Graphic Design Resume Examples

Even graphic designers need an incredible resume to succeed in an application. The problem is: the artistic field is one of the most competitive for job seekers.

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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 8,800 jobs for graphic designers were expected from 2018 to 2028. And the Bureau also estimated that around 280,000 designers were active in the U.S. by 2019.

On the other hand, in 2017, around 53.4% of graphic designers were female. In other words, this market is booming with opportunities.

With such a competitive but thriving market, your application should be memorable. And that’s why using graphic design resume examples is so important.

For this reason, we’ve crafted a guide for designers with examples and tips on how to compose a brilliant graphic designer resume –even without experience in the job hunt.

Let’s begin!

What to Include in a Graphic Design Resume?

Embellishing a resume for graphic design is tempting. After all, you should display all your talents from the first impression, right?

Not exactly.

Countless graphic designers display too much of their creative abilities on paper, which is great, but not everything.

The layout is critical, but it’s not the only crucial element when applying for a job.

Believe it or not, a clear, not-so-fancy format could be, by far, more effective than the artistic masterpiece that many candidates try to deliver.

And then comes the portfolio.

As a rule, the portfolio is the most valuable part of your application, while the graphic designer resume is its complement.  As a result, the structure of a graphic design resume is simple and, generally, the same as for most CVs:

  • Contact info (name, phone nomber, email, and address)
  • Summary
  • Experience
  • Education
  • Skills
  • Other Sections
Note: some graphic designers and recruiters prefer to remove the education segment for considering it unnecessary. Make sure to write your phone number and email in the contact info.

But why unnecessary?

In short, this section isn’t as relevant as your experience, work titles, or achievements. Not to mention, it leaves less space to point out more relevant fields.

Graphic designer

And What’s the Best Format for a Graphic Designer Resume?

The following formats are the most effective for job seekers; all of them are suitable for graphic designers:

  • Reverse-chronological resume
  • Functional resume
  • Combination resume
The reverse-chronological style is the best choice to exhibit your work history along with your most relevant achievements. So it’s more effective when you have an excellent relatable background and good references.

The functional is more fitting if you haven’t begun your professional path. Or else if you prefer to try a more creative approach and just focus on your talents.

The combination resume allows you to get the most of both formats in a single paper: a detailed professional experience section and a segment to showcase your best skills.

Tip: still not sure about what format is best? Check our article on which resume format is best for you or have a look at our repertoire of resume templates

Graphic Designer Resume Summary

The summary is like your presentation card: the first impression the hiring manager will retain after reading your graphic design resume. Therefore, this segment should show who you are in a single flash, just like a stunning picture.

Create an introduction that would captivate clients. Think about your document as the gate for countless projects.

Use around four to six sentences to mention your capabilities and accomplishments. Also, speak in the past tense and avoid using subjects like “I” and “we” and inject powerful verbs to illustrate your work history.

Verbs like “improved”, “increased”, “created”, “managed”, and “designed”, among others, show you as a proactive, skillful professional and can take your graphic designer resume to the next level.

Thoughtful designer using graphic tablet and computer

Examples

First, let’s check a good summary for a graphic designer:

CORRECT
Result-driven graphic designer with six years of experience in marketing and online advertising. Specialized in 3D animation through Houdini and Lightwave. Well-versed motions graphic and website design. Defined the visual identity of Resume Examples, designing logos, landing pages, infographics, and general website layout.

Now, let’s break this graphic designer resume example down:

The summary comprises just three phrases in a friendly format. This way, you can capture the reader’s attention without daunting them with too many words.

On the other hand, the summary describes both professional experience and area of expertise. As a result, the hiring manager will understand the candidate’s profile almost immediately, giving it better chances in the procurement process.

Tip: you can also use bullet points to help the reader scan your resume more quickly.

And now, let’s take a look at what not to do with this segment:

INCORRECT
Graphic designer with extensive experience. Expert in Adobe Creator and many designing tools. Looking to join a creative agency to display all my capabilities.

“Extensive experience” is an ambiguous phrase that doesn’t describe anything to the reader. And the same happens with “many design tools” and with “my capabilities.”

Note: s an applicant, you don’t want recruitment managers to wonder which tools you command nor how much experience you have. You want them engaged with your resume and with no doubts about your capacities.

