Wouldn’t it be great if you could get paid for your hobby. If your hobby could become a good paying stable job. Well, that’s what happened for most of the graphic designers when the industry experienced a boom in the late 1880s. As of now, this is worth more than 153.2 billion and is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 13 percent to nearly 249.5 billion by the end of 2022. Yes, we know the growth is exponential, and it’s a direct effort of the hundreds and thousands of graphic designers who are working as freelancers or in big designing companies.
Well, these numbers are not for show as the graphic designing industry has inspired thousands of creative minds to come to the front and get paid for what they do best. As of now, being a successful graphic designer is a dream come true for many of the beginners who are aspiring to become a graphic designer.
However, graphic design is not as easy as it may look from the surface. Well, obviously not everyone can master the art of blending together different components including line, shapes, texture, and create something amazing and meaningful out of it. In case you own a business and think that you could take care of designing aspects yourself then we got news for you. All you are going to do is waste your time and effort. It’s better to hire a professional in such cases. Delhi, Mumbai, Texas, California graphic design are some of the major graphic designing hubs you can look for a professional graphic designer to get your work done.
However, if you are someone who is aspiring to become a professional graphic designer, but have no clue from where to start then you are at the right place. As we are going to discuss some of the most important points to keep in mind to become a successful graphic designer.
Know Your History
Yes, we know you would think that what good would come from learning about past methods and tools. You should focus on the latest tools, technology, and designing methodology. Well, you may be right, but is it really possible for you to get better at designing without knowing anything about the designing industry?
According to us, no, just as you cannot learn to write sentences without learning alphabets first, similarly you can not improve the basics of your designing without learning about the previous methods. You can not do innovative work unless you know what went before you. So, get some books on design and go back in the history of design and carefully study from where a lot of these movements, ideas, and concepts came from.
Fundamentals of Arts
Now a lot of good designers ask themselves what is designing? And they came with a simple answer, designing is a little bit of art and a little bit of science or its an art of creating something using psychological elements to achieve a certain task. Well, don’t worry about the scientific part of designing in the beginning. As a beginner, you must focus on improving your art skills, and for that, it’s important that you know the fundamentals of arts. So, what you want to do on the art side is learn the basics of visual art like creating compositions, and maintaining the balance between components, and color, and form, and materials, etc. All of these things help you get an understanding of how humans actually perceive things. This way when you are actually working in the field, you will always have a basic idea of what you want to create when provided with some real-world requirements. It will definitely help you improve, or we should say, that learning fundamentals of arts are just a prerequisite you need to become a professional graphic designer.
Sketching is one of the fading requirements from the graphic designing industry due to the emerging new technologies, which allows graphic designers to do everything on the computer. However, following a methodology where you directly start working on a computer is a bit stupid and it only makes you work difficult.
It is really complicated from almost all the designers to get the rough ideas out on the computer as they are used for creating detailed finished products. So, you need to be able to sketch so that you can easily draw a quick thumbnail sketch of whatever ideas are popping out in your mind. It is highly recommended for the graphic designer to maintain a sketchbook and keep it with them all the time. This is particularly important when you are conceiving a design, sketching will help you go through a lot of ideas very quickly unlike the designing software where you might have to spend hours creating a single design. So, make sure that you create a habit of sketching from the very beginning of the carrier. It will definitely help you out when you work as a professional or even as a freelancer.
Although there is not a specified course for being a professional graphic designer, we would still recommend getting a degree from an accredited art school. This will provide you an edge over the others. If you cannot afford schooling or college, then go take online certified courses, which act as a testimonial for your skills. Yes, it’s true that you can even join the industry without certification or a degree from a well-known school/college, but there is also no excuse for you to not get educated in design.
This will not just help you gain knowledge but also make it easier for you to land your first job in the industry. Being educated is not just about cramming in school, it’s about improving your personality, your communication skills, which are both very crucial in any industry.
