want to be a graphic designer i think how can i find out

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by Anarchy99, Nov 14, 2008.

  1. Anarchy99 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 13, 2003
    i love working on/with computers im currently doing my 2nd year of a 2 year CIT diploma and i realized i hate programing i suck at it even after 2 years and thats a large portion of my program, i dont think i want to transfer for the last 2 years of a comp sci degree which will contain more programing.

    anyway i like the idea of graphics design but never thought of myself as creative and thats why i went for the other side of computing.
    whats the best thing i could do to get used to what i would be doing as a graphic designer and see if i like it without spending thousands more realizing it wasnt my thing either.
  2. tobefirst macrumors 68040


    Jan 24, 2005
    St. Louis, MO
    Grab a pencil and a thousand sheets of paper. Fill them with drawings of everything you think you would do on the computer. Do some page layout mock ups, a million different logo ideas, some cartoon drawings, design a thousand different versions of each letter of the alphabet.

    This will be the cheapest and most effective way to see if you'll like graphic design.
  3. 7on macrumors 601


    Nov 9, 2003
    Dress Rosa
    Quoted for the truth. I still keep a daily (I try my best) sketch book. Been thinking of turning it into a blog for input. Either wordpress or livejournal... Really need something I can update through my iPhone. Just sketch something and snap a pic to go off to the interweb
  4. ktbubster macrumors 6502a


    Jan 20, 2007
    You could also take a weekend class or even an evening class at a local community college, or some place around you (look around, they offer classes at tons of different places, program etc.. maybe even at your current place.. you could get a one credit intro class? - i know that's haarder at a lot of bigger universities though) anyway, take an intro class, if you can at a community college for 100 bucks or something and see how you like that. That way if you like that you can spend the money on the classes at your school that would cost more :)
  5. stainlessliquid macrumors 68000

    Sep 22, 2006
    make a website

    But if you seriously suck bad at art then dont waste your time. Its a competitive field and unless you know how to get business by finding gullible people to pay you then you wont be able to make a job out of it (there are a surprising amount of terrible designers out there that get a lot of work from people who dont know any better or dont ask to see a portfolio first, so it is possible to suck really bad and still make money).
  6. shamrock593 macrumors regular

    Nov 2, 2006
    Don't do this.. it's not an good way to try an express your creativity, unless you're already really proficient at graphics software. As the tobefirst posted, it's probably best to start out with pencil and paper.
  7. Yr Blues macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    Like the above poster said, it's an extremely competitive field. But if you truly love design and you are tenacious about it, you can make a living at it.

    If I had a chance to start over I would learn how to code a website from scratch instead of using a program like Dreamweaver.

    Also, try to learn all that you can about design history including the fine-arts.

    Lastly, design for yourself just for the sake of designing.

    Good luck and have fun.
  8. stainlessliquid macrumors 68000

    Sep 22, 2006
    A website is a multistep process that covers most areas of design, theres no rule that he cant start out with paper and pencil and then move to photoshop and then to code. You learn a lot more by taking something to completion since you learn right away the things that dont work in the final product and can fix them before they become habits (like websites that defy coding abilities or page layouts which make things unreadable).

    If creativity is the main goal then forget about design and just do regular art, after that you can worry about designing something. Trying to do creative design without a background in art is an uphill battle, while simply designing something that looks good is as easy as copying trends.
  9. MacBoobsPro macrumors 603


    Jan 10, 2006
    If you have MobileMe you can create a web gallery and update it via your iphone.
  10. Yr Blues macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    One more thing, if you plan on getting an education in design, please go for a 4 year degree instead of a trade school. You'll have a better overall education and that will help you in life.

    Also, don't wait until you graduate to make money in design. Start now, no matter what it is or how much it pays. It's not so much for the design skills as much as it is for the business skills.
  11. bocomo macrumors 6502

    Jun 29, 2007
    New York
    i agree

    and if you want to know if you really want it--trace the alphabet with the pen tool!
  12. NXTMIKE macrumors 6502

    Nov 11, 2008
    Assign yourself your own projects. Like...

    -Redesign mockups of poular/famous logos out there like google, apple, coca cola, etc...
    -Make some christmas cards for your family
    -and anything else you can think of

    Try it out especially in the drawing and vectors aspect of it and hopefully you'll chose Graphic Design.
  13. Yr Blues macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    Better yet, see if you can copy a design exactly. You will probably learn a crap load just from that.
  14. Yr Blues macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    I think I taught myself graphic design in middle-school when I forged grades and tardy passes.
  15. Rt&Dzine macrumors 6502a


    Oct 8, 2008
    You may want to investigate other computer-related fields besides programming or graphic design.