Tips to Make Your Work Experience Stand Out

Your graphic design resume wouldn’t be that appealing without the experience section. When you start chasing your dream job, consider that some managers check the work experience in advance, focusing only on your work history.  Therefore, you should highlight your job titles and achievements accordingly.

Note: your freelance work will give you extra points in any application. Even the most professional graphic designers and art directors work or have worked as freelancers.

Now, remember these tips to write an effective experience section:

  • Keep it short and relevant.
  • Point out relevant achievements.
  • Use short phrases.
  • Do not focus on core responsibilities.
Whether for a graphic designer resume, a job position for a freelancer, or any kind of application, everything spins around how you can help the company you apply to.

woman ready to take over web design

Graphic Design Experience Examples

Now, let’s see how to craft this section accordingly:

Graphic Designer

TheArtAttacker

2016 – 2019

  • Created three marketing campaigns that increased the brand’s ROI up to 26% in one year
  • Reinvented the company’s web layout
  • Established new layouts to improve the brand’s identity across distinct platforms
  • Collaborated with external graphic designers to redesign clients’ websites

The structure is simple: title, company’s or employer’s name, and work time. Plus, you can boost this segment and level it up by using bullets.

Check two more examples:

Senior Graphic Designer

Picasso’s Arts Studio

2019 – Present

  • Conceptualized brand’s identity by creating company logos, covers, and website layouts
  • Created infographics for the website content
  • Designed a successful brochure that generated a 17% profit increase.

Senior Social Media Manger

ExampleSudios

2018 – 2021

  • Designed images for posts on Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter
  • Modified the layout of the brand’s social media profiles
  • Enhanced two marketing campaigns for Instagram in 2020 that attracted +2000 subscribers
  • Collaborated with print design specialists for offline publications

The experience should be minimalistic and descriptive at the same time. Center on achievements rather than core responsibilities.

Consider that hiring managers prefer to glimpse what you can come up with. Besides, as recruiters, they’ll understand your core responsibilities by reading the job title and the accomplishments.

Tip: if you don’t have experience, create samples to link to your portfolio and hone your skills while getting that first job.

Web design software

Best Skills to Include in your Graphic Design Resume

To stand out in the procurement process, you’ve got to tackle dozens of skillful candidates with one paper. And the best way to show yourself as the best fit is by showcasing your skill set.

The most relevant skills are mentioned in the job description as instructions, core responsibilities, and strengths.

If you command some of the key software required for the job, you must definitely highlight it in your graphic designer resume. This way, you introduce yourself as the ideal professional profile they’re eager to hire.

And if the required abilities don’t match your skill set, you can include the most similar or transferable skills.

Hard Skills

Hard skills entail technical, academic, digital, and specialized knowledge. For example:

  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Photoshop
  • Corel
  • 3D animation
  • Acrobat
  • GIMP
  • Adobe Creative Suite

Soft Skills

These include interpersonal and non-specialized abilities, such as:

  • Teamwork
  • Organization
  • Communication
  • Time Management
  • Research
  • Exhaustiveness
  • Creativity
Be careful. These lists are meant to provide you with ideas to craft your graphic designer resume, but not to blindly copy-paste them in in your template.

Plenty of candidates make this list too long, making the resume lengthy and difficult to read. Avoid including too many graphic design skills.

Tip: write down an extensive list of your most relevant skills and select only the ones that best fit the job offer. Also, check our article about what skills to include in your resume if you need more ideas.

Graphic design partners working together renovation and technology concept - on a desktop computer

Display Your Certifications

Certifications can take your resume to the next level, introducing you as a prepared, skillful designer to rely on. Many job offers don’t even require them, which is good news for starting designers. However, the most profitable jobs usually require a good set of certificates.

Graphic designers who meet the requirements and demonstrate their skills from the resume stand alone and stand out from the first impression.

A strong background could make the difference beforehand. So let’s take a look at how to write this section:

Certifications

  • Adobe illustrator Certified
  • Adobe Creative Suite Certified
  • Microsoft Office Suite Expert Certified
  • HTML – CSS Certified

These certifications are part of our graphic designer resume example. However, to create a tailor-fit document, look for the software programs specified in the job opening.

Suggestions for this Segment

Let us guess: you think you should throw all the courses under your belt to enhance your resume.

Hold on. Hang in there.

