Designing for Yourself

One of the things that gets more relevant as I get further in my design education is the idea of designing for yourself and finding your style. When you are starting your education, it is a good idea to try as many styles, projects, classes as you can so that you can explore what you like. All of the exploration from freshman and sophomore years will then help when you are a junior and senior when you want to start setting yourself apart and defining who you are as a designer. It is always important to be able to adapt to any type of design that you need to do, however when you begin to make things like online portfolio sites, business cards, and resumes it is important to represent yourself how you would like. If you have a style that is really special, people could recognize it and hire you for that specific look.

This process or finding your style is really exciting but also a lot of pressure. Although things can always change, when it comes to representing yourself, you want to put your best foot forward. It is really difficult to “design for yourself.” Many of us hold really high standards for designs we would pick to represent ourselves. I am working on getting portfolios together both online and off and it is a lot of pressure to illustrate and choose the fonts that represent not only who I am as a designer but also who I want to be and the work I want to do in the future.

Although it can be scary, from my own experience I would say just try to go into the process of finding your style as aware as you can. Make a list of adjectives that you would like your work to be. Gather illustrations, designs, inspirations that you really love and put them all together. With them together, you can better see a unity for your design style. When you better determine what your style is, it is easier for when you either want to use it or break out of it for a project. Also, the better you know your own style the better you will be at describing yourself and your work.

Most importantly, remember that all the hard work that you’ve put into your design work has led to you being the designer that you want to be! So trust yourself! If something feels right it probably is (or is really close). The work that you put the most effort into will be your favorite works, so really try to dig deep and put in everything you can into representing yourself.

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