In this article , Ian Cullam , Director of Design at Jaguar gives young students and professionals interested in car design some important tips to secure a job at jaguar in the design department. These tips are universal and would help any student of car design who is currently in the process of job hunt or preparation of portfolio.
Today a career in car design job is much more competitive than when I first started my automotive career. It’s critical that you stand out from the crowd. Here are my top tips when applying for a job here at Jaguar.
1. A killer portfolio is key
When I first arrived at Jaguar, I received a portfolio once every few months. Now we’re getting at least one a week, from all over the world. Portfolios say a lot; they are the first point of contact. Some of the books I get are beautifully made; they’re like coffee table books, but it’s the content that really counts. I can tell from four or five pages how good somebody is. It should show the thought process, with sketches and quick ideas, right through to a fully rendered car. Remember I don’t need to see your life story in drawings (although I do sometimes get it!).
2. Write a killer cover letter to go with it
Remember that your portfolio is going to land on my desk with lots of others. A cover letter is a must. This needs to be succinct, showing an understanding of Jaguar. Give me an indication of your genuine interest in not just being a designer, but being a Jaguar designer.
Before you go for an interview, you should find out about Jaguar. Find out about the person who will interview you. Who are they? What do they do? What are their interests? This gives you the advantage of knowing how to deal with them, because you deal with people according to their character. We all do.
Ian cullam sketch
3. Demonstrate creative thinking and drawing ability
I am often asked what qualities I look for in a designer. The most important mental skill is to be creative and to be able to think laterally. That’s the first thing I look for in any designer. The main physical skill I’m looking for is your ability to draw. Drawing is how we communicate.
4. Be yourself down to the last detail
First impressions are everything. I’m not necessarily expecting you to turn up in a three-piece-suit or a shirt and tie. People can present themselves in all sorts of different ways. You have to present your character as you really are. Designers look at details. I know a very famous entrepreneur who, when he sees people for the first time, looks at the heels of their shoes. Be aware that people are looking at these details. Don’t take the chance.
5. Be interesting and interested
Be prepared for what you want to say. You’ve got to be clear about what you want out of the job; not just financial benefit but real personal gain. The best candidates are interesting to talk to, and leave me wanting to know more. That’s always fascinating. However, I have interviewed people who just won’t stop talking. It’s nerves a lot of the time. Don’t be nervous, we’re all human. Be concise and listen.
Don’t forget to smile. It’s all about human interaction and a smile says so much about somebody.
6. Be a team player
We need an eclectic mix of people who fit into a team. I don’t have time for overly-confident, single-minded people. I used to be one of those people who could only work on my own, and that’s why I left Ford when I did, to set up my own design studio with “me, myself and I”. But since I have arrived at Jaguar, the most important thing I’ve learnt is to manage teamwork. A car is made up of thousands of parts and no one person can work alone with such a magnitude of work.
I say to my team “leave your ego at the door”. Of course every designer has an ego. Of course every designer wants to get their design up front. I’m quite happy with that. I’m not asking them to forfeit their design for the sake of teamwork. I’m asking them to understand that everybody in the team has something to offer and they must respect that. I don’t mind individuals with an individual character, but remember you are part of a team.
7. Show your love of learning and improving
The most important thing to remember is that your latest work is not necessarily your best and even if you think it at the time, it will get better. That is what makes a good designer.
There’s a lovely quote from Thomas Edison which I utterly believe in: “When you’ve exhausted all of the possibilities, remember this: you haven’t.”
Ian Callum at Jaguar Launch
About Ian Culla
Ian Callum, RDI, Jaguar Director of Design, was born in Dumfries, Scotland. Ian attended a course in Industrial Design at Glasgow School of Art, followed by a 2-year course in Automobile Design at the Royal College of Art.
Ian spent the first 12 years of his career at Ford Design Studios, where he contributed to the creation of the Escort RS Cosworth and the Ghia Via Concept. Later, as Chief Designer of TWR Design, he was responsible for the Aston Martin DB7 and Vanquish.
