Set designers are vital to almost all entertainment productions. Their job is to make a scene come to life, from the beautiful landscapes of outdoor scenes to the furniture and lighting of indoor scenes. They must read and analyze scripts, story lines, and other materials relevant to their production to define the style and surroundings of the scenes. They are often required to source items from a particular place or era of production, such as antique items for a production which takes place in the early 20th century. This can mean many hours at yard sales, thrift stores, or online auctions, and close attention to detail and great imagination are essential for the position.
Set designers not only source and obtain props, but may also build them as needed. They are generally in charge of the angles and placement of items on stage to help convey their interpretation of the scene, which can include even the smallest details, and they oversee each scene and may also set marks for actors if necessary.
Requirements for this position can vary. While a degree is not required, film school education is highly beneficial and prior experience in film, television, or theater is held in high regard. Of course, a passion for performance art is essential, as well. Set designers spend most of their time on-set or shopping for props, and their hours may also vary depending on the production.