Computer Arts - - Special Report -

In Mel­bourne, food and drink are taken as se­ri­ously as de­sign. Peer into any of the city’s gritty al­ley­ways and you’ll be re­warded with cool cafes, trendy bars and bou­tique gal­leries, while a thriv­ing de­sign cul­ture en­sures cre­ativ­ity around ev­ery cor­ner. “You can’t walk far with­out see­ing a re­ally well-crafted piece of graphic com­mu­ni­ca­tion, cool sign or cafe identity,” says Pete John­son, founder of de­sign stu­dio Can I Play. “There are world-class graphic, fash­ion and fur­ni­ture de­sign­ers along with some of the best ar­chi­tects on the planet. In­spi­ra­tion is only a block or two away.”

Av­er­age pay sits around AU$50,190 per year, says PayScale, but while cost of liv­ing is cheaper than Syd­ney, Mel­bourne isn’t cheap. “Hous­ing prices are though the roof,” says John­son, adding that de­sign is a pop­u­lar ca­reer choice so com­pe­ti­tion for jobs can be tough. “That said, it’s a great place to get in the mood to de­sign. And ev­ery­one seems to be hav­ing a good time on a Fri­day evening!”

Top: The city’s Om­bra sa­lumi bar. Mid­dle: “For me, the most in­spi­ra­tional part of the city is the beach,” says John­son. Bot­tom: Mel­bourne has top-class ar­chi­tec­ture.

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