Ian joined Jaguar in 1999 but continued to manage Aston Martin Design, developing the DB9 as well as directing Jaguar Design where he and his team created, amongst others, the R-Coupe, RD-6 and C-X75 concepts. Heralding an exciting new era for the brand, each car takes the design theme further and continues to reinforce Jaguar as a creator of ‘fast, beautiful cars.’ The first new model was the XK, followed by the XF and XJ. In September 2012 the much-anticipated F-TYPE was launched, Jaguar’s first 2-seater sports car since the iconic E-Type. This was followed later by the Jaguar XE, which Ian designed for a very competitive segment. A bold statement for Jaguar using Ian’s established design philosophy.
If you love cars and are interested in designing them, our Diploma in Car Design course is the perfect choice for you to get started on your journey towards becoming a car designer.
Meet Muqeet Arsh, a Mechanical Engineering graduate from AMC College of Engineering, Bangalore, who got admitted into Masters in Transportation & Car Design course at Scuola Politecnica di Design, Italy, after doing his Diploma in Car Design from Launchpad Academy. He is currently pursuing his second year . He kindly agreed to meet couple of our students and talk to us about his experiences. With two years of work experience at Mahindra under his belt, Muqeet was all set to take the next grand step in his career. His eyes were all set on being an automobile designer. Having no background with design, he opted to hone his design skills before applying for a master’s degree at a foreign university. That’s when he enrolled himself in Launchpad’s Diploma in Car Design course.
visit to ferrari
In a live session with Launchpad Alumni, Muqeet shared his experience on how Launchpad helped him realize his dream. Here are some of his excerpts and learnings from the session. Joining Launchpad’s Diploma in Car Design Course
“I did my Mechanical Engineering from AMC College. After that I joined Launchpad Academy. This helped me a lot to focus where exactly I wanted to be. They guided me how exactly to apply to colleges and which all colleges are open to apply.” Learning How to Sketch
Sketching is one of the most essential skills to get into a design course at any prestigious university. Being from an engineering background, Muqeet realized that he had to learn how to sketch freely and own this skill. “I used to sketch but I didn’t know how to get into this field.”. Launchpad’s sketching and design course helped him hone his skills and get admitted to SPD, Italy.
Building a Strong Portfolio “When I started, my portfolio was really bad. It was basically a word document with all my sketches. You can start with anyhow you want depending on how your skill level is.” Your portfolio needn’t be anything fancy. Just include a collection of your best work. Focus on free hand sketches and showcase any other creative pursuits you may have such as drawing, painting or even clay modelling.
Why Join a University?
You will get to know what you really want to do. They’ll help you hone your skills right and get to the next level. The industry demands certain skills and traits from the designers, and the university prepares you to gel perfectly with it. Getting Admitted is Only the Beginning
The SPD admission process consists of an online application process followed by a skype interview, wherein you’re given a live sketching assignment. It’s that simple really, provided you’re already prepared. The course which Muqeet opted for at SPD is in English. No GRE score or TOEFL certificate was required to qualify for an admission. About the Course As with any design course, it’s extremely rigorous and tough. Classes are short, but most of the time is spent completing assignments and projects. You’ll hardly find time for any other activities, except on weekends. The course is divided into two years. The first year is compulsory for students from non-design background. On completion of the first year, every student gets a 1-year post graduation certificate. Only those who score more than 8.5 GPA in their first year get into the second year to earn their master’s degree. “Out of 12 students from my class just 4 of us made it to the second year.” The course fee is roughly INR 20 Lakhs and the living cost is around 1000 Euro a month in Italy. Learning from Industry Experts The professors at SPD are all industry experts and come from some of the top design studios and automotive companies in the world. One of the professors is working for Alfa Romeo. Another was one of the designers for Niki Lauda’s Ferrari car. Learning from such experienced professionals was truly an amazing experience for him.
