Six Tools You Should Have As a Graphic Designer
If you’re just entering the field as a graphic designer, there are some common pitfalls and some great tools to keep you running smoothly.
Graphic design is your passion and you want to be the best in your field. Like in many professions, having the right tools will make you successful at what you do and set you apart from your competition. There are many options on the market that will accent your art and catch the attention of potential clients. Here are a few items you should add to your workspace.
Depending on what system you are using, you can either purchase software or download apps to do your work. There are many options also that can be used from the cloud. Aside from your computer, this could be the most important tool you could have in your career. There are different versions for the various types of media you plan to use. There is photo editing software if you want to change or enhance an image. You can utilize video editing software to create commercials or trailers. There are also programs that let you create or alter images and logos to yours or your client’s specifications. When you know which areas you want to specialize in, research which brands of software are the most reliable and fit best with your application. If you are considering using a cloud based service, look to see if they have a month to month option for you.
This tool is beneficial if you are away from your computer and find inspiration. You can install apps on your phone that will let you design, alter images, or draw on the go. With different types of CRM Apps, you can keep your client’s information on you at all times in the event that you need to reach out to them to ask questions or change an appointment. A simple calendar keeps you aware of due dates and meetings so you stay on schedule with your projects. Your phone will also have a camera with it to take photos of items that you would like to add to your art or might look great in a logo or advertisement. Like your computer, you will want a phone with a fast processor, a camera with high pixels, and the top of the line graphics especially since you will be working with a smaller screen. Contact the company you have your plan with to recommend one that will suit your needs. Ask for several options among the brands they carry and if any will need additional accessories or data plans.
While your computer might be the best on the market for the tasks you have to do, it could use additional help. Purchase a monitor calibrator to keep the colors you see true. This way, what you design on your screen will be the same shade and color when you send it out to your client or print it out on paper. An external hard drive saves your vital information in a place other than your system. If something happens to your machine, this drive will keep what you worked on safe and intact. This also frees up space on the hard drive of your computer so that it runs faster. A stylus and digital drawing pad allows you to freehand a design and have it appear digitally so you can adjust it in your software.
Laptop or Desktop Computer
The graphics that you see today lean heavily on digital design. To achieve this, you will need a computer to do your work on. To get started, purchase a system that has an efficient yet powerful graphics card. You want a machine with a wide array of colors to work with. Once you know this is a career you want to stay with, you will want to update to a state of the art computer that is designed to be used by graphic artists. You can ask those in your field for recommendations. While you are shopping, determine whether you are more comfortable with a desktop unit or if you want a laptop. A desktop allows for dual monitors and other apparatus that will make your job easier. However, a laptop is portable and lets you work wherever you are comfortable.
Pen and Paper
Sometimes the best tool for your design is to go back to the basics. Carry a pad of paper and a pen with you either in your car or bag so that you can sketch out a design when it pops in your head. You can also use it to take notes of ideas that you might have or to jot down an address of a location that you want to take a picture of later. It can also be utilized to write down messages if you are talking to a customer on the phone and want to remember what you spoke about. It is there if you want to clear your mind and doodle random things while you try to come up with your next great design or want to work offline instead of your computer.
Cloud Based Service
Much like an external hard drive, a cloud service can store your information off site away from your computer. This protects your work if something were to happen to your home as well as your system. It allows you to access your images and other images if you have an appointment at a client’s organization and would like to show them something that you designed. It is also ideal if you need an item that you did on your desktop while you are working on your laptop. Depending on which service you choose, they will back up your data either on a daily or weekly basis. Having the right tools to do your job is essential to be successful at any position you might have. Whether it is a computer, software, or the storage to keep what you have created, you need the correct equipment to be the best graphic designer in your area. Taking time to find what will best fit your requirements will keep you busy with projects for a long time.