How to become a graphic designer, you must develop marketable skills that employers and customers value, including strong drawing skills, a deep understanding of graphic design theory, mastery of design software, and a comprehensive understanding of professional standards. Whether you plan to pursue a traditional degree or self-guided training outside of school, follow these steps to ensure you have the basic qualifications to succeed.
- The basics: build your foundation
A graphic designer works directly or indirectly for a client to create materials that align with the client’s brand, appeal to the target audience, and ultimately delight the client. Understanding design theory, mastering specific commercial art skills, and learning industry standards should be the first goals for all new designers who want to differentiate themselves from the hobbyist.
- Master the software
Computer design skills are vital to creating professional designs. To be competent, the designer needs a high degree of proficiency in industry standard software programs, usually acquired through long hours of practice. You should be comfortable with the software to create designs quickly and in accordance with industry standards. Whether you’re preparing images for website use or designing a brochure for the printer, a graphic designer needs to know the correct size, format, and dimensions for each different type of project a customer may need.
- Learn Adobe Photoshop
- Learn Adobe Illustrator
- Learn Adobe InDesign
- Obtain a degree in graphic design or related field
We’ve all heard stories about people shedding the chains of a bachelor’s degree to start multi-million dollar businesses. People like Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg dropped out of college and created companies that changed the world we live in. These stories reinforce the idea that a college education is not necessary; all you really need is old-fashioned courage, originality, and natural talent to succeed.
- Choose an area of expertise
Having a niche helps narrow your focus to a single area, so you can be really good at what you do. For many graphic design companies, it is important to have a solid understanding of all aspects of graphic design, but one approach sets you apart from other professionals. If you plan to work as a freelancer, you want a very specific approach so that companies or firms are eager to hire you rather than other professionals in that area.
- Logo design
- Web design and digital design
- Multimedia design
- Build an outstanding portfolio
His portfolio demonstrates his skills and understanding of the industry. Your graphic design program should help you develop an impressive portfolio to help you land a job (or internship) as soon as you graduate. You want to focus on quality over quantity, choosing your best job to show clients or prospective employers. A portfolio should include a handful (often 10 to 12 examples) of your best work that demonstrates your specific skills and abilities and interests.
- Start your career
Taking the next step may seem scary, but your education has prepared you for How to become a graphic designer. The key to working as a superior professional is to continue your education as much as possible by getting involved in the industry and keeping up with trends. Continuing to criticize your own work may be the most important factor for improvement, and you will constantly want to assess the impact of your work. After graduation, you will spend a lot of time initially to hone your resume and portfolio, as well as to market to potential clients and apply for jobs at marketing and design firms.