SPD is affiliated with Volkswagen Group, an automobile conglomerate with many companies under their belt. As a result, students get a chance to do projects at leading automobile firms such as Alfa Romeo to Lamborghini. “My first year we worked with Alfa Romeo and Fiat. My second year as soon as I’ll be joining we’ll start with live projects from Lamborghini, Audi and Ducati.” Why Italy and not US or Germany? “As far as design is concerned I think Italy is the best place to learn, because it is known as the design capital of the world. They’re the oldest and one of the most famous designers in the world. They’re very precise, they know what they want and how they want it to be in the future.” Being the home of iconic car brands like Ferrari and Alfa Romeo, Italy has been very influential in car design. We cannot argue with him here.
Joining Launchpad’s course helped Muqeet grab a seat at one of the most prestigious design universities in the world. If you love cars and are interested in designing them, our Diploma in Car Design course is the perfect choice for you to get started on your journey towards becoming a car designer.
Dilip Chabria is probably India’s most well known automobile designer . In this article we reveal his life story and hope it inspires you to follow your passion for car design .
DC’s as Dilip Chabria is known , love for cars started with his fascination for doodling them on every surface at his home. Armed with a commerce degree and with no idea on what to do with his future was when he chanced upon an advertisement that said-“Do you want to be a car designer?” A surprised Dilip Chabria (DC) realized that his hobby could culminate into a career too. He applied to the Automotive Design Arts Center in California where he majored in transportation design. He cut short his stint with General Motors as a car designer because of the red tape associated with working in huge corporations. The same Dilip goes on to become the automobile style guru and founder of DC designs whose repertoire includes designing expensive cars, executive jets, helicopters, designing yachts and making India’s first sports car, DC Avanti.
Dilip Chabria’s father ran an electronic manufacturing business where he was given a little space and an ultimatum of one month to do whatever he wants to. With a team of 3 on the design venture, he makes an indigenous design of a horn in the shape of a ring for Premier Padmini in the replacement market. Selling each of the piece at 40 rupees apiece when the making charges were only eight rupees meant that his hobby could be successful as a provider of bread and butter. He ended up making more money in the 1 month than his dad made in the whole year. In a wise move, his dad gave him the entire factory.
He designed his Gypsy in 1992 and vowed to give his all for the design because it was being done for him, it had the desired impact, people everywhere thronged to look at his now remodeled car. He sold the car to invest in his business. For a brief period, he had signed an exclusivity deal with Mahindra where he worked on the Armada and other concepts that later led to the creation of Scorpio. A non-conformist that he was, he quit being a part of the deal to concentrate working on any car that he is fascinated with.
Not only does Dilip Chabria indulge in designing cars for India’s uber rich, he has the distinction of making the first prototype for the Aston Martin Vanquish that appeared in James Bond’s Die Another Day. His website describes him as someone with the sensibility of an artist and the mind of an engineer.
He believes that the toughest car to customize would be the Porsche 911 as he opines that it is difficult to alter something with a design as perfect as that. Dilip Chabria is quite the painter too, a hobby which he indulges in on Sundays. Also known to sculpt, he has a full-fledged studio in his factory where he uses the same materials as in his cars to make sculptures like plastic, acrylic, fiber glass and steel. These are then displayed in his showrooms in Mumbai, Pune and Delhi. In his own words-“Those who can’t afford to customize or buy my car can have a piece of DC design through my art work”.
Dilip’s DYPDC Center for Automotive Research and Studies offers both undergraduate and postgraduate programs in automobile styling which is based in Pune. In fact, before the end of the program, students are supposed to build an automobile to get their degrees.
In a list of glowing achievements that would trump most achievers, he has created India’s first sports car, DC Avanti. Chhabria reckons that this is the first Made-in-India sports car and was created with today’s youngsters in mind. The commercial launch was done from its dealership Aadivenoo Motors in Pune. Each piece of beauty was priced at 35.93 lakh rupees, available in three standard colors of red, white and silver, in addition to any customized color choice. This is the first time Dilip’s company has ventured into manufacturing segment of the automobile industry. Despite a slowdown in the automobile segment, Dilip’s DC Design would never go out of work because it caters to a niche market where money is nary a matter.
