Designs for a designer?
June 26, 2012 6:26 AM   Subscribe

Suggest me a rewarding and inspiring career side-step. I desperately need to find a new job, but the obvious ones directly on my career path are just not working for me. I'm looking for a more creative/design environment which will value my engineering skills and to which I can bring my unusual innovative experience.

I retrained as a mechanical engineer fairly late and since leaving university have had a very interesting and professionally rewarding career developing wave power. That was been great; I've been able to play a key role in a small company, very committed, very inspirational, balancing creativity and engineering discipline. It's given me a very thorough mechanical background; concept to commissioning, cradle to grave design.

Since then I've been drifting around the local engineering industry, getting a feel for what's happening and how I fit in. Unfortunately I dont really think I do. I'm too unconventional for most established engineering firms, and too broadly experienced for most tightly defined roles.

Squeezing myself into a role or a company which doesn't suit just isn't going to work. I'd far rather try something completely different.

Engineering has never completely fulfilled my design/creative skills (I used to be a semi-pro graphic designer), so please suggest some areas which I could explore. Where are mechanical designers with creative flair needed? Hands on would be great.

Please help me out here; all I can think of is set design but there's got to be more innovative, creative, design than that. Coding? Logistics for festivals? Jewellery?!
posted by BadMiker to Work & Money (5 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Industrial design is a combination of mechanical engineering & design -- it might be up your alley.
posted by elmay at 6:44 AM on June 26, 2012

Like elmay, I think the term you want is industrial designer, working on product design for consumer and/or B2B products.

You might also be a good fit for sales and marketing (including creative/design) for an existing environmental firm expanding into the energy sector.
posted by pie ninja at 6:45 AM on June 26, 2012

Built environment / green cities / industrial design, urban design, architecture. Especially if you are already using CAD software, you could follow through into 3D modelling / digital film modeling from there too.
posted by Under the Sea at 7:05 AM on June 26, 2012

Response by poster: That's great, thanks. Long question; short answer!
posted by BadMiker at 8:12 AM on June 26, 2012

And if you want to learn more about industrial design, check out the core77 design resource:

* not affiliated with them, just found it the other day and thought it looked good.
posted by gregjunior at 3:12 PM on June 26, 2012

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