Graphic Design – and what it means for the rest of us.

Can’t tear your eyes away from that picture? Keep going back to it? Again and again?

You’ve just been Graphic Designer’d.

It would be easy to think that graphic designers are born, not taught; that they’re naturally good at what they do. Leaving the rest of us to play catch-up.

However, in the UK, graphic designers usually study for an HND or degree in an art-based discipline, before qualifying. So, being good at graphic design doesn’t just happen by chance.

Graphic designer, Grace Abell-Neal says:

I became a graphic designer after four years of study and one three month internship for a gadget company in London, which I loved every second of. I landed my first job at Singletrack mountain bike magazine just as I graduated. I wasn’t the most skilled student, but I worked harder than most… leaving nightclubs at midnight or 1am so I could get a few more hours of university work in before falling asleep on my work!”

So, what do graphic designers actually do?

They sell. Ideas. To you and me.

Grabbing our attention with bright colours, typography, photography, page layouts and illustrations. Whatever works.

… and they do this out of the goodness of their hearts? Er, no.

They get paid for it, by clients who want to sell their products – visually.

Like many people, I love looking at good design, and am truly jealous of those lucky few blessed with design skills.

Instead, I’m a copywriter, but let’s just say that copywriters aren’t thin on the ground.

However, even great artwork benefits from context …