A graphic designer is an artistic professional responsible for designing and creating visual text and imagery. Designing content for social media campaigns and billboard advertising, the designer may work with clients to decide everything from the base sketches to colour and photo picking to the final product. As professionals, a lot of designers work alone, too, based on some client input. A designer must often go through several designs and presentations before the product is optimized.

Summary. We reviewed real candidate profiles to learn the best path to become a graphic designer. We'll guide you through the education, experiences, and skills hiring managers look for in a graphic designer.

  • Most companies require a graphic designer to have a bachelor's degree degree in a related field, such as graphic design or fine arts.

  • It's important to have relevant work experience, with typical job requirements ranging from 2-4 years in related fields.

  • Common job titles before becoming a graphic designer include graphic designer internship, internship, and graphic artist.

  • Hiring managers expect a graphic designer to have soft skills such as analytical skills, artistic ability, and communication skills.

  • Once you have all the required skills and experience, it doesn't take any job training to become a graphic designer.

  • Getting a certification as a Master Certified Web Professional - Designer (CWP) will help you to earn more as a graphic designer.

How to become a Graphic Designer in 5 steps:

  • Step 1: Explore graphic designer education
  • Step 2: Develop graphic designer skills
  • Step 3: Complete relevent training/internship
  • Step 4: Research graphic designer duties
  • Step 5: Prepare your resume
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Key Steps To Become a Graphic Designer

  1. Explore Graphic Designer Education

    If you're interested in becoming a graphic designer, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 68.0% of graphic designers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 3.4% of graphic designers have master's degrees. Even though most graphic designers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

    Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a graphic designer. When we researched the most common majors for a graphic designer, we found that they most commonly have graphic design, fine arts and design and visual communication.

    Graphic Designer Degrees


    68.0 %


    22.6 %


    3.4 %

    Graphic Designer MajorPercentages
    Graphic Design54.70%
    Fine Arts9.30%
    Design And Visual Communication7.00%
    Other Degrees25.40%

  2. Develop Graphic Designer Skills

    It'll be a good idea to develop graphic designer skills before applying for a job. Here are some skills commonly requested in graphic designer job descriptions:

  3. Complete Relevent Training/Internship

    Graphic designers spend an average of None on post-employment, on-the-job training. During this time, new graphic designers learn the skills and techniques required for their specific job and employer. The chart below shows how much time it takes to gain competency as a graphic designer based on U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data and data from real graphic designer resumes.

    Average Amount Of Time At Training


    Less than 1 month

    1-3 months

    3-6 months

    6-12 months

    1-2 years

  4. Research Graphic Designer Duties

    When you decide to become a graphic designer, It's important to know what duties and responsibilities are required for this position. Some common responsibilities are a part of most graphic designer jobs. Here is a list of the main duties that define the role:

    • Lead the transition from paste-up, typesetting, pasting up page layout to digital ad/page building and web printing.
    • Design new template for magazine as well as ads, flyers, brochures, and cards for a variety of events.
    • Plan the development of a social networking site website using HTML, CSS, PHP, and a WordPress management system.
    • Compose and create daily advertisements for national automotive dealerships utilizing typography and design concepts while adhering to corporate brand standards.
    • Follow style guide requirements to maintain brand integrity with specific treatments of photography, typography, graphic elements and team/sponsor/arena logos.
    • Create UI kit for the website.

  5. Prepare Your Resume

    Finally, when you already have checked the skills and responsibilities for this role, you can start creating your resume. Everything that goes into creating a perfect resume can take hours, days, or even weeks. No worries, we created a resume builder to make this process as easy as possible with tips and examples of skills, responsibilities, and a summary.

    Choose From 10+ Customizable Graphic Designer Resume templates

    Build a professional Graphic Designer resume in minutes. Browse through our resume examples to identify the best way to word your resume. Then choose from 10+ resume templates to create your Graphic Designer resume.

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  6. Apply For a Graphic Designer Job

    With your ready resume, it's time to start searching for a new job. Consider the tips below for a successful job search:

    1. Browse job boards for relevant postings
    2. Consult your professional network
    3. Reach out to companies you're interested in working for directly
    4. Watch out for job scams

    Graphic Designer Jobs

  7. How To Become a Graphic Designer
    How To Become a Graphic Designer Career Overview

How To Become a Graphic Designer Without A Degree

Yes, you can become a graphic designer without a degree. One way to gain the necessary skills is to take a comprehensive course. Additionally, you can also gain experience by working on relevant projects or volunteering as a junior graphic designer. Networking and building relationships with other professionals in the field are also great ways to break into the industry.

