We live in a remarkable era of ceaseless tool publication. Comparing the minimalistic toolset from my early design career to the present abundance, the transformation is astounding.
The biggest challenge I observe among young designers is their comparative analysis with veteran designers who have been in the field for over a decade. The emerging talent aspires to emulate them, chasing the same salary, projects, and achievements. But all these aspirations should be underpinned by expertise. By an 'expert designer,' I mean someone who has honed their skills through various projects, learning equally from successes and failures. They are passionate, understand their craft deeply, and the process behind it.
Today's tools are more feature-rich than ever, reducing the time required to design, build sites, write copies, and more. We find ourselves in an era where a tool exists for every minor aspect of our work. As AI accelerates the development of each part of our work, we seem to have developed a growing obsession, making us "overtooled".
To the budding as well as seasoned professionals, I urge, "Prioritize craftsmanship." Mastering your craft will teach you far more than relying on AI and seeking the quickest solutions. At the outset of your career, focus on honing your craft and exploring new paths. Craftsmanship will push you out of your comfort zone, broaden your perspective, deepen your understanding, and open doors to learn new skills. The growth may not be rapid, but it will be substantial and smart. As a beginner, start wisely. Don't rush; learn instead. Prioritize mastering skills over tools.