What if you could work in one of the most interesting industries and at the same time receive an enviable salary? To make the deal sweeter, you will be getting into an industry with a bright future. If that sounds like your wish, welcome to the graphics design train. Top CEOs project robust growth for the graphics design industry. It will mean a handsome graphic design artist salary as you lay claim to the $15billion the industry generates every year with a growth rate of 3%.
But who is this getting such a handsome share and what do they do to deserve such a hefty pay? Is it an industry for anyone who needs money?
First, we will have to unravel who a graphic designer is;
Who is a Graphics Designer?
A graphic designer is an artist tasked with assembling images, motion graphics, and typography to create a drawing or image that communicates a specific message. Let me explain. Your role is to listen to the ideas of your clients and bring them to life using images, typography, and motion graphics.
A look at where these graphic designs are used could help you to understand the idea better. The designs produced are published in books, printed in magazines, used as posters, or form part of electronic media. Whatever you see on a brochure or advertisement is the product of the work of a graphics designer. Even the content on websites and social media has passed through the hands of a graphics designer to take the shape of the finished product you see.
Technology is also redefining the role of graphic designers. New tools and an increasingly demanding clientele are raising the bar for graphics designers. There is greater demand for motion graphic design skills as more people turn towards videos for entertainment and advertisement. 3D is also becoming a much sort-after skill because it captures the imagination of viewers, whether it is on paper or in motion.
So, what’s stopping you from tapping into an oasis of graphic design artist salary?
What does it take to be a Graphic Designer?
A job as a graphics designer feels interesting. Furthermore, the rewards are also enticing, besides the fact that you will soon see your artistic work on billboards, video adverts, and brochures, among other places.
However, it takes some work to get there. Therefore, let’s look at the journey to becoming this lucrative graphic designer. Here is what you need:
- Sturdy Computer Handling
Graphic designers work on projects using computers and laptops. You will need to type, copy and paste, move objects, upload and download, and such other actions on your computer. The speed and ease of handling your computer determine how well you will handle the project at hand. Since you can work faster and with ease, you will increase your earning potential.
This is probably the most obvious skill for a graphic designer. Your work must be catchy and unique. Even with the existence of numerous graphic design tools and templates to help you, the client expects the most original work. You should pick the idea developed by your client and transform it into the most original image, info-graphic, or video. Copied graphics will attract legal action as well as lower the profile of the brand you are working for. Creative graphic designers receive lucrative job offers and high paying projects.
Attention to Detail
Whether you include a male or female in a brochure determines public perception. A single missing letter in a word or choice of a common phrase could change the direction of an advert and branding outcomes. The best graphic designer is one who pays attention to details.
- Knowledge of Graphic Design Tools
Graphic designers use specific apps to deliver their final products. Each software has unique features and capabilities. You need to learn how to use these graphic design apps to manipulate images, videos, and other materials you will be using in your work. New tools are also emerging with more advanced capabilities. They make your work easier, faster, and more impressive.
A Proactive Spirit
Lazy people cannot make it in graphic design. In the world of technology, and in an arena as competitive as graphic design, the skills or knowledge of yesterday will be obsolete by today. If you are offering graphic design services, you need to know the latest trends and the software that can help you to deliver the desired outcome. Truth be told, no client will want an outdated design for a poster or newsletter. Your designs must be futuristic and reflect the prevailing wishes of your client’s target market. Research on the latest trends, try new ideas, and master the latest techniques to deliver the most impressive graphic design projects.
- Patience and Diligence
Top graphic designers have a story to tell about their journey. It includes sleepless nights and countless rejection of ideas. Take small and simple projects to begin with as you await the intense and lucrative ones. It helps to build your confidence. You also build a portfolio that demonstrates your skills to potential employers or clients. Assess your skills from time to time and tighten the areas you think require sharpening of skills.
Tapping into the Lucrative Graphic Design Artist Salary
Success in graphics design requires specialization. Being a jack of all trades means risking being a master of none. Choose an area of specialization and master the skills needed. It should be known that a graphic designer can serve more than one area of specialization. Your diligence and quality of work will determine whether clients turn to you for services.
