5 Ways to Improve Your Graphic Design Skills
As designers, it’s dangerously easy to get stuck in our ways and become content with what we can do. We sometimes forget how much there is to learn, regardless of how much we already know. Our egos tell us that we’re doing just fine the way we are, and that may be true, but it doesn’t mean there isn’t ample room for improvement – especially in such a fast-paced industry like graphic design.
Stay on top of your passion, polish your talents, and advance in your graphic design career with these 5 tricks to improve your skills.
Get a Degree
Getting a degree in graphic design is without a doubt the greatest way you can intensify your talents and learn new skills. Not only will a degree improve your graphic design capabilities, but it will provide you with a huge advantage over your competition. Tack those completed college classes onto your resume and your LinkedIn profile to show potential employers or clients that you’re not just another self-taught designer who thinks you have all the answers.
If you’re concerned about the time and money that additional schooling will drain from your wallet and busy schedule, you can earn your degree online with courses that work with your distinct situation. Independence University offers an affordable Online School of Graphic Arts that you can complete without ever having to step foot on a campus.
Join a Community
Don’t be shy! Join a graphic design community and actively involve yourself in debates and discussions. By surrounding yourself with like minds (online or in person) you’re giving yourself the opportunity to grow as an artist. Being in a community gives you the chance to converse with others about what you’re struggling with and get fresh ideas and feedback on how to improve or overcome a creative block.
Use these three design forums to test the waters of the graphic design community, but don’t discount the value of in-person meetups and social media groups!
Ask for Feedback
Many artists fear true feedback from anyone other than their unflinchingly supportive loved ones. Even friends who lack an artistic eye can pierce our self-esteem with one casual expression of what we could have done better. If you ever want to improve as a graphic designer, you need to learn how to handle feedback, whether it’s useful or not. The opinions of an impartial third party can open your eyes to some much-needed improvement; however, take every serving of feedback with a grain of salt and remember that you can’t please everyone.
One of the greatest ways you can improve as a graphic designer and really unearth your unique style is to allow yourself to experiment. Give yourself a side project, one that you can redesign over and over again and treat as a sort of creative sandbox. Give yourself complete artistic freedom and push yourself to create works that you wouldn’t normally create. Try new font combinations, daring color schemes, and abstract design. For many, a website is a wonderful creative outlet that you can fiddle with till time stops.
This step is so simple, yet often overlooked. In the world of design, we rarely have time to sit down and read a book. We’ve got textures to arrange, colors to match, and new fonts to create. Add our list of day-to-day tasks to all the web surfing we do for new ideas and references, and you’ve got a day loaded with mental stimulation.
Be that as it may, you’ll learn more from a graphic design book than you will from scrolling through Pinterest or Deviantart. If you feel that you don’t have the time to sit and read, download an audiobook and listen to it during your commute, while you work, or as you tend to time-consuming chores and errands.
These 5 graphic design books are a great place to start.
- How to Be a Graphic Designer Without Losing Your Soul
- Logo Modernism
- Branding: In Five and a Half Steps
- The Elements of Typographic Style (vol 4)
- Graphic Design: A User’s Manual
Improve Your Graphic Design
By adopting these five tips into your daily life, you will improve your graphic design abilities, amplify your passion for what you do, and impress your audience with an ever-advancing style and talent. Request more information about the Online School of Graphic Arts at Independence University.