#1 Edited by Napalm (9020 posts) -

Hey guys,

Long story short: my company, who I was doing contract work for, has decided to expire my contract in two weeks. I have rent and bills to pay, and I have a mouth to feed, and unless I can find something in the relative short time, well, I don't really think about what's going to happen. Before I proceed, let me make two things very clear.

1. I am not expecting you to do my work for me. The job search is a very tough thing, and since this is a very, very, small amount of time, I am exhausting every available resource to me. I've been with Giant Bomb since its inception, and this community has always been my go-to for mostly any shit, so I'm hoping you guys might be able to help me out here.

2. No, I am not expecting you to reference some random person on the internet. Essentially, I am asking if you know if any legitimate companies or business people who are in need of a graphic designer. If you have relevant information that might help me, please send me a PM. I have an online portfolio that's ready to go.

Please, I am a duder in need. If you, or a company you know, or have a friend or know somebody who might be hiring, please send me a PM with as much information as you have.

Mods, please do not lock this! Truly I am in desperate times, and I look to the community to help me with this one.

:'(

#2 Posted by CaptainCody (1521 posts) -

I'll bump this so someone who can help you out may see this.

#3 Posted by SexyToad (2722 posts) -

Bump for same reason as CaptainCody

#4 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

Thank you guys so much. The official job search will start tomorrow. I picked up some supplies and got my physical portfolio ready. I figured I might as well keep this as an update topic.

Thank you! <3

#5 Posted by wordfalling (193 posts) -

Sorry to hear about your situation. You're in pretty much the same state that made me give up design as my primary occupation, except I was an employee and what was it... my "position was being eliminated". I was making damn good money too, now I'm making a quarter of it but still getting by. Best wishes dude, hope something comes along.

#6 Posted by agentboolen (1844 posts) -

Sorry to hear, yea I use to work in Graphic Design too. Companies just don't want to pay us designers anymore since the economy is in the shitter.

Some advice, since you definetly need to keep the money coming don't just limit yourself to graphic design. Wish you luck, if I had some really good connections I would try to help you out but my 5 years of graphic design just got me jobs with companies that wanted to use me and didn't really care about me in the end. I think the bigger the companies the less likely they are to care about your needs in the end (Corporate Greed).

#7 Posted by wordfalling (193 posts) -

@agentboolen: Yep, I had sixteen years in the field and that didn't amount to a hill of beans when the economy tanked.

#8 Posted by BonOrbitz (2252 posts) -

@Napalm said:

Thank you guys so much. The official job search will start tomorrow. I picked up some supplies and got my physical portfolio ready. I figured I might as well keep this as an update topic.

Thank you! <3

As a fellow graphic designer who understands your plight, I wish you the very best of luck. The graphic design industry sure ain't like what it used to be, especially in my industry (magazine publishing). It's alarming and a call to increase my skill set.

May I ask how your physical portfolio is assembled? Mine is the put together the old-school way with printed pieces (not the actual pieces but high quality prints) mounted on individual pieces of black mounting board with the corners wrapped in black tape and placed in a portfolio case.

#9 Posted by MikeGosot (3227 posts) -
@Napalm: Dude, i wish you the best of luck! I don't know you very much, but you have a pretty fucking good taste in games and you're a cool guy that deserves better than this. I hope everything gets better.
#10 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@BonOrbitz: I have an actual portfolio binder with metal locks that I lock my sheets into. The size is 11x17, and I keep my portfolio landscape. Right now my school work is still in there, so I need to update a little bit of it and especially, get my current work onto my website.

@wordfalling: Sixteen years? Damn. That really sucks. Where do you live/work? What do you do now?

@agentboolen: My boss seemed more than ready to push me out. Since I was a contractor they can just straight-up fire me with no problems since I was never part of the company. It just sucks that he's letting me go over two weeks worth of shitty design, compared to eight and half months of strong designs. But, I've seen the signs all along, so it didn't surprise me, but it still frustrated me and happened all too quick.

@MikeGosot: <3!

#11 Posted by Brendan (8136 posts) -

Nudged. Get that LinkedIn, or...DeviantArt profile cooking! Artfully spray paint the side of a local building?

#12 Posted by iam3green (14390 posts) -

sorry to hear about that. i kind of know what you are going threw. i graduated in multimedia and there isn't really any jobs out there.

#13 Posted by DavoTron (157 posts) -

Do you do UI stuff? Or looking for something a little different?

#14 Posted by dudeglove (8282 posts) -

@Brendan said:

Get that LinkedIn

...or not.

#15 Posted by Calavero (86 posts) -

As an aspiring graphic designer, this thread bums me the fuck out.

#16 Posted by dudeglove (8282 posts) -

@Napalm: A year or so Aurahack (I think?) posted something similar. He was in a similarly desperate situation and offered his services to the GB board e.g. things like making new avatars, backgrounds etc. Nothing huge, but every little helps I guess?

#17 Posted by MrCandleguy (813 posts) -

@dudeglove said:

@Brendan said:

Get that LinkedIn

...or not.

