Since 2002, the graphic design industry has grown from 141,830 salaried creatives to more than 191,000. Salaries have increased as well, from what was considered a “comfortable” $36,680 per year to $48,690 per year today (median). Overall figures look good for the next decade, and the State of Texas is keeping up with the trend.
In addition to employment and salary growth, Texas has other benefits for aspiring artists and designers—including graphic designers. Texas is home to a large collection of coveted colleges that offer competitive programs for artists and designers. Just a few include University of Houston, Baylor University, Texas A&M, and Texas Christian University. These top-tier schools, and many others, can be found in principal cities such as Dallas, Houston, and Fort Worth as well as much smaller cities such as Edinburg, Waco, and Huntsville.
No matter where you go in The Lone Star State, a thriving art and culture scene is never too far away. Texas has a long list of amazing art venues that can be found everywhere from Amarillo all the way down to Corpus Christi. Head to Houston—Texas’s largest city, where you’ll find the Museum of Fine Arts, the Menil Collection, and organizations such as the Houston Civic Arts Association, Houston Arts Society (HAS), and The Society for the Performing Arts. Stop in San Antonio and you’ll discover dozens of art venues from San Antonio Museum of Art to the soon to be unveiled The Tobin Center for the Performing Arts (2014).
Texas’s smaller towns house some of the country’s finest small museums. For example, in Brazosport (population, 71,908) locals and folks from across the region flock to The Center for the Arts & Sciences. The Center combines natural history exhibits with attractive art galleries, a theater and performing arts venue, a planetarium, and pristine nature trails. A number of colleges across the state also house their very own art venues. Texas Tech University (Lubbock), Southwest School of Art (San Antonio), and Texas State University School of Art & Design (San Marcos) are just a few. Continue reading to learn more about Texas’s art and design schools.
Texas Graphic Design Schools
According to the most recent report by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES), Texas is now home to 252 Title IV degree-granting institutions. The state has the fourth largest collection of colleges in the U.S. Nearly a dozen of these schools offer top-tier programs for graphic designers. Scroll through the list below to review Texas’s top schools for aspiring graphic designers and what they have to offer.
McMurry University - Degrees Offered: B. A., B. F. A. Multimedia and Graphic Design
Lamar University - Degrees Offered: B. F. A., B. S. Graphic Design
University of Texas-Pan American (UTPA) - Degrees Offered: B. F. A. Studio Art with Specialization in Graphic Design
Texas Christian University (TCU) – Degrees Offered: B. F. A. Graphic Design
University of Houston - Degrees Offered: B. F. A. Graphic Communications; M. F. A. Art with Concentration in Graphic Communications or Interdisciplinary Practices and Emerging Forms
Sam Houston State University - Degrees Offered: B. F. A. Art with Specialization in Advertising and Graphic Design or Computer Animation
Schreiner University - Degrees Offered: B. A. Graphic Design
Angelo State University - Degrees Offered: B. A., B. F. A. Studio Art with Specialization in Graphic Design
Baylor University - Degrees Offered: B. F. A. Graphic Design
Midwestern State University - Degrees Offered: B. A., B. F. A Graphic Design; B. A. Mass Communication with Digital Media Concentration
More Graphic Design related programs to consider:
Employment and Salary Trends for Texas Graphic Designers
Texas is home to a hearty 106,350 salaried artists, earning an average of $45,730 per year. Of the state’s 106,000+ artists, 10,780 are graphic designers. They earn an average salary of $45,570. In 2002, the average salary for graphic designers here was $40,050. Employment is on the rise as well. In 2002, Texas was home to 84,040 salaried artists earning $36,780, and 8,610 salaried graphic designers, averaging $40,050.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the average salary for graphic designers, so it is important to note that individual salaries vary greatly based on type of company, location, seniority, industry (advertising, web design, technology), and more. This industry also attracts thousands of independent artists whose salaries fluctuate even more.
According to the Bureau, “senior designers, who may supervise junior staff or have some decision-making authority that reflects their knowledge of graphic design,” currently earn a median salary of $60,000. Solo designers who freelanced or worked under contract reported median earnings of $57,000. Design directors, the creative heads of design firms, or in-house corporate design departments,” earn $95,000. “Graphic designers with ownership or partnership interests in a firm or who are principals of the firm in some other capacity” average $95,000 per year.