Career talk for the creatives of our future

I always get a great kick out of meeting future innovators and changemakers. Every year I am asked to speak to 2nd level students in the RDS Higher Options event about careers in Art and Design. This event is huge and offers young people a chance to speak to a variety of different course providers across Ireland and the UK – great right?! Well yes of course it is if you have a clear vision of what you would like to do in the future and know who you would like to talk to. However, in my experience most young people simply don’t know this information and thus they wander around like lost sheep until their teacher tells them its time to leave on the bus back to their school. There are just so many options out there for young people that its fairly overwhelming, especially if the student wants to pursue a career less ordinary…. that’s where I come in!

The Irish Times Higher Options event – RDS 2017

Design is Life

To me, design is everything. It consumes my mind every moment of everyday.

Great people continuously explore solutions where others only see problems. This is design thinking. This is being creative. This is life at its finest.

I want all young people to know how important we really are in the way our world works. Designers, innovators and artists pave new ways for people to live, communicate and flourish. We are the reason that medicine, technology and humanitarian and environmental efforts have evolved. In my talk to the students this year I tried to relay this messages to them with clear examples of how exactly designers and artists are doing this now and in the future.

My top tips for being a designer / artist in 2017

Every year I do this talk I invite students to ask me questions and here is an overview of some of the advise that I provided this year:

  1. Don’t pick a course / college without attending open days. It is vital to have a full insight in to where you will be spending 4-6 years of your life and to get a feel for the facilities and the staff that will be available to you.
  2. Keep everything and learn to hoard. Its important to not throw anything out, instead of putting old drawings, bits and bobs…etc in to the bin put them all in a box in your room. You never need to show them to anybody if you don’t want to. They are for you, to learn from, to grow and to understand how you work best. As an extra bonus you might add some pieces to a portfolio or even use some bits to make a whole new design or art piece.
  3. Pick a vision and talk about it. If you feel like doing something you need to talk about it; family,friends and even random strangers can often help give you tips and feedback and help you advance in your choices. Sometimes, by simply vocalising your visions you will help your own mind settle on a decision!
  4. Be your own boss. You are never too young to be in control of your own destiny. Your success is based on what you put in and the best thing is that YOU get to define what that success is!!! Is it a grade goal? Or maybe money, family, friends, travel?? You get to decide what you success is and you get to plan you way there too. I have handy Goal charts which help me reach my work and fitness goals that you might like – Download them here for FREE.
  5. Meet a hero for coffee. Do you dream of being a fashion designer, videographer, architect, artist, curator, interior decorator…etc? I can tell you now that the BEST way to gain insight in to careers is to chat to people doing what you think you would like to be doing!!! Get out there and make a few phonecalls, send a few Facebook chats and offer your guru a free coffee through Instagam in exchange for a 15 minute chat on what they do every day. You will learn so much!

Fancy a career talk?

I am available to come talk in your school and can also run workshops with groups to explore creative options and put the building blocks in place so that you get there. Send and enquiry today and I will be in touch with more info.

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