This is a subject I have been looking forward to, and especially useful for our final undergrad year. Professional Practice looks at some of the drier – but nonetheless extremely important – realities when working in creative industries.
Stepping out of the lecture theatre, I overheard the whining toward a theory-based subject that by this stage is getting familiar… and tiresome. I guess it’s my (limited) experience doing freelance design that has made me so keen to learn about contracts, copyright, intellectual property and how to present yourself well. Learning through experience might be important, but at times it’s pretty painful.
It wasn’t just paperwork that held my attention though. Our lecturer made the point that as Australians, we shy away from calling ourselves artists in the creative industry. I can relate to that. This sparked thoughts about what title I should give myself when people ask that dreaded question: “So, what do you do?”.
Graciously, instead of testing us on our recall of corporate law, we have been set more design oriented assignments for this subject. The first being personal promotion in the form of a business card, resume, letterhead and bio.
Having done a few graphic design subjects in my time, I often heard stories of beautiful print media, sent out and promptly melting the minds of creative directors around the country, resulting in an avalanche of job offers. That’s fine for someone in print – or even screen – design, but how do you express to someone that you’re an interactive designer (or… *cough*, artist…) through print?
So the prospect of creating a business card for myself really caught my attention. The first assessment is screen based, and whilst we need to make a PDF business card, it’s possible that I could create some kind of clickable interactivity – perhaps through something like LiveCycle (which I have never heard of before – let alone used). The hardcopy version, required a later assessment, could be a lot more interesting, perhaps with some sexy paper mechanics involved.
Either way, what I would like to create is something that the receiver wants to keep. There are an infinite number of ways to stand out, but for someone to to cherish your work is quite a rare thing in a market saturated with creative artists.