Monthly Archives: June 2017

15 Description of Designer Duty

As a student, I often hear other students asking their tutors “What is the difference between a creative director and an art director?”. To be honest I didn’t know at first however luckily enough I was given a linkby one of my teachers answering just that question. So I present to you 15 designer job descriptions.

Solo designer
A freelance or self-employed design professional who works independently of a company and has no employees.
Owner, partner, principal
An owner, partner, principal holds an equity position and has major business responsibility for a firm having employees.
Creative/design director
A creative director or design director is the creative head of a design firm, advertising agency or an in-house corporate design department. In all of these areas, key responsibilities can include the development of graphic design, advertising, communications and industrial design publications.
Art director
The art director establishes the conceptual and stylistic direction for design staff and orchestrates their work, as well as the work of production artists, photographers, illustrators, prepress technicians, printers and anyone else who is involved in the development of a project. The art director generally selects vendors and, if there isn’t a creative director on staff, has final creative authority.
Senior designer
The senior designer is responsible for conceptualization and design of solutions from concept to completion. In some firms, a senior designer directs the work of one or more junior designers who generate comps and create layouts and final art. In some cases, senior designers do not manage staff but are designated “senior” because of their authority in design decision-making.
Designer
A designer is responsible for conceptualization and design of graphic applications such as collateral material, environmental graphics, books and magazines, corporate identity, film titling and multimedia interfaces, from concept to completion.
Entry-level designer
An entry-level designer is one-to-two years out of school and requires mentoring in all aspects of design conception and implementation.
Print production artist
A print production artist has a working understanding of layout, type and color, and is able to take instructions from a designer and create a complete layout, working proficiently in InDesign, QuarkXPress, Photoshop and Illustrator. Responsibilities also include producing final files that image properly to film.
Web designer
A web designer determines and develops the look and feel for sites, and is responsible for site navigation design and visual execution.
Copywriter
A copywriter is able to write, edit and proof promotional or publicity copy for print or electronic publications. At higher levels, copywriters are often responsible for strategic and conceptual development of messages and stories.
Print production manager
The print production manager is responsible for managing the process (bids, scheduling, production and delivery) of producing publications, from concept through production, including photography, separations, 4-color press work and digital production. Print production managers are strong project managers, managing multiple jobs simultaneously. In some cases, proficiency in InDesign, QuarkXPress, Illustrator and Photoshop is desirable in this role.
Marketing manager, new business manager, director
A marketing or new business professional is responsible for seeking business opportunities, developing proposals and marketing the firm’s practices.
Web developer (front end/interface systems)
A front-end developer uses HTML/JavaScript/ASP/ColdFusion and other tools to develop static and dynamic web pages.
Web programmer/developer (back end systems)
A back end programmer works with web server systems and web databases, develops web queries to databases and programs web applications.
Web producer, senior producer, executive producer
A web producer organizes web development teams and ensures adherence to budget, schedule and design of website development.
Content developer
A content developer is also known as a web writer or editor. He or she is responsible for the production and repurposing of text/graphic/audio content on sites.

Best Design & Tip Program

A question I often get asked via email is “Which graphic design school / university should I attend?”. To be honest it’s a very hard question to answer as everyone has different needs, however, today we haveBrian Jenkins* here to highlight some of the top US design schools. If you are not from the US please do share the top design programs in your country, in the comments below.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), in 2008, there were about 286,100 graphic design jobs in the USA . Employment growth for graphic designers from 2008 to 2018 is forecasted by the BLS to be about as fast as the average for all occupations. Keen competition is expected for positions in the field. According to the BLS, those with website design and animation experience will have the best job opportunities.

Recent college graduates will have to depend on their educational credentials and portfolio to convince employers to hire them so it’s vital to select a recognised graphic design degree program to ensure you get the education you need. Some important factors for employers – after your body of work – are the school’s reputation, the quality of the graphic design program, and accreditation by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design. These certainly not the only credentials, but it does help.

When choosing a school, consider schools that have up-to-date design software and technology as employers are looking for candidates who know how to use them. Find out if the schools you’re considering have connections in the graphic design industry and if they provide internships. Internships give valuable experience and networking opportunities, and oftentimes employers will their hire talented interns.

US Top Rated Design Schools

The following schools’ graphic design graduate programs were ranked in the top ten by U.S. News & World Report in 2008. These schools also offer quality undergraduate degree programs that include the vital elements of graphic design:

  • The Rhode Island School of Design: This school is widely regarded as one of the best stand alone design schools in the nation.
  • Cranbrook Academy of Art: This school doesn’t have faculty, but instead has artists-in residence. The program focuses on the core of art and design. Cranbrook provides a very unique experience.
  • Yale University School of Art: This fine school is tied #2 in the U.S. News & World Report list.
  • Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU): VCU offers a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts in Graphic Design. The program includes a range of design-specific classes.
  • Carnegie Mellon University: Graphic design students attend the university’s College of Fine Arts. The college emphasizes hands-on learning.
  • Maryland Institute College of Art: It’s one of the nation’s oldest art colleges. The school is included among the top 25 design schools by ID magazine.
  • California Institute of the Arts: CalArts, founded by Walt Disney, offers a graphic design program that places an emphasis on the practical and conceptual sides of graphic design. Students have access to studios 24/7. The school has a extremely accomplished faculty.
  • Pratt Institute: The Institute’s School of Art & Design faculty is made up of numerous recipients of prestigious awards including Fulbright, Tiffany, and Guggenheim fellowships. Pratt is a member of the Association of the Independent Colleges of Art and Design which consists of 36 of the premier art schools in the nation. It has been regarded as one of the leading art schools in the nation since its founding in 1886.
  • School of Visual Arts: This school offers a graphics design undergraduate program that works in 3D, 2D, and digital media.
  • California College of the Arts: CCA provides internships at publishing and printing firms, nonprofit organizations, and technology companies.

Here’s a list of other US notable schools:

  • University of Delaware
  • Penn State University
  • Kansas City Art Institute
  • Academy of Art University
  • Parson Schools of Design (see their Graphic Design Degree)
  • Cleveland Institute of Art
  • UCLA School of Arts and Architecture
  • University of the Arts
  • University of Illinois at Chicago School of Art and Design

Remember that not one school is right for every individual. Do the research to find out what’s best for you & try your best to get there!

Notable Schools In Other Countries

  • Billy Blue College Of Design – Australia
  • Hyper Island – Sweden

Have a recommended design school in your country? Please let us know in the comments.

*Brian Jenkins writes about a variety of topics related to education and careers for BrainTrack, including careers in graphic design & online graphic design degrees.

5 Good Fonts, Used By Professionals In Graphic Design

Top 7 Most Used Fonts Used By Professionals In Graphic Design

1. Helvetica

Without a doubt, Helvetica is the most heavily used font by professionals (and also by the not so professional) in graphic design. Although some praise the font, many believe that it is spaced too tightly.

And as Vivien pleas in her 16 most overused fonts article, “Understand that you can’t always rely on Helvetica to illustrate and deliver your every message. Helvetica is not perfect for everyone and every occasion.”

2. Trajan

Trajan finds its way into many Hollywood movie posters and anything remotely to do with religion, law, marriage, class or the past. You can check out the flickr pool for more uses of Trajan.

A bit of history on the font Trajan… Trajan is an old style serif typeface designed in 1989 by Carol Twombly for Adobe. The design is based on Roman square capitals, as used for the inscription at the base of Trajan’s Column from which the typeface takes its name.

3. Garamond

Although there are many versions of Garamond, the most used version today is the Adobe Garamondversion (as seen above) released in 1989. Garamond is a great font for magazines, textbooks, websites and long bodies of text and was recently named the second best font (after Helvetica) by a German publication.

4. Futura

Futura is a font that comes up often in large displays, logos, corporate typefaces and in books where small text is needed. It is based on geometric shapes (near-perfect circles, triangles and squares) which became representative of the Bauhaus design style of 19191933. Futura has an appearance of efficiency and forwardness. Some do hate the font though.

5. Bodoni

Bodoni is a great font for headlines, decorative text and logos. Bodoni has a narrow underlying structure with flat, unbracketed serifs. The face has extreme contrast between thick and thin strokes, and an overall geometric construction which makes it a very aesthetic looking font.

10 Typography Tools, Templates and Libraries Web Designers Need to Know

Typography is indeed one of the most crucial components of every good web design. As a novice or professional web designer, knowing about the best typography tools, frameworks and libraries is definitely a plus point.

All these resources can aid you in dealing with web design typography in a better manner, offering you extensive control over fonts used on the web. Enjoy!

1. FlowType

As a handy plugin, FlowType will dynamically adjust the font size in accordance to the width of the wrapper under focus. Additionally, you can use the plugin for applying an ideal count of characters per line along with screen of variable width specification. FlowType can be easily downloaded from GitHub and plays a vital role in accomplishing the most legible typography which includes 45 and 75 characters on a per line basis.

2. Typeplate

As a complete framework for setting up typography in a web design, Typeplate is shipped with some stunning basic typographic styles that address critical elements within web design such as colors, scaling, dropcap, small capital, hyphenation, code block, blockquote, scaling and a lot of other interesting stuff.

3. Gridlover

As a brilliant typography tool, Gridlover allows you to establish a typographic system wherein there is a fully adjustable CSS for the line heights, font sizes and all margins. As an easy-to-use tool, Gridlover allows you to achieve perfect typography for your web design.

4. Hatchshow

Hatchshow is a special web typography plugin which expands the size of your font, thereby filling in the entire width of the font container. Utilizing a specific algorithms, Hatchshow will measure your container’s width, length of font characters and finally append the appropriate font size.

5. LiningJS

As an excellent JavaScript library, LiningJS allows you to individually style each line within a specific paragraph. Stimulating the idea of “::nth-Line()”, “::nth last-line()” and “::last-line” pdeudo-classes, LiningJS will serve as your most trusted library for creating a brilliant web typography.

6. Underline.JS

A yet another remarkable JavaScript library, Underline.JS will allow you to improvise the text underline. You can compare the demo with the underline output of your current CSS text-decoration for spotting the key differences.

7. Modular Scale

Modular Scale is a handy typography tool that will generate an ideal font along with proper scaling for the body and heading of your text. Output received with the use of Modular Scale is available in Sass and should hence be used in conjunction with Sass library.

8. Kerning.js

Kerning.js is a JavaScript library that marks the meeting of kerning with CSS. You can use it to automatically style, kern, scale and transform your web typography using real CSS rules.

9. FFFFallback

FFFFallback is a brilliant web typography tool that allows you to find stack of font that would further degrade in a graceful manner. Available in the form of a bookmarklet, FFFFallback will analyze will allow you to analyze the family font on a particular page, followed by suggesting you the most appropriate font.

10. TypeSettings

As a remarkable pack of CSS rules, TypeSettings is available in Sass and Stylus. You can use it for defining vertical rhythm, font scaling and reasonable ratio for your web typography.