El Mundo

2016 / 14 October

8 Misconceptions About Graphics Design That You And I Are Guilty Of

How well do you know Graphics Design? Do you think it’s an easy job, a way to make more money, or do you think it’s just visual?

Graphics Designing

According to AIGA, graphics design is an art and practice of planning and projecting ideas and experiences that involves image and textual content. It is also known as communication design. The form of the communication can be actual or virtual, and may include images, texts, or graphics forms.

Drawing and Photoshop

Sketch Pad, Notebooks, Pen, and Pencil

Back then, I always love to sketch and draw. Art takes a vital role for who I really am. I was 14 when I started using Adobe Photoshop. I can still remember that I had one of the oldest versions of Photoshop; Adobe Photoshop 3. I learned to use the different tools out of curiosity.

My Misconceptions About Graphics Design

When I started doing graphics design, I realized that it was not as easy as I thought it was. It was like a roller coaster experience for me because because in order for me to learn and enhance my skill,I had to learn a great deal. Even up to now, I know I still have to learn more about it. Indeed, learning is a continuous process.

Now, let me share to you my 8 misconceptions about graphics design now and then. I think we have have the same misconceptions too!

8. Graphics Designers Charge Too Much and Make Big Money

This may be true if you are in the industry for many years already, let’s say around 5, 10, or 20 years and proved a lot. It is a universal rule that when you are a neophyte, you may be paid a little less. In my case, I accepted less fees as I started.

Most people think that we are charging too much for the work that we are doing, without even realizing the process that goes into every project that we work on. They think that the reason we charge too much is for us to make more money.

I’ll tell you this. If a brand has a nice logo and is appreciated by consumers, do you think the graphic artists were being acknowledged for that? Not most of the time, right? Personally, it is okay not to be acknowledged as long as we are paid accordingly. Artist fees depend on their value and their relevance in the industry.

7. It’s an easy job

Before, I thought that graphics designing was just an easy job. It may be one of the reasons why people think artists should not charge too much.

Now, as a graphic artist, I would say that doing our job is not easy. A graphic artist follow certain processes in order to achieve the requests and demands of the clients. He considers different factors too; from the colors, to the text styling, to the positioning of the subjects and more.

Graphics designing is very dynamic and you have to deal with the trial and error process. This is a job that consumes a lot of time making drafts in order to realize a specific output or an artwork.

6. There are no rules in graphic designing


In everything that we do, there should be rules in order for us to attain harmony and coordination. Graphic designing is not exempted from that. I never knew this not until I became part of the artistry.

Yes, graphics designing is dynamic, however, the dynamism follows a certain rule. The rule is dynamic too. Graphics designing is like problem solving, with set of rules and parameters that an artist should adhere unto.

5. Everything you need is the internet

Internet may be a place where you can have some of the resources that you need in doing graphics. However, it is limited. I really thought before that everything is in the internet. I was wrong.

There are times when you need other media to construct your masterpiece. You would need a pen, sketchpad, pencils, etc. Most graphic artists are also using other media aside from the internet. I am one of those artists who uses a pen and sketchpad to create an initial illustration of the graphic that I wish to produce.


4. You need a degree or a certification

When I was seeking a graphic design job online, it was not easy because part of the requirement should be a graduate of such course or an equivalent certification. This hindered me to pursue my passion in graphic design, for the following reasons; I am not a graduate of a course related to graphic design, my folio was limited, and I still can’t showcase what I am capable of.

I know a lot graphic artists out there who had no degrees in graphic design but pursued to for mere passion! I am proud to say that I am one of them. I pursued graphic designing with courage and dedication and most importantly, I had the drive and passion!

Yes, I had no degree in graphic designing but I now have a portfolio that I can show to people.

Being a graphic designer is not limited to people who have degrees and certifications but, it is really a BIG PLUS FACTOR if you have it.

I am glad that there are people who trusted me with their graphic needs. I think you can also name a few creative people with no degrees or certification in graphics designing who could do graphics better than those who have one.

3. Doing it freelance is the best way to earn a living

Personally, freelancing is never the best way to earn a living. As a graphic artist, it was never easy to get clients. The competition is tight and there are lots of talented graphic artists out there.

Why is it not the best way to earn a living?

First, freelancing is never stable unless you have an existing client who asks you to do the job for them.

Second, it’s a one step at a time process in most cases. You have to work hard and create your brand in order for you to be known in the industry. It may take more time for you to create a brand, unless you become influential enough.

Third, once you had created your own portfolio and made happy clients then referrals will follow, but not all the time. Hence, freelancing is never easy. It is easier said than done.

2. Designers do the same kind of work and sometimes plagiarize.

As an artist, there should always be a distinguishing factor in your works but sometimes, people think that you are just doing the same kind of work. There is also a limit for each graphic artists. That’s why companies may hire other artists to do the revamp of their logo, or a design company may hire new graphic artists to have new approach to graphics design.

Graphic designers have their own unique approach and individuality.

Source: ttp://whatculture.com/

Source: whatculture.com

Plagiarism is claiming someone else’s work or ideas, and is widely known as intellectual theft. However, we should be aware that it does not always follow or warrant plagiarism if your portfolio has a resemblance from other projects.

Have you ever asked yourself if you have never been inspired by others? Have you not created something because you had been impassioned by someone else’s work? For me, it is never wrong to say, ‘this work is inspired by or from…’

It is never wrong to be influenced by other artists. It is highly possible also that an artist may present a graphic that has a resemblance from other graphics.

1. Graphics Design is just visual

This topped my list because before, I thought graphics designing is just visual. I was very wrong.

Some of the graphics that I have worked on.

Some of the graphics that I have worked on.

