Though you may not realize it, graphic design is almost everywhere you look, making it a skill and career that is always very much in demand. If you’re wondering how to make money as a graphic designer, use this guide, whether you’re just starting on your journey or you’ve already begun.
It’s effortless to earn money online designing.
Nowadays, you don’t even need to have a degree in graphic design from a university to get started because there are so many online platforms that can help you learn techniques, such as YouTube or Skillshare.
I’ve managed to make design one of my largest income streams after recently graduating from university with a dual degree in Media Arts and Graphic Design — but, as I said, you don’t need a degree in order to get into this career.
I have been studying graphic design and using what I’ve learned in the real world for the past 7 years, and my journey is only just getting started.
If you’re wondering how to become a freelance graphic designer, read on to learn the ins and outs from my personal experience in the industry. It really is one of the best, high paying online jobs, and is great for those who are looking to find work they can do while travelling.
Here’s how to make money as a graphic designer!
What is Graphic Design?
Before we begin to answer how to make money as a graphic designer, it’s essential to understand precisely what graphic design is.
From billboards and logos to the packaging of your food products. That’s all graphic design.
Essentially, graphic design is finding visual solutions for a specific purpose, whether that’s to make someone want to purchase a product, watch a television show, or come to a large event. Graphic design truly encapsulates almost every visual aspect of your life.
Within graphic design, there are a few different buckets that you might choose to specialize in, including package design, layout design, branding and logo design, or even typography if you’re interested in making fonts and playing with type.
Each bucket is equally as important, though some niches might pay a bit more depending on your skill level.
Essential Graphic Designer Tools
If you’re wondering how to become a graphic designer, you first need to make sure that you have all the proper tools. A lot of these can easily be purchased online, but keep in mind that graphic design is an expensive business to start in.
The first thing you’re going to need is a computer, which can be either a laptop or a desktop of any brand. The majority of professional graphic designers will tell you that it’s best to use Apple products and have a desktop instead of a laptop.
You’ll also need to purchase a membership to the Adobe Creative Cloud. Prices for this range per month depending on which package level you choose; I recommend purchasing access to all of the Adobe apps because you never know which one you’ll need for a client.
If you’d rather purchase a monthly subscription, then consider buying a package that includes access to Photoshop (which is perfect for creating web images) and InDesign (geared more towards print design).
Students can purchase access for just $19.99 a month, while I spend closer to $50 per month to have access to everything.
The last graphic design tool that I recommend might sound a little silly, but it’s always great to have a ruler handy, especially for print design. This way, you can get a feel for just how big the printed item that you’re designing is — in case you don’t have access to a printer for practice prints.
10 Ways To Make Money As A Graphic Designer
There are tons of ways to make money online as a graphic designer, no matter what niche you’re interested in! If you’re wondering how to become a graphic designer, have a look at this list and start selling or making some of these items.
1. Create and Sell Templates
This is arguably one of the most profitable ways to get passive income for graphic designers. With this approach, all you have to do is make templates of any kind, which could be for ebooks, posters, invitations, or Pinterest graphics. Then, sell the templates online.
Many small business owners and bloggers who are always in a time crunch or who don’t have the skillset to create their own designs from scratch love purchasing these products because of how simple it is to customize them.
Once you have your own template shop set up and you put in the work, you could earn income without doing much else besides marketing your products.
2. Share Knowledge through Workshops or Webinars
Online learning is at an all-time high, and I’m sure many of you reading this would even attend an online workshop on ‘How to Make Money as a Graphic Designer.’
If you’ve studied graphic design or feel that you know enough about it, then sell access to online courses, workshops, training, or webinars where you introduce others to the topic who may not know a whole lot about it.
Even if you just discuss basics, you’d be helping out many people and making some money along the way. Teachable is a great platform for creating online courses! Learn more here.
4. Be a Design Consultant
If you want to make money as a graphic designer with high-ticket items, then becoming a design consultant might be the job for you.
With this, you essentially sell an hour or two of your time to someone who wants your opinions and ideas on graphic design for their own business. You set your hourly rate and coach and advise potential designers — giving them advice and pointing them in the right direction.
5. Design Fonts for Creative Market or Etsy
Fonts are a great way to make passive income for graphic designers if you’re interested in typography. There are many ways to easily make fonts, even just with your own handwriting, which you can then sell for up to $100 on websites like Creative Market or Etsy.