Graphic design has evolved to be a strategic arm of any business, so working in graphic design requires both a creative and strategic mindset to help further a company’s brand in the market.
In this post, we answer the question “what is graphic design?” and dive into how graphic designers can help businesses differentiate themselves from the competition while also driving brand loyalty and sales.
What is Graphic Design?
Graphic design refers to visual communication that uses a combination of ideas, images and words to convey a message to the intended audience and elicit a specific effect. It includes everything from logos and branding, to website layout, signage and flyers.
Graphic design is based on several key design principles — balance, alignment, proportion, proximity, repetition and contrast.
While graphic designers are multi-talented and are often in roles where they serve multiple stakeholders across business units, it’s common for graphic designers to specialize in a specific area.
Graphic Design Specialities
This focuses on creating websites and web pages that are both intuitive and engaging for users and includes everything from navigation to color scheme and layout.
This area of graphic design focuses on the usability, desirability and adoption of an app or website.
Motion Graphics Design
Designers take visual elements and bring them to life for TV and movies, online videos, video games and special effects.
Why Graphic Design Matters
People are visual creatures. A research team at MIT found that the human brain can process images in under 13 milliseconds.
Knowing this, it’s clear why strong graphic design is critical for a company. It’s much easier and quicker to reach people visually, as opposed to relying on them to read and process what they see.
As a graphic designer, you’ll play an integral role in helping your company create a recognizable brand and run dynamic and memorable marketing campaigns. Great design attracts customers and helps a company look both professional and polished.
More and more companies are hiring graphic designers who can handle all of the brand’s needs as it’s typically more cost-effective. As part of the Marketing team, the right designer can help a business meet its organizational goals.
The Role of the Graphic Designer
When you look at graphic design and the role graphic designers play, their primary focus is offering a fresh and creative perspective on various projects.
On a broader level, a graphic designer is part of the team responsible for developing and maintaining a consistent brand presence on projects including web design, digital ad campaigns, presentations, reports, event signage and other materials.
Cohesion is critical, so designers not only have to consider what they are currently working on, but also how their work ties in across the brand as a whole.
Graphic designers bring together all the key design elements — line, shape, color, typography, texture, size and space to ensure that what is being produced will make an impression.
Finally, graphic designers make recommendations on which medium is best suited to produce the desired visual effect and message. Then, they prepare sketches, layouts and graphic elements. They consult with stakeholders to establish the overall look, graphic elements and content of marketing and communications materials.
Is Graphic Design Right for You?
Now that we’ve answered the question of what graphic design is, you can see how the role of a graphic designer plays an important part in meeting business goals and providing a memorable experience for customers.
For those looking for a career that’s both creative and impactful, being a graphic designer may be the perfect fit.
Are you interested in flexing your creative brain in a career that allows you to be innovative while making an impact on a company’s success?
Udacity’s UX Designer Nanodegree program teaches you how to design impactful user experiences for products in today’s digital world while building a portfolio that showcases your ability to transform user research to high-fidelity interactive designs.