Build your skill-set
To become a car designer, you will need to build a comprehensive skill set. Indeed, it is highly recommended to be proficient in drawing, computer-aided modelling and clay modelling.
Practicing your craft on a daily basis is always a great idea. Keep churning out sketches and original designs. This way, by the end of your studies, you should be able to put together a compelling portfolio to make you stand out from the crowd. As you will be working with engineers, having a basic knowledge of the mechanical aspects of a car is important too.
3rd Year Transportation Design Project - A collection of car designs
Learning how to draw
Drawing is at the heart of car design, it is your foundation you’ll use to project your creative ideas. So needless to say you must be extremely good at it. It is by far the most fundamental skill you should learn.
CAD software are used to create models in 3d with computer graphics. They are used to flesh out your original ideas, rendering them in detailed 3d images. There are both free and paid software on the market, so don’t hesitate to try the free ones to get an idea of how they work early on.
You should also get your hands on some clay and start modeling with it. Even today in our digital age clay-modeling is an unavoidable step of the design process. It allows you to give your design a concrete physical form in the real world.
On one hand you should be well aware of the current and established design trends in the car industry. On the other hand, don’t confined yourself to what you already now and be on the lookout for creative ideas.
Take part in drawing competitions. Apart from honing your skills, you’ll get a chance to get noticed by members of industry and potential employers. Such opportunities are numerous. Most car manufacturers as well as car magazines organize such contests every year.
Obtaining a Master’s degree in transportation design
At the very least you should obtain a bachelor degree in transportation or industrial design. Furthering your studies is also a good idea.
Indeed, getting a Master’s degree in transportation design will give you more credibility as you will enter the job market, and will open the door to positions with higher salaries.
Internships give you the opportunity to get professional experience before graduation, i.e. working on real projects, be part of a team, meet deadlines, etc.
Design schools having contacts with the car industry can provide you with interesting internship opportunities. While working as an intern, don’t hesitate to make contact with other professionals to extend your network. Be proactive, ask your colleagues and managers about potential job opportunities.
Once you’ve graduated, and are looking for a job, don’t limit yourself to simply applying to positions online. Put yourself out there. Don’t hesitate to go to industry events, bring your resume and business cards and establish contacts.
Find out about other designer jobs: