Any serious graphic design student or graphic designer should subscribe to at least one graphic design industry magazine. Graphic design magazines give graphic designers and graphic design students the ability to keep up with current graphic design trends, learn about new or coming graphic design technology, and discover new graphic design opportunities. Graphic design magazines can also give graphic design students information about graphic design scholarships and graphic design compeitions.
One of the best graphic design magazines is HOW Magazine. This graphic design magazine allows graphic designers to find information about graphic design technology, freelancing as a graphic designer, and graphic design career opportunities. Students of graphic design will find this graphic design magazine helpful in its showcases of graphic design career opportunities, graphic design schools, and graphic design events. Of interest for all graphic designers and graphic design students is the stress that this magazine puts on not just the how, but the why and the creativity of graphic design.
Graphic Design USA is another fabulous graphic design magazine. This graphic design magazine has technology information for serious graphic designers to keep up with industry news. Graphic Design USA magazine also has resources for students of graphic design, as well as contests and scholarship programs. The online version of Graphic Design USA magazine also has opportunities for free graphic design stuff, and a graphic design online newsletter that can be emailed to your inbox weekly.
Print Magazine is yet another great graphic design magazine. This graphic design magazine seems to tend more toward the creativity side of graphic design. With regional and nationwide graphic design contests, student graphic design contests, and other graphic design competitions, this graphic design magazine is a must for students of graphic design or those just starting a career in graphic design. The online version of Print Magazine offers graphic design forums, a free graphic design newsletter, and other free graphic design stuff.
DT&G, (Design, Type, and Graphics) Magazine is an online only publication for graphic designers. This graphic design online magazine offers the option to read on the web site, or on a text only email edition that is sent out around the first of every month to subscribers. Not only does this online graphic design magazine offer industry news, graphic design technology information, and other graphic design features, but it also offers reviews of graphic design software, graphic design books, and other graphic design resources. Anything graphic design related, big or small, might be included in this online graphic design magazine.
There are many other graphic design resources and graphic design magazines that can be found both on and off of the internet. Serious graphic designers and graphic design students should subscribe to at least one graphic design industry publication in order to keep up with the latest graphic design industry news. If you would like to find more graphic design magazines and resources, do an internet search for graphic design magazine and be amazed at the wealth of graphic design information available to you in this type of graphic design forum.
A graphic design portfolio is the best way to display and showcase your past projects, creativity, and talent. A graphic design portfolio is vital when trying to pursue opportunities as a graphic designer within a company or as a freelance graphic designer pursuing clients. The graphic design portfolio can contain any number of items, in several different formats.
The first important step in developing a graphic design portfolio is deciding what work to include. You should only include your highest quality work in your graphic design portfolio. If you include mediocre work in your graphic design portfolio simply because you are concerned about not having enough pieces in your graphic design portfolio, you will lose important job offers and clients. It is better to have a few pieces in your graphic design portfolio that really showcase your talent and creativity than have many pieces that do not help you build a solid reputation as a graphic designer.
The next step in developing a graphic design portfolio is deciding what type of graphic design portfolio you want to create. There are four main types of graphic design portfolios: printed pages in a binder, an online graphic design portfolio, images placed on a graphic design portfolio CD, or a slideshow of images placed on a graphic design portfolio DVD. Really, it is best to create one of each type of graphic design portfolio so that you are fully prepared to offer whatever your prospective employer or client is prepared to look at to judge your talent and creativity as a graphic designer.
To create a graphic design portfolio of printed pages, you should choose only your best work, and only the best quality printed copies. If you are unsure of the quality of your home printer, put the images on a disk and have them printed for you at a print shop. The best quality and most creative pieces can look mediocre if not printed with high quality printing. You should then present the pieces in a professional manner. The best color for a graphic design printed portfolio is black, and the most professional style is leather. This should be something that is spiral bound, a book, or a case so that you can add or remove pieces from your graphic design portfolio easily as you progress in your graphic design career.
To create a graphic design portfolio online, you will first need web space. Website hosting and domain registration has become very cost effective. Most websites also give you free website building tools so that you don't have to know HTML. However, make sure that you sign up for website hosting with enough bandwidth to handle all of the images and potential traffic. Once you have your website set up, you'll want to choose your pieces carefully. Display them as thumbnails on one page, with each full scale piece appearing on another page when the thumbnail is clicked. This will give people with slower internet access easier access to your online graphic design portfolio.
To create a graphic design portfolio on DVD or CD, you must have a computer with a DVD or CD burner. To make really professional DVD or CD graphic design portfolios, you will want to get a CD or DVD burning kit that allows you to burn images onto the top of the CD or DVD and create labels for jewel cases. You can either save individual pieces on the CD or DVD, or you can simply save a copy of your website on the disc.
Sparkle! Shine! Be noticed! Attract customers! That's what you want for your product or service. But how do you attain that?
Great graphic design is the key! Graphic design that creates sparkle and pizzaz and magnetizes your target clients to you is what you are looking for. When you begin to look for the right graphic designer, it can seem that there are way too many to choose from. Most will have a graphic design portfolio on line. This is the place to start.
What is it that sets one apart from another? How do you judge graphic design for yourself? It's not an easy task, because it also involves personal taste, but here are some basic design elements that will help as you look at their portfolios.
Emotional Response. Take the time to look at their work and see how it affects you. Do you like it? Does it make you want to know more, buy more? Do you respond in some way? It is usually an effective emotional response that make us want to act or buy. In the graphic design you are reviewing you want to assess the degree to which the pieces initiate an emotional response.
Use of White Space. Probably the first and foremost consideration is the use of white space in the graphic design. Is the message presented simply with lots of surrounding space, or is the space cluttered and you don't know where to look next. Examine a number of the graphic design pieces in the designer's portfolio. Knowing how and when to use white space is a talent and an art. Does this designer have it?
Simple Easy to Understand Message. Just like white space, the message should be simple and easy to understand. Competing messages don't make for sparkle and notice in graphic design.
Meaningful Unique Bold Graphics. Our brains process visually, so the visual message is very important, often more important than the words. How clear and bold are the graphics in the work of the design you are considering. Do you get the message immediately? Are the visuals different and unique or do you have the feeling that you've seen them before. Is the designer using the same "stock" images as everybody else or do they find new and unique ways to present their message.
Effective use of Type or Fonts. Does the type style match the emotional feel of the piece? Does is help the message to stand out. Is it readable?
Benefits. While benefits are a selling point and not really a part of the design itself, they are a very important part of what makes a piece sizzle and sparke, because it's the benefits that magnetize clients to you. So be sure your designer has included benefits in their design pieces.
Drama. Does their graphic design work have drama? Drama engages the reader, involves the reader, keeps them looking and then remembering long after they've seen the piece. This is another part of what creates magnetism.
Spend some time with each online portfolio. Talk to the graphic designer. As for references and then, talk to their clients to get a feel for how well their work has produced results. How happy were they with the graphic design services they received. Would they use the designer again?
With all this information, finding the right graphic design firm to create sparkle, sizzle and magnetism for your product or service should be a cinch.