If you’re currently looking at potential career or education options, you’re probably sorting out what your good at versus what you enjoy doing. Fortunately, the things that you enjoy doing can eventually become the things your best at doing too. And if you happen to have any of the traits or interests listed here, maybe that’s a sign you should be a graphic designer. The five signs that you should be a graphic designer are: You love to create, you’re great with computers, you want to explore the ‘why’, you’re inspired by visuals, and you love learning. Here’s a bit more about why each of these things are important.
1. You Love To Create
Having a need to create, whatever it might be, is key to being a designer. The desire to make something from nothing and share that with the world is a driving force for all designers. The need to draw or paint, sculpt, build, plan, or combine; it’s in your DNA. You’re driven to take an idea, break it down, merge it with another idea, and mess with it until you can create something new.
Your love to create doesn’t mean that everything (or anything) you create needs to be good. If you’re learning a new skill, like graphic design, most of what you make won’t be good. That’s the whole point in learning. As long as you love to create, and create whenever you can, you’ll get better. It’s the desire to create that will drive you to greatness.
You don’t need to be driven to create designs, specifically. Creative people love to create, regardless of the medium. You could enjoy creating blueprints, stories, treasure maps, elaborate Minecraft mansions, etc., What matters is creative drive itself.
2. You’re Great With Computers
Forty years ago, being a graphic designer didn’t mean being good with computers. Today, it’s a huge part. Designers sketch on paper to get their ideas out and then move to the computer to make those ideas reality. Often, designer’s ideas come exclusively out of the exploration with design software.
As a designer, you would use vector software like Adobe Illustrator or Affinity Designer to create vector illustrations and logo designs. You’ll use software like Adobe Photoshop, Affinity Photo, or Procreate (iPad) to create pixel illustrations or edit images. You’ll also use desktop publishing software like Adobe InDesign, Affinity Publisher, or Quark XPress to create things like ebooks or brochures. Designers with an interest in expanding their skills become familiar with motion graphics software like Adobe AfterEffects or Cinema 4D. Some learn 3D modelling software like Maya or Blender.
3. You Want To Explore The ‘Why’
The most successful designers are the ones who ask a lot of questions. If you’re the kind of person who wants to dig deeper into a visual problem, graphic design would suit you well. You don’t want to stop at something just looking good; you also want it to work, to solve the problem it was intended for. When you come across a problem in need of solving, you don’t just ask how but why. Why does this problem need solving in the first place? What happens if this problem isn’t solved? What does it look like after the problem is solved? Is there a better way to do this?
The exploration of a problem through questions leads designers to create better, more effective visual solutions. Just keep asking why until you get to the root of a problem, and go from there. Chris Do details this process really well on TheFutur channel on YouTube.
4. You’re Inspired By Visuals
A love for all types of imagery and the creation of imagery is at the root of what likely will draw you to a career as a graphic designer. You enjoy scrolling endlessly through Pinterest, exploring logo designs and typography. You follow dozens of designers and illustrators on Twitter and Instagram. A visit to the bookstore has you spending your time figuring out how many art and design books you can afford. On YouTube, you spend hours a day immersed in how others create and build unique works of art and design. A folder on your computer is reserved entirely for inspiring images and design work from the talented designers you idolize.
If you find your happy place among beautiful or interesting imagery, and if those images drive you to learn about how and why they’re made, that’s a good sign.
5. You Love Learning
This is probably the most important sign that you should go into graphic design; your innate desire to learn new things. New software, new skills, new ideas, and new ways to think. You should love to be immersed in a book or video that teaches you something, whether it’s design related or not. The desire to be a lifelong learner is paramount to a successful career in graphic design.
The design industry itself is constantly changing and evolving. We learn one software program to do something, and in a few years time, there’s an even better program to do it in. As technology evolves, designers need to continually learn with it.
Even if you’re not someone who loves to learn, you should at least have the drive to want to learn; to evolve your knowledge and skills. The dedication to improve yourself as a designer will take you far.
Signs You Should Be A Graphic Designer: In Conclusion
Before I ever realized I wanted to go into design, I had all of the things above checked off, but I didn’t make the connection between them and a design career for awhile. I loved creating art and stories on the computer and desperately wanted to know how to make the cool visuals that I found in magazines. After some potential career exploration and some high school design courses, I made my decision to go into graphic design.
Are there other signs that you should be a graphic designer? Absolutely. But I think the ones listed above are the biggest. Hopefully this helps you make a decision on whether you should become a graphic designer. If not, keep exploring and learning. You’ll figure it out.
What do you think are some other signs that you should be a graphic designer? Which do you think is the most important sign someone should be a graphic designer? Let me know in the comments below!