How Can I Improve My Graphic Design Skills as a Beginner?

Honza

Graphic design is a complicated process of craft, where creators make visual designs to deliver a message. They optimize user experience by displaying logically the elements of interactive design, layouts, fonts, illustrations, and colors. Graphic design helps businesses to get a higher conversion rate, better customer loyalty, and improve brand recognition.

To achieve the goals of the business, a designer, even a beginner, has to improve her or his skills steadily. So, here is the answer to the question: how to improve designer skills for a beginner?

1. Get Deep into the Tools

When you are a newbie in any kind of sphere, till you gain the professional skills at the basic tools, you can't go further. For example, for a beginner graphic designer, it's essential to work perfectly with:

  • Sketch is a perfect graphic design tool for a newbie as well as for a pro. It's also a nice prototyping tool, here you can read more on that. This tool is easy and handy for people who start creating designs recently. Get deep into it and when you understand how it works, it will be much better for you to understand the other graphic design tools.
  • Canva is also a popular and custom tool to work with. It's free and clear, that's why lots of beginners love it! Canva has lots of templates for marketing, social media templates, which makes it a solid tool for a beginner in graphic design.
  • Vectr allows you to create free graphic designs easily. You can use it online, also Vectr has built-in tutorials, so you won't get lost and will learn properly.
  • Figma is a clear and native instrument that would be suitable both for a freshman of graphic design and a professional one. Maybe, you should start with this tool to get into the depths of graphic design with it.

After being perfect with one or two tools, it will be much easier to work with the other ones that will help you improve the performance.

2. Practice More Styles

Both parts of the advice are important here: you have to practice more and use more styles while creating a design. For this part you'll need to learn the theory of art, so you will be able to differ an art-deco from modernism. It will help you not to get lost in the styles and epochs.

The more styles you know, the better understanding of the combinations you gain. Here is the list of the styles to know for a beginner in graphic design:

  • Minimalism
  • Art Nouveau
  • Art Deco
  • Kitsch
  • Swiss
  • Psychedelic

Google them or better read a book with the descriptions of their origins, developments, and future.

Psychedelic music festival website by Ivan Ivanov

3. Stay Hungry

Always stay hungry for quality content. But how to look for original content in the times when everything is a plagiarism of the other? Go out!

  • Visit all the offline galleries in your town, there you will find a world of contemporary art of oil paintings, sculptures, and so on
  • Find your circle of colleagues, exchange your ideas
  • Go out more to look for any kind of architecture, you can also get inspired by nature: the most important thing is to notice details so after you will be able to use them in your graphic designs.
Website design by Max Nilov

4. Work on Various Projects

Creating different kinds of designs is very useful for developing your practical skills and creating a portfolio. Try to do some marketing materials, banners for contextual ads, or packaging. Don't mix them up, create them steadily with no rush.

When you know, how to create multiple kinds of designs, your skills will grow immensely, and as a bonus, you might compose a nice portfolio. Here you can find our full article on how to create a portfolio for a designer.

Also, you can try working with various teams, which will improve your soft skills such as communication, time management, ability to work with different cultural contexts. The last is getting more important day by day because of the remote format of work. It allows hiring better professionals from all over the world.

5. Find an Internship

Learning is hard, we know that! It's even harder to find a job in that very competitive sphere of design. Small companies rarely want to hire a designer with little experience, so, you'd better find an internship. Corps, which offer an internship, hire them afterward, thus they grow their professionals with their corporate and culture code.

6. Surf a Lot

Every graphic designer has to know the theory, the basics, and the trends of graphic design. Surfing the net helps a lot to improve your skills and get you to the next level.

Keep on learning design every day. Surf through websites like Dribbble and Awwwards, this will help you to learn more from other designers.

Surf the net for one hour in the morning. If you do this every day, you will know a lot about the subject. Of course, make bookmarks!
Site of the month by Awwwards. Designed by Retail 710

7. Repeat, Repeat, Repeat

Repeating your work is essential for becoming a seasoned designer. Just find a design and repeat it as many times as possible. It can be very boring and sometimes dull to do the same all the time, but be patient and you'll get your reward.

Various designers started with this method and some of them say it's the best way to increase your skills. Also, you develop muscle memory which is also very important for a beginner graphic designer.

Don't Forget!

Improving your graphics design skills requires lots of energy and intellectual resources, especially for a newbie. You must take your time to have rest and get enough sleep to become a better professional.

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