Topical!

#18 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18954 posts) -
@wordfalling said:

Sorry to hear about your situation. You're in pretty much the same state that made me give up design as my primary occupation, except I was an employee and what was it... my "position was being eliminated". I was making damn good money too, now I'm making a quarter of it but still getting by. Best wishes dude, hope something comes along.

What does a graphic designer do exactly? design 3D programs? design flyer logos?
#19 Posted by Athadam (704 posts) -

I don't know any company that would be hiring for graphic designers - but I wish you the best of luck duder.

#20 Posted by wordfalling (193 posts) -

@AhmadMetallic: No 3D but yes, logos, fliers, business cards and other stationery, ads, chamber of commerce maps, forms, books and on and on. Plenty of web design too. My last gig was for a mailshop designing variable data printing mailers and corresponding landing pages. You know, junk mail and yep, I was one of those assholes but the pay, hours and benefits were great and as Bill Hicks assumed, I slept like a log every night, though I wasn't marketing arsenic to babies or at least I don't think so. But if you are in the US and have health insurance, chances are you've received mail that I had a hand in at one point.

@Napalm: I'm in Maine, hardly a metropolitan area but I was fortunate to be on staff for some large companies like Unum. That job I left willingly back in '04, far too large a company for me and I lacked the stomach for the politicking and backstabbing necessary. Honestly I'm just doing mindless grunt work now, it pays the bills and puts food on the table. As BonOrbitz said, the industry isn't what it used to be, largely due to the decline of print. Which is why, apart for the occasional freelance job for someone local, I'm out of it. Thankfully I saved during the good times so I have some long term plans but that is a whole other story.

#21 Posted by Yummylee (22538 posts) -

Which I could help, but I got nuttin' =/

#22 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@Brendan said:

Nudged. Get that LinkedIn, or...DeviantArt profile cooking! Artfully spray paint the side of a local building?

I have a LinkedIn that I've been using, as well. Like I said, using every available resource.

@Calavero said:

As an aspiring graphic designer, this thread bums me the fuck out.

Don't just learn graphic design, learn web design, too. I ended up doing web work at my (current) job, and fortunately, it's given me eight months of experience that I can try to sell in the workplace.

@DavoTron said:

Do you do UI stuff? Or looking for something a little different?

I haven't before, but I did some low level web design. Interesting. I think I'll apply for that. Thank you!

#23 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

Just a small update, I've been busting my ass today, getting my resume in order and getting ahold of my old contacts from school, students and teachers alike. I'm now updating all of my information on CareerBuilder, CreativeHotlist, Monster, and anywhere else I can think of. It's funny, just two weeks ago I was walking on top and enjoying every minute of it, but now I'm in the trenches with everybody else. It's time to bust ass once again and get this shit. Hard work doesn't make itself.

#24 Posted by kumquat (128 posts) -

@Napalm said:

@Calavero said:

As an aspiring graphic designer, this thread bums me the fuck out.

Don't just learn graphic design, learn web design, too. I ended up doing web work at my (current) job, and fortunately, it's given me eight months of experience that I can try to sell in the workplace.

Yep. I know plenty of print-only designers who are having a really hard time right now. You need to at least be able to take a design and translate it into HTML/CSS.

Good luck, OP.

#25 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

Oh, I also wanted to say: If you guys want some work done, whether that be a blog banner, avatar, or anything, please let me know!

While I do have experience, I'm still looking to put stuff on my resume and get more experience if possible.

#26 Posted by golguin (4045 posts) -

I picked up an internship by applying to promising stuff I saw on craigslist. I never thought of craigslist as a viable site to apply for graphic design jobs, but it worked out fine. Every few days I'd see a new offering appear in the "web design" and/or "graphic design" sections. I live in southern california so that's certainly a plus, but you may have luck in your area.

#27 Posted by Vodun (2370 posts) -

@Napalm said:

@DavoTron said:

Do you do UI stuff? Or looking for something a little different?

I haven't before, but I did some low level web design. Interesting. I think I'll apply for that. Thank you!

You really should go deeper into doing some actual interface designs. Read up on usability and interaction design so you can complement your "making stuff purdy" skills with "making stuff wurk right" skills. I can recommend you some books if you're interested.

Either that or hope your graphics are good enough that they'll let you learn the other stuff on the job.

#28 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@Vodun said:

@Napalm said:

@DavoTron said:

Do you do UI stuff? Or looking for something a little different?

I haven't before, but I did some low level web design. Interesting. I think I'll apply for that. Thank you!

You really should go deeper into doing some actual interface designs. Read up on usability and interaction design so you can complement your "making stuff purdy" skills with "making stuff wurk right" skills. I can recommend you some books if you're interested.

Either that or hope your graphics are good enough that they'll let you learn the other stuff on the job.

Whatever you got, advice, books, etc. Let me see it!

