What made you decide to become an industrial designer?
Ever since I was in high school I heard about industrial design and it first caught my attention because it had to do with how things that we use every day were made, and that always amazed me. Later on, as I searched for people in the field and what they did I started to like it even more due to how flexible this profession really is. I liked the fact that it requires you to dig into many areas in order to design a given product, concept or system; from engineering, to science, to psychology, to business, etc. Then, I knew, I would never get bored with this career because there would always be something great and interesting to be learning and executing.
I was really into industrial design throughout high school, but when it came time to go to university, some second thoughts were implanted into me as to the fact that, at least in Mexico, design is commonly thought of as an underpaid profession. I looked into different professions and started my degree in Chemical Engineering. It was all very interesting, but nonetheless, it wasn’t what I really wanted. After a year and a half, I decided to finally change to what I truly wanted to study in the first place: industrial design.
In your opinion, what types of people are best suited for the profession of industrial design? What is a typical industrial designer like?
I think curiosity is a key element that every industrial designer should have. As an industrial designer you’re job is not only to design, but to observe, analyze, identify patterns and needs, and finally, have the freedom of mind to create something that fulfills those needs taking many variables into consideration. You need to have a combination of problem-solving skills using your divergent thinking. Most of the time there are many factors involved in designing something that don’t always have to do with design. Don’t be afraid to research and look into other areas in order to develop the best and most suitable design or concept that you can.
I’ve come across all sorts of designers, and everybody has a different style, it doesn’t always have to be classy, or minimalist, or anything, finding your own style is the best thing you can do.
Where did you study industrial design and what was the most important thing you learned?
I studied industrial design at the University of Monterrey in Nuevo Leon, Mexico, and one of the most important things I learned was Human Centered Design. I like this method because it gives you the tools to first know your user and his/her needs in order to design something that fulfills them.
What do you believe are the major obstacles or challenges for young industrial designers today from a professional standpoint?
I think credibility is one important challenge for young industrial designers. First off, there are still many people that don’t know what industrial design is, and second, as a young graduate, sometimes older people take a while to trust your work and judgment.