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Graphic designer

Alternative titles for this job include

Graphic designers create visual branding, adverts, brochures, magazines, website designs, product packaging and displays.

Average salary (a year)

£18,000 Starter

to

£35,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

37 to 40 a week

You could work

evenings occasionally

Find out more about jobs in this group

See which sectors you’ll find this job in, what qualifications you need to work in this area and if these types of jobs are going up or going down. This information can help you make good career decisions.

Explore job trends for this group.

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become a graphic designer

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course

University

You could take a foundation degree, higher national diploma or degree in a design related subject like:

  • graphic design
  • art and design
  • communication design
  • illustration

Getting work experience during your course will give you an advantage. Talk to your university careers service about work experience, internship and year placement opportunities as well as any support offered to help you build a portfolio.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • a foundation diploma in art and design
  • 1 or 2 A levels, or equivalent, for a foundation degree or higher national diploma
  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree

More Information

College

You could take a college course like a Level 2 Technical Award in Graphic Design or A level Graphic Communication, and use this to join a company as a design assistant.

You would need a good portfolio to showcase your skills to employers.

Entry requirements

You may need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course
  • 1 or 2 A levels, a level 3 diploma or relevant experience for a level 4 or level 5 course

More Information

Apprenticeship

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More Information

More Information

Career tips

There's a lot of competition for graphic design work. You'll need a portfolio that shows your creative ideas, skills and work experience to help you get started.

Having experience of using desktop publishing software will also give you an advantage.

Professional and industry bodies

You could join the Chartered Society of Designers and the International Society of Typographical Designers for professional development and to make industry contacts.

Further information

You can get more information on working in creative careers from Discover Creative Careers.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • design skills and knowledge
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • knowledge of media production and communication
  • knowledge of computer operating systems, hardware and software
  • knowledge of the fine arts
  • the ability to come up with new ways of doing things
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • to be able to use a computer and the main software packages competently

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

In this role you may:

  • discuss the client's requirements and come up with creative ideas
  • work out budgets and deadlines
  • produce rough drafts and present your ideas
  • prepare designs using specialist software
  • make presentations to clients for feedback and approval
  • produce a final layout
  • explain requirements to other design professionals
  • keep up with design trends and developments in software tools

Working environment

You could work in a creative studio, in an office or at a client's business.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

You could become a senior designer, creative director or move into management.

You could go freelance or start your own design agency.

Another option is to move into teaching or lecturing.

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a graphic designer right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Graphic Design - BA Hons Degree

  • Provider: BLACKPOOL AND THE FYLDE COLLEGE
  • Start date: 13 September 2021
  • Location: Blackpool

Graphic Design and Emedia Foundation Degree

  • Provider: LEICESTER COLLEGE
  • Start date: 23 September 2021
  • Location: Leicester

Jobs In the United Kingdom

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Skills assessment

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