Chloë Galea
What difficulties did you face at the beginning of your career?
I lacked in confidence which nearly lost me my first job — I was learning fast, working hard, and doing well — but I wanted someone else to make all the design decisions for me. After I was called into a meeting with the creative director to discuss the problem — it was make or break — time to take responsibility and trust my work.
What should a young designer do in order not to get hired by anybody?
Refuse to do any internships, not get a website up and Behance portfolio online, not contact any agencies, make spelling mistakes in emails, forget to wash, forget to smile... Oh and not do some research into what the studio does, how big it is, what kind of work they do before sending them over an email asking for a 6 month internship! You look dumb when you send a one-man-band-freelance-designer-who-works-in-their-room a request to work with your team for 6 months.
Are there any things you wish you knew at the beginning of your career?
I wish I knew more about the reality of designing for clients — the processes you go through, what the meetings would look like, how to hire photographers / illustrators / etc, how to invoice them, how to pay tax. I struggled initially with all the paperwork and bureaucratic elements of the job. I also wish I knew more about buying typefaces and the regulations — it’s all a bit of a minefield when you just used to being a student and not caring too much about licences. And I wish I knew how naff a big A3 black portfolio can look when you get interviewed at a studio. From my point of view an ipad with a pdf portfolio and some examples of the printed work you have looks far better and stops you engulfing the table with an unwieldy portfolio that shouts STUDENT.
Are there any rules or habits that help you do your job more efficiently?
Planning and timetables. Keeping an up-to-date finance book. Keeping hold of all the contacts you make and using them for advice or help finding whatever I need for the job I’m currently working on. Plus keeping my inbox tidy and labelling emails.
Would you recommend some books that young designers might find useful?
More than just one book, I find going to specialist design book and magazine shops hugely inspiring. It never ceases to refresh my creative energy. I always come back wanting to get straight to my desk and get designing.
Chloë answered the questions on May 11, 2015.
The answers were published on May 13, 2015.