Today, there is competition in almost any field that you see out there – more so, in the design industry. You are not going to be of much worth, if you simply are a designer – today, you have to be the master of all trades to make it as a designer worth mentioning; and that means you will need to master many tools and skills, lest you miss out on opportunities.
So, if you are ready to take your design career a step ahead, you should make a checklist on the various skills that you will need to be proficient in.
It’s all about typography
No matter how much the design industry has evolved over the years, it is ‘typography’ which has always been the main element of how to make a design pop. The typefaces that you are going to choose – they will be the deciding factor of how the audiences will react towards your client, be it positive or negative.
You will need to know of what and which images should go with certain content – they will be the one that will either make your design or break it, based on what you choose.
The theory of color
Did you know that color can influence the moods and decisions of people? It is for this reason that you need to understand how colors work. Based on that, you will get an idea of how to use and mix colors in your design projects.
Doing so will make your design projects more amiable plus it will also make the design projects get aligned with the primary mission.
Learning HTML and CSS
Now, this is not exactly necessary, but doing so will be like an additional feather in your design cap.
HTML and CSS – they are the basic building blocks that make the website work and appear the way that they are supposed to. Now, learning these two programming languages are not that hard – at best, it will only take you a month to master them.
Just imagine what you can do with these two languages – you will be able to build a website, you get to know where to place images to make the website look great, learning where to place text and many other aspects that come together to create a web page. These two languages are the backbone of any website – they are the ones which controls the frame and structure of a website.
Learning and getting updated with design software
No matter what designer you are, it’s a must to learn the software based on your field, so, if you are a graphic designer, you will need to learn Photoshop and Illustrator, and any other tools that will make your workflow easy.
Almost every other month, you will see new apps and tools emerge, so, you should make it your task to get updated with all of them – doing so will make you versatile with your work.
Growing your network
Today, in the 21st century, it’s simply not just done to live your designer life in isolation. Earlier, it was acceptable, but now, you have to socialize.
Now, you simply can’t live with just talent anymore – you will have to learn how to network with other designers from your industry. Doing so will help you to make your name and worth, plus you will also get an idea of how you can do business and all such aspects.
Learning about copywriting
You simply just can’t write anything that comes to your mind – you will need to make sure that the copy matches the look and feel of the piece.
Now, just because you are a designer, it doesn’t mean that you won’t need to learn to copywrite. You do want to show your clients that you are an entire package, right? Then, make it worth.
You should learn to copywrite – you can even take the help of online courses from platforms like Udemy, Skillshare, and CreativeLive. You just can’t write about unicorns and rainbows on a web page that is focused on politics – you need to learn what should you write that best conveys the message and match it with the relevant design.
Learn how to photograph
Why pay thousands of your hard-earned dollars to a photographer when you can learn about photography in half of that amount?
Unless you are a professional photographer, you don’t have to learn each thing about photography if you are a designer. The thing is that – you can learn the basics of photography if your needs are small. But, say, if you are an interior designer, then, of course, you will need to learn everything about photography – there are extensive courses for that on various online platforms such as CreativeLive. Doing so will help you to learn about colors and layouts and how they both work together to form a cohesive masterpiece.
Be active on social media
Simply having a website is not enough – you will want to become popular, of course; and what’s a better way than social media?
If possible, try to be active on social media, posting at least twice or thrice a day is enough for you to show up on the feed. That said, you should also learn about email marketing and online advertising – doing so will help you a lot in your future course.
Getting to know about print design
Just because today is the digital era, that doesn’t mean that you will ignore how the print design works. There will be quite a few design projects which will be applied to printed material such as flyers, brochures and such – so, it’s of utmost importance to have proper working knowledge of color spacing, grid layouts, and other such concepts.
It’s all about creativity
Despite all of the concepts and software that you will and should learn, they won’t be of much use, if there’s one element missing – and that is ‘creativity’. No matter how advanced the era itself gets, creativity is one thing that the technology can’t replicate.
It’s this creativity that makes the life of a designer so much interesting – the ability to create things out of imagination.
So, did you happen to bookmark this checklist? It’s time to start building your skills and show the world what you are capable of as a designer!!