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Digital Graphic Art Designer: Employment Info & Career Requirements

Find out what a digital graphic art designer does. Learn about the education and skills required, in addition to the salary expectations and employment outlook, to see if this is the career you seek.

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Career Definition for a Digital Graphic Art Designer

A digital graphic art designer, or graphic designer, creates and modifies digital images or ads. These images are most often used to promote sales and marketing campaigns for businesses. For example, a digital graphic art designer for a movie studio may create digital images to increase the marketability of a particular film. Digital graphic art designers work within strict production timelines and may work with other graphic designers.

Education Bachelor's degree in graphic art or design recommended, associate's degrees available in related visual arts
Job Skills Technical ability, natural talent, meeting deadlines, independent work
Median Salary (2017)* $48,700 for all graphic designers
Job Growth (2016-2026)* 4% for all graphic designers

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Required Education

If someone is interested in becoming a digital graphic art designer, they should strive to complete a bachelor's degree in graphic art or graphic design, or an associate's degree in a related visual art field. Several courses in digital art such as digital imaging and website design may be required to complete a degree program. In addition to coursework, students will complete hands-on training requirements and build a portfolio to show to prospective clients and employers.

Skills Required

Digital graphic art designers are technically-savvy individuals who use their creative abilities to inspire the creation of digital images. In addition to technical ability and inherent talent, they must be able to work in deadline-driven environments and be able to work independently, as well as with groups.

Career and Economic Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in 2016, 18% of graphic designers were self-employed. The BLS reported the median salary among graphic designers as $48,700 per year in May 2017. Numerically, the industry expects slower than average growth of 4% overall from 2016 to 2026. However, those that work in computer systems design and services will see a faster than average growth of 20% from 2016-2026.

Alternate Career Options

You might consider these other careers in digital development:

Web Developer

Typically, web developers earn associate's degrees in Web design, or a related field, and have backgrounds in graphic design and programming. These developers create and design websites, from the visual appearance to the technical matters of capacity and performance. Strong growth of 15% was predicted by the BLS from 2016-2026, and an annual median wage of $67,990 was reported in 2017.

Advertising, Promotions and Marketing Manager

A bachelor's degree and related work experience are normally required for these managers who plan advertising or promotional programs in efforts to increase interest in particular services or products. A faster-than-average job increase of 10% was anticipated by the BLS, for the 2016-2026 decade. In 2017, the BLS noted annual median earnings of $106,130 for advertising and promotions managers and $132,230 for marketing managers.

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