Not only would DC design 25 foot limousines, but they have also come up with design enhancer kits for small cars such as Tata Nano and other models like Maruti Swift, Toyota Innova and Honda City. The cost for the same would be around 50,000 to 150,000 rupees. These customization kits are shipped to Carnation Auto, a company founder by former MD of Maruti Suzuki
The services that are offered at DC designs are the following:
Styling: Vehicles, Aviation and CAS.
Show car & Prototype Build.
Customized and Armored Vehicles Builds.
Special Purpose Vehicles Builds.
The Dilip Chhabria Design Private Limited is credited with more than 600 designs boasting of an employee strength of 300.
Dilip Chhabria has made his passion grow to a stage where his company is the largest auto accessory manufacturer in the country. Catering to the needs of B2B and B2C firms and individual clients by providing innovative automobile design solutions, DC makes this happen through system integration, automobile styling and knowledge of the craft. The end result is an amalgamation of pure unadulterated automobile lust and genius on display. Dilip’s company has put India on the global map of automobile design. DC’s products bear a striking resemblance to its creator’s work ethics in terms of its design, finish and fulfilling requirements of a client.
Shyam Prasad is a 23 year old mechanical engineering graduate living in Gadag, Karnataka. A design enthusiast driven by automobiles, getting into a reputed design school like NID or IDC was Shyam’s dream of many years. Shyam successfully cleared the written exam and studio tests of NID and will be pursuing his M.Des degree in Transportation and Automobile Design. He spoke to Launchpad on this joyous occasion and remembered how our Diploma in Car Design course helped him in his success and shared all the details about NID’s studio tests and other selection procedures. Read on!
Congrats Shyam! How does it feel to get into NID? Thank you and I’m on Cloud 9 right now! It feels great. In fact this is my second attempt. Though I made it to the 5th waitlist, I was unable to clear NID’s tough entrance exams for the first time. However, I didn’t give up my hope on becoming an automobile designer. Every decimal counts in NID’s entrance score. I missed it by a mere 0.70 the first time and I’m glad I cleared it this time!
Can you tell us more about the NID exam pattern this year? I’ll give you a comparison rather. When I appeared for the exam for the first time, the test had about 7-10 descriptive questions and the total awarded marks was 50. But this time, the emphasis was more on creative-sketching rather than descriptive and the total marks was doubled to 100 as well, this year. The paper pattern is totally unpredictable to be honest.
Can you briefly tell us about the Studio Test following the exam? The Studio Test wasn’t just a test, it was a whole new experience! After clearing the first round, we were asked to attend the second round at their campuses, respective of the streams we chose. I gave the entrance exam in Bangalore and the Studio Test was in Gandhinagar. The Studio Test goes on for a minimum of 2 days and can go on up to 5 days. We were offered free hostel stay during the Studio Test and the fact I was in NID campus made me reduce my stress levels and face the tests more confidently.
What kind of questions are asked in the Studio Test of NID? The studio test can be shortlisted to three stages. 1. We were asked to pen down three views of the scale models of the cars. 2. With a few craft items, we were given a task to complete. 3. The Interview. Last time, we were made to sit in front of a JCB and asked to sketch three views of the JCB. The studio test, as I told earlier is a whole new experience! It is totally unpredictable, how they decide to test you. But it was a lot of fun!
How was the Personal Interview? The interview was very cool and casual. Generally we expect interviews to be stress filled, but interviewers here go really easy on us. But they will definitely get the information they need out of us. Keeping our calm is the only preparation needed for the interview. We must know what we are talking about rather assuming or bluffing. One doesn’t need any coaching to face interviews and learn how to behave; we just have to be ourselves. And yes, we need to carry a portfolio to present the panel. In fact, carry everything and anything which shows the creative part of ourselves. Nothing is too much. The panel patiently goes through all the sketches or items that we present.
