If you find that you’re really interested in creating designs and how to make websites more user friendly, then you may want to learn more about graphic design. Graphic design is a diverse field with lots of different topics to learn about. Learning graphic design allows you to study things like art, user experience, color and design theory, typography, or web design. Fortunately, it’s pretty easy to learn about these topics by taking classes in graphic design or even studying them on your own.
EditTaking Classes in Graphic Design
- Take art history and drawing classes if you’re in high school. Any class that focuses on the visual arts, including painting, art history, and photography, will help you develop your artistic skills and broaden your understanding of how art works. If your high school doesn’t offer these courses, see if there’s a local college that offers courses or summer programs in the arts for high school students.
- Other high school classes that are useful for graphic design include English courses, computer courses, and even business courses.
- Opt for free online courses in graphic design if you want to save money. There are lots of websites, video tutorials, and free online programs that will teach you the basic elements of graphic design and help you learn and practice graphic design on your own. Although these methods usually don’t have as much structure to them as an in-person class, they won’t cost you any money to take.
- Some websites that offer free graphic design courses include Alison.com, Udemy.com, and Skilledup.com.
- Some universities, such as Massachusetts Institute of Technology, also offer graphic designs courses free online to the public.
- Enroll in a local certificate or associate’s degree program in design. If you’d rather learn graphic design in a structured program or from an in-person instructor, you’d probably be better served completing an entire program in the field. Check with colleges in your area to see if any of them offer short programs in graphic design that you could enroll in.
- Note that if you’re interested in making a career out of graphic design, an associate’s degree by itself probably won’t be enough to make you a competitive job candidate.
- Get a bachelor’s degree in design if you want this to be a career. Hundreds of schools offer 4-year degree programs in graphic design, both in-person and online. Not only do many lucrative design jobs require you to have a degree in graphic design, but pursuing a bachelor’s in the field is a good way for you to network with other designers who can help your career in the long run.
- Classes in graphic design degree programs typically include courses in studio art, principles of design, commercial graphics, web design, and advertising.
- You’ll most likely also take a number of courses focused on graphics-related computer technology.
- Your program may also include courses in tangentially related fields, like business and marketing.
EditStudying the Basics on Your Own
- Practice drawing every day to build your basic artistic skills. Spend at least 30 minutes every day drawing the things around you in as much detail as you can. This will help train both your eye and your hands to produce detailed and impressive art.
- Your drawings can be as simple as the objects around you or as complex as landscapes you visualize in your head. The important thing is that you spend time every day exercising your artistic ability.
- If you’re a complete beginner, start by drawing simple things like fruit and objects without a lot of detail. Then, progress to more complicated objects and adding more detail to your drawings.
- Learn about user experience to get better at making usable designs. Read books and articles on graphic design websites that focus on designing apps, websites, and other platforms to be as intuitive for the user as possible. User experience is a very important component of graphic design, so it’s equally important to study how to effectively design things with the user in mind.
- Some books to read about user experience include The Design of Everyday Things and Don’t Make Me Think!
- You can find articles on graphic design on justcreative.com and designshack.net.
- Study the fundamental ideas in graphic design theory. These include principles like alignment, contrast, balance, color theory, and repetition. Having a firm grasp of these fundamentals will help you know how to make effective and aesthetically pleasing designs in any field of graphic design.
- Using a graphic design textbook or theory book would be the most effective means of studying these core principles. However, you can also study each one independently through various online resources.
- Make sure you know how to write for diverse audiences. Practice writing texts for academic audiences (e.g., specialists in a particular academic field), professional readers (e.g., business people or people who do work in that particular field), and the general public (i.e., people with little or no prior knowledge about the topic), using different terminology and grammatical structures for each. Since graphic designers create various designs for a wide range of clients, knowing how to write to different audiences is essential.
- Although you may think that graphic designers only work with visuals, a lot of design also includes creating written materials (e.g., as part of an infographic or a webpage), so learning how to write is also very important in graphic design.
- You’ve probably had practice writing for academic audiences through school, so it’ll be more important for you to focus on learning how to write for a general audience.
- When writing for a general audience, avoid using specialist jargon or overly complicated sentence structures. Stick to commonly used words and phrases that most people will easily understand.
- Get comfortable with using graphic design software. Acquire and spend time every day using software that designers utilize to create visual, audio, and text designs. A lot of graphic design is done through this kind of software, so it’s important to have a working knowledge of at least 1 or 2 software applications.
- Some of the most commonly used graphic design softwares include Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign.
EditFiguring Out Your Specialty
- Focus on typography if you want to specialize in creating text. Typography revolves around the art of setting, arranging, or designing text and thus focuses on making sure the words in a graphic design convey the right message. This field of graphic design may be best for those who enjoy writing as well as drawing in their designs.
- In typography, 2 of the most important components are typefaces and fonts. Typeface refers to a particular design of type, while font refers to a set of characters that share the same typeface, size, and styling.
- It’s also important in typography to understand the different components of characters, such as serifs, counters, and apertures.
- Study logo design if you want to use more drawing in your work. Logo designers create logos for companies and individuals that serve to consistently represent a particular brand. Logo designers primarily work with software that focuses on creating visual designs.
- For example, many logo designers work with Illustrator as their primary design software.
- Go into web design if you want to build websites that are easy to use. Web design involves both creating visually pleasing websites and designing sites that are easy and intuitive to use. Web design is one of the more popular types of graphic design positions, so this field may be particularly suitable if you’re looking to go into graphic design as a career.
- A good way to get started in web design is to look at those websites you think are especially good-looking or easy to use and analyze what makes them so successful.
- Choose to study mobile app design if you like working with apps. Much like web design, mobile app design combines the art of creating pleasing visuals with a concentration on user experience, except it focuses on mobile applications instead of websites. This is a good field to specialize in if you like the components of web design but are more interested in creating popular apps.
- Also like web design, the best way to start thinking about app design is to analyze and critique the apps you use the most. Try to figure out what is it about their visual design or interface that you like so much.
- Graphic design skills require a lot of time to pick up and keep sharp. Make sure you practice graphic design every day to most effectively learn these skills.
- There’s a lot to learn when it comes to graphic design, so be prepared to spend a good bit of time working at it.
- Learn Typography
EditSources and Citations
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