Career of the Month Graphic Designer
With National Doodle Day taking place in September, we are celebrating creativity and exploring a career suited to someone who enjoys art and design. Doodling for communication dates back as long ago as prehistoric cave drawings. While we may have moved on from creating illustrations with sticks and stones to digital devices, the creativity behind the drawings continues through the career of a Graphic Designer. Graphic designers are digital creative who create visual branding, adverts, brochures, magazines, website designs, product packaging and displays for businesses.
Salary Range £18,000-£35,000
A Graphic Designer uses creative skills and digital software to create illustrations, mock-ups and graphics for businesses to use in promotion and visual displays. They will lead the design process from discussing the client’s requirements, planning the work and developing creative ideas. They will agree budgets and deadlines based on the scope of the work, sometimes working with other design professionals to develop the designs.
Graphic designers will produce designs using specialist software such as adobe creative cloud. They will produce draft ideas to present to their clients for feedback and approval before producing a final layout.
A graphic designer might work on a freelance basis building up a client base of several businesses, or work as part of a marketing and communications team in house.
There’s a lot of competition for graphic design work, so someone wanting to succeed will develop a portfolio that shows their creative ideas, skills and work experience to help get started. They will need to keep up to date with design trends and developments in design software. Beyond a flair for the creative, clear communication skills and ability to present your ideas with confidence is important.
Graphic Designers will typically have followed education pathways in art and design leading to completing a University diploma or degree course in something like graphic design, art and design, communication design or illustration. A Levels in Art or design disciplines can be a pathway to University, or art and design based college courses.
What you can be doing now
Having experience of using desktop publishing software will give you an advantage, so exploring design software could be a starting point. Free design tools such as Canva can help you to hone your creative eye using basic deisgn templates, and you can then use free tools similar to photoshop such as deisgnpea to get started practicing more in depth design skills. Building your portfolio as you practice skills is a good way to build a body of work you can show to a potential employer.