My work environment when I interact with people face-to-face is generally in ballrooms and convention centers across the country. I hear and get the “I’d like to do what you do” question fairly common. I recently responded to someone, who was very serious about a change of direction in their design work, which I will share with all:

“Dear XXXX,

Over the past few years I have seen a surprising need for qualified people to work showsite presentations. But for straight design work I believe there is a very competitive market. For me the two have become inseparable. I do lots of creative design work for live events, both in pre-production from my office and while on showsite.

For showsite presentations the graphics person needs to be very knowledgeable about design principles – PowerPoint – computer/hardware issues – A/V equipment (projectors, scalers, switchers, etc.) and of course people skills. I would recommend:

○ Spending lots of time on the PowerPoint newsgroup just reading the questions and answers. Knowing the solutions to the various common problems is mandatory.;en-us;newsgroups
○ Get familiar with the PPT FAQ that Steve Rindsberg maintains(you will see plenty of newsgroup replies are just links to pages on this site)
○ Beyond skills and knowledge it is a matter of getting your name in with production companies. The industry is relatively small, so working with one means referrals to others.

Lest you think it all exciting, the hours are anywhere between midnight-and-midnight. Airplanes – hotels – banquet food – and lots of travel are a daily part of things too…”

Troy @ TLC