The role of “Designer” is a constantly shifting and increasingly difficult title to define as new research, trends, and tools are emerging every day.
So what does it mean to be considered a Designer by trade, and what skills does it require for one to keep up in today’s fast-paced digital world? demoMedia’s Creative Director, Iain Reid, sheds some light on just some of what his role entails and shares his perspective on what the future holds for the design industry.
demoMedia: What got you interested in becoming a designer?
Iain Reid: I started drawing as soon as I could hold a crayon, so I guess I decided subconsciously early on that I would like to do something creative.
dM: Where do you find inspiration for your design?
IR: Other designers I admire. Younger designers can come up with some really great ideas, usually because they are not restricted creatively with concerns over budget and deliverables.
As a designer you are effectively opening yourself to criticism on a daily basis
dM: What have been your favourite projects to work on during your time at demoMedia?
IR: Thats a tough question, without giving specific clients or projects, I would say the more creative control I have over a project, the better. Working collaboratively is great, but it can also reduce the level of ownership you feel over a project. Being weighed down by a hefty brand guideline document can, not always though, restrict creativity.
dM: What is the most challenging thing you experience in your work and how do you overcome it?
IR: As a designer you are effectively opening yourself to criticism on a daily basis. Sometimes negative feedback can be hard to stomach, especially if it is subjective and not backed up with a solution.
dM: Where do you think the future of design is headed?
IR: I think there has been a large shift in priority over the past few years, heading towards a focus in user experience. This coincides with the general adoption of a minimal flat user interface style, started by Microsoft then adopted by Apple, now pretty much everyone. As digital products become more interconnected, or smart, the user experience cross-platform on multiple devices becomes a much more important consideration than the user interface design. Just looking pretty won’t cut it anymore.
dM: What advice do you have for aspiring designers?
IR: Trust your instincts, question everything. It’s important to be a sponge early in your career and learn from those around you. Everything you pick up along the way adds another tool to your locker. And also don’t be afraid to ask for advice when you need it.