It’s a given that a career of arts and designs is all about creativity. The world’s most creative individuals hop into this career field and give us food for the eyes. Sure, the idea of pursuing a career in arts and design sounds fancy and appealing, but like every other career, it demands immense efforts and dedication. It also demands sleepless nights, innumerable redos, constant improvising, and the ability to think creatively round the clock.
With everything gone digital today, a career in arts and design has become challenging than ever. Newer digital platforms demand new kinds of creativity. If you have been thinking of stepping into the world of arts and design, you must do sufficient research in order to circle on this option.
Rucha Gujar, a student at MIT Institute of Design, Pune, India, pursuing her Master’s Degree in Graphic Design says, “ designing manages to keep me on my toes. I have always had a keen interest in the creative field. It’s interesting to see how design makes a difference in the day to day choices that people make subconsciously. Designs have always raised strong messages in society for change, with a solid history. Curiosity keeps me in”.
Ms. Rita Ashara, Dean at Ecole Intuit Lab, says that to study arts and design, especially at the Ecole Intuit Lab one must have completed the K-12 education, and must appear for an entrance examination and clear the interview round. Institutes always look to offer admission to students who are curious, passionate, have the ability to reflect, hold enthusiasm, determination with a creative bent, have the ability to express through writing, sketching, doodling, photography to name a few.
Ecole Intuit Lab is a French educational institute of design, strategy, and digital creation co-founded in Paris in the year 2001. Ecole Intuit Lab offers art & design UG & PG programs in Art, Design, and Gaming The institute has 2 campuses in India – Mumbai, and Kolkata and 2 international campuses in Paris and Aix-en-Provence respectively. A culture where creative minds get the freedom to innovate, create, and become part of a design revolution.
The curriculum of arts and design courses is really strong, intense, and richly designed, keeping it robust, dynamic and ever-evolving with the latest design trends. Students learn to create fantastic illustrations, identities, and advertising campaigns on all media, dabble with photography, copywriting, design thinking, art direction, identity, and strategy and use tools like motion design, experience design, and also technologies like AR/VR and editing software. Students are trained to present, articulate, and learn entrepreneurship skills too, so by the time they graduate, they are industry-ready and ready to be absorbed in the market.
The pattern of education for any arts and design courses is way different than any other course. Rita states that “We do not have any written exams except for one written exam in French. The rest are based on assignments, exercises, and projects.” The fact that written exams play a minor role in arts and design is also backed by Rucha who shares that her institute follows the jury system of education where the students present their work to the jury who then mark the students purely on the basis of how strong their ideas speak, their research and their understanding of design.
Apart from pure academics, students are also encouraged to participate in hackathons, field visits, gaming events, football, and other competitions that help them to develop interpersonal and collaborative skills.
When asked about the common challenges students face, Rucha Gujar points creative block as one of the major challenges. At such times she says, “I think one should give a break to creative thinking and invest that time in reading books and blogs. This helps in opening up ways for you.” The other she mentions is that one often tends to get easily demotivated during initial years, as there is just soo much competition around, but the only key is to focus on yourself, observe, and just keep working. Eventually, one will reach where one wishes to. Experience is all that matters for design.
Further, institutes like, the Ecole Intuit Lab has adopted a few beneficial disruptive technologies that help students with problem-solving. These include design thinking, mind mapping, and brainstorming which ensure that disruptive ideas are given a chance to experiment and grow. Additionally, they also use online sessions effectively to engage and create impact, AR/VR sessions to experience interaction in entertainment and in creation processes for our students.
The one who wishes to build a career in the field of arts and design must have certain qualities and traits which are key to be able to study the course. Rucha states, during the process of learning, one must be open to too many ideas, concepts and explorations within the chosen topic. Being in the graphic field of design, it has led Rucha to always question “why” for any graphical form, color, or structure. This has helped her polish her observational skill and develop an eye for details.
To excel in the arts and design profession, Ecole Intuit Lab Dean, Ms. Rita Asgar suggests that students need to be curious and reflective in nature. They should learn to do a lot of DIY tutorials and to solve multiple experiments on their own. Students must not wait for others to teach them all the tools that exist in any software and should rather try their hand at it with the intention of self-learning.
Attempt a lot of hypothetical projects on your own, try and learn as much from a product, fashion or other designers. Be bold, experiment, explore beyond your domain. Ecole Intuit Lab, facilitate students to various projects, stakeholders, people, when they work on their projects and do research. This naturally builds their confidence and self-awareness, behavior, and habits. Students can question, empathize, and understand various personas, individuals, situations, circumstances when they dig deeper to solve design-related issues.
Throwing light on the career prospects for arts and design students, Ms. Rita mentions that Visual Communication has totally evolved today due to innovations and disruption in technology. New media has taken over, where graphic designers, design thinkers and experienced designers collaborate and provide information in entertaining, visually aesthetic, dynamic, and engaging ways. In fact, everything is an experience today and it has become an all-encompassing domain. It’s also changed the way the world communicates today, whether simply absorbing news or information, through channels or media (print or digital) or AR/VR technology for consumers to feel and experience the same.
In this way, it has touched every part of our human lives, be it business and commerce, political campaigns, global connect, entertainment, social media or education. The way we respond, react, and engage is all controlled by media and communication and is transforming the way we communicate and consume information in today’s world.
Solving and dealing with socio-economic problems, will require digging deeper with design research, design process, design thinking and aligning with all the stakeholders, ensuring that one sees the problem through many facets and solutions which are real. Hence today’s designer has to be a multifaceted team player, knowing to collaborate, adapt, and be sensitive to the society and the world.
Careers today can start from Art Directors, Graphic Designers, Illustrators, Type Designers, Packaging Experts, UI/UX Designers, Project Managers, Design Researchers, Animators, Motion Graphic Designers, Game Designers and many more.
Furthermore, the Coronavirus pandemic too is going to bring about changes in this field of career. Ms. Rita states that COVID-19 has already made people realize the uncertainty that prevails today. Even after things settle down, there will be few organizations that will take time to open their doors to their employees and to normalize the regular functioning of their businesses.
There are many software companies and other organizations that have allowed their teams to work from home. We have also witnessed a slow down for advertising agencies and brands that sold products, consumerism and that highly invested in promotions to now shifting to a more adaptable structure with support for locally grown/made products.
As a result, people will gradually stop depending upon companies; studios for their work/living, and many will use the online platform to either team up, build their skills, or start their own ventures. This is going to be the new normal going forward.
If you are looking to step into this field, here are some institutes that are well known for providing quality education:
- National Institute of Design (NID), Ahmedabad, Gandhinagar, and Bangalore
- Symbiosis Institute of Design, Pune
- MIT Institute of Design (MIT ID), Pune
- Indian Institute Of Art And Design, New Delhi
- Department Of Design, Indian Institute Of Technology (IIT), Guwahati
- Ecole Intuit Lab, Paris
- Royal College of Art, UK
- University of the Arts London, UK
- Parsons School of Design at The New School, US
- Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), US
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), US
- Politecnico di Milano, Italy
- Aalto University, Finland
- Glasgow School of Art (GSA), UK
- School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), US
- Pratt Institute, US
A unique aspect this about the arts and design field is that it is quite open and flexible. There is freedom for exploration. The more you explore, the more you create.