Graphic design has become one of the best ways to make money online. You can do it from an office, or even from your home. The average graphic designer makes any where between 30 and 100 thousand dollars a year depending on experience. There is a large amount of competition due to the industries limited requirements. You really do not need a degree to become a graphic designer. A good since of a computer file system, along with familiarity of software such a s Photoshop , and a creative mind, is all you need to get started. This article will explain some of the basics to get you started in a career of graphic design .
The first thing required is some basic common knowledge of a computers file system. You will be required to file customers projects, so this is a must. Luckily its not very hard to learn. If you have any prior computer experience you probably have this mastered.
Next, you will need imaging software such as Adobe Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator. The programs are designed to allow you to create, edit, and manipulate, images and graphics . Learning one of these programs is a necessity. The most popular is probably Photoshop . I would suggest learning this program inside and out. There are tons of online tutorials to help you learn the basics of the software. You need to be fairly familiar with the program before attempting the next step.
At this point you have several options depending on which route you would like to take. One option would be to join a forum that hosts graphic design contest. With these contests you can fine tune your skills. The contests can offer prizes from $10 to $500 depending on the client. The way it works is they give you the details, and you submit your concepts. Normally they will review your concepts and suggest certain changes. This is a great way to further develop your skills. Competition is pretty tough so it requires great creativity, and close attention to what the client wants.
If you feel fairly confident in your design skills, you can begin to develop your business identification. This is probably the most important part of your new business . This would consist of your business name, logo, rates, procedure, etc.. Your business name needs to be something easily remembered. Something that shouts I CAN DESIGN IT! Your logo will be one of the most important elements in your business . Your logo must portray the services you offer. Your logo needs to be unique, and flashy, yet professional. Your logo is what your clients will remember you by. Once you create the perfect logo you can apply it to a website or business cards .
Next i want to discuss how you will be displaying your services. Again there are several options. The most popular and professional being a website. I highly suggest you try really hard to develop a professional website. If you can not afford hosting or a website to be developed, then you can create a graphic portfolio, to display your work. Basically this would be an image created in Photoshop with a collection of your work. There are also a few online portfolios that you can use to display your designs . Your portfolio is another important element. It is what you clients will use to determine if you are competent to pull off the job they need. However you decide to display your work, be sure it is professional and attractive.
Another thing you will need, is a way to receive payments. In my opinion the best payment processor is PayPal. It accepts all major credit cards and is very secure to use. This will allow you to receive payments for your services. Creating an account is free.
Now i want to help you spread the word of your business . There are lots of way to advertise. Its always best to have a website of some kind that explains what you do. The key is getting people to that website. One thing you will want to look into is SEO (search engine optimization) What this does is it optimizes your website so that is easily found with search engines like Google. This will help people find your site via search engines. Another way to advertise is through ad publishers such as Google AdSense. By publishing your ads you are placing your ad for your services onto many other websites, depending on how much you spend for the ad. Another way is through articles similar to this one. If you have any writing abilities, you can create article like this one and use it to attract clients. Earlier I mentioned forums for contests. Most forums allow you to have a signature, with a link, that shows up in every post, this is a great way to advertise your service.
Now these are some of the basics for kicking off a successful business. I know they work because this is how i got to the level i am at. I started off with contests, doing this as a hobby. I can now say I am a full time graphic designer. The possibilities are endless as long as you put in the hard work.