Employment Options for Graphic Designers
Talking of areas of specialization, where do graphic designers find these well-paying jobs or gigs to earn them top dollar? Like all other fields, graphic designers are not holed into a single work station. There are three main work options for graphic designers that will guarantee the best graphic design artist salary.
Graphic designers are employed by businesses that require a lot of materials in their daily operations. Such businesses include marketing agencies, publishing houses, and media outlets. You begin as a graphic designer working under an editor or producer. As your skills advance and you understand the business model, you can take up such roles as an illustrator, art director, creative director, and production manager. Even brand identity developers, marketing designers, and visual journalists were once graphic designers. Scaling the ladder in your job as an employee will depend on your skills and understanding of the business model.
Graphic designers with the right tools, experience, and exposure start their own businesses. If you choose this path, you will be in a special class of 18% of graphic designers who have chosen self-employment. And what are the rewards for self-employment? Well, you get to decide your salary limit. As a self-employed graphics designer, you will be serving businesses and clients whose workload is not substantial to employ a full-time graphic designer.
Do not confuse freelancing with self-employment. As long as you have the skills and free time, you can become a freelance graphic designer. In fact, 90% of the graphic design industry is freelance. Here is how it works. Your friends or people in your network know that you are a graphic designer. You may also advertise your skills and availability for services online, like on social media. Clients will contact you whenever they have a graphic design project. This arrangement can work even for employed graphic designers. For instance, if you deal with motion graphics, you can offer freelance motion graphic design services in the evening, over weekends, and during your leave days. In fact, this is one of the ways to test your potential when you want to get into self-employment or start a business. It will also help you to create a portfolio that you can credit your name for easier use when looking for clients. If you need to boost your graphic design salary, this is a viable side hustle.
It is evident that there is no limit on where you can work as a graphic designer. In the age of social media and digital marketing, businesses, as well as professionals, are laying a lot of emphasis on graphic design. To make it clear, let’s look at some of the day-to-day assignments you will be handling as a graphic designer, shall we?
Assignments for having a Hefty Graphic Design Artist Salary
- Visual identity projects
your work is to develop logos, brochures, pamphlets, and image-related materials that capture the brand image of a company or professional. From diaries to calendars, posters, and social media profiles, your work is to maintain consistency and professionalism in branding.
· Marketing and advertising– this is a rather straightforward job. You will be tasked with producing posters and catchy banners that communicate the desired marketing message. It could be digital for internet usage, motion graphic video for online as well as offline usage, or visual advertisement for printing in banners.
- User interface graphics– these are the graphics you see on your phone, laptop, or any other screen when interacting with an app or website. Your role will be to balance aesthetics and functionality.
- Publication graphic design
Magazines, website pages, newsletters, books, and catalogs will be your business. Annual reports, e-books, and e-newsletters are some of the projects you will be handling on a daily basis.
- Packaging graphics
You will be required to design packaging materials that raise the profile of companies and products. Product labels also fall into this category.
Animations, videos, imagery, and typography are in this category. With the rise in video popularity for advertisement, motion graphic design is one of the most-in-demand graphic skills.
- Environmental graphics design
It involves signage, wall murals, office branding, exhibitions, and event or conference spaces, among others. The landmarks you see or iconic spaces are the work of a mega thinking graphics designer.
Art and illustration
These are original works that generate a new character or identity. You will see it on video games, websites, t-shirts, and other materials used to identify brands. It means creating an iconic image or identity from scratch.
Salary Scale for Graphics Design Artists
How much do you get from all this work? Well, the salary of a graphic designer is not cast in stone. It will depend on a myriad of factors including your level of skills, the design tools you can handle, whether you are self-employed or freelancing, and even your speed of work.
However, the least paid graphic designer takes home between $16.82 and $25.84 an hour. The average earning is $48,000 a year with some states and businesses offering as much as $81,000 a year. This is a decent pack considering the liberty to create what pleases you and a chance to work as a freelancer during your free time.
What’s in it for Graphic Design Artists?
Graphic design is expected to expand by 4% by the year 2028. Technology is also making it easier to complete projects and increase your earning potential. If your professional call is design, then your sights are set on one of the most lucrative professions going into the future.
It’s time to tap into that lucrative graphic design artist salary.