Graphic Design

Graphic design is the craft of creating visual content to communicate messages. Applying visual hierarchy and page layout techniques, graphic designers use typography and pictures to meet users’ specific needs and focus on the logic of displaying elements in interactive designs to optimize the user experience.

Learn the fundamentals of Graphic Design

To better understand the meaning of graphic design, it is important to be aware of the elements and principles that make up design. Elements are used in conjunction or opposition with each other to create visually striking and impactful designs.

These graphic design elements include:

  • Color
  • Form
  • Line
  • Shape
  • Size
  • Space
  • Texture

Graphic designers also adhere to the principles of design, which are essentially a set of guidelines that help a design achieve effective composition. These basic principles aid in creating balance and stability for the piece of work.

These graphic design principles include:

  • Balance
  • Contrast
  • Emphasis
  • Movement
  • Proportion
  • Rhythm

You’ve heard the old saying that “rules are meant to be broken,” which can certainly ring true in this case. But a good graphic designer must first understand these principles before making the conscious decision to break them.

Types of graphic design

As mentioned earlier, there is no single graphic design meaning. Graphic design is composed of many fields and specializations, ranging from print and web design to animation and motion graphics. Graphic design offers opportunities and options for individuals of almost any interest.

If you’d asked someone 30 years ago to define graphic design, their answer would have likely been focused on print-related examples like magazines, movie posters and advertisements. Now we’re living in the digital age, which has given birth to several new types of graphic design.

Some of the most notable modern-day graphic design examples stem from advancements in technology. Here’s a glimpse of some of these types of graphic design:

  • Website design involves creating engaging and intuitive web pages for users. This includes overall layout, color scheme and navigation.
  • User experience (UX) design is focused on ensuring a website or application is easy and satisfying to use. These designers emphasize value, usability, adoptability and desirability.
  • Motion graphics design—or animation—brings visual elements to life through special effects, TV shows, video games and movies.

Common graphic design jobs

With technological advancements introducing new types of graphic design, there has also been an emergence of new graphic design jobs. This evolution has changed the entire landscape of careers in this field.

Demand for “traditional” graphic designers who work primarily for print publishers has fallen substantially, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. Employment of graphic designers in computer systems design services is projected to grow by 24 percent through 2028, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Much of this demand is spurred by business’ and organizations’ increased need for digital graphics and imagery as they aim to increase their digital presence.

So with that said, what are some common graphic design job titles? We analyzed more than 30,000 job postings calling for a graphic design degree over the past year. The data helped us determine the most common job titles:

  • Graphic designer
  • User experience (UX) designer
  • Web designer
  • Art director
  • Creative director

As you can see, once armed with the proper knowledge and training, there are several graphic design job options out there. You have the ability to cater your career to your personal skills and interests.