More than a hundred professional graphic designers live and work in the city of Richmond, Virginia. With a population of only about 204,000, Richmond is known for its relatively many commercial businesses. As many as 60,000 local Richmond businesses require ongoing solutions to visual communication challenges, and consistently hire local graphic artists.
Richmond Schools and Training Programs for Graphic Design
Many famous colleges and Universities in the state of Virginia carry degree programs in communication design. Popular graphic design schools in Richmond include ECPI Technical College, J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College and Virginia Commonwealth University, among others. The majority of aspiring graphic artists earning degrees at Richmond design colleges major in visual communications.
In addition to locally situated graphic design schools, Richmond artists have ample opportunities for earning degrees online. Accredited online design degree programs are available nationwide. Among the most prolific colleges featuring online degree programs in communications design are The Art Institutes, ITT Tech, University of Phoenix and DeVry. Each of these four fully accredited schools also features many physical locations throughout all fifty states. ITT Tech maintains a campus in Richmond.
Working as a Graphic Designer in Richmond, Virginia
Quite a few graphic design professionals in the state of Virginia work for leading local advertising agencies. Recognized Richmond ad firms include Sharon Brooks, WF-of-R Media and Zycus Media. Some local artists team up with highly rated Richmond motion picture companies. Leading local movie producers include EAF-Custom-Communications, Fuel-Creative and Robert J. Griffith. Other Richmond graphic designers work for schools, real estate offices, travel agents, wedding planners, art galleries, book publishers, industrial manufacturers and many other kinds of commercial businesses. Local graphic design jobs for Richmond artists include clinical charts, greeting cards, book and magazine layout design, company logos, restaurant menus, instructional diagrams, web pages and more.
Employers in Virginia pay graphic designers about $52,000 a year on average, with a mean hourly wage of around $25.00. About half of all graphic designers in America earn between $30,000 and $60,000 a year. Virginia ranks seventh among states in terms of average annual income for corporate graphic designers. What's more, artists employed in densely populated cities like Richmond tend to earn higher incomes than similarly employed individuals in rural regions of Virginia.
Skills of a Graphic Designer
Modern-day graphic designers are, more-or-less, digital artists who do a great deal of layout work. Layout involves the placement and visual manipulation of design features such as shapes, colors, lines, symbols, illustrations and words. Obviously, proficiency with graphic design software is required for professional work. Other essential skills include advanced drawing technique, photography, web design and typography, which is basically the layout of words and written language. Most of all, professional artists need excellent communication skills for graphic design work. They don't call it communication design for nothing.