4 Essentials a Designer Should Always Have

Throughout my design journey over the past few years, I’ve found that there are certain physical items that I really just can’t leave home without. This is a quick list of 4 essential items I recommend always having on you, no matter where you are or where you’re going!

01. Business Cards

As a designer, it’s never a bad idea to have business cards on you. There will be times when you’re talking to people and they tell you that someone they know needs design work done. Don’t just give them an email address or phone number. A physical business card goes a lot further. If you don’t want to spend money getting fancy business cards printed, just print some at home or at school and cut them out—It’s better than nothing. If you need some direction, check out this article for some business card design tutorials or just gather some inspiration on the internet. It’s also a great way to get really creative!

02. A Notebook

Chances are you’re a creative individual, and creative people have constant creative thoughts, that’s just how we operate. Never let a creative thought or idea slip away. The easiest way to ensure your ideas stay with you is by always having a small notebook and pen/pencil on you. It allows you to get your thoughts down on paper immediately. Sure, you can use a note-taking app instead, or say “Okay Google” or “Hey Siri” but I recommend the physical route. Things just stick better with good old fashioned pen & paper. Go grab some Field Notes or a Moleskine and you’ll be set!

03. A Camera

As designers, we’re constantly taking in the world around us and seeing things from a unique perspective. Inspiration can come from anywhere at anytime. There’s a good chance you have a smartphone equipped with a solid camera. Don’t forget to take lots of pictures and capture everything that inspires you when you’re out and about—whether it’s a billboard, product packaging, the color scheme on a piece of clothing, or just a beautiful sunset!

04. Headphones

Let’s be honest, almost everybody owns a pair of these. Just remember to grab them on your way out! Having a pair of headphones on you allows you to peacefully listen to music, audiobooks, podcasts, or whatever you’d like wherever you go, providing you with the ability to learn, gather inspiration, and just simply accomplish more. I’m a huge fan of wireless headphones (mainly for the gym and other physical activities), but wired work great as well. If you really appreciate sound quality over inexpensive headphones, give some Audio Technica’s a try.

Those are my top 4 every day carries. What are some other essentials you can’t leave home without and how do they help you? Drop a comment below!

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