How to be a successful graphic designer

How to be a successful graphic designer

Are you interested in pursuing a career in graphic design? If yes, You're not the only one who feels this way. There is a high level of competition out there right now, but there is also a lot of potentials, with many graphic designers and content creators evaluating their career options after a traumatic period (Covid crisis).

Starting graphic designing as a career can appear to be a daunting endeavor... However, this is where we come in!

You may be starting from scratch, straight out of high school or university, or you may already be working in another field for a few years. You'll be well on your way to realizing your ambition of becoming a graphic designer if you follow the guidelines which we are going to discuss below.

This article will look at how to become a graphic designer as a newbie and what are the traits needed to become a good designer and then we'll give you a list of 10 steps to becoming a graphic designer.

So let’s dive in!


So, you've decided to pursue a career as a graphic designer?

That sudden realization is a huge step forward because most of the high school and undergraduates students don't even know what they want to pursue in their careers.

To begin, Let's first discuss what does a graphic designer basically does?

Graphic designers produce visual representations that help people understand what they're seeing. Including everything posters and billboards to packaging, logos, and marketing content is created by them. Shapes, colors, typography, images, and other elements are used by graphic designers to communicate ideas to the public.

Graphic designers can engage in-house, generating designs for a single customer, or at an agency or as a freelancer, working with a wide range of clients.

Before you decide to pursue a career as a graphic designer, you need to have a few attributes checked off your list. These traits may come easily to you or you may have to learn them over time, but they are necessary to have.

There are a few characteristics one should learn and incorporate into your toolbox of knowledge:

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Some other traits include:

  • Visual ideation/creativity
  • Typography
  • Design software (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, etc)
  • Multimedia design software (Acrobat, etc)
  • Colour theory
  • Web design/Basic HTML & CSS
  • Layout/Conversion optimization
  • Print design

So, now let’s look at our ten steps to becoming a graphic designer. I'll describe how each key step that will assist you in becoming a self-taught graphic designer in detail below, so you can get off on the right foot as well.

Step 1: Find Your Motivation

Graphic design can be pursued for a variety of reasons. You might want to:

  • Create a logo for your website
  • Express yourself and be creative
  • Learn a new skill
  • Learn to use complex software
  • Make a career change
  • Make money online

Step 2: Understand and Learn Graphic Design Basics

After finding your motivation behind choosing graphic designing as a career, now start learning its basics. Before going any further, it's critical that you study the design concepts and have a firm grasp of the design aspects.

There are numerous online resources available to help newbies who wanted to become graphic designers. These online tutorials are available in 2 forms, they can either be paid or unpaid as well. Both ways have their own advantages and disadvantages at the same time. If you want to combine these tutorials with some good books, then you can opt for a combination of tutorials and books, It will help you in refining your skills.

Step 3: Start Exploring Online Software

You can make use of some of the leading online graphic design software once you've learned more about graphic design background and the fundamentals of design philosophy. Whether you're a seasoned designer or just starting out, we have the same advice for you.

As you develop your technical skills, start with affordable graphic design tools to keep costs down.

Step 4: Setup Setup Setup

While graphic designers are usually well compensated, beginning your career as a graphic designer can be costly. Unlike writers, who only need a laptop to write, graphic designers need considerably more than that. To begin, you'll need to find the appropriate graphic software.

Step 5: Follow Established Graphic Designers

This step is sometimes ignored, but it is critical that you complete it. Before developing their own creative approach and being a huge inspiration to others, everyone obtains design inspiration from somewhere.

Step 6: Build a Portfolio

Getting a portfolio is possibly the most significant stage in the process of becoming a graphic designer. "Why do I need a portfolio if I have all the abilities, tools, and know-how?" you might wonder. Of course, to show off your work! A portfolio is a means to showcase your greatest work and demonstrate your abilities. Pieces.

An online portfolio will assist you in presenting yourself in the most professional manner possible. Potential clients or companies can use your web portfolio to evaluate if your work style suits what they're searching for.

As a result, think of your online portfolio as a supplement to your resume. Graphic designers frequently carry digital versions of their portfolios and keep them on hand in case they are needed during an interview process.

Step 7: Get Some Work Experience

Now that you've completed your portfolio, it's time to put it on display and gain valuable experience by seeking junior positions. It makes no difference whether it's a paid position or internships; the skills you get will be invaluable in the long run, especially if you're just beginning out and need someone to vouch for you or give a reference letter.

You'll also be able to upload your unique talents to your portfolio this way. You'll also be a part of the design community and build professional ties with other graphic designers, art directors, motion designers, creative teams, and design teams.

Step 8: Acquire Professional Copywriting Skills For a graphic designer, strong copywriting qualities do not imply knowing how to produce short or long-form text. Simply put, it entails crafting succinct explanations, one-liners, calls to action, and headings, among other things. It also involves being extra attentive with typos and language errors, as well as reflecting the voice of any company you're advertising.

Step 9: Update yourself with Current Design Trends

Following well-known graphic artists or paying attention to your fellow graphic designers is a simple method to stay on top of current visual patterns. Clients and businesses are always on the lookout for graphic designers who don't keep to the same style throughout their careers and instead aim to evolve and adapt each year.

Step 10: Choose a specific Area of Specialization

Simply said, it involves determining your area of expertise and branding yourself as the best in that field. Maybe you are competent when it concerns logo design, motion graphics, site design, and so on.


There is no 'one real solution' to adopt to get you where you want to go in a thriving graphic design profession. There is a range of options to examine. It's about taking advantage of chances, working hard, and tackling each endeavor with zeal, passion, and commitment.

Last but not least, keep going forward. Keep phoning, emailing, or whatever you're doing on a regular basis. Don't take rejection personally, and don't be envious of others. A rejection today could lead to a job the next day or a new client in the future.

Hopefully, you've learned everything there is to know about becoming a graphic designer and are ready to dive right into your new journey!!