In our increasingly visual world where listicles need pictures and people can’t pay attention for more than a moment, graphic designers are becoming even more essential. It’s a rewarding career for anyone who wants to produce successful content for marketing efforts or websites. You can also make around $45, 000 from just an entry-level position. The problem is that most colleges don’t offer majors specifically for graphic design. Even if they did, not everyone can afford the average $9-30, 000 it costs each year depending on whether or not you go to a public or private university. So, how are you going to get the skills while still spending a reasonable amount of money and time?
Fortunately, one of the greatest things about learning graphic design is that all you need is a computer and some programs like Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Acrobat, etc. You don’t need to go to class and fall into debt by paying college tuition. Employers want to see a strong portfolio above all and the foundation for a strong portfolio is solid skills. Time to develop those skills with online graphic design courses! In fact, we formed our course selection based on several essential skills you may need as a graphic designer: Adobe Software (the programs we mentioned), Typography, and basic HTML & CSS.
This free course is a great way for aspiring graphic designers to build a broad foundation for later skills by understanding design in general. It will only take 2 weeks of your time if you put in around 6 hours/week. Don Norman, a former VP at Apple, created the virtual textbook for the course and acts as lead instructor. The course also includes instructional videos, exercises, and projects. Get ready to join over 52, 000 other students if you’re ready to begin your journey to a career in design!
This short (under 20 minutes) series of videos take a “software independent” look at key elements in graphic design such as anti-aliasing, letter spacing, linear perspective, and more. Like the previous course, this series offers a foundation you’ll need for software skills and other more advanced skills. A basic subscription to Digital Tutors will cost $29/month if you want to watch these videos and hundreds more.
When you sign up for Treehouse for $25/month (or $49 for the pro-membership) or take advantage of their 14-day free trial, you’ll get access to hundreds of courses with a combination of video instruction and interactive elements like quizzes and challenges. Learning Photoshop is no exception since Treehouse walks you through key Photoshop features like layers, masks, type tools, etc. while quizzing you occasionally so you retain the information.