The need is not always easy to find. It could be for a product not yet created or it could be for a feature on an existing product. Either way, it’s like answering a question.
Some products fail because they answer a question that isn’t being asked. Another reason products fail is because they answer the wrong question. And finally, sometimes products fail because they answer a trivial question.
(INSERT: noise of fortune cookie opening) The only way to create the perfect product (answer), is to find the perfect need (question).
Recognizing the need is the primary condition for design.
I bet, you’ve heard many reasons why you shouldn’t blog, maybe even some of those reasons you made up yourself. Well, here’s a few reasons why you should.
1. Every designer should be a thought leader.
Your concepts are innovative and ground breaking. You have developed processes to execute new worlds of possibilities. Why aren’t you sharing them?
2. Blogging forces you to think things out.
Putting the pen to paper has always helped you clarify a design concept. That’s how we “work things out.” Picking a blog post topic, and stringing together a few sentences does the same thing.
3. It gives you a place to vent.
No, I don’t mean rant. Being an Industrial Designer doesn’t always mean you’ll be drawing hover boards, floating cars, and toasters that check your email. Writing a design article helps alleviate pent up design aggression, much like sketching on blue-sky-portfolio-projects.
4. It’ll keep you sharp.
Even without maintaining a blog, you should be reading and scouring the web, books, and magazines for the latest trends and tech. When you do have a blog, it encourages you to stay on the leading edge even more.
5. THE MOST IMPORTANT – A blog is the perfect place to start your Personal Brand (and I don’t mean a place to post your personal logo and portfolio). Personal Brand is so much more then a logo and few pretty pictures. Stay tuned for a whole blog post on this, but your brand is how others see/know you. Besides your portfolio and skill set, this is EVERYTHING. I’m not speaking to just students, either. I believe this is true for every Industrial Designer. Blogging, brings another level of depth to who you are and how you work.
What do you think? Is blogging for every Industrial Designer? If not, why?
A lot of money and time can be spent researching and designing the look and function of a product, it’s very important to keep this investment safe. David Canton, a business lawyer, has a great post back in June regarding how to keep your designs safe from copycats.
Industrial designs are often thought of as being like a utility patent, which protects useful inventions. Indeed, in the United States, registered industrial designs are known as design patents and are registered within the patent registry.
In reality, industrial designs are more akin to a cross between copyrights and trademarks. A trademark protects words or images used to brand products or services, while copyright prevents the copying of artistic works.
So how does one go about obtaining an industrial design?
Thanks David for this great post.
I just read a great article on Core77 about Feng Zhu. If you aren’t familiar with this talented designer I’m sure you’ve seen his work in many movies. Ever since I was in school his work has always been inspirational to me. Now if you’re new to design and looking for a school to attend (with an emphasis on entertainment concept design), you can learn from the master. Feng Zhu has opened his own school in Singapore, check it out.
With so much destruction in the world it’s great to celebrate the creatives, and the builders.
When I’m faced with an industrial design challenge sometimes I spend too much time focusing on project restraints. This can cause a major problem by diverting your attention away from the true needs of a customer. It can be especially troublesome during the early stages of development. While working through the initial ideating and sketching, look for ways to set aside the looming budget and manufacturing restraints. Allow yourself the freedom to have uninhibited fun finding product solutions. Ironically, many solutions won’t wander that far “out of the box.”
For today I thought I’d spotlight another great tool for Industrial Designers and their portfolios. Check it out, it’s a site called Behance.net. It’s free to sign up, although you do have to go through a short approval process. This place is great to network with other Industrial Designers, or just browse to find inspiring product and transportation eye-candy.
If you’re in the industrial design field and are familiar with this service, I’d love to hear your thoughts on it.
A friend of mine forwarded a designer’s portfolio to me, and noticed they were using carbonmade.com. I’m not familiar with it, but it looked clean and easy to use, best of all it’s free. I’m looking forward to setting up my own portfolio and will give you a complete review. I would love to hear if you have used this and what you thought.