Aesthetic Sense

These texts originate from a series of tweets Jonathan Barnbrook put out around the time of this year’s degree shows, and which were followed up by a Twitter Q&A with students

If you ask someone on Twitter for work advice, or a question relating to a project, you’re far more likely to get an answer as it’s clear you don’t expect the usual page of text that many people simply don’t have time to write. I use Twitter as a way of chatting to students; it means that they have to get to the point – and I do, too.

The reason for the tweets was that with the current economic climate, and glut of design job seekers, it can be a very disorienting time for students. So I just wanted to give some real and positive advice based on the many portfolios I see, instead of the rather trite ‘go for it’ kind of thing.

It’s very easy to become demoralised by the lack of response from people that you approach and the level of competition out there, but really you just need to work at it like anything else; be smart in who you write to, what you send them, and try not to be too intimidated.

The good news is that design is not so academic a subject that people care about your grades, even if you and your parents do. It’s the work, your creativity, your personality, and a bit of being in the right place at the right time, which are the key deciders of whether people will take you or not.

Jonathan Barnbrook. @barnbrook
Jonathan Barnbrook is the director of the well-known London-based design company Barnbrook, sometime collaborators of David Bowie, AdBusters, and Occupy London. Barnbrook also work for a host of cultural institutions, such as the V&A and the Design Museum in London, and have a large back catalogue of political and social projects. Barnbrook also actively believe in, and are involved in, design education.

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