Senior Graphic Designer Salary
Just under three-fifths of Senior Graphic Designers in the United States have been in the field for more than 10 years. Pay can fall anywhere from $41K to $85K per year, but median earnings come to around $59K annually. Total cash compensation to Senior Graphic Designers ranges from $41K on the lower end to $85K on the higher end; the final number includes potential for approximately $8K each from bonuses and profit sharing in exceptional cases. Geography is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by career duration. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. Most report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a strong majority collect dental insurance. Women Senior Graphic Designers who took the survey just slightly outnumber men. The data for this synopsis comes from respondents who took the PayScale salary survey.
Job Description for Senior Graphic Designer
Teams that create drawings, backgrounds, lettering, or other original graphics for commercial purposes work in graphic design. A senior graphic designer is often the leader of such teams, and he or she may have one or more junior graphic designers and other support personnel working with him or her. The senior graphic designer typically will be the member of the team who receives the various jobs to be performed and works out the parameters, requirements, and scope of the design. While the designer will normally perform much of this work, he or she will also delegate graphic work to other junior graphic designers on the team, typically suggesting edits to work and giving final approval before their work is submitted.Read More...
In order to have a career as a senior graphic designer, a person typically must have extensive experience working in that field at junior or freelance levels. Most people interested in this job will seek out some kind of training after high school, especially education that involves the fundamentals of computer-aided drawing. Some of these designers attend art school or have an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in design or a related field. Senior graphic designers typically work regular business hours of the week, although projects approaching deadline can cause them to work extended hours.
Senior Graphic Designer Tasks
- Design or create artwork to meet specific marketing or promotional needs.
- May lead team of lower level graphic designers.
- May use a variety of mediums to achieve artistic or decorative effects but is often created by computer technology.
Common Career Paths for Senior Graphic Designer
There are some Senior Graphic Designers — though it's uncommon — that transition into Associate Directors of Creative Services, where earnings are an average $91K annually. As Senior Graphic Designers progress in their field, many go on to become Art Directors. In fact, this transition is more common than anything else, and median pay for the role is $56K. Another common career choice for Senior Graphic Designers is to move into a Creative Director role — this promotion usually pays $83K.
Senior Graphic Designer Job Listings
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Popular Skills for Senior Graphic Designer
Survey results imply that Senior Graphic Designers deploy a substantial tool kit of skills at work. Most notably, skills in Macintosh, Illustration, Adobe Photoshop, and Web Design are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that pay less than market rate include Dreamweaver, Adobe PDF, and HTML. Most people experienced in Adobe Illustrator also know Adobe InDesign.
Pay by Experience Level for Senior Graphic Designer
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For Senior Graphic Designers, more experience in the field does not usually mean bigger paychecks. Salaries of relatively inexperienced workers fall in the neighborhood of $51K, but folks who have racked up five to 10 years see a notably higher median of $59K. Senior Graphic Designers claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $61K. Respondents who claim more than 20 years of experience may encounter pay that doesn't quite reflect their extensive experience; these veterans report a median income of around $62K.
Pay Difference by Location
Senior Graphic Designers will find that San Francisco offers an impressive pay rate, one which exceeds the national average by 47 percent. Senior Graphic Designers can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like New York (+20 percent), Seattle (+17 percent), Los Angeles (+14 percent), and Boston (+12 percent). Denver ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 7 percent below the national average. Employers pay around 5 percent less in Houston and 1 percent less in Dallas, below-median salaries for those in this field.
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Key Stats for Senior Graphic Designer
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