Here are courses we recommend for graphic designers at the beginning of their career paths.

1. User Experience Design Immersive (Full-time)



40 hours; 12 weeks, Full-time

Launch a future-proof career designing digital experiences that power revenue, user loyalty, and product success. Distinguish yourself as a designer by compiling a portfolio to showcase solo, group, and client projects to employers based on UI design and Agile methodologies...

2. User Experience Design (Part Time)



20 hours; 10 weeks, Part-time

Translate user wants and needs into intuitive digital experiences that power revenue, loyalty, and product success. Build confidence and credibility to tackle complex design problems on the job. This course is offered in person and live online, in a remote classroom setting...

3. Design of Everyday Things


This course provides a summary of key concepts from the first two chapters of The Design of Everyday Things (Revised and Expanded Edition, November 2013) by Don Norman. It's intended to be enjoyable and informative...

4. Product Design


There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come. This course is designed to help you materialize your game-changing idea and transform it into a product that you can build a business...

5. Graphic Design Mastery: The FULL Branding & Design Process


Follows the FULL Graphic Design Process for A Company: Logo, Ad, Social Media, T-Shirt, Package, Website Design & More! This ambitious class aims to tackle the entire branding and design process. We will dive deep...

6. Graphic Design MasterClass- Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign


Graphic design & Advertising Masterclass: Do you want to learn graphic design & advertising from scratch? well, Ive tried to squeeze my academic studying of advertising in the faculty of applied arts & experience in...

7. Visual Design (Part Time)



20 hours; 10 weeks, Part-time

Gain the vocabulary and tools to tackle diverse design challenges on the job. Kickstart your portfolio and create beautiful, responsive designs for the web. This course is offered in person and live online, in a remote classroom setting...

8. Intro to UX Design



2 hours; 1 week, 2 hours live

Are you interested in UX Design, but have no prior experience or an idea of where to start? You’ve come to the right place! In this two-hour livestream, we’ll explore the decision-making process that separates a good user experience from a great one, and learn some tools that you can implement in your own UX process today. All in real time, taught by an industry professional. Come learn the basics and gain the skills you need to begin your UX Design journey!...

9. Graphic Design Masterclass - Learn GREAT Design


As you can see, this course is updated frequently with new lessons, projects and resources! November 2022 -Coming soon! The History of GraphicDesignStyles! August 2022 -NEW Section! Learn to Create a CustomBrand PresentationMockup inAdobe PhotoshopJanuary...

10. Master Graphic Design & Software with Practical Projects


Master Graphic Design and Adobe Design Software By Doing Popular Design Projects Do you like to learn by doing practical real-world projects? This project-based course is extensive, starting at beginner level projects and moving all...

11. T-Shirt Design Workshop 02: Mixed Media Design


Improving your t-shirt design skills is one of the most rewarding investments that you can make in your design career. In this workshop we will go over the entire process of creating a t-shirt design,...

12. Graphic Design Masterclass Intermediate: The NEXT Level


NEWCONTENTADDED FREQUENTLY! Oct 2021 - New - Creating effective Highlights & Shadows on mockupsJune 2021 - New - Create aDynamic Seamless InstagramCarousel Post! April 2021 - New - TheGuide toPrintDesign 22 page pdf resource April...

13. Introduction To Graphic Design


Introduction To Graphic DesignLearn the basics of graphic design using Canva to create real-world projects. You will discover the tools you need for starting a design project and how to organize your deliverables, as well...

14. Graphic Design Bootcamp: Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign


UPDATED! Now featuring over 15 hours of on-demand content, including getting your design portfolio up and running online using Adobe Portfolio and Behance! Welcome to the Graphic Design Bootcamp! This course has over 6,000 5-star...

15. Digital Design Masterclass For Graphic Designers


JUSTADDED! The 35 Page Pdf Resource -TheGuide to Digital Design! The Social Media Edition! The future of design is digital. This course was designed to get graphic designers up to speed on the latest and...

