What does a graphic designer do?

Graphic designers use a combination of art and technology to express ideas by means of images plus the layout of web screens and printed pages. They can utilize different design elements to deliver artistic/decorative results. They build and enhance the overall layout, as well as production design for ads, brochures, company reports and magazines. Graphic designers use text and images in their work. They choose the size, font, color and length of text, headings and headlines. In addition, they decide on how image and text are arranged on a page and the amount of space of each. Whenever they use text in their layouts, they closely work with writers who decide on the words, and if these will be included in lists, tables or combined to form paragraphs. The typical job of a graphic designer includes the following:

  • Meeting with clients/art director to find out the scope of a particular project;
  • Recommending strategies to clients so they can reach their target audience;
  • Determining the message to be conveyed by the design;
  • Creating images that get across a message or identify a brand;
  • Creating graphics plus audio/visual images for websites, logos and product illustrations;
  • Making designs manually or with computer software;
  • Choosing the images, text, colors and layout;
  • Presenting the design to clients/art director;
  • Making changes suggested by clients into the end product;
  • Reviewing designs for any errors before printing/publishing them.

Nowadays, graphic design has become more and more important in marketing and selling products/services. For this reason, graphic designers, also called communication designers, often collaborate with people working in advertising, marketing, promotions and public relations. Usually, designers specialize in a certain category or clients. Some of them, for instance, make credits for motion pictures, whereas others create signage/posters for print media.

People in this profession must always stay up-to-date with the latest design software and computer graphics – either by themselves, or enrolling in formal software training programs. They should have the ability to create designs that are visually interesting to clients. They make a rough draft of design ideas, sketching by hand, or with the use of a computer program.

Graphic designers should have constant communication with clients and other designers to make sure that the designs they make convey the desired message and provide reliable information. Many of them use specialized graphic design software to make their design. They should find new approaches to effectively communicate ideas to consumers. They create distinct designs that are easy to recognize.

When they have projects, graphic designers usually collaborate with other graphic designers, marketers, writers, programmers and business analysts. They have to work together to come up with successful websites and publications, among other products. Those with a graphic design background can teach in colleges, universities and design schools.

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