more than just a designer who knows Figma. You dive into Adobe After Effects and Principle to animate interfaces and draw icons.
This is how you grow into a professional who can lead a project from A to Z while attracting new customers and building a loyal client base.
Find A Mentor
So, if you want to reach the highest step, it is worth starting now. Find yourself a mentor. As a rule, having a more skilled friend speeds up the learning process due to inspiration and high motivation. An experienced designer with a portfolio you like is an ideal variant.
Try to search among your friends on social media sites since you are likely to share design-themed pages with professionals. One of the specialists among your online acquaintances may help you start a career. Ask more experienced brethren to assist you by providing constructive feedback; let them explain what you are doing wrong and what you need to pay attention to.
Become A Skilled Hand
You need to gain experience, which means hours of hard work. At the beginning of your journey, you can practice copying someone else’s designs until the technical side of your actions becomes automatic and you are able to develop your own style. The main thing is to take a high-quality source as a basis so that you can copy design elements pixel by pixel.
This practice will help you figure out how everything works from the inside. Learning the basics of proper composition and placement of elements on your own can be quite difficult and time-consuming, but it is much easier to comprehend them when having good examples.
Get Inspired by Visuals Around You
The aesthetics of the visual elements around us directly affect our mood, well-being, and state of mind, which is extremely important in these unstable times. Designers are “suppliers” of the visual component of our life, building their work on a combination of technology, art, and current trends.
Keep your eyes open and collect your own base of good and bad visual solutions. Thanks to this, you will have a good eye for designs, which singles you out as a professional. Regular passers-by rarely notice that a poster on the street has the wrong font or color. The power of observation grows on looking into details, which, in the end, allows you to see minor subtleties.
Use sites with a database of other designers’ work for inspiration. Pinterest might seem an obvious yet still working option. It lets you create Pins for collecting a set of ideas that can inspire you during your work on a project.
Join the Community
Becoming a part of online platforms dedicated to design also pays off. These sites allow you to track current trends, leave and receive feedback, ask questions, and learn from answers. You can upload your works, gain recognition, and attract clients.
Besides, try to attend at least a couple of professional conferences a year. This will help you make acquaintances, establish contacts, and recharge yourself with inspiration.