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Does one need to be good at drawing to pursue a career in graphic design?

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Even though I don't plan on pursuing a career in the graphic design field, this has always been a question of curiosity. I'm taking a communications technology course where we look at graphic design, and our teacher said that you don't need to know how to draw at all. Rather, you just need to know how to communicate effectively and know how to utilize the tools properly. Any input would be appreciated. #graphic-design #art #design #graphic-designer #career

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Terri’s Answer

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Hello, Aun. Great question! As a graphic designer who went to art school to be an illustrator and painter, my answer is no. A person does not need to know how to draw to pursue a career in graphic design. What they do need, however, is an understanding of balance, space, composition and content and how all of these things work together to create a cohesive and clear design. Having the right tools is also important. My team uses Adobe Creative Cloud programs all day, every day, especially InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator and Dreamweaver. It's important to have a trained eye as well as experience with the software which, when combined, can create a strong piece.

For more info on graphic design and career info, I recommend AIGA, the professional association for design, Communication Arts as well as connecting with design groups on LinkedIn.
Thank you for your answer! I like how you tied this in with your personal experience and gave advice for developing this into a career! Now that I'm diving further into an illustration with adobe illustrator and animate, I'm finding that knowing how to use the right technique and technology is more important than having the ability to drawing quick sketches and refining them into a notable piece. Even with this in mind, Drawing does seem to utilize a similar workflow to get from start to finish. With that being said, I appreciate your insight! Aun M. Translate
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Shazia’s Answer

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No
You are supposed to be a good imaginative thinker to imagine and create .Happy Thinking
Thank you for your insight! I see a lot of people saying the same thing you are saying as well. I will definitely keep in mind all these perspectives when learning this as a hobby! Aun M. Translate
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Judith’s Answer

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Drawing is always a good basic skill for art professionals. Today's technology may simplify this but drawing teaches good composition, shading and form so it is a plus to develop this.

Studying drawing does not need to become a professional level. It does develop the eye's capability to discern good design. I believe that if you a pursuing a career in art, it would be a good idea to engage with drawing, application of color and perspective.
Thank you for your insight! It's always great to know the perspectives of other educators before jumping to conclusions. I do agree with you, many of my friends are great at using technology to design impressive products because of the drawing they have invested their time in. I personally haven't invested that time, but have always found it intriguing and something to do on the side. Thanks again! Aun M. Translate
No You are supposed to be a good imaginative thinker Shazia Imran Translate
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Todd’s Answer

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Drawing well isn't a requirement to be a good designer. Design sensitivity is important. Going to school helps develop that sense. So does work experience. It's helpful to have others you can show your work to. People's whose opinion you value. Posting on Facebook and asking fellow group members can yield positive and negative feedback. So you have to be prepared for that. I've drawn my whole life. Drawing has enabled me to have a richer experience in my career. But others I've gone to school with that couldn't draw, were no less a designer than I would consider myself. In some ways they were better.
Thank you for your answer! All these responses are reaffirming that I can do well in my graphic design and animations class, given I put in sufficient time and work! Additionally, I liked how you used "Design sensitivity". After doing a bit of research, I have found that a sense of design is very important to understand elements of design and situations where you can use critical thinking to identify how one will interpret the design, and applying attention to certain details. I'm still trying to learn how these design principles can help me reap better results, and so far I am loving it! Thanks again, and all the best! Aun M. Translate
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James’s Answer

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At the end of the day is to be a creative individual and use the tools you have in front of you in the most dynamic way.

Be abstract and different! Having the ability to draw isn't everything at the end of the day - there is so much more to it!
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Ted’s Answer

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Understanding communication is a very valuable and underappreciated skill for designers. My undergrad was in Human Communication and I feel it gives me a "6th sense" for designing learning materials that strictly visual designers lack. It helps to develop your skills with design software, but conventional drawing is definitely not a prerequisite.
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Vineeth’s Answer

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While most people assume that you need to be an excellent drawer and illustrator to even consider becoming a graphic designer, the truth is that drawing skills are rarely even mentioned in graphic design job descriptions. While not necessary, knowing how to draw can be an advantage in graphic design.
Graphic design may not require professional drawing skills or fine art background, but UX designer Essentially, all a designer needs to know is how to sketch out basic design content.
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Gloria’s Answer

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Hi Aun,

The short answer is no. I would say that you need to have an artistic eye, but the physical need to draw is low on the list. I say this for a few reasons. First, where I work, graphic design is one of the skills required for the role that I do, Instructional Designer. It is not a job in and of itself. It is a skill set that I have to tap in order to my job well. At my company, we do have Graphic Designers who support my role, however, there are rare times when the graphic designers do all the work on their own. Depending upon where you work, you can expect to have others to depend on for skills that you may lack. Another reason is that graphic design isn't always about designing logos specifically and more about creating a visual experience. I would have to agree with your teacher that you should make sure to focus on communication - how you can use visual elements to communicate. This is not just drawings. This can be about composition of elements on a page or the color palette that you are using. It is also in the words that you choose and how you present them.

I think that you have chosen an exciting field to be a part of. I hope that you find success with it.
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