Can You Teach Yourself Graphic Design? (2024)

Can You Teach Yourself Graphic Design? (1)

Are you looking to teach yourself graphic design? If so, you may be wondering if it is possible. The answer is yes—it can definitely be done! With the right resources and tools at your disposal, anyone can become a graphic designer.

However, there are some things to keep in mind as you embark on this journey. While there are plenty of online tutorials that teach basic graphic design skills for free or low cost, they often lack the depth and breadth of knowledge required for professional success. To truly excel as a graphic designer, you need a more comprehensive approach—which can only come from a comprehensive course like Shillington’s Online Graphic Design Course.

Why should I teach myself graphic design online?

One of the positives of teaching yourself graphic design online is the freedom you have. You don’t have to worry about tuition fees, location or class schedules. You can learn at your own pace and on your own schedule. Additionally, there are plenty of online resources available, such as YouTube tutorials, blogs and forums dedicated to learning graphic design online. These resources can teach you everything from the basics of color theory to advanced design software techniques.

Can I learn graphic design on my own?

However, teaching yourself graphic design online can be challenging. Without the guidance of a teacher or mentor, it can be difficult to stay motivated and consistent. You may also struggle with time management as you balance learning with other responsibilities like work, family, and hobbies. Moreover, without a structured curriculum, you may miss out on important concepts or fundamentals. In the end, you may find yourself with gaps in your knowledge and skills that you would have otherwise picked up in a structured course.

That’s where an online graphic design course like Shillington’s could make a massive difference. A course will teach you industry-standard knowledge and skills, even if you have no previous experience or design background. Moreover, it will give you the practical tools and guidance you need to apply your learning—something which teaching yourself online can’t offer. With Shillinton, you’ll have access to highly qualified teachers to offer feedback and mentorship. Additionally, a course will provide you with structure, support, a community of peers and ample opportunities for growth all tailored for online learning.

The benefits of an online course aren’t just anecdotal. A study shows that “eLearning is proving to be up to 70% more effective than traditional classroom training” (DDLS). An online course can help you stay disciplined, motivated and provide you with critical feedback that you would miss out on trying to teach yourself. Additionally, Shillington’s graphic design course provides students with real-world experience, which is incredibly valuable when it comes to building a portfolio, finding work or transitioning into a new career.

How to teach yourself graphic design online

If you do want to teach yourself graphic design online, here’s six steps you have to teach yourself to get there:

1. Understand what a graphic designer is and does

Learning what a graphic designer is and what they do is an important step in teaching yourself graphic design online. Graphic design involves the use of various tools, techniques, and processes to create visually appealing images, designs and layouts that communicate ideas or messages effectively. It requires an understanding of color theory, typography, composition principles, software proficiency and communication skills—more on this later!

With so much to learn it can seem like a daunting process—but with Shillington’s comprehensive online course you’ll be working as a graphic designer from the very start! You’ll quickly learn what it means to be a graphic designer, and start working on briefs on your first day of class.

2. Learn the fundamentals of graphic design

Learning the fundamentals of graphic design and design theory is essential if you’re teaching yourself graphic design online. You’ll need to understand composition, color theory, typography and other core principles in order to create effective designs. At Shillington, students learn these key concepts as our comprehensive online course teaches them the skills they need to become successful designers.

With this solid foundation in place, students are then taught how to apply their learning and underