If you ask a child what they want to be when they want to grow up, you’ll hear answers like “doctor” or “teacher” or “astronaut”. You aren’t likely to hear “industrial designer.” In any case, what is industrial design?
Industrial design is said to be a mix of applied science and art, of creating innovative products to be manufactured and sold. Of course, industrial design is a very broad term, as this can encompass many other areas of design, including electronics design, packaging design, furniture design and even car design. It is a combination of using the arts and science to create or modify an existing product and sell it to a target market.
Many people consider becoming an industrial designer because such a career rewards people for being creative and inventive. So why would you want to be a designer?
Choosing to become an industrial designer is not a decision to be taken lightly. Much like any specialized career, you need education and skill, and perhaps most of all, passion in the field. Many designers work long hours, and the job is demanding as well as rewarding.
For example, an electronics industrial designer might need to work with the same electronics prototype over several versions to get it right, to satisfy a client’s expectation, the budget, as well as electronics industry regulations and other factors such as environmental issues. If you’re still interested industrial design, take a look at what it takes to become an industrial designer.
Industrial Designer Requirements
Industrial design is a career that needs a lot of skill and passion. Education is important too, but artistic and practical skills, as well as knowledge in physics and math are the expertise designers use throughout their careers.
Many people who love art and have drawing, sketching and sculpting skills go into industrial design. Indeed, putting a design to paper is the most basic skill a designer should have. However, to transform that two-dimensional design into a three-dimensional object that works, you’ll have to know math and physics, to be able to understand how things move in space.
Additionally, you’ll have to undertake more training, depending on what type of design you want pursue. If you want to focus on gadgets and electronics, studying engineering and electronics design is a pre-requisite, as you’ll need to know how these devices work inside and out.
There are some universities and colleges that offer degrees in industrial design, but you can also check with art, design or electronics engineering schools that may be able to offer more comprehensive degrees. An internship is a great idea, especially if you’re switching careers or thinking (but still not sure) about going into design. This will give you an idea of what working as an industrial designer is like, and you can find out if this type of career is for you. Of course, talking to other designers about their experience will also tell you more about the job and what a day in the life of a designer is like.
While you’re studying to be a designer, it’s important to have a strong portfolio of work. In addition to a resume, potential employers will judge you based on your actual work. Build a good portfolio throughout your studies and make sure you showcase only your best work for future employers to see.
Designer Career Path
So, what does an industrial design graduate have ahead of him or her? There are many places a career in industrial design can take you. The first place many graduates go to is a design house. For example, an electronics design house is usually contracted by another firm to create electronics products for them. Usually these places work on a variety of projects, and many like this pace of not working on the same electronics product every day. An electronics designer will work on an electronic product from concept through to completion. This is an exciting process and includes creating an electronics prototype for client approval.
With the current unstable world economy, many industrial designers must find ways to keep themselves sharp. It’s important that designers always brush up on their skills or acquire new ones. Competition is fierce, so you want to stand out. The more design skills you have, the more desirable you’ll be to companies and clients. Getting an additional degree or training is a good idea.
You Want To Be An Industrial Designer?
So, if you think you have what it takes to be a designer, such as an electronics or industrial designer, the best time to start is now, whether you are secondary school, taking a different degree or in the middle of another career. The work is challenging, but it is a career where your inventiveness and artistry can thrive, while reaping the financial rewards.
LX is an award-winning electronics design company based in Sydney, Australia. LX services include full turnkey design, electronics, hardware, software and firmware design. They specialise in embedded systems and wireless technologies design. www.lx-group.com.au
Published by LX Pty Ltd for itself and the LX Group of companies, including LX Design House, LX Solutions and LX Consulting, LX Innovations.