There’s no better time than now to kickstart your career as a graphic designer.
Graphic design skills are in demand, and graphic design is among the top career choices today. A career in graphic design is not only lucrative but also gratifying.
That’s why we’ve put together a guide on how to kick your career as a graphic designer, whether you’re looking for a career change or fresh out of college. By the end, you’ll be better prepared to find your dream role in graphic design on job search sites such as Lensa.
Defining the role of a graphic designer
Graphic design is one of the most in-demand skills right now. These are essential skills to consider mastering to stand out in today’s competitive job market. Because businesses are now more than ever reliant on visual communication, the graphic design role has become indispensable. But what exactly is a graphic designer?
A graphic designer is a visual communicator whose primary responsibility is translating complex ideas, messages, and products in a visually appealing manner and a way that makes it easier for the target audience to understand. To achieve this, graphic designers must have expertise in design software, typography, color theory, layout techniques and even web development. In doing so, they can easily transform ideas into powerful visuals that resonate with audiences across various platforms. These include social media, websites, branding, and marketing materials, to name a few.
As businesses and professionals want to stand out in the ever-changing economic landscape, graphic designers are vital in creating effective visual communication that people will remember.
Now, let’s see which skills and education are essential to kickstart your career as a graphic designer.
Boost your career with education and skill development
Developing a solid foundation is essential to kickstart your career as a graphic designer. Familiarise yourself with the visual design fundamentals first. These are line, shape, color theory, space, balance, typography, and composition principles. In addition to learning graphic design fundamentals, these are other skills that you’ll need to master:
- Adobe Creative Suite: Be confident with Adobe software applications such as InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator. Applications such as Premiere Pro and After Effects will also come in handy.
- Content Creation: Being proficient in diverse creative fields like photography, sketching, web design, social media, and videography will enhance your graphic design career prospects.
- Originality and Creativity: Think innovatively continuously and think outside the box for answers that haven’t previously been explored, proposed, or implemented.
- Time Management: Be able to deliver solutions to urgent issues within a restricted time frame as successive deadlines will continuously pile up.
- Patience: Effectively handle revisions and possess ample patience to navigate multiple client requests. Most importantly, have the ability to uphold the quality of your work without yielding to pressure.
Enrolling in a graphic design course will be great for learning all these skills. You might opt for a shorter online course, depending on your schedule and preferred learning method. Or study for a Degree in Graphic design (3-4 years) or a Diploma (2.5 years). Whichever option you choose, it’s important to continuously upgrade your skills and technical expertise by participating in conferences and workshops, enrolling in online courses, and intensive training programs.
You can also gain additional knowledge in complementary fields such as creative writing, UI/UX, design, and photography. These can significantly enhance your graphic design career journey.
Showcase your work and apply to your dream job
Next, you’ll need a portfolio to kickstart your career as a graphic designer. This is a creative resume showcasing your best work and skills to potential employers or clients. You can showcase your self-initiated projects if you’re a complete beginner. Or work together with friends, small businesses, or even non-profit organizations.
Aim to showcase various designs to demonstrate your versatility across different artistic forms and mediums to ensure your portfolio stands out from the crowd. Afterward, you can start your job search journey as a freelance graphic designer or be employed on sites such as Lensa, Fiverr, or Upwork. Freelancing will give you flexibility and autonomy to handle multiple projects simultaneously and set your rates.
Employment by corporations, agencies, or startups offers stable earnings, professional development, and growth opportunities. Lastly, graphic designers must establish an online presence. This is a great way to showcase your portfolio digitally, and you can also network with industry professionals and attract potential clients on platforms such as Twitter and Instagram.
Now is the time to launch your graphic design career
In today’s ever-changing job market, launching a career in graphic design has never been so promising. Regardless of size, graphic design skills are in high demand from all businesses. Moreover, this role has been ranked among the top career choices in 2023.
All that’s needed is to master the essence of a graphic designer’s role and cultivate essential skills like Adobe Creative Suire, creative versatility, time management, and continuous learning with courses and workshops—additionally, building a portfolio showcasing your adaptability across diverse styles and mediums and then choosing between the flexible world of freelancing or stable employment.
Finally, by establishing a powerful online presence, and with determination and continuous growth, you can unleash a creative vision in the world of graphic design. Are you ready to kickstart your career as a graphic designer today?