Graphic Artist Salary
Job Description for Graphic Artist
A graphic artist designs visual presentations of a wide variety, including advertisements, brochures, screen-printed tees, logos, signs, product illustrations, websites and more. A graphic artist works alone or with a group of illustrators, photographers and writers to meet the design demands of clients from all fields. The artist determines the size and arrangement of visual elements to facilitate communication between the client and a target audience.Read More...
As graphic design is considered a young and rapidly evolving field, conventional qualifications like a college degree and years of experience are often less vital to prospective employers than the quality of an individual's work. Graphic artists in the job market are expected to maintain a portfolio of recent work that best represents their aesthetics and technical ability. Being computer-savvy is a necessity for graphic artists in the modern marketplace. Expert knowledge of design applications like Adobe Photoshop, InDesign and Illustrator are considered standard in the industry. A benefit of formal education in graphic design is the provision of time and resources to develop such specialized skills and a portfolio that represents the artist well after graduation.
No single work scenario can be considered typical of most graphic artists. Many graphic artists seek work from traditional firms in fields like advertising, journalism or entertainment. Many more work for real estate agencies, universities, non-profit organizations, and other seemingly unrelated entities, proving that nearly all industries can benefit from a strong visual presence. Quite a few more work as freelancers, connecting with clients on an individual basis. Freelancing offers tremendous flexibility and variety, but usually at the cost of stability.
Graphic Artist Tasks
- Determine size and arrangement of illustrative material and copy, and select style and size of type.
- Use computer software to generate new images.
- Develop graphics and layouts for product illustrations, company logos, and internet websites.
- Confer with clients to discuss and determine layout design.
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Popular Skills for Graphic Artist
Survey participants wield an impressively varied skill set on the job. Most notably, facility with Autodesk 3ds Max, Adobe After Effects, and Adobe PDF are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 21 percent, 9 percent, and 5 percent, respectively. Skills that pay less than market rate include Adobe Acrobat, Corel Draw, and Microsoft Office. Those educated in Adobe Illustrator tend to be well versed in Adobe InDesign and Graphic Design.
Pay by Experience Level for Graphic Artist
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Respondents with less than five years' experience take home $32K on average. In contrast, those who have been around for five to 10 years earn a noticeably higher average of $39K. After working for 10 to 20 years, Graphic Artists make a median salary of $42K. Folks with more than two decades of experience actually report lower incomes overall; their average comes out to a mere $41K.
Pay Difference by Location
Boston is home to an above-average pay rate for Graphic Artists, 43 percent higher than the national average. Graphic Artists can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like San Antonio (+42 percent), New York (+38 percent), Los Angeles (+31 percent), and Denver (+20 percent). Graphic Artists in Tulsa take home the lowest salaries, earning a whopping 20 percent less than the national average. Employers pay around 14 percent less in Oklahoma City and 4 percent less in Chicago, below-median salaries for those in this field.
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