Associate art directors are professionals who assist art directors in performing creative-driven tasks such as producing graphic design for brands, layouts, and advertisements. These associate art directors are required to stay updated on the latest techniques using computer-aided design software such as PhotoShop, AutoCAD, and After Effects. They must organize photoshoots and work with PR managers and agents to coordinate the schedules of their models. Associate art directors must also establish a graphic design studio team and provide training for their designers and interns.

Associate Art Director Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real associate art director resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Design ads, uploading print PDFs to vendor s printing website, manage print approval process and create HTML email blasts.
  • Assist in html with Dreamweaver.
  • Design and develop animation for RFPs.
  • Produce and maintain new-product marketing templates to establish a solid foundation for brand email campaigns using inline CSS.
  • Design Powerpoint decks for presentations.
  • Coordinate and direct fashion photography shoots for on-figure and tabletop merchandise.
  • Perform equipment maintenance, operation, embroidery production and provide superb customer service.
  • Research, obtain and assign illustration and photography within budget including selection and direction of freelancers.
  • Conceptualize and successfully develop numerous creative visual concepts for online sites, print materials, and PowerPoint presentations.
  • Participate in brainstorm sessions and develop creative options for internal projects.

Associate Art Director Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 12% of Associate Art Directors are proficient in Graphic Design, Photography, and Adobe Creative Suite. They’re also known for soft skills such as Communication skills, Creativity, and Leadership skills.

We break down the percentage of Associate Art Directors that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Graphic Design, 12%

    Provided art direction, responsive web and mobile design, publication design, graphic design, illustration, and multimedia management.

  • Photography, 10%

    Worked closely with photographers, stylists and Art Directors in implementing conceptual photography for specialized programs and campaigns.

  • Adobe Creative Suite, 10%

    Utilized Adobe Creative Suite family, notably InDesign, Photoshop and Illustrator.

  • Adobe Photoshop, 7%

    Earned Award of Excellence in Adobe Photoshop/Illustrator Forklift Certificate, AAA Forklift, Riverside, CA Sept 2010

  • Sketch, 7%

    Developed strategic project plans managing and maintaining multiple projects from sketch to print, facilitating high-impact presentations to senior leadership.

  • Art Direction, 6%

    Commissioned illustrators, assigned photographers and assisted with art direction for photo shoots.

"graphic design," "photography," and "adobe creative suite" aren't the only skills we found associate art directors list on their resumes. In fact, there's a whole list of associate art director responsibilities that we found, including:

  • The most important skills for an associate art director to have in this position are communication skills. In this excerpt that we gathered from a associate art director resume, you'll understand why: "art directors must be able to listen to and speak with staff and clients to ensure that they understand employees’ ideas and clients’ desires for advertisements, publications, or movie sets." According to resumes we found, communication skills can be used by a associate art director in order to "recruited to take ownership of 1,200-page web site and transition it from it to communications & marketing department. "
  • Another trait important for fulfilling associate art director duties is creativity. According to a associate art director resume, "art directors must be able to come up with interesting and innovative ideas to develop advertising campaigns, set designs, or layout options." Here's an example of how associate art directors are able to utilize creativity: "contribute creative design direction for corporate communications. "
  • Leadership skills is also an important skill for associate art directors to have. This example of how associate art directors use this skill comes from a associate art director resume, "art directors must be able to organize, direct, and motivate other artists" Read this excerpt from a resume to understand how vital it is to their everyday roles and responsibilities, "worked with marketing leadership to develop custom promotional materials. "
  • In order for certain associate art director responsibilities to be completed, the job requires the skill "time-management skills." According to an associate art director resume, "balancing competing priorities and multiple projects while meeting strict deadlines is critical for art directors." As an example, this snippet was taken directly from a resume about how this skill applies: "created consistently polished ad and editorial content under strict monthly deadlines. "
  • See the full list of associate art director skills.

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    What Graphic Design Managers Do

    A graphic design manager is primarily in charge of leading and overseeing the efforts of a graphic design team, ensuring adherence to goals and deadlines. It is their duty to learn and analyze the purpose of design, coordinate staff, liaise with internal and external parties, set goals and objectives, manage schedules, and conceptualize plans. Furthermore, as a graphic design manager, it is essential to lead and encourage teams to reach goals while implementing the company's policies and regulations, including its vision and mission.

