I've landed a temporary graphic design job. When it ends, I'd like to be an attractive candidate for other graphic design jobs. What should I focus on learning?
(Anonymous and slightly vague-ified in case my coworkers read AskMe.)
I've read this question
; my situation is somewhat similar, but my question is different.
This is my first real graphic design job. I had an internship years and years ago, but no other professional experience; I didn't feel confident enough to do freelance work, and had no portfolio. My future boss and coworkers have seen samples of my work and I will be able to hit the ground running in this role. I'm a little nervous, but beyond thrilled to have this opportunity. This could be a major turning point in my career, so I want to take advantage of it.
There is a slight chance that this could result in a permanent position, but for now it's a temporary assignment – twelve weeks, maybe more. So I've got good reason to learn everything that I possibly can.
How can I best use this limited time to transform into a "real" designer? What skills will help me the most in finding future employment? What should I focus on? Any blogs, books, tutorials, or other resources that will help me? I'm looking for any and all advice, no matter how basic or specific (in fact, basic and specific are great).