How did Launchpad help you in all of this? I was very disappointed when I couldn’t crack the tests for the first time. I felt it was because I didn’t put enough efforts. But it was just that I had no idea of many aspects of the car design though I wanted to pursue Transportation Design as a career. I just looked at car sketches and copied them down. But after I joined Launchpad, I got to know about perspectives, ratios and many other technical terms of car design. It totally redefined sketching for me. I think that sums up how important Launchpad was for me to get into NID!
Love Cars? Interested in Car Design? We have a course just right to fuel your interests! Learn more about our Diploma in Car Design online course!
The popularity of interior design in India is such that it’s no longer a choice of luxury but has evolved to become a necessary amenity. Increased standard of living and a growing concern for shrinking living spaces have made interior design more significant than ever. Correspondingly, the number of students who are considering interior design as their future career option is also very high today. If you are one of them, here’s a list of the top interior design companies in India who are on the lookout for fresh and creative interior designers.
But before we begin to list the top 5 companies where you could pursue your interior design career, here are a few facts about interior design to blow your mind!
High Demand: Currently India needs more than 100000 interior designers to work in various architectural and real estate firms, event management companies, healthcare and retail industry, hospitality, furniture companies and more.
Less Designers: However, this enormous demand for interior designers is heavily undersupplied as there are very few students who are taking up interior design as a career and very few interior designers who are capable of meeting the industry standards and satisfying all their clients, each with a different mindset and taste.
Tremendous Growth: The interior design industry which once was considered as a sub domain of architecture has evolved to become a fully-fledged, established profession today. Along with the existing high demand, the industry also has a tremendous growth rate of 20%, which is expected to continue until 2018.
Lucrative Pay: An entry level interior designer in India starts with a median salary of 4 lakh per annum and a senior interior designer makes up to 30 lakh per annum! You could be hired by interior design and architectural firms, by construction companies as an in-house interior designer, by furniture manufacturers or event managers.
With growing experience and demand, you could have your own interior design firm, be a consultant to high-end projects and also freelance in the sideline to supplement your finances. Now that you know why interior design is one of the best career choices in India, here’s the list of the top 5 interior design/furniture companies who want to hire people like you!
1. Homelane Homelane is a budding startup based in Bangalore that provides technology led interior design solutions which are clean, quick and customizable; also specializing in modular and fixed furniture. Homelane drew a lot attention in a short span of 8 months since its inception to include big names like Sequoia Capital, Aarin Capital and the Ganeshes as its investors. Homelane is looking for more than 10,000 interior designers from around the country to match its growth rate, which is over 100%!
2. Urban Ladder Urban Ladder is another home setup startup that hails from Bangalore, specializing in online sales of furniture and other home-décor services. Citing the importance of e-commerce in the future and Urban Ladder’s vision and growth in the e-tailer industry, many venture capital firms have invested in Urban Ladder, including Ratan Tata who made a personal investment in the company. Urban Ladder has many interior designer careers open under its wing.
3. Bonito Designs Again from Bangalore, Bonito Designs is a well-established interior design company started and managed by a bunch of people who are probably in their 20s! Bonito Designs offers many interior design services including planning & design, visualization and consultancy. The company is also featured on the popular interior design website Houzz.com and is looking for interior designers who can learn quickly and tell stories through their designs.
4. Livspace Livspace is located in Bangalore and is one of India’s leading shopping destination for home décor and design. Livspace offers interior design and home décor solutions to customers through their award winning designers or allows customers to customize the design by themselves through their interactive website. Operating with a browse and shop approach, Livspace is looking for many interior designers and furniture designers.
5. Inch Based in Bangalore, Inch delivers world class wardrobe, bedroom and kitchen interiors. Inch specializes in modern and contemporary sofas, storage furniture, room designs, beds and more. Affiliated with Launchpad Academy, Inch is looking for promising interior designers and furniture designers. Those students who successfully complete our ‘Interior Design Course’ will be offered internships and job opportunities in Inch.
Love decorating houses? Want to be a professional Interior Designer? If yes, then we might have the course tailor-made for you! Join our ‘Diploma in Interior Design‘ online course today!