Many candidates try to hide their lack of experience with these, but this approach doesn’t turn out in a professional resume. The problem is: most recruiters notice this immediately, moving forward to the next resume with no hesitation.

For instance, an 8-hour course on Domestika is not the same as three years in a painting class at a recognized art academy.

For this reason, you should center on your most relevant courses. Don’t try to fill in the blanks with all the courses you’ve performed. And above all: put your major at the top of the section.

And now, check a list of suggestions to fuel your application even further:

  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe Creative Suite
  • Photoshop InDesign
  • CorelDraw Graphic Suites
  • Affinity Designer
  • Sketch
  • GIMP
  • C++
  • CSS
  • HTML5
Again, the best way to know what software you should add is by rereading the job description and include the software the company demands, or else the most similar programs or the ones that best portrait your design skills.

Include Your Languages

Languages are gate-openers for every career, even for graphic design resumes. Mention that you speak a second language fluently and you’ll multiply your chances of getting your dream job.

And the best part: you can highlight your languages using 15 words or less, depending on how many you speak.

Note: you can include your languages in the certifications section, the skills section, or create another segment just for them.

Now, let’s see how to tailor this small section to finish with our graphic design resume examples:

English – Native

French – B2 (Upper-intermediate proficiency)

DELF Certificate

German – B1 (Intermediate)

TestDaf

young female graphic designer using graphic tablet at desk digital artist working at home

Tips & Tricks to Write the Best Resume for Graphic Design

Considering that a hiring manager may read –scan through– hundreds of resumes, we’ve got some tips so that you keep gaining opportunities of landing your dream job:

  • Match your graphic design resume with the job description. In most cases, the job opening contains all the information you need to excel at the procurement process, not to mention the best keywords.

 

  • Stick to the one-page format. Imagine this as an elegant minimalistic masterpiece of yours. Convey all the vital information on one page. And structure your sections harmonically, making the most of your template to deliver a neat paper.

 

  • Vet your resume ruthlessly. Try to reduce all the information up to half. Look for wordy phrases, redundant or unclear sentences, not-so-relevant aptitudes, and anything you can remove.

 

  • Don’t include too many skills. Fifteen designing tools would make your paper overwhelming. And you don’t aim to overwhelm recruiters but to engage them effectively.

 

  • Beware your grammar. All your effort might go to the trash for one or two typos and a grammar mistake. If the language isn’t your strength, have your resume checked before applying or use any proofreading software.

 

  • Remember your portfolio. Your resume and portfolio should complement each other. Optimizing and sending both will demonstrate your design skills amazingly, positioning you as one of the best candidates for an interview. Always have a link to your online portfolio and include clients, projects, and testimonials.

 

  • Show off your website. Include a link in your graphic designer resume to your website –in case you have it– in addition to attaching your portfolio. Just make sure your page reveals your talents.
Last but not least: don’t forget the value of cover letters. Our graphic designer resume example will help you create a solid presentation. But, you should complement it with a good cover letter. Think about this: countless candidates don’t even consider cover letters necessary, which means that this is an excellent opportunity to stand out on the graphic design.

Key Takeaways

  • Don’t overdo it. Don’t try too hard to be creative. A Graphic design resume doesn’t have to be the fanciest, classiest masterpiece the recruiter will ever read. It must be effective.
  • Personalize your application to fit the job offer. Play with the company’s color palette and use the keywords of the position when possible.
  • Prioritize achievements over core responsibilities as we did in the graphic design resume examples.
  • Try your best to make your file one page long.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

How to format a graphic design resume?

Begin with our sample and template and modify it as you prefer. Play with the color palette at will and create an effective but amazing graphic design resume.  Just let our resume builder take the heavy lifting and focus on highlighting your talents and work history.

How to display publications on my resume?

The best way is to include them in your portfolio alongside your resume. Or else link to your online portfolio and online page in your contact information segment.

You can also mention the most relevant publications and projects in your experience section and add a link to your portfolio. Yet, remember that you must always link to your online portfolio, Make sure to pack it with your best projects, whether as a freelancer or art director.

 

Display your designing skills with our resume templates. Even in this career candidates struggle to come up with a winning resume, but writing your graphic design resume doesn’t have to be an overwhelming task.

So, display your designing skills with our resume templates. eep growing your career. Get that project in that company with our graphic designer resume example and create a marvelous presentation.

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