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What is Graphic Design?

What is Graphic Design?

This question has many answers, i typed in the question into google and it came up with a Wikipedia responce (just like most questions people ask wikipedia has an answer!) it gave me this as a responce;

Graphic design is a creative process – most often involving a client and a designer and usually completed in conjunction with producers of form (i.e., printers, programmers, signmakers, etc.) – undertaken in order to convey a specific message (or messages) to a targeted audience. The term “graphic design” can also refer to a number of artistic and professional disciplines that focus on visual communication and presentation. The field as a whole is also often referred to as Visual Communication or Communication Design. Various methods are used to create and combine words, symbols, and images to create a visual representation of ideas and messages. A graphic designer may use typographyvisual arts and page layout techniques to produce the final result. Graphic design often refers to both the process (designing) by which the communication is created and the products (designs) which are generated.

Which is a brief answer to what the subject is and it is correct!

When asking this question to a number of people they will give you answers saying a graphic designer or graphic artist is someone who designs and creates brand identities, posters adverts and what not, most of parents who have a son/daughter studying graphic design may well just say “oh, erm…. they play about with pictures and something to do with computers!” thats exactly what my parents say. However graphic design is much much  more than playing with computers!

To me this subject is one of the most difficult professions out there, because it is such an opinionated subject, some people may think that a piece of design is the best thing since sliced bread and others may have a complete different perception on it.

It is attention to detail, seeing new possibilities that could open peoples eyes to a new product, business, object or event, a new way of selling something. I remember when given a brief to design a new christmas mail out for a company, they wanted something querky, different eye catching rather than the traditional ‘Merry Christmas from all of us at such and such!’  As all starts to a new design brief i research into christmas cards previously produced finding most of them to be jolly happy with images of families, santa clause and snowmen! which, dont get me wrong are a nice thing to see at the seasonal time, however the company wanted something different! So i went shopping to see if i could get some kind of inspiration for this brief, looking for hours upon end to get something that would be unique and quirky. Eventually i found a few small toys that gave me an idea that would fit the brief. The company was very pleased with the final outcome and boosted their costumer data base.

So thats an example of how graphic design isnt just using computer software to get the final product, its using your creative edge that others would not of noticed. Its thinking outside the box!

There are many many different areas of graphic design which all work together to give a fantastic final outcome, some people may be typographers and others may be logo designers, some areas are your weaknesses and others are strengths, my advice to you is try each area in your first and second years to see which area of design best fits in with your design style and then in final years of university concentrate in the area you are best at. When you are working on your portfolio you will need to include a wide variety of designs to show that you can manage different projects and briefs however make the portfolio work towards your favour by arranging your work starting with your strongest piece and ending with your strongest piece.


Graphic Design is more than just playing with pretty pictures, its thinking outside the box, its something that is inside of you! many people will support you with your designs but when people have a different view to you, take in their advice and try and see it from a different point of view. All advice is good advice!

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