Graphics designing is very deep. It is more than just visual. It is made to deliver a message, to imply various ideas, emotions, textures, or even the perception of senses. That’s the challenge of a real design. It should speak more than what can be seen.

My Final Thoughts About Graphics Design

Sometimes in life, we have to see things the other way around in order for us to realize and see a clearer picture. Misconceptions and apprehensions can happen anytime.

Who would have thought that I would be able to do graphics design? I even asked myself how I did it. I had doubts and fears, of course but the misconceptions never stopped me pursuing it. I immersed myself to see the real fresco.

There was something inside me saying that I had to do it. It may be uncertain at first and I finally knew the reason; because I can do it!

‘If others can do it, why can’t I?’ This really pushed me to work hard, to bring out the best in me.

I am an aspiring multimedia artist. I do photography, videography, video editing, graphic designing, and web designing and development.

How about you? What were your apprehensions in life? You might be doing things now you that you thought you couldn’t do in graphics design or life in general, right?

  • Pam / Hey, Miss Adventures! / October 15, 2016 AT 4:24 AM

    Amen to freelancing not being easy. It never was but, here I am, still doing okay after a year. Hahaha. I love the flexibility in my time though so I won’t be going back to the corporate world soon…or maybe ever. I’d rather start my own business.

    Anyway, I have nothing but praises for graphic designers and wish to go on some formal schooling (short course, maybe) so I can learn the basics and enhance whatever it is that I already know (from reading blogs).

    And you know what, I totally believe that you can be anything and achieve anything you want as long as you really set your mind to it. 😀

  • Graphic design is definitely not easy! When I started doing freelance work, I had a couple of graphic design projects. The process is really taxing but when you get to see your output, it’s totally worth it. 🙂

  • Thelittlelai: Beyond limits / October 15, 2016 AT 2:16 PM

    I always value people who are definitely good in their own craft, especially if I don’t have it. Graphic design is not easy and I truly agree with that even I have not tried doing such. In a simple computer usage and terminology I even discover it difficult how much more if I engage in graphic design? I truly salute you guys for having such a rare gift and would able to make use of it for good and for living. You all deserve much appreciation for what you do.

  • I’m a frustrated graphic artist. I’m not good in drawing but that’s one talent/skill I badly wish I have. I do know how to conceptualize. I do some of the images for my client. And I only use Canva. Haha. Because, no time to learn photoshop for now. Keep it up Moh. It’s a dog eat dog world out there so dedication and hard work are both necessary. Kudos for following your passion.

  • I remember the first time I did a graphic design about a technical school and it was really fun! I got to win an award while doing something I would definitely enjoy for the rest of my life. 😀

  • Jullian Robin Sibi / October 15, 2016 AT 3:36 PM

    I have to admit, I was tempted to the concept of freelancing. The problem is that I need a stable income and I don’t think freelancing is always stable. Graphics design is getting easier to get and use. 🙂

  • Foureyed laagan / October 15, 2016 AT 5:07 PM

    I was a freelance graphic artist when I was college so I can feel and understand the things pointed here. It’s a challenging job especially when you think your design is already best but for the customers, it’s not haha. Paetss

  • AJ of Wandering Soul Scamper / October 16, 2016 AT 3:39 AM

    Haha I can relate most of these points you’be mentioned. Graphics design is not that easy. We have had graphics design subjects way back in college and I kindda love it but its not my thing.

    These things happen also in the software industry.

  • Carlo Andrew Olano / October 16, 2016 AT 6:53 AM

    Well, freelancing is actually about freedom. I think it will be sustainable once you a create an awesome portfolio and people seek you out. Keep doing what you are doing and soon I will see at the other side (freelancing). 😉

    Freelancing could also mean that you decide to be a start-up and an own business. Just keep an open mind. hahahah

  • I get to see the works of graphic designers due to my partner’s line of work. He’s a front end web dev. lead and would always work close to graphic designers. Conseptualizing is never easy and it would take patience and an artist eye to do so.

  • Making sketches and painting some picture makes me enjoying what i do but after reading this blog it makes me say that being a graphic designer need a hard time in making that logos of companys

    • wow. you sketch too chris? i wanna see your works too. 🙂 i haven’t sketch for years already. I will try to post some in my blog if I have time.

  • I’ve had the knowledge that GD is absolutely not an easy thing to learn since I am an IT student and I got plenty of friends who do GD. All these 8 misconceptions in your list should also be removed from the minds of those who think this way. People should read this post Moh! haha.

    x, Kat of Nested Thoughts

  • Channel Marie Imperial / October 16, 2016 AT 2:43 PM

    Yes! Freelancing is not easy at all. There were times that I did not earn for many months. I had to save while I had salary because I didn’t know when I’ll stop earning. Clients walk in and out. But I’m glad I’m stable now, and we’re heading to a new direction, both of us. I can see us owning a condo unit and car because of this Moh! Hahahaha!


  • As someone who dabbles in graphic work myself, I can definitely relate to all of the things you listed. So much that it almost hurts remembering the many times I’ve face-palmed after talking to someone who was just so oblivious to the hardship that that kind of work actually entails. I really do hope people become aware of the facts more so that the misconceptions may be wiped out.

  • Rome of Basta Bisaya / October 17, 2016 AT 5:42 PM

    Well, daghan jud ang misconceptions sa design. It isn’t easy and takes too much time to create and conceptualize. Cheers to reality!

  • Richie Bunalos / October 18, 2016 AT 1:13 PM

    I am willing to learn on how to do graphics design.
    NO work is easy.

  • I’m an architecture student and I think I can relate to this post if you generalize the idea of design not just in graphics. No. 8 is really spot on. Haha

  • I think why they charge higher since they are the one who get’s the idea. The idea which makes the business grow.. Without a proper good design like their logo.. Once the company logo is known, the graphic designer is very proud of what he/she did.