Graphic design has changed a lot over the years, as the overall term is used to cover various fields and professionals with different specializations. The most common types of graphic design roles include the following.
In this type of design, you will focus on the company’s identity and brand. All the visuals should match this brand identity, including the logo. It’s often used in partnership with brand marketing to clearly communicate all the company’s values adequately through the use of color, shape, and images.
Marketing and Advertising Design
The most commonly known type of graphic design, marketing, and advertising design involves creating magazine ads, infographics, vehicle wraps, billboards, postcards, social media graphics, email marketing visuals, brochures, menus, website and blog images, content marketing, and more.
While this type of design originally meant print design only, the digitalization of the publishing world has revamped this medium. Publication designers of today often work in close relation to an editor or publisher to create layouts, typography, or illustrations for the publication. Publications can vary from books, magazines, and newspapers to eBooks, e-newsletters, and online publications. A recent rise in digital publishing has led to an increase in jobs designing book covers, especially for eBooks.
An overlooked form of graphic design, environmental graphic design involves using visuals to connect people to their surrounding environment. With the purpose of boosting a person’s experience in a place by making it more meaningful or memorable, this type of graphic design is wide-ranging. The environmental design includes murals, architecture, signage, road signs, retail store interiors, museum exhibitions, office branding, public transportation navigation, stadium branding, and event spaces.
Designers in this role are often familiar with both sketching out detailed architectural plans and creating industrial design concepts. The landscape must flow with the design, and the industry collaborates on specific best practices such as how vertical handles on doors always should pull while horizontal must require pushing to operate.
No matter what type of product you buy, it probably came with packaging that features visuals on the label or sticker wrapping around the product. Sure, this wrapper is used to prepare products for easy distribution, but the elements on the packaging are crucial for a sale. Marketplace trends regularly change and dictate what visual elements and best practices to follow for successful product marketing techniques to work.
Motion graphics such as animation, apps, video games, GIFs, trailers, advertisements, promotional or tutorial videos, and other website features that move are a newer region of graphic design. Technology has allowed designers with skills in other areas to explore these mediums in recent years further, and motion graphics are becoming more popular by the day.
Art and Illustration Design
Graphic artists who focus on art and illustration create original artwork that tells a story or take on various forms of art to illustrate a story. It’s popular among t-shirt design, stock images, comic books, book covers, album art, concept art, technical illustrations, and graphic patterns for textiles or picture books.
Web design may not be a type of design exactly, but it is an crucial element worth mentioning. Web designers combine many of the above-mentioned graphic design types into one medium, focusing on using images, layout, and typography to create a website that users enjoy. Many designers teach themselves how to design their own websites alone, but make sure to learn about UX and UI design to work on sites.
UX vs. UI Design
User experience or UX is all about boosting the user’s experience, which includes the structure and logic of the design and how the user interacts with the elements. Good UX design can increase how much a product is used and how users perceive interacting with a product, boosting satisfaction.
The user interface or UI design, on the other hand, involves the interactive elements. For this, you’ll need to understand a user’s needs while on a device and anticipate what users want, incorporating steps to make that possible. It’s all about how users interact with the images, like progress bars, toggles, dropdown lists, breadcrumbs, or notifications.