Thursday, April 23, 2015

The Freelance Experience

"...freelancing is the most amicable, and suiting path a Product / Industrial designer can choose"

The director of MIT-ID, Dhimant Panchal told me on my convocation that in his experience, freelancing is the most amicable, and suiting path a Product / Industrial designer can choose. It is only if one gets a superb opportunity from a very good agency or a company, that has an excellent design culture, that will bring out the best from a designer, that it is right to take up a job.

What is important to a junior designer / fresh graduate is finding his forte, and learning as much as he can on the job. That certainly won't happen in companies who aren't design led, and where design is seen as just another 9 - 5 job.

It was surprising to see so many freelance opportunities come to me, without even looking for them, when I was still a student. India does have a need for Industrial Designers. There is a lot for us to do, to firstly fulfil the basic needs of people here: their healthcare, their sanitation, cleanliness, and overall well being. Design and creative problem solving is a necessity in India, and well designed products shouldn't be a privilege, but consumables for common Indians to improve their quality of life.

Before my graduation exhibition, I'd printed out my business cards, and they look like this:

I wish to get the best of experiences and be the best of myself, before I start my own large initiative, which, I think will be in servitude of making smart things, that'd be mass consumables, durable, and of utmost necessity to people.

Freelance is very self propelled. I'd ended up making a bunch of timetables and set deadlines for myself. Also, there is no safety net. You make something, and show it to the client. He may approve of it, or slash it down entirely. That's where the design process comes into play! If you follow it, you won't make something vague - that isn't feasible.

Also, I ended up getting another project with my initiative with Pranali and Uttara: "Quip", for which we are going to Mumbai for our first client meet. These things are new and exciting! :)

Looking forward to more projects, and more myriad experiences! :)