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Graphic Designer

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Graphic Designer

Emily is a qualified and experienced Graphic Designer with a proven track record of creating and implementing innovative ideas across multiple mediums. Over the years, she has gained expert knowledge in design principles and tools. Her previous, graphic-heavy CV was in dire need of an update, so she has selected a simple yet modern Otago CV template.

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"Creative graphic design professional with 15 years of experience creating and implementing ideas that inform, inspire, or motivate users. Expert knowledge of design principles combined with a mastery of design software across multiple mediums. Adept at motivating and managing team members to meet deadlines while guaranteeing quality, consistency, and brand alignment. "

Emily Thompson - Graphic Designer

CV example - Graphic Designer - Otago template

Table of contents

How to write a CV for a Graphic Designer

You’re creative, design-focused, and love making eye-catching designs, but when it comes to writing a CV, you’re baffled as to why you are not getting through to the interview phase. Well, the thing is, a CV does not need to be graphic-heavy. All that truly matters is the content and layout. The aim is to simplify your experience, skills, and key achievements to showcase why you are the best candidate for the job. If you have design projects, best to insert a link on your CV or send a portfolio as a separate attachment. 

The need for graphic designers and companies to continuously increase their digital presence is growing. Choosing a career in graphic design allows a lot of flexibility, whether you decide to work for an agency, freelance, or in-house. A few career paths within the umbrella of graphic design include but are not limited to:

  • Product Designer

  • Packaging Designer

  • Game Designer

  • Brand Identify Designer

  • Animation Designer

  • User Experience (UX) or User Interface (UI) Designer

  • Production Artist

  • Creative Director

  • Lettering and Typography Designer

This article is for you if you’re seeking a change or are just curious about what makes an excellent graphic designer CV. We provide the latest information on what makes a good CV, skills to include, and graphic design CV examples for different levels.

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The CV writing process: Where to start?

A graphic design CV is no different from a regular CV in that it should follow an easy-to-read, clear structure.  Whether you are qualified or just starting your career, include some form of a portfolio to showcase your design skills while also drawing attention to your technical proficiencies. So, if you're ready to learn how to write a CV for a graphic designer job, let's get started.

Master CV for a Graphic Designer

No matter what field you specialise in, a master CV comes highly recommended. This document aims to keep a log of all your past experience, skills, or achievements and ideally in a centralised file location such as a Google Drive. You may think this is time-consuming, but once you’ve done it, it will only get easier.

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Pro Tip

Make it a habit to track your day-to-day duties or any projects you have worked on within your role. That way, when updating your CV, you can easily refer to this document to refresh your memory.

Job-specific CV for a Graphic Designer

A career in graphic design is desirable for many reasons, but it can also be very competitive. With so many people choosing the creative field, you must create a solid graphic design CV to stand out. The importance of tailoring your CV can’t be iterated enough. Ensure you use the correct keywords and skills that recruiters or hiring managers have listed in the job description.

Graphic Designer CV Example

Graphic Designer CV example

Download this CV example - Graphic Designer CV

Emily is a qualified and experienced Graphic Designer with a proven track record of creating and implementing innovative ideas across multiple mediums. Over the years, she has gained expert knowledge in design principles and tools. Her previous, graphic-heavy CV was in dire need of an update, so she has selected a simple yet modern Otago CV template.

What to include in a graphic design CV? Tips and examples

As a creative thinker who enjoys using technology to bring ideas to life, you might want to do the same for your CV. However, with automated software and recruiters or hiring managers quickly glancing over your CV, you will want to keep it as clear, concise, and relevant as possible. The end goal is to show off your essential skills, experience, and achievements so that you can elaborate on each within the interview. Yes, having a solid portfolio or website to showcase your work is highly recommended, but a well-written, to-the-point CV is what you will need when writing a graphic design CV. 

The CV for a Graphic Designer posted later in this article is an excellent example of the same primary sections you'll include with any speciality. Take some time to review the layout, structure, and wording we've used to communicate skills, experience, and design jargon. For more information, refer to the article on how to write a good CV.

How to write a personal profile for a Graphic Designer CV

The personal profile is your first chance to grab the attention of the recruiter or hiring manager. Essentially, it serves as an elevator pitch that needs to start with a powerful statement. Similar to your headline on LinkedIn or short bio on other social media platforms, you need to keep it brief but relevant.

A well-written personal profile for a graphic designer should contain your title, years of experience, and relevant soft skills. In addition, the primary purpose of your role is to focus on what makes a graphic designer—alternatively, the types of roles you are targeting if you are a recent graduate or changing careers. 

Entry-level Graphic Designer

Recently qualified Graphic Designer with certifications in user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design. Skilled in basic design principles and Adobe tools with a passion for implementing design solutions. Experienced in using data and user feedback to create wireframes, prototypes, and user flows while ensuring continuous testing and feedback evaluation.

Senior Graphic Designer

Creative Art Director with 15+ year track record of meeting and exceeding client expectations. Dynamic leader with proven ability to motivate, guide, and manage cross-functional teams to achieve project objectives while remaining within budget. Passionate about solving problems with innovative design solutions by leveraging excellent communication, interpersonal, and brand development skills.

What skills to put on a graphic design CV?

A graphic designer can specialise in many different areas including but not limited to brand identity design, marketing and advertising, product packaging, web or user interface design, or print. Whichever route you choose, you need to ensure you include skills relevant to the job. 