    If you want to give design a try, my suggestion would be to create some logos and layouts. First one might be to create your own logo using your name or initials or whatever. If you enjoy doing that type of thing then take a basic design course.

    I can't imagine doing this for a living without really enjoying it. I've done both graphic design and programming professionally, but design comes naturally for me and programming gave me a headache.
  16. nickadam macrumors newbie

    Nov 21, 2008
    Hi Anarchy99

    Good decision. Graphic designers have a lot of potential in market. Its quite easy, just need some patience, that you have. You just install the Corel Draw or Adobe Photo shop and start reading their tutorial from help. Its enough...It will automatically tell you, what you need next.

    Nick Adam
  17. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination
    When i was in college for TV production, titling just became a big thing. Motion and After Effects were popular and everyone wanted to learn how to use the apps and so forth.

    My professor told us to go and take a few (like four or five) graphic design courses so we could learn the basics and fundamentals of 2D and 3D design and we did (we were good students then).

    The very first class, had us pull out paper and pencils and we didn't touch a keyboard until halfway through the second half of the semester. Then I took a typography course, then another GD course more oriented in Illustrator and then another....

    Main point, is, that pencil and paper course, and learning the fundamentals to pull out, and help guide my creativity really paid off. Motion, Illustrator, After Effects, etc were a breeze to master, but the design courses helped my projects actually look good.

    Grab the pencil and paper and get back to us brother.

    p.s. If I could do it over again, I'd be a triple major. TV Production, (which I did) Journalism, (my minor), and graphic design, (one class away from a minor.
  18. Kyrahlynn macrumors member

    Sep 30, 2008
    This is sarcasm, right? Because there's a heckuva lot more to graphic design than just knowing the software.
  19. Digital Skunk macrumors 604

    Digital Skunk

    Dec 23, 2006
    In my imagination
    It has to be. No one in their right mind would ever make such a statement. Although, a lot of the art industries have been loosing creativity and uniqueness because of that mindset, so this guy may just be serious.
  20. mouchoir macrumors 6502a

    Apr 29, 2004
    London, UK
    Graphic Design is about communication and attention to detail is very important. This also includes your written english.

    I am not having a dig at you as I also suffer with this and work very hard to improve it.
  21. Melrose Suspended


    Dec 12, 2007
    He Speaks Truth.™

    I've filled so many notebooks over the years.. I still keep most of them because I still flip through them and get re-inspired.

    Pardon my pickiness, but it is best to call it by it's name: Photoshop (all one word).

    I can often spot the level of experience one has with the app by whether they spell it as one or two words...
  22. Kyrahlynn macrumors member

    Sep 30, 2008
    True, but I said "software" because Photoshop isn't the only program a graphic designer can use (i.e., Illustrator, Flash, etc) ;)
  23. mouchoir macrumors 6502a

    Apr 29, 2004
    London, UK
    And I think the name for those that do so is 'Photoshop Jockey'! ;)
  24. Radam macrumors member

    Dec 3, 2006
    The essence of graphic design has nothing to do with photoshop, adobe, or anything to do with the computer. Graphic Designers are problem solvers, they have tools such as photoshop etc. But if you are good with photoshop/ any other program, you are good in the program not in graphic design. When you get a graphic design degree is like getting a degree for solving visual problems, not because you know how to lay out a page or make a mesh in illustrator.

    On the subject of knowing if you would like graphic design, there really isn't a good way besides taking some classes about it and/or listening to some talks about graphic design, and if you feel inspired then you have a good indication of if you would like it or not.

    I am in my 3rd year of graphic design in one of the best design schools in Ohio, and I have constant work, I stay up until 3-4am, 4-5 times a week. And this isn't just in school. In the real world you have deadlines that are almost unobtainable. You really have to be passionate about your work or you will fail big time.

    Also if you are thinking about doing graphic design, sorry to say but now adays you will not go far without a degree.
  25. freeny macrumors 68020


    Sep 27, 2005
    Location: Location:
    Close your eyes, randomly open a magazine to any page. wherever you land, make it a self prescribed assignment to redesign the layout how you would do it. Get feedback from other designers... repeat...

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