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How to become a Graphic Designer

8 min read
graphic designing

image by pixabay


Considering a career as a graphic designer and don’t know how to become a Graphic Designer? Don’t be discouraged by the quantity of competition. Follow my 5 simple tips so you’ll grab the bull by the horns and obtain out of the starting stalls. If you’ll last space an ingenious career awaits you, take it from me.

01. Have a hunger to succeed

The first step is to possess the will and fire inside to succeed at whatever you select to try to to. Without drive, you’ll be destined to fail right from day one. Competition is fierce within the planet of design, you actually must be ready to roll with the punches to survive.

Believe me, there’ll be times as a designer when you’re discouraged and need to contribute the towel. Criticism WILL come and it’ll desire you’re taking a barrage of body punches within the 12th round from Tyson. If you’re focused on your end goal you’ll return to your corner, re-group, learn from the experience, and work on ways to enhance for your next gig.

It takes a particular quite person to require criticism on the chin. It can hurt but when justified I always see it as a chance to explore ways to enhance and learn what I didn’t know. Because I used to be not immediately successful early in my career many of us said, “Get a true job, why are you wasting your time?” Lucky on behalf of me I prefer to prove the naysayers wrong. due to this desire failure was eliminated as an option.

If you would like to be a graphic designer my best advice is to harness your hunger to drive self-motivation. exerting and open your eyes to everything around you, the design is everywhere. If you’ve got the eagerness and determination to become a designer there really is nothing to prevent you from making it a reality.

Success doesn’t come without diligence, believe me. If you’ve got this far you’re still within the ring, ready for your next bout. you want to be made from the proper stuff.

02. Tools of the trade


Made it past the primary step? Well, you’re getting to got to invest in a number of the tools of the trade. Designers need quite just creative ideas and a pair of hands to make visual art within the digital age. Nowadays, you actually won’t get far without a computer.

Hardware really is competitively priced in today’s market. not does one got to heavily invest within the most powerful and expensive iMac or Mac Pro. At work, I exploit a 2019 2.3GHz 8-Core Intel Core i9 32 GB MacBook Pro but reception i exploit a 2015 2.5GHz Intel Core i7 16 GB ram MacBook Pro. Honestly, I can’t say I actually notice the difference between the 2 machines aside from when I’m performing on large format print.

If you’re not an Apple enthusiast or don’t want to spare extra money than you would like to, there’s still many budget options that will do the work . for fewer than £500 you’ll start with an HP 14s-dq1504sa or ACER Aspire 3 15.6. Both are affordable with good specs for any aspiring graphic designer.



Now that you simply have your workhorse primed and prepared to travel you would like to believe software. Integral to any designer’s toolkit, design applications enable creatives to output a spread of projects. From artworking to publication and everything in between, the software is that the key.

You don’t get to be a designer to understand Adobe. it’s pervaded our cultural consciousness and ‘photoshopping’ may be a buzzword. For over a decade I even have used Adobe’s Creative Suite which is now Adobe Creative Cloud as a part of my creative workflow. Creative Cloud sets the quality within the creative industry. At GES my whole team across regions use Adobe InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, and Acrobat daily.

For our publication workflow, we use InDesign to output posters, ads, brochures, and interactive collateral. Photoshop is employed to make and manipulate raster graphics (think photos). Illustrator is the tool of choice for vector graphics. Vector graphics are resolution-independent which suggests they will be enlarged without loss of quality, unlike raster graphics.

If you’re a student/teacher Adobe is currently offering a 65% discount (£16.24/mo) on all 20+ Creative Cloud apps. This includes Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. inspect the offer here. for everyone else, all apps are £49.94/mo but if you would like to save lots of money you’ll prefer to subscribe to apps individually.

Free software

Paid software might not be an option for a few so be happy to experiment with alternative applications freely available online. There are several options. Sadly, I haven’t used any of the subsequent but that doesn’t mean you can’t successfully add them to your workflow.