Now, graphic designing is not like any other industry where you study for a few years and boom, you become a professional graphic designer. Well, there is no specific qualification for a graphic designer, their value is determined by their skillset and both the quality and quantity of work they do. Keep in mind that volume is going to make you better, so the first thing you should as a beginner in graphic designing after you are done with all of the above tips is a practice all day long. Create a number of designs, patterns, sketches, and also try to create a full-fledged working environment for yourself. This way you will definitely notice improvements in the quality of your work and also how fast you can do it.
So, get outside that comfortable circle of your friends and family and get some professional feedback from other designers. Get yourself set up with a mentor, try to get hard feedback on your work, because that’s what’s going to make you better. However, for such a rigorous method you need to stay positive and some of the feedback may literally break you. Sometimes you might feel like quitting, but it takes a consistent fool to climb at the top of the tower. Be consistent, create new things, get feedback, improve your work, and repeat that the way to become a successful graphic designer.
Follow Your Ideals
Everyone has a hero in their life, they want to be like them. And it’s not bad to idolize someone, on the contrary, these ideal heros can help you achieve yours in the best possible way. So, don’t be ashamed in trying to be like someone at first, check out their work, try to be as efficient as they are, as good as they are, and try to copy a piece of their work to get insight to how they think while working on a design. You will actually be amazed at how much you can learn by just copying someone else’s work. There are always a few ounces that you cannot distinguish just by looking at someone’s work from the surface or the techniques they used in order to get a certain effect and until you do it you will never learn how it was actually done.
People can easily lose faith. So, it’s important to stay inspirational in order to be consistent with whatever you are doing. Gather inspiration voraciously, gather inspiration like a religion, get your motivation from people around you, maintain a personal sketchbook, tear things out of magazines, create a creative environment around you, take pictures, start sharing your work, do crazy things if you have to in order to stay motivated and inspired. This is important as when you are down you will always have a place to go to.
Now design is not just about visual aesthetics, design is about ideas, design is an art that has a job to do. So, you need to think about the concept behind your work. What is the purpose of your work, what emotion is it supposed to get across, what kind of action is it supposed to precipitate?
It is important that you think about all of these concepts of your work not just about how your work looks. A design, no matter how good looking it may be, is utterly useless if it does not serve the purpose for which it is made for, and it’s your duty as a graphic designer to carefully observe that purpose and create your design around that purpose.
So, just like thinking conceptually, thinking strategically is thinking about your viewer. What is the action or the impact you want to have on your viewers when they experience your design, whether it is an illustration or a video or a graphic design? Think about what the strategy is behind your work. This is important in order to come up with an efficient way of creating graphic design and also making sure that the graphic design meets the customer’s requirements. For instance, if a business is starting out a referral program and they want something that can catch users’ attention and also compel them to take action. Now, here, if you think strategically about the motives of the graphic design you need to create, you can easily narrow down the design ideas popping out in your head effectively, while making sure that your design fulfills both of those requirements.
Never Ignore The Brief
Like we said before, every graphic design has a purpose, which is generally determined by the brief provided. So, never make a mistake of not reading the brief enough, as it determines the style of the project you are going to make. The brief is really really crucial as the client is expected to put everything in there that you need to use and you need to know in order to complete the project. Consider it as a roadmap for that specific graphic design project, it tells you where to go and where you need to be focusing on. There is nothing worse than finding out that the product you made is incompetent after you have finished. So, make sure that you read the brief very carefully.
Now it is useful of course that you have mastered a certain platform or a tool for your graphic designing purposes, also it goes without saying that it’s important to use a daily software for graphic designing purposes. However, sometimes designers rely too much on their software. Well, being a designer is getting creative and thinking about a lot of possible designs. But a lot of young designers have lost a touch to it, all they do is boot up their system, look around on the internet for a similar project, get a rough idea and start their work. This can really deteriorate the quality of work they deliver. So, make sure that you stay in touch with all the habits you make as a beginner designer, they are essential to remaining creative and do quality work.
Hermit Chawla is a Marketing Manager at AIS Technolabs which is Web design and Development Company, helping global businesses to grow by Web Development Services. I would love to share thoughts on Social Media Management Tools Services and Game Design Development etc.