What Are the Different Types of Graphic Design?

Graphic design is all around us, which means there are a range of graphic and UX design areas and specializations. Each type of design requires specific graphic design skills and techniques.

Visual identity graphic design

Visual identity graphic design focuses on the visual elements of a brand. It aims to communicate a brand’s identity through images, shapes, and colors. Graphic Designers within this area create elements like logos, typography, color palettes, and image libraries that represent a brand. They also develop visual brand guidelines to ensure brand consistency across all uses.

Marketing and advertising graphic design

This type of design is used to sell products or services. This may involve print advertisements, such as posters, billboards, flyers, catalogs and packaging, or digital advertisements, such as television ads, video ads, or social media posts.

If Graphic Designers work in this area, they spend a lot of time creating assets for marketing strategies and campaigns. They develop ideas, research consumer habits, and create designs that speak to the target audience. This type of design involves a strong knowledge of how to sell a product and how to entice consumers.

Web design

Web design involves planning and building the appearance, layout, structure, and design of websites. It focuses on the front-facing aspects of a website, including the user experience. Although somewhat similar to a graphic design career, Web Designers combine a variety of visual elements, such as text, photos, graphics, and video, to create appealing and user-friendly sites and pages. Web design is also closely connected to UX and UI design.

Publication graphic design

This design focuses on creating layouts and selecting typography and artwork, including photography, graphics, and illustrations. Graphic Designers in this area work with books, newspapers, magazines, and catalogs. They need to understand color management, printing, and digital publishing.

Packaging graphic design

Packaging not only protects products, but it is also an important marketing tool. Graphic Designers in this area develop concepts, mockups, and print-ready files. Packaging graphic design requires an understanding of print processes, as well as industrial design and manufacturing. Packaging Graphic Designers need to track trends and competitors so they can create packaging that stands out to consumers.

Motion graphic design

Motion graphic design is a new speciality area in the graphic design industry, though it is quickly growing and demand is increasing for Motion Graphic Designers. At a basic level, this type of design involves any graphic in motion. This can include animations, banners, title sequences, trailers, or video games.

Environmental graphic design

Environmental graphic design is a multidisciplinary practice that combines graphic, architectural, interior, landscape, and industrial design. This type of design connects people to places. Typically, these Designers will have a background in graphic design and architecture. They should be familiar with industrial design concepts and architectural plans. They may work on projects such as public transportation navigation, retail store interiors, signage, and office branding.

Illustration for graphic design

Graphic Artists create original artwork through a combination of media and techniques. They often have a background in fine arts, animation, or architecture. Graphic Artists collaborate closely with writers, editors, marketers and art directors across all types of graphic design.

Benefits of Graphic Design

Investing in graphic design can offer many benefits for a company, including:

Consistent, identifiable branding

Having a Graphic Designer create or select the right logos, images, graphics, or layout for your creative materials will create visual consistency for your company across all of the different channels it uses to interact with clients. Think of any successful company and how much graphic design plays into its branding and any forward-facing design choices.

Visual communication

Beyond establishing your brand, graphic design is a key tool in telling your target audience what you want it to hear. A photograph or text alone can’t convey all that good graphics can, so it’s the job of a Graphic Designer to find out ways to create emotionally resonant creative materials.

Boost sales and competitive position

Good graphic design will make a company more visible in the marketplace, which will translate to a boost in revenue. Given the link between smart graphic design and concerns like usability and user experience, there’s plenty of evidence to show that just graphic design alone has a major effect on customer behavior.