16. Become a Professional Graphic Designer


Graphic design has always been a popular profession, but with more and more technology being introduced into our lives it's becoming an ever more important one too. All kinds of people use all kinds of...

17. Graphic Design Masterclass: Learn Graphic Design in Projects


Learn and apply graphic design principles, color, and typography for better designs! Are you frustrated with the quality of your graphic designs, or wonder how graphic designers create effective content? Or do you simply want...

18. T-Shirt Design Workshop 01: Foundation


Learning the possibilities and options you have when creating a t-shirt design is an essential investment in becoming a professional t-shirt designer. In this workshop, we'll go over all the ingredients that go into a...

19. The Complete Graphic Design Theory for Beginners Course


NEWSECTION! 2022 DesignTrends and Practical Projects added! Learn Graphic Design Theory in this New Course! Many people want to become designers but don't know the basic fundamentals of design at all. It can takes years...

20. Canva Freelancing 101: Become a Successful Graphic Designer


In this course, I will share with you the complete road map to freelance graphic designing using canva and canva Pro. Learning from how to design graphics to getting clients from canva and then some...

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Becoming a Graphic Designer FAQs

How Hard Is It To Become A Graphic Designer?

It is not hard to become a graphic designer. With today's technology, you can learn what is necessary about graphic design online in a relatively short period of time.

Having a four-year degree in graphic design is great, but it is not necessary to be successful in the field. Today, online courses and tutorials can provide you with information about technology and software programs used in producing today's graphic designs. The AIGA, which is a professional organization for design, recently issued a statement that those pursuing a degree in graphic design should make informed decisions about their career goals and whether their college degree program serves these career aspirations.

The most important aspects of graphic design are knowledge of applicable software such as Adobe. Obtaining a certificate for one of the eight software design programs is helpful. Graphic designers do not need to be able to draw as these programs require only that you are able to combine elements to create an appealing final product.

Candidates with great design ideas, knowledge of relevant software, and the ability to meet deadlines can find success in the field of graphic design.

How To Become A Graphic Designer Without A Degree

To become a graphic designer without a degree, follow these steps:

Perform research and learn about the graphic design industry. Find out exactly what graphic designers do.

Then do some digging on the software applications graphic designers use. Many of the most commonly used programs are...

How To Get A Graphic Design Internship?

To get a graphic design internship, enroll in a graphic design program, look for opportunities through your program, prepare a portfolio, complete an application, and practice your interview with potential employers.A graphic design internship is an opportunity for aspiring designers to gain practical experience in the field and can be a great way to kick-start a career that's both visually appealing and creatively fulfilling.

How To Get A Graphic Design Job

To get a graphic design job, you must research the field, develop your skills, consider formal education, gain experience through an internship or freelance work, build up a strong work portfolio, and join an industry community.

How To Start A Graphic Design Business

To start a graphic design business, you need to select a niche of graphic design, put together your marketing strategy, and build your client base. For more details on each of these steps in starting a graphic design business, use this guide:

What Companies Hire Photoshop Professionals?

Companies in marketing, content creation, and fashion hire photoshop professionals. Marketing companies often seek photoshop professionals to help create content for marketing campaigns. These campaigns typically include custom graphics, photos, videos, and other forms of media intended to catch an audience member's eye. Photoshop is often a key part of this creative process, leading many marketing companies to hire photoshop professionals.

What Is The Career Path For A Graphic Designer?

The career path for a graphic designer involves jobs as a freelance graphic designer, an in-house graphic designer, and a creative director. The graphic designer career path is varied and can result in a number of different creative positions. Here are the key factors in the graphic designer career path:

What Should I Study To Become A Graphic Designer?

To become a graphic designer, you should study graphic design. While it is not required for an entry-level graphic design position, a degree in or graduation from a certified program in graphic design is important.

Today's graphic designer must be more than creative or artistic. While both of these are important characteristics, graphic design candidates today have a broader educational focus. There are over 300 accredited programs in the United States related to graphic design. These range from public institutions to art institutes, and online programs. Many of these programs focus on producing a graduate who understands the larger scope of graphic design. Courses within these programs focus on aspects of technology, marketing, and advertising.

The specific tools necessary to create graphic designs include raster and vector graphic editors such as Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator. These skills can be obtained by anyone via online certification. Some high school students begin to pursue software certification before entering college or the work world.

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