Considering a Graphic Design Career? Here’s What You Absolutely Must Know

Does a career as a graphic designer appeal to you? If so, you’re not alone. This career path is becoming a popular one due to the fact that many students now have easy access to affordable graphic design programs at home. Many students are taking up graphic design as a hobby and then choose to later further their skill with a solid education in graphic design.What is Graphic Design?Graphic design, in the modern day, generally involves using computer software to design media messages used for communication purposes. There are many types of graphic designers including:- Logo designers
- Website designers
- Flash designers
- CAD designing
- Multimedia designers
- Photo editing/artMost graphic designers start with designing banners, brochures, stationary, business cards, logos, websites and other corporate related design requirements. If you decide to pursue a career in graphic design, this flexibility gives you a great opportunity to expand your experience. You may easily branch out into other fields once you are an expert at using graphic design programs.Graphic Design ProgramsWhile there are many types of graphic design programs available, it is usually the same few that are used by most all designers. Most designers prefer to use a MAC computer, however many design programs are available on both the PC and MAC.A few of the most commonly used professional graphic design programs include:- Adobe Photoshop
- Daz Studio
- AutoCAD
- CorelDRAW Graphics Suite
- Adobe Illustrator
- Adobe Flash Professional
- Macromedia Freehand
- QuarkXpress
- Director
- Fireworks
- Paint Shop ProGraphic design jobs of all types require exceptional attention to detail and patience. Designers often work on the same project for weeks on end, so being able to cope with a repetitive environment is important. There are also often strict deadlines to meet.Self EmploymentGraphic design has a high rate of self employment due to the ease of delivering graphic design work. Graphic design can be undertaken solely at home on a computer and as such many people simply find clients through word of mouth, advertising and via the internet. It is certainly possible to make a good living running a graphic design business right from your home or from your own office.A self employed graphic designer does not have the advantage of the regular income that a paid employee has. There are also no retirement benefits. However there are other benefits to self employment including:- Tax breaks
- Flexible hours
- Possibility to earn more money
- Choose your own clients
- Being your own bossThe negatives of being self employed are often significantly outweighed by the positives.Graphic Designer Salary GuideSo how much does a graphic designer earn? That is the question asked by many budding graphic designers, but the answer is not black and white. In fact, compared with most other industries there is a wide variation in the salary of graphic designers worldwide. The average salary of a graphic designer in the U.S. is listed at about $45,000. However people who are self employed may earn double this amount, as will designers in higher positions in corporations.Graphic design can incorporate many different paths including web design and corporate stationary design. There are many avenues for designers to take in order to earn high salaries in this exciting career. Graphic design was once a volatile line of work, however, now jobs are relatively stable and wages are on the increase. Despite the threat of overseas outsourcing, many graphic designers can still find work locally as companies see the value of having a designer on site rather than having to communicate with those in countries like India.Graphic designers often boost their salary by becoming a freelancer. By freelancing you have unlimited income opportunities. The only limit is how much work you can take on and of course how many clients you can gather. Freelance is the same as being self employed, so you are not reliant on an employer and you can generally choose your own hours. You can also have the luxury of working at home. If you do not have a home office set up then it can be difficult to concentrate on work so some graphic designers choose to rent an office in order to separate their work and home lives.Web design is a popular avenue for graphic designers to take due to the increased demand for high quality designers. Every business needs a website these days and if a graphic designer can offer a package of business card design, stationary and web design then they can earn significantly more money and out perform other designers who solely focus just on business card and logo design.A graphic designer salary is never set in stone as there is so much scope for extra work and up-selling when it comes to offering your services. Being innovative and having good business sense will ensure that your career as a graphic designer is a successful one. If you’re artistic, creative, and like working with technology, consider a career in graphic design.

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