What it Takes To be a Graphic Designer

graphic-designHave you always had an interest for the arts but want to put it to a practical use that will earn you a decent wage? Well, then it seems like being a graphic designer is the perfect job for you. Graphic designers are able to create the designs of products, websites, and other media in order to entice consumers using both computer programs and physical drawings. They are able to control everything from the shape of the box to the color and font of the text. All of that is done to convey a certain feeling with the consumer viewing the product, hopefully driving sales.

Sadly, graphic designers need a bachelor’s degree in graphic design or similar major. This is the biggest con for those already in or those who have already graduated college because going back to take more classes and spend more money is the last thing on most peoples mind. Once you get your degree you have a choice of working on their own or for a company. The average salary for a graphic designer is $48,700 according to the BLS. About 1/5 graphic designers work on their own. And graphic designers are able to make up to $20,000 more per year. However, if you work on your own you will have much more competition in getting yourself out to potential customers. In order to demonstrate your creativity and skill you should have a portfolio that shows only your best drawings and designs. And hopefully your designs and ideas are able to convince either the company or the client to hire you on.

Once you have been hired, you need to be able to adjust to the deadline heavy workgraphic-design-industry schedule and be able to work until the job is done. Also, be prepared for a growing amount of competition as the BLS estimates the job outlook for graphic designers to only increase by 4%, which is less than average. One aspect to a graphic designer that’s different from other positions is that the graphic designer must quickly adapt to the changing design trends. Also you must stay up to date on computer design programs, which are always changing in their complexity and ability.

For those looking for a highly competitive career that involves a mixture of artistic ability with a high amount of varying projects; for those who like drawing and using their creativity, but want an actual career to support themselves or their family, then it seems like being a graphic designer is a great career if you are willing to put yourself through a four year degree and are willing to constantly adapt to a changing environment.