#29 Posted by Vodun (2370 posts) -

@Napalm:

The Design of Everyday Things (Basically the bible of interaction design, written in the 80's so the examples are kind of dated but it's still relevant)

Don't Make Me Think: A Common Sense Approach to Web Usability (Probably the best known book on web usability)

Designing the Obvious: A Common Sense Approach to Web Application Design (A good book to learn not to over do functionality just for the sake of it)

Designing Interfaces: Patterns for Effective Interaction Design (Most of this is already covered in the previous books, but it's a good reference for design patterns)

#30 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@Vodun: Okay, cool. I'll take a look at that those. Thanks!

#31 Edited by MordeaniisChaos (5730 posts) -

@Napalm: What region do you reside in? One thing I'll say is graphic designers can usually move over into games work, particularly UI if you have animation experience, fairly easily. That or concept art. Look for studios in your area, or look into start-ups if you can. If you live on either coast of the US, you can probably find a few big names that are hiring. And smaller indie projects need flashy websites and ad campaigns to help attract attention, so you might find a bit of work there.

And of course, look into non-GD jobs, there aren't many left, as you probably know.

And if you end up with a position outside of graphic design or similar field, you can always apply your skills to commissions and stuff. Something to keep you working on your skills so that when the market picks up you'll still have a current portfolio AND you can make a little extra money if you're any good. And I think I've seen your work before and liked it so I'm sure that won't be a problem for you!

Get out there and look for gigs that might need a bit of design. Maybe a music festival/concert in your local area, I know a few people who've made a quick buck off of that sort of things, or making album covers for up and comers in the local music arena. While there are fewer big gigs, the little jobs out there still totally exist, and it could help you branch out as well.

Another thing you might be able to do is look around for newer or smaller businesses around your area that have really shitty websites or signage, and show them some ideas you have on what they could do to liven things up. You never know what might happen. You have to get out there, and do work. Even if you end up in a shitty position that isn't graphic design, you can still do smaller gigs on the side and that'll help you network and keep up your skills so you stay sharp when an opportunity comes along.

Also, as someone who just spent months looking for a job, I wanna wish you the best of luck in your hunt. It was frustrating as all hell trying to get a job (my first, I have zero experience) and it was tedious as hell. Just keep at it, look for places that you might want to work, check out stuff like craigslist. Hell, if you have to apply to retail jobs. Summer is a good time for temporary positions. Get something to get the money coming in and then you can look for a more serious/permanent/fitting position for your experience and skills. I got a part time job at Fred Meyers and sure, it's not going to be the most enjoyable experience of my life, but it's a way to pay for school, which is my gateway to enlistment and my career plan. Don't be afraid to get your hands dirty and work in some shitty job. Money is better than no money, obviously.

#32 Posted by Napalm (9020 posts) -

@MordeaniisChaos: That's a lot of good information you provided, and I feel like an asshole for not responding sooner. Right now, I'm pretty much looking at everything. The good thing with being in Atlanta is it's a big city, and there are a lot of jobs.

I finished up the last of my portfolio changes, edited my business card and resume, and I have everything look good and in order. I just now need to get everything printed. I'll feel secure once I have these items printed so I'm not scrambling at the last minute if I do get a call from a potential employer.

#33 Posted by BananaHead (11 posts) -

Bumping this for the sole purpose of mire people seeing. I remember when my dad was fired from hus job as a graphjc designer. He now works in a five star restaurant, earning 3000€a month or more! Hope everything turns out for the best.

#34 Posted by MordeaniisChaos (5730 posts) -

@Napalm: No worries man, I imagine you're busy. I wish you luck!

#35 Posted by super2j (1790 posts) -

@golguin said:

I picked up an internship by applying to promising stuff I saw on craigslist. I never thought of craigslist as a viable site to apply for graphic design jobs, but it worked out fine. Every few days I'd see a new offering appear in the "web design" and/or "graphic design" sections. I live in southern california so that's certainly a plus, but you may have luck in your area.

I am in Ottawa and i checked the Craiglist equivalent that is Kijiji, and there are totally lots of jobs in graphic design. I have no experience in graphic design other then so so photoshops, but i have been looking for a job....what would it take to do this job right? Could i learn on the fly? This is all assuming i can get the employer to take a chance.

But OP, this might be a very viable way to to find a new job.

#36 Posted by golguin (4045 posts) -

@super2j said:

@golguin said:

I picked up an internship by applying to promising stuff I saw on craigslist. I never thought of craigslist as a viable site to apply for graphic design jobs, but it worked out fine. Every few days I'd see a new offering appear in the "web design" and/or "graphic design" sections. I live in southern california so that's certainly a plus, but you may have luck in your area.

I am in Ottawa and i checked the Craiglist equivalent that is Kijiji, and there are totally lots of jobs in graphic design. I have no experience in graphic design other then so so photoshops, but i have been looking for a job....what would it take to do this job right? Could i learn on the fly? This is all assuming i can get the employer to take a chance.

But OP, this might be a very viable way to to find a new job.

Most jobs ask that the person know Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign as a baseline for a graphic design position with some also requiring you to know some flash, dreamweaver, and after effects. Portfolio in both physical and online form would also be required.