Tips to Improve as a Graphic Designer
Graphic design is a field that is constantly changing and evolving. Both the creative and technical elements of graphic design are important and every effort needs to be made to focus on improving these aspects of graphic design.
It can be easy to let the desire to learn and stay on top of things slip because of environmental factors. When you are at design school you are in a great environment for learning and continuous improvement so it is easy to stay on top of things. However, there are a few things you can do to make sure you are at the top of your game. Here are a few tips that will help you stay ahead of the game in graphic design.
Start a Design Collection
You will probably see creative designs regularly. A great tip is to make sure you collect and file away every creative design you see. They could be anything from brochures, posters, and various other materials. These are all great sources of inspiration so it’s important that you collect them and file them away for those moments in the future when you are looking for inspiration.
Invest in books
Reading is one of the most important things you can do to keep learning and improving. Every new book you buy represents a new source of knowledge that will help in this field.
Stay up to date with design blogs
Reading design related blogs is a great source of inspiration and information so take advantage of all the great information out there and use it.
Start your own design blog
Starting a design blog is a great way to stay on top of things. By starting your own blog you will become more analytical in your own work and also involved with the design community in general.
Take an active role in the design community
It’s important that you join a design community and be active in it. The reason why this is so important is because you need other people in your field to critique your work and help you improve. When you are your own boss you don’t have that input to constantly improve so being involved in a community of likeminded individuals is crucial.
Be Snap Happy
Whenever you see something that inspires you from a design standpoint take a photo of it. Take a photo and file it away for those moments when you need inspiration in the future.
Keep your mind open with fake projects
Creating fake projects is a great idea for those moments when you are slow in work. The reason why this is so great is because it keeps you stimulated creatively. When you are creating a fake project you can let your imagination run wild and this will only benefit you as a graphic designer.
Redesign others' work
Redoing other people’s designs is a great idea if you don’t want to create fake projects. Simply pick a design that you know you could do better and redo it.
Don't be afraid to revisit old designs
It is important that you keep your old design because you can look back on it in the future, see what you’ve done wrong, and then redo it to improve it. This is a great way to gauge how much you have improved as a graphic designer over your career.
Attend lectures of other designers held at universities or local schools. This is a great way to pick up a new skill or two.
Be sure to network with other designers
Networking is one of the most important things to do as a designer. This way you can meet fellow designers that will help you improve and you’ll form valuable relationships that will last a long time. Try to find people who are better than you when you network as this will be most beneficial to your learning.
Taking classes will put you back in a classroom of your peers, which will help you improve technically.
Interview and learn from other designers and studios
Interviewing other designers and owners of studios is a great way to learn new skills and gain insights into your field. Quite often there will be many questions that they can answer that aren’t possible by a design school.
Travelling is one of the best ways to stay creatively inspired. When you expose yourself to a new environment and new experiences you stay inspired and keep the creative juices flowing which is only going to mean good things for you as a designer.
Learn Something New
Doing something new and completely unrelated to design is a great way to stimulate yourself creatively. By getting your mind off things and doing something completely different you are creating new opportunities for creativity in your work.
Use that sketchbook
This is a great way to help you work through ideas quickly. This will make a huge difference in your designs and will help you improve your designs.
Using these tips you will able to stay ahead of the game as a graphic designer. It is important in a field like graphic design to always be looking to improve and grow so you can adapt to the changes to the field creatively and technically. Constantly improving and evolving as a designer is a must and using these tips you’ll be able to continuously improve.
Have you used any of these tips before? What do you do to stay on top of things creatively and technically?