Design Apprenticeships

Design is a business of trust. It is thinking made visual, a balance between form and function. You will create something out of nothing. It’s not just what it looks like but how it works.

You could work in any of the following sectors:

  1. Graphic and multimedia designer,
  2. Interior design
  3. Fashion and textiles
  4. Product design

Graphic Design

Graphic designers create visual concepts, by hand or using computer software, to communicate ideas that inspire, inform, or captivate consumers. They develop the overall layout and production design for advertisements, brochures, magazines, and corporate reports. Graphic design is important in the sales and marketing of products, and is a critical component of brochures and logos. Therefore, graphic designers often work closely with people in advertising and promotions, public relations, and marketing. Some create the graphics used in packaging for various types of retail products, while others may work on the visual design used on a book jacket.

Your main duties will be:

  1. Meet with clients or the art director to determine the scope of a project
  2. Advise clients on strategies to reach a particular audience
  3. Determine the message the design should portray
  4. Create images that identify a product or convey a message
  5. Develop graphics and visual or audio images for product illustrations, logos, websites
  6. Create designs either by hand or using computer software packages
  7. Select colours, images, text style, and layout
  8. Present the design to clients or the art director
  9. Corporate changes recommended by the clients into the final design
  10. Review designs for errors before printing or publishing them

Interior Design

Interior Designers plan the design of living and commercial environments, they then manage the work of turning their ideas into a reality. Projects can be broad in scope, ranging from structural alterations to the choice of furnishings, curtains, wallpaper and lighting.

The role includes:

  1. Inspecting and surveying buildings
  2. Negotiating fees and setting schedules for the project (under supervision)
  3. Researching and drawing up rough plans
  4. Developing detailed designs and choosing materials
  5. Supervising the work as it is carried out

Textile Design

Textile designers create two-dimensional designs that can be used, often as a repeat design, in the production of knit, weave and printed fabrics or textile products. Inspiration can come purely from just opening your eyes. Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Design is knowing which ones to keep. Restrictions are not always negative, restrictions can push creativity.

You might:

  1. Accurately interpret and represent clients’ ideas;
  2. Produce sketches, designs and samples for presentation to customers
  3. Assess and approve completed items and production standards
  4. Work independently, if self-employed, or liaising closely with colleagues as part of a small team
  5. Use specialist software and computer-aided design (CAD) programs to develop a range of designs
  6. Experiment with colour, fabric and texture
  7. Maintain up-to-date knowledge of new design and production techniques and textile technology
  8. Develop new design concepts
  9. Ensure that projects are completed on time
  10. Source fabrics and other materials at trade fairs, markets and antique shops
  11. Attend trade shows, as a delegate or as an exhibitor
  12. Keep up to date and spotting fashion trends in fabric design by reading forecasts in trade magazines and using internet resources

Product Design

Product design is intelligence made visible. People don’t use a product because of the great design; great design helps them use the product. Almost everything we use in our day to day lives, from tables and cutlery to clocks and computers has been designed by a product designer. To work in product design, you need to understand the relationship between art, science and technology. As a product designer, you will spend your time planning, designing and modelling products, producing prototypes and conducting rigorous testing. As a product designer, you won’t just design products willy-nilly.

Production designer sketching Drawing Development prototype process Design idea Creative Concept

Your day to day duties could include:

  1. Investigating how existing products work
  2. Developing ideas and produce initial sketches and outline plans
  3. Deciding on suitable materials or resources
  4. Using computer software to produce detailed blueprints
  5. Making samples or working models (prototypes)
  6. Testing and refine designs

Simplicity is about subtracting the obvious and adding the meaningful. Design is so simple, that’s why it’s complicated. For more information on design apprenticeships, can help.

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