Graphic designers create visual concepts, by hand or using computer software, to communicate ideas that inspire, inform, or captivate consumers. They develop the overall layout and production design for advertisements, brochures, magazines, and corporate reports.
Graphic designers typically do the following:
Meet with clients or the art director to determine the scope of a project
Advise clients on strategies to reach a particular audience
Determine the message the design should portray
Create images that identify a product or convey a message
Develop graphics for product illustrations, logos, and websites
Select colors, images, text style, and layout
Present the design to clients or the art director
Incorporate changes recommended by the clients into the final design
Review designs for errors before printing or publishing them
Graphic designers combine art and technology to communicate ideas through images and the layout of websites and printed pages. They may use a variety of design elements to achieve artistic or decorative effects.
Graphic designers work with both text and images. They often select the type, font, size, color, and line length of headlines, headings, and text. Graphic designers also decide how images and text will go together on a print or webpage, including how much space each will have. When using text in layouts, graphic designers collaborate closely with writers who choose the words and decide whether the words will be put into paragraphs, lists, or tables. Through the use of images, text, and color, graphic designers can transform statistical data into visual graphics and diagrams, which can make complex ideas more accessible.
Graphic design is important in the sales and marketing of products, and is a critical component of brochures and logos. Therefore, graphic designers, also referred to as graphic artists or communication designers, often work closely with people in advertising and promotions, public relations, and marketing.
Frequently, designers specialize in a particular category or type of client. For example, some create the graphics used in packaging for various types of retail products, while others may work on the visual design used on a book jacket.
Graphic designers also need to keep up to date with the latest software and computer technologies to remain competitive.
Some individuals with a background in graphic design teach in design schools, colleges, and universities. For more information, see the profile on postsecondary teachers.
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