The state of Delaware, with its close proximity to three major cities and a local population exceeding 900,000, holds many opportunities for resident artists pursuing professional graphic design work. Delaware supports thousands of commercial businesses, and is also a feasible commute to Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington DC.
Delaware Schools and Training Programs for Graphic Design
No less than a dozen Delaware colleges offer degree programs in what academics refer to as Communications Design. Among the state's top design colleges are Delaware State University in Dover and Delaware College of Art and Design in Wilmington. For those who prefer to stay home, many schools offer graphic design training and degree programs online. Among the most successful of these are The Art Institutes, ITT Tech, University of Phoenix and DeVry.
People studying graphic design usually earn degrees in visual communications or fine arts. A typical Delaware degree program in Communications Design includes courses in computer science, website design, digital art, animation, technical drawing, typography, commercial marketing and printmaking. Students also gain proficiency in the use of professional graphic design software.
Working as a Graphic Designer in Delaware
Delaware graphic designers are in demand. Businesses hire professional graphic designers to create brand logos, promotional materials, cover art, web pages, product packaging for advertisers, commercial signs for storefronts, print patterns for textile manufacturers and visual instructions for product assembly, among other important tasks.
Some Delaware graphic designers are employed by top local advertising agencies. Examples include Local Book Publishing and Taylor Jensen in Dover, as well as Deardorff Associates, Reese-Tomases-&-Ellick and Aloysius-Butler-&-Clark in Wilmington. Other local designers collaborate with Delaware motion picture producers. These include Bogalli Productions and Phoenix Fire Entertainment in Dover, as well as crewcalls.net and Teleduction in Wilmington. Professional graphic designers in Delaware also work for software companies, educational foundations, publishers, manufacturers, construction contractors, architectural firms, realtors, internet start-ups and many other commercial organizations.
U.S. commercial businesses currently employ more than 250,000 graphic designers. Roughly half of them earn between $30,000 and $60,000 a year. When determining the starting salary of a graphic designer, an employer considers educational background and professional experience, among other things. The employer's decision is heavily affected by the designer's portfolio, a visual collection of images that showcases the designer's best professional work.
Skills of a Graphic Designer
Graphic designers know how to visually convey very specific messages, and are often hired for commercial purposes. Basically, a graphic designer manipulates and arranges images (pictures, words, shapes and symbols) to affect particular target markets in particular ways. The majority of graphic design jobs involve page layout, which is determining the size, color, location, orientation and other attributes of images on a page. Graphic designers show tremendous visual clarity and keen attention to detail. Their special skills allow them to affect the way we feel about whatever we are looking at. Where the rest of us can only look, a graphic designer can see.