graphic artist vs graphic designer image
Graphic Design

Graphic Artist vs Graphic Designer: Is There a Difference?

If you are a fan of the world of visual, you probably stumbled upon the terms graphic artist and graphic designer. Little did you know that these terms are not synonyms and they mean completely different things. Even though they are related to the very same domain, there are opposing views you should know about.

In case you are looking for a job that would be suitable for your skills and preferences, paying attention to the characteristics of each concept mentioned above is essential.

Both the graphic artist and the graphic designer have to involve creative abilities into their work. But what makes them so contrasting?

Continue to read this article if you want to learn more about this topic. Graphic artist vs graphic designer: what’s the best for you?

The world of visual content

People express themselves better visually. Words are sometimes not powerful enough to convey the ideas and thoughts of a person. Visual content is stronger than any other form of suggesting a belief, an opinion, a perception.

It is important to understand that delivering visual content always has a purpose behind it. People who create visuals do it because of something that drives them to.

Graphic artists might be driven by imagination while graphic designers have tasks to complete because that’s their day job. This purpose is the one who guides the visual outcome in one direction or another. The skills involved in creating visuals cannot be learned through studying – one has to possess them from the very beginning.

Once you’ll understand the topic graphic artist vs graphic designer, you might start perceiving visuals in a completely new way. One thing is certain – visuals will always be required in order to empower an idea, regardless of its type.

Most people prefer visuals over any other method of communicating, so the industry will continuously evolve.

Being a graphic artist

For defining both concepts, the characteristics of each should be stated.

A graphic artist is a person who doesn’t necessarily have proficient schooling in design of any kind. Graphic artists are usually talented persons who would like to create artwork of various types. They work freely, using their imagination and their own, unique style. They transpose into visual content whatever seems relevant to them.

Graphic artists can create content for print shops or similar production-type jobs. If you are familiar with Instagram or other visual-based platforms, you can search for hashtags such as artwork or illustration to see freelancers in action.

Graphic artwork mostly refers to expressing thoughts and ideas that the artist has, not something that the client desires. Of course, a theme is given, but the artist has no limitations in creating the final product.

Art is based on creativity and talent, unlike exact tasks that require respecting a set of rules and preferences.

A graphic artist facilitates storytelling, idea through image, impressing people emotionally with his work. Of course, graphic artists still respect design elements and principles, otherwise, their work wouldn’t be visually pleasing.Their compositions are simply less strict compared to other graphic design works.

The fields a graphic artist works in include illustration, graphic novels, comic books, movie illustration and so on.

As you may notice, the denominator between these fields would be the freedom they get when creating artwork. Their purpose is not to communicate something effectively, but to entertain the viewer in a visual manner.

A graphic artist’s most important weapon is his unique style.

Being a graphic designer

On the other hand, being a graphic designer involves different sets of rules and a distinct purpose.

Graphic designers have to communicate an idea in the most facile way possible. Sometimes, they have to focus on the commercial point of view rather than the artistic one.

People who hire graphic designers want to solve a certain problem they encountered with delivering a message. To work as a graphic designer, you need to have specific schooling in this domain, as well as a lot of experience and a good portfolio.

Designing is based on rules, principles, and regulations one cannot avoid. Although graphic designers work with visuals, they don’t have to put the same amount of creativity into it.

graphic designer image

Being a graphic artist vs graphic designer involves a lot of dissimilarities that you should be aware of. The purpose of creation is the focal point of the discussion.

Their work is more specific – the client states exactly what he wants and a graphic designer has to follow his indications strictly. It doesn’t mean that they don’t have to come up with new ideas. Depending on each project a graphic designer gets, the requirements change.

They don’t get full freedom, as the outcome should respect the customer’s preferences instead of their own. Maintaining a good communication between you and your client as a graphic designer is a condition, not an option. Without properly stating what they want, you risk creating something that’s not relevant to what the customers expected.

A graphic designer has to respect a strict style which is adapted entirely to the needs of the client. He also has to follow the changes happening in terms of graphic design, from programs and new technologies to influences and trends.

Adapting to change is a rule that graphic designers have to follow.

Graphic artist vs graphic designer

Now that you have a better grasp on what each term means, let’s point out the differences between a graphic artist and a graphic designer.

As mentioned in this article, both the artist and the designer work with a similar set of skills.

But what element is differentiating the two? The answer is simple – the way they use that set of skills and the freedom they get when working on a project.

While a graphic artist might get to reach his absolute potential in terms of imagination and creativity, a graphic designer can be limited to the rules set by his client. In the same time, the graphic artist is not bound to follow any design rules or principles, but the graphic designer has to.

The artist and the designer have to approach different perspectives, regardless of the project they work on.

Being flexible and respecting deadlines is part of each one’s job. The contrast resides in the fact that a graphic artist might take longer to finish his project, as it involves a lengthier creational process compared to the work of a graphic designer.

The battle between a graphic artist vs graphic designer is all about the way they approach and find solutions to problems. One is more expressiveness-oriented while the other is focusing on delivering a clear message as effectively as possible.

The work of a graphic artist leaves room for interpretation, as he has plenty of freedom to put into his art. On the other hand, a graphic designer should come across with unhindered visuals to express a message.

Final words

This article offered complex definitions and descriptions of a graphic artist and a graphic designer. You should be able to make the difference between the two and decide which one is more appropriate for what you need – no matter it is about pursuing a career in this domain or hiring someone to help you with one of your own projects.

You Might Also Like...