Are you a tech-savvy individual who can't imagine having a career that doesn't involve computers? Do you also have a knack for creating artistic collections that would be well received by the public? If both of these areas fit your style, then maybe you should consider a career in computer graphics. Continue reading below to find out all you can about this promising technological career.
If you have a bachelor's degree in computer graphics you will work with a wide variety of technological tools to visually portray messages or ideas. Through the training you will receive in your bachelor's degree program you will learn to use tools such as print layout, incorporation of color, illustration, and animation. These tools will be utilized with a range of software available to computer graphic artists. However, be sure you understand that while computers play a huge part in the designs that are created, an individual must still have the creative ideas that he or she wants to create. Often, computer graphic designers sketch their designs by hand and then use computer software programs to bring their designs to life!
Before you begin a degree in computer graphics, most colleges or universities will require that you have completed at least a few courses in design and/or art. This will demonstrate that a student has ample artistic abilities to begin more advanced level courses in computer graphics design. Typically speaking, these background art or design courses can be taken either at the high school level or at your local community college. Although there are other degree program options for computer graphics designers, a Bachelor's in arts degree will ensure that you will be prepared for practically any job in this field. While working on your four year degree program at a traditional college or university, you will be required to complete courses that teach you about graphic production, graphic communication, 2-dimensional design, computer illustration, advertising design, electronic publishing design, and computer graphics. If you have the opportunity to complete elective courses such as principles of drawing, web graphics designing, digital photography, introduction to art, and principles of marketing they will surely prove beneficial to your future career.
While receiving your education, as well as after your graduation, you will work to effectively use computer graphics software program such as Quark, Adobe Illustrator, and Photoshop. Your daily work will require that you are comfortable using these programs to create your designs. As you work on your degree and as you begin your career in computer graphics, you will want to create a portfolio that accurately demonstrates your creative abilities to future employers. While completing your degree program, you will likely add to your portfolio with projects and mock designs. To be as successful as possible in this technology based career world, you will want to continue your learning long after receiving your diploma. For instance, it will be important for you to stay abreast of current technological trends so that you will rise above your competition.
Sketchbook Pro– Works on android, desktop and iOS. Great software program that is eas to use.
PhotoDirector Ultra – Supports tons of digital cameras and allows you to make increasable photo adjustments. The software is very affordable and a must for any graphic designer.
Motion Artist by Smith Micro – If you want to draw amazing comics then this is the software for you. Use video, auto and photos.
Adobe Photoshop, Elements and Lightroom – Regardless of what career you end up with in computer graphics you’ll want to be fully trained in all the Adobe products.
Salary and Outlook
The median salary for someone in computer graphics is $45,900. The graphic design industry is projected to increase 21% per year. Digital media is where the growth of the industry is going so it is advised to pursue careers that focus on the digital design.
Are you ready to make a commitment to enroll in school? Before signing your enrollment agreement make sure to ask the below questions.
Teaching Credentials – Anyone teaching computer graphics programs should be fully credentialed as well as past experience in the industry.
Graduate Jobs – Are the students that graduate with their Bachelor’s degree in computer graphics getting jobs? It shouldn’t be an issue for you to ask for references regarding students who recently graduated. Can the school provide you with companies where their graduates found employment?
Class Size – Does the school have a low student to teacher ratio? Of all the degrees you can obtain having as close to a 1 to 1 ratio is the best as you often need hands-on help learning the software packages.
Question: What type of person likes to use your services?
More and more I’m dealing with individuals who just have graduated college. The issue is they are brand new to the industry and don’t really have the connections yet to approach some of these companies. I can assist them in finding the perfect job in a shorter amount of time.
Question: How are you paid?
I get paid only when the person I’m working with gets hired and the employer is the one who pays me. The client I’m working with has no out of pocket expenses except for their time.
Question: Tell us the process
When I’m first contacted I have my client visit our office so I can personally meet them. During my meeting I’ll get a good idea about their strengths, interviewing skills, look (meaning dress, appearance, etc). I also get a chance to go over their resume which 100% of the time we have to redo or update. Since most of our clients have just graduated college they typically don’t have work experience so we have to use the experience they learned in school.
Question: What are some of the best strengths someone in computer graphics should have?
I would have to say of course knowing the latest software programs is the best strength you can have as my clients are looking for someone with a particular skill. Outside of that someone that is trustworthly and a team player are big qualities that my employers are always looking for. They have told me in the past that they would rather have someone with decent computer graphic ability that is willing to learn than someone that is a great designer but will never fit into their organizational structure.
Questions: Any advice to give someone before they contact you?
Always be looking to improve your skill-set. I see gradates come in all the time that went to a good college, seem to know graphic design or computer programming yet they graduated a year ago but haven’t done anything since graduation. I always asked them surely new software came out or you could have volunteered at a company or done someone during that year and most of the time they were what I like to call a “sit and wait” period. They were just sitting at home waiting for someone to call them versus going out there and continuing on with your education. In the computer graphics industry it is important that you stay current with all of the latest trends and computer software or you could fall behind very quickly.