What does a graphic designer do?
Based on the industry specifics, using specialized software, a graphic designer can be responsible for the creation of web designs, or the corporate style, including the development of layouts for newsletters, social networks, business cards, etc., book covers and illustrations, banners, posters, leaflets, and other marketing materials, logos, user interface, and many other products. Besides simply creating an eye-catching logo or a leaflet design, modern designers also develop style guides to ensure that all products and visual representations of the brand support the unity of style, maintaining the main concept.
What is graphic design?
Graphic design is a visual communication tool helping express ideas, meanings, and values through images, fonts, videos, etc. It solves a variety of different tasks through colour, form, images, and compositions. Naturally, it is impossible to solve all of these tasks with one tool, which is why there are different subcategories of graphic design. Usually, designers focus on one type, but today you need to be agile and have a grasp of all branches.
Who is a graphic designer?
A graphic designer is a specialist whose responsibility is to transform the idea of a customer into a visual concept transmitting the message, including prompting to make an action through pictures, fonts, compositions, photographs, etc.
Graphic designer skills
- Creative thinking and ability to draw. You should be able to do fast sketches by hand to visualize how you understand the customer’s idea or need. It is a crucial skill for a designer, even if the end result of their work will be visible only on a mobile device screen.
- Knowledge of typography basics. Even though most designers work with digital products, typography rules are still very relevant. It is about the text design that can attract or turn off the website visitors intuitively react to font size, style, and other elements. And depending on their relevance to images and content on the pages, such reactions can be positive or negative.
- Proficiency in using editing software. There are three essential software products that every graphic designer must be proficient in Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. And of course, you need to always be aware of new developments in the field of graphic design software in order to keep up with the progress.
- Knowledge of multimedia software. Sometimes customers want to add a small animation to their logo or a website. And to be able to implement such projects, you need to be able to work with such software as After Effects, Acrobat, Maya, and others.
- Knowledge of colour theory. The knowledge about colour combinations and the ability to use and mix colours is crucial for design. Users intuitively assess a colour solution of a website, app, or any other product and if they do not like it, they will keep looking for another product or service. The colour theory also implies the use of lighting and shadows that can help to achieve original effects.
- Knowledge of HTML and CSS basics. It is a curial skill if you want to work with website designs in order to be able to independently make corrections and change objects on web pages, link them or move them in the process.
- Knowledge and experience in performing layout optimization. All elements on a webpage should be structured and placed in such a way to easily lead the visitor to the key goal of the website or app, i.e., take an action such as buy, subscribe, etc. At the same time, it must not be too intrusive.
- Knowledge of print design basics. Although we live in a digital era, printed materials are still in high demand. Besides, even if you work only with digital products, you need to have a grasp of colour space, grid layout, and printing processes to avoid serious errors in the work.
Graphic designer qualifications
You don’t need a certain degree or certificate to compete for the position of graphic designer. The best recommendation for you will be your portfolio. You can create it on your own while learning the basics of design, i.e., colour theory, editing software, drawing, etc., or apply for designer assistant jobs. However, in this case, you will also have to learn how to use the main software on your own. You can learn even on YouTube tutorials or by completing a free online course.
Graphic designer salary
In the USA, the average annual salary of a specialist is $46,461 a year.
In Canada, graphic designers annually receive C$45,000 or $36,000.
- In India, the annual pay for this profession is around ₹305,000 or $4,000.
The top IT companies offer graphic designers the following salaries: Microsoft pays graphic designers from $42,701 to $87,107 a year. Google pays for the same speciality on average $59,345 a year. At Amazon, the average salary of a graphic designer is $62, 500 a year.