In my experience there are a lot of up-and-coming designers and developers taking the right approach: asking those that they admire if there’s any good advice to offer. Many times these inquiries can be categorized in two ways:
- I admire and respect the work you’ve done, what can I do to focus on my developing craft to make the most of my time as I start out?
- I want to be a famous designer. What’s the quickest way to do that?
I’ve received emails from both parties, and many designers (and developers) fit into one of the two. The fact of the matter is there’s no quick way to success. Not in design, not in development, not in life. There’s no get rich/famous quick formula to follow. If I can offer one bit of advice in conjunction to Brian’s awesome suggestions I would suggest being passionate. The rest will fall into place if you’re truly in to what’s going on around us every day.
With that honest dedication to what you love, you’ll pick up tons of advice, meet tons of great people, and do awesome work.