Dr Sangay Gupta
Dr Sanjay Gupta

It has been over 50 years since the inception of India’s first design Institute NID (National Institute of Design), but design is still considered a relatively new field for India. This scenario however has seen a drastic shift over the past decade. Today design is all around us; physical spaces, virtual spaces, electronic devices, mechanical devices, apparels and accessories, all are designed to fulfill our specific needs more efficiently than ever, by drawing upon logic, imagination, intuition, and systemic reasoning. Owing to the growing awareness and design consciousness among people, design is often the differentiator when it comes to making a purchase decision, thus creating a tremendous scope of the Design Industry to thrive in India. This results in creating a fistful of job opportunities for students holding a degree in design. A degree in design is now being considered as a mainstream career option.

Design studies provide you with an opportunity to refine your creative talent so that you can find your niche as a good designer. The study and scope of design is spread across different domains like architectural design, fashion design, jewellery design, graphic design, interior design, furniture design, automotive design, industrial design, animation and new media, landscape design, website design, exhibition design, etc, to name few.

The Four Main Disciplines of Design Domain – The design field can be primarily classified into four major categories

Product Design: Also known as industrial design, this stream of design focuses on designing a wide range of industrial products ranging from consumer durables, to automobiles, games, toys, mobile phones, storage units, helmets, furniture, construction aids, medical instruments, tools & equipments and much more. As this design discipline entails knowledge of multiple domains in design, it encourages cross-functional team collaboration to shape the products.

Fashion Design: One of the most sought-after career choices, fashion design has a huge scope in India. If you want to gain hands-on experience in various sectors related to fashion, like leather, knitwear, accessories, fabric research and development, apparel production, or fashion communication, then fashion design is the apt choice for you and make a career in. Placements can be found in export houses, fashion media, textile mills, boutiques, design houses & studios, garment manufacturing units, or in fashion event management etc. Once can also launch one’s own label.

Interior Design: If you have a knack for thinking spatially in all its dimensions, this is the correct career option for you. Interior design, as a profession, entails space designing, innovativeness, interaction with clients, and accomplishment of design projects. Interior design, as a career option is booming in India as the demand for interior decorators is on the rise in real estate companies, airports, cruise ships, TV studios, reality shows, cafes, hotels, movie theaters, showrooms, exhibitions, events, shopping malls, and exhibitions.

Communication Design: If you want to pursue multimedia arts, animation, or graphic design as your career, communication design is the best option for you. This design stream teaches you the art of conveying a compelling brand message by putting design principles into practice.  There is a huge demand for communication designers in the arena of instructional design, animation, creative direction, fashion communication, graphic design, content strategy, advertising, interaction design, UX/ UI design, brand management, marketing communication, and lots more. The job of a communication designer involves designing digital images, diagrams, maps, brochures, product packaging, posters, album, covers, book covers, etc.

The design disciplines mentioned above entail the amalgamation of applied arts and applied science for improving the aesthetics and functionality of products. If you want to pursue a B.Des Program in any of the above streams, there are no restrictions; whether you are from science, commerce or arts streams or any other subject combination, design entrance looks only for a creative aptitude.

Postgraduate Design Programs

After completing an undergraduate design program, you may opt for 2-year Postgraduate programs–M.Des (Master of Design) or MVA (Master of Visual Arts). There are also those who have an aptitude for design but for some reason were unable to take up formal design studies during their bachelors. For such students a Master Degree in design or visual art, helps explore myriad job opportunities in diverse sectors – From fashion, jewelry, food, furniture, and software to transportation, construction, electronics, and film, every industry is embracing the talent of skilled designers to add value to their products or services. One can take up design after engineering, arts, commerce or even after English honors. The value addition is immense. There are also 1-year Diploma courses, which one can opt for post graduation in fashion design, industrial design and automotive modeling.

Undergraduate Design Opportunities

If you have a flair for Design and want to make it your career, you should opt for an undergraduate design course offered by specialized design colleges and universities in India. The certified design institutions in India offer 4-year Bachelor programs—B.Des and B.FTech to design aspirants. If you want to pursue a course where self expression is more important than functionality, then visual arts and applied arts offer a good option. The correct choice would then be a Bachelor program in visual arts (BVA). At undergraduate level also there are 1-year Diploma programs in fashion design, graphic design, and web design etc, which offer a quick route to placements after your 12th -grade qualification.

Career Opportunities

There are ample job openings available in the private and public sector for qualified design graduates and postgraduates. On completion of your design education, you can seek employment with a plethora of big, medium & small organizations in the private sector. Lately, multinational giants such as Microsoft, TCS, Infosys, Wipro, Sap Labs, Cognizant, and Infosys have also hiring talented design graduates by hundreds, considering the immense potential of designers in the industry. Opportunities have also opened up in the government organizations and institutions through qualifying competitive exams such as UPSC, SSC, PSC, etc.

The writer is Vice-Chancellor, World University of Design, Sonipat