  • Scribus / InDesign alternative
  • Pixlr / Photoshop alternative
  • Inkscape / Illustrator alternative
Graphic designer software
image by pixabay

03. Learning the principles of design

Now you’ve got all the gear, let’s get some idea of what to try to to with it. You don’t need to spend three years at university to master graphic design. If you’re self-motivated you’ll learn the basics within the comfort of your house, at your own pace.

There’s a wealth of comprehensive training resources online led by industry professionals sharing their a few years of creative experience. Platforms like LinkedIn Learning and Pluralsight offer beginner to advanced video courses at affordable prices. Over the years, I even have used many of those resources to develop and hone my very own skills.

LinkedIn LearningLinkedIn Learning

Paid training isn’t the sole option out there. With sites like 99designs, Envato Tuts+, Spoon Graphics, and artistic Bloq you’re never distant from fantastic free training resources.

If you haven’t already read my 5 training resources to assist you to master graphic design. this is often an excellent place to start out for an inventory of online training options.

04. Closing the skill gap

A useful tip I learned very early was to undertake and replicate the work that inspired me most. I really like page layouts and typography and that I feel the simplest learning curve I followed was to deconstruct then reconstruct designs that struck a chord with me. These designs were just private test projects but they proved instrumental in helping me understand spacing, alignment, and typography best practices.

Get yourself Behance and Pinterest mood boards, pin anything and everything that excites you. As soon as that creative spark ignites open your software and check out your best to emulate the planning and techniques of these creatives you admire. In next to no time you’ll expand your skillset by absorbing design practices from experienced designers.

05. Jump in at the deep end

It looks like only yesterday, but it’s been 17 years since I left university. thereon sunny July day once I graduated and left Lincoln I never even considered graphic design as a career. I never studied design at university, I had one publication module in my first year which was it.

To be honest, I didn’t actually know what to try to to with my life at 21. I got accepted into film school in l. a. but that was only to shop for a while whilst I found out my grand plan . Despite my lack of direction one thing that’s clear to me once I reminisce was that I had this hearth in my belly to realize.

Not needless to say

After university, I spontaneously jumped on a plane and began my traveling adventures in Australia. Long story short, I followed a woman and ditched my “Hollywood dream”. The crazy belongings you do when you’re young hey?

When my once during a lifetime adventure and relationship ended, I had to return home and begin brooding about a career. A year approximately later I discovered the opportunities hospitable me wouldn’t help me reach the extent of accomplishment I craved.

Making your own luck

Because of this disappointment, I knew I had to leap in at the deep end and make my very own opportunities. Within weeks of deciding, i might make my very own luck I used to be sat during a room with the Prince’s Trust presenting my business decision to get funding to start out my very own business. Thankfully my business plan was successful. i used to be awarded the very best value loan – the princely sum of £4,000.

Over the subsequent few years, I produced promotional and training videos for little businesses and at weekends shot weddings. For a brief time, business was good on the other hand the financial crash of 2008 happened. In next to no time I found myself rethinking my whole career.

Swimming within the deep end

Anybody that runs their own business knows you wear many hats. We roll up our sleeves, grind to a halt in and learn as we go. During this era, I developed a spread of skills to scale back costs by doing things myself. Very quickly I became aware to preserve income I needed to be ready to produce my very own marketing collateral. i used to be very fortunate to require this approach because it sparked my interest in design. I found that I enjoyed the method of design and preferred it to video production. Before too long I made a decision to become a full-time designer.

Making a career change didn’t come without challenges. it had been a couple of years before I managed to determine myself as a designer and make an honest living from the profession. the simplest thing I ever did was take that leap into the unknown, if I didn’t I’d still be in my one-dimensional temperature. Challenge yourself like I did. regardless of how silly you are feeling sometimes if you get things wrong to learn from your mistakes. The journey is one big learning curve.

Thanks for reading

I hope you found my thoughts interesting? As I even have written this post it’s been a really enjoyable experience. I’ve loved reliving the evolution of my journey. I’m glad I broke out of my temperature and explored those extra dimensions.

If I inspire just one person to pursue a career in design I will be able to be a cheerful man!

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