To design means to create or execute something in an artistic or highly skilled manner.
A Designer is anyone who creates, plans or constructs anything tangible or intangible.
The term "designer" is used broadly and can refer to a wide variety of different career types. A designer is in charge of coming up with an idea and creating the visual arrangement of a project, whether it's a new web site, a product's packaging, an art exhibit or an airliner.
The following list of design types is by no means complete. With new technologies and new industries emerging, new types of designers are emerging every day in areas like software, industrial products, medicine and environmental science.
How to find work
The design industry is very competitive and sometimes you need to be slightly pushy, resourceful and creative in marketing yourself and getting a chance to proof yourself. Here are a few strategies that helped other designers.
Join professional associations and guilds: Find out what bodies exist and what their requirements for membership are.
Network: Look for opportunities to rub shoulders with potential employers at expo's, trade fairs, seminars, workshops, etc. Be an active user of social- and professional networks on the internet. Keep your profiles and websites professional and up to date, showcasing your talent and skills.
Personnel agencies: Find companies that specialise in your field of expertise. They offer contact information for developers, studios and agencies to whom you would send your resume and design portfolio. Make use of online services such as:
Participate in crowd sourcing: Crowd sourcing is the new buzz word in the design and marketing industry. This is just another word for a design contest where many designers will submit their ideas and the best one wins. This gives the person who wants the work done a lot of options and ideas to choose from and also allows designers to showcase their skills.
Learn about the industry: Any industry has its big players and its culture that you have to be familiar with in order to succeed. Research the market and read the various industry magazines, both online and in print, to get you in the know. Make sure you get the bigger picture so that you are able to adapt and be knowledgeable in a rapidly changing market.
Get some experience: An internship, if you can find one, is an ideal way to break into the industry. Not only do you gain valuable experience in the working world, but you will also make contacts in the industry who will come in handy when you are looking to secure permanent work. Also be prepared to work for free as an intern as experience is the key to success.
Spend time on your CV: Have your list of credentials, work history and qualifications ready and professionally done.
Create your marketing materials: Up-and-coming designers need to be able to present a design portfolio to potential employers: a collection of designs or proposals carefully chosen and presented to show off the full range of your creative skills. This should prove you are creative, motivated, talented, intelligent, and a good communicator.
Prepare for interviews: Research the company beforehand and be prepared to answer questions about current trends, events and where you think the industry is going. You may also beexpected to explain why you want to become a designer or even 'sell' an imaginary concept to the interviewer. Learn to present yourself professionally and confidently.
Accelerate your career: Once you have secured a position in the industry, expand your set of skills with further training or by taking on additional responsibilities at work to make yourself more marketable. Many designers work on mini-projects (smaller applications) in their spare time to increase their number of completed projects. You can also look at related work in other industries or do consulting and publish articles to establish yourself as an expert in the field.