Jumping from print to UX

Does anyone worked as print designer before and jumped into UX? How did you do it? I worked in magazine design for almost nine years until I got fed up of the deteriorating circumstances of traditional publishing. I took a really good and comprehensive course on UX but now that I am starting to apply recruiters tell me I am too senior as a designer for an internship position but too inexperienced (in UX) for a permanent role. Did anyone went through something similar? Would appreciate any advice on how to bridge the two industries.

Hi Hugo, my history is similar to this.

I started in print design in '99. I started learning web design in '01, and gradually transitioned completely into web design by '03. The jobs I had during that transition allowed me to learn web design while I was the Chief Designer for print, because we had a lack of human resources.

With a background in graphic design, I had a natural tendency toward the technical aspects of web design. I was hand-coding HTML, CSS, PHP, JS etc by '03. This technical knowledge helped me get i the door for more technical design roles. My big break was when I took a job as the Creative Director at a UX agency. I learned so much about UX there, from first-hand experience. I wasn’t thinking about it at the time, but this was the perfect way to transition from design to UX.

Now, my CV showed that I had worked at a UX agency. By '05 I was taking IX and UXD contracts based on that experience.

There’s no formal ‘bridge’ between the two, that I know of. As always, learn by doing, and pick a way to get yourself in the UX sphere of work. Just by being in the industry, you’ll learn a lot and gain credibility in that way.

Early on for me, I had similar experiences. I’d been a Creative Director for many years, but my years in UX were drawled by that. It’s hard going from a senior / directorial role to a lower role, and most employers don’t like to do that. The way I got around it was to focus on UX jobs that had some crossover (e.g. heavily design-focused) and word my CV so that my UX experience was highlighted.

Good luck!

I made the switch from print to web, including learning to hand-code and even spent time doing AS3 (which was helpful for doing Javascript) around the same time but am facing the same problems as Hugo354 now because I spent the last 6 years teaching design. I have the paper qualifications for UX but no industry experience i.e. I can’t say I’ve delivered a front-end mobile product in the last 4 years… I’ve tried to bridge the gap by pointing out how my experience maps with requirements in UX but that hasn’t worked so far.

I feel that in the past couple of years, UX has become a buzzword (“webmaster”) and it really is about what we as designers and developers have always done, before the processes became formalized and even packaged.
Also, producer and product manager roles have become UX roles.

To Hugo354: I guess we have to fall back on our visual design skills, pick up whatever comes our way. Yes, I’m dressing up PowerPoint presentations, emailers and whatever I can get my hands on.