DfRL: Professional Practice & Positioning

This morning we had a lecture from Paul Thomas on professional practice and positioning. We spoke about our role as the designer, how we can work effectively with clients, what our responsibilities are and how we can make our work meaningful and beautiful?

  • As designers we are the messenger between client & audience
  • Our role as a design is to offer a solution whereas the client provides the problem
  • 4 essential qualities of a designer are Empathy, Endeavour, Expertise and Enthusiasm
  • The answer will be found through discussion and communication.
  • Stay curious and inquisitive.
  • Appreciate the perspective understand the context and act with empathy
  • Be informed and ambitious

We also talked about manifestos and inspiring design manifestos which are out there. We talked about Milton Glaser and What a designer Ought to be… this was really inspiring to look through I hadn’t hear of it before the lecture but it’s something that I will take on board. We also looked at Manifestio for Myself by Brendan Dawes, this piece of work really did resonate with me because I was able to understand the things he was talking about and why.

Manifesto for Myself | 2019

We spoke about feedback and how professionally to give feedback to clients. This is something that’s super important to learn, even at this stage in my career. Being gentle with feedback think objectively rather than subjectively. This means that as a designer you positioning your feedback or idea without being emotionally attached to it. This is something that also related to receiving feedback on work, sometimes you have to put you emotion aside in order to hear the feedback without getting frustrated or upset. It can be difficult to take sometimes but it’s important to take on feedback and improve. Designing is always about learning.

We spoke about budget and how always to keep this in mind when talking to the client but also designing. Also think about budget when costing up work, we spoke about this in great depth after the lecture as well and it was super useful to hear from Paul his experiences and tips for pricing up work. Building long lasting relationships with a client is really useful. Over time rather than working for the client you end up working with them. Paul spoke about the work that his done for clients of the years and it was really interesting to hear really experiences about working with a client.


Dawes, B. (2019) Manifesto for Myself. Available at: http://www.brendandawes.com/projects/manifestoformyself (Accessed: 15 October 2020)

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