    In this section, we take a look at the annual salaries of other professions. Take graphic design manager for example. On average, the graphic design managers annual salary is $15,689 lower than what associate art directors make on average every year.

    Even though associate art directors and graphic design managers have vast differences in their careers, a few of the skills required to do both jobs are similar. For example, both careers require graphic design, adobe creative suite, and adobe photoshop in the day-to-day roles.

    As far as similarities go, this is where it ends because an associate art director responsibility requires skills such as "photography," "sketch," "animation," and "web design." Whereas a graphic design manager is skilled in "project management," "customer service," "brochures," and "print collateral." So if you're looking for what truly separates the two careers, you've found it.

    Graphic design managers receive the highest salaries in the finance industry coming in with an average yearly salary of $82,776. But associate art directors are paid more in the media industry with an average salary of $102,115.

    The education levels that graphic design managers earn is a bit different than that of associate art directors. In particular, graphic design managers are 2.7% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree than an associate art director. Additionally, they're 0.5% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    What Are The Duties Of a Lead Graphic Designer?

    A lead graphic designer is responsible for creating, designing, and updating the company's visual aspects. The lead graphic designer works closely with the branding department alongside the advertising and marketing team. It is essential for the lead graphic designer must be creative, willing to think outside the box, and brave to dare novel ideas. The lead graphic designer is also responsible for leading the creative department in accomplishing assigned tasks from management.

    The next role we're going to look at is the lead graphic designer profession. Typically, this position earns a lower pay. In fact, they earn a $6,655 lower salary than associate art directors per year.

    While the salary may be different for these job positions, there is one similarity and that's a few of the skills needed to perform certain duties. We used info from lots of resumes to find that both associate art directors and lead graphic designers are known to have skills such as "graphic design," "adobe creative suite," and "adobe photoshop. "

    But both careers also use different skills, according to real associate art director resumes. While associate art director responsibilities can utilize skills like "photography," "animation," "web design," and "gpa," some lead graphic designers use skills like "design concepts," "adobe illustrator," "project management," and "motion graphics."

    Lead graphic designers may earn a lower salary than associate art directors, but lead graphic designers earn the most pay in the technology industry with an average salary of $85,443. On the other side of things, associate art directors receive higher paychecks in the media industry where they earn an average of $102,115.

    On the topic of education, lead graphic designers earn similar levels of education than associate art directors. In general, they're 2.1% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.5% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    How an Art Consultant Compares

    The art consultant profession generally makes a lower amount of money when compared to the average salary of associate art directors. The difference in salaries is art consultants making $12,672 lower than associate art directors.

    Using associate art directors and art consultants resumes, we found that both professions have similar skills such as "graphic design," "adobe photoshop," and "fine arts," but the other skills required are very different.

    There are many key differences between these two careers as shown by resumes from each profession. Some of those differences include the skills required to complete responsibilities within each role. As an example of this, an associate art director is likely to be skilled in "photography," "adobe creative suite," "sketch," and "art direction," while a typical art consultant is skilled in "art gallery," "contemporary art," "art collections," and "art shows."

    Art consultants make a very good living in the internet industry with an average annual salary of $68,646. Whereas associate art directors are paid the highest salary in the media industry with the average being $102,115.

    When it comes to education, art consultants tend to earn higher education levels than associate art directors. In fact, they're 7.7% more likely to earn a Master's Degree, and 0.9% more likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.

    Description Of a Creative Director/Owner

    Now, we'll look at creative directors/owner, who generally average a higher pay when compared to associate art directors annual salary. In fact, the difference is about $41,579 per year.

    According to resumes from both associate art directors and creative directors/owner, some of the skills necessary to complete the responsibilities of each role are similar. These skills include "graphic design," "photography," and "adobe creative suite. "

    Each job requires different skills like "sketch," "animation," "web design," and "web banners," which might show up on an associate art director resume. Whereas creative director/owner might include skills like "video production," "website design," "creative concepts," and "corporate identity."

    Creative directors/owner reach similar levels of education when compared to associate art directors. The difference is that they're 2.3% more likely to earn a Master's Degree more, and 0.3% less likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.