When it comes to deciding which skills to put on your graphic design CV, it is pretty straightforward. Skills on a CV should be balanced between hard, soft, and transferable skills. Sometimes, you must elaborate on technical skills such as software and tools. For example, you can mention Adobe Creative Suit but be more specific in the technical skills section. Alternatively, incorporate the exact tools into your work experience or education. Refer to the skills article for more information.

A hard skill is most commonly gained through training, school, or work experiences and typically can be proven. Soft skills refer to character traits, interpersonal skills, and professional attributes that are developed and sharpened in your daily life. A transferable skill can be categorised into hard, soft, or even more technical skills, such as a specific program or tool. 

Examples of hard skills for a Graphic Designer

  • Project management

  • Adobe Creative Suite

  • Sketching

  • HTML/Web design

  • Design strategy

Examples of soft skills for Graphic Designer

  • Creativity

  • Curiosity

  • Problem-solving

  • Attention to detail

  • Passion

Examples of transferable skills for a Graphic Designer

  • Time management

  • Presenting

  • Planning

  • Organisation

  • Verbal and written communication

Examples of technical skills for a Graphic Designer

  • Adobe Photoshop

  • Sketch

  • Adobe Illustrator

  • Adobe InDesign

  • CorelDRAW Graphics

Work experience on a graphic design CV: How to include it with tips and examples

Whether you have experience or are just starting your career in graphic design, recruiters or hiring managers want to see what you did versus what you achieved. Your achievements include projects you’ve worked on, clients you’ve assisted, training, or new graphic design software. There are a few ways in which you can gain valuable experience. For example, volunteering for charities will help you build a strong portfolio. 

Your career history should only include the relevant experience to your job targets. Suppose you have an experience that is not necessarily related to design. In that case, you can strategically alter your duties by focusing on transferable skills that will grab the attention of the recruiters as well as pass the automation software. Always make sure to keep the information truthful so that you can back it up within an interview. 

We recommend listing your experience in reverse chronological order (or current to oldest). Include the company's name, the dates of employment, and the location while differentiating between duties versus key achievements. This will give the company an idea of your practical work experience, especially if they are looking for someone with your experience. Refer to the work experience on a CV blog for more information.

How to list education on a graphic design CV

To work in the design field, you need to be knowledgeable about specific tools, processes, and techniques. Although this can be self-taught, it is always important to back it up on your CV with some training if you still need to get secondary or tertiary education. Only include the highest level of study if you have completed tertiary schooling. 

However, to become a graphic designer in the UK, ideally, you would need to start off with a foundation diploma in art and design. The type of information you need to include within the education section, like other sections, must be short and to the point. The one thing that you can do as a recent graduate or student seeking an internship would be to elaborate on projects, relevant courses, and high grades to make your CV stand out. Refer to our skills-based CV example or graduate article for more information.

 The following should be listed:

  • Institution/school

  • Degree or diploma type

  • Location

  • Date range, year completed, or in progress.

What certifications to include for a graphic design CV

This section is a must for anyone who is changing careers or has completed several forms of professional training. Including certifications shows that you are someone who is proactive and takes the initiative by making sure to stay ahead of the latest industry trends. 

This section varies depending on the type of graphic design positions you're targeting. Most jobs will not require a specific certification or licence. However, certifications in some graphic design specialities help gain a competitive advantage. Some of the critical certifications you may want to list on your graphic design CV include the following:

So, how do you go about putting this section together? It's straightforward. List all your current certifications - that's all there is to it. We recommend following the format:

  • Course name

  • Issued by

  • Issued date or in progress

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Key takeaways

We hope this article has shed some light on what makes a good CV and, most importantly, how to write a graphic design CV. Having more insight into the different career paths and CV sections will help set you up for success. 

The key thing we want you to take away from this article is the need for consistency and attention to detail. Your first reaction might be to choose a graphic-heavy design template. Although the template is also important, the content is more important.

Here are some additional tips:

  • Make sure the font is easy to read. 

  • Proofread your CV, use Grammarly, or share it with family or friends for a different perspective.

  • Avoid white space and unnecessary CV sections irrelevant to your job targets. 

  • Always make sure your personal details, previous employment history, and education match what you've stated on your application or cover letter.

Next steps?

Need to polish some inconsistencies in your text or improve your writing? Check our CVMaker website for professional CV Writing Services or our easy-to-use CV and Cover Letter Builder. 

FAQ

Is graphic design a good career choice?

If you are someone who wants to combine your passion for art, technology, and communication, then yes, graphic designers are needed in every industry, so depending on which type of design you want to produce or the types of company you want to work with, it is a great career choice. 

How do I become a Graphic Designer with no experience?

Start by building up a portfolio through freelancing or experimenting with design tools to produce work you are passionate about sharing. In addition to this, start by networking with people online or through groups of other professionals to see which are the latest trends in graphic design. Complete online courses that you can start including on your CV.

What should a Graphic Designer put on a CV?

Your portfolio, achievements, and technical proficiencies are some of the key things to include in your graphic design CV. Recruiters want to see the type of work you have provided, whether you are familiar with the latest tools and trends, and what you have achieved through university or past work experience. 

Where can I apply for graphic design jobs?

With CVMaker, you can apply and manage all your applications in one place. Alternatively,  LinkedIn is a strong platform used by professionals worldwide. If you have a strong LinkedIn profile that matches the information you have included on your CV, then it could be a great way to land your first or new graphic designer position. 

What is the best template for a graphic design CV template? 

There is no one perfect CV template but rather a combination of a modern CV template with well-written and structured content. Speed up your CV writing process by choosing from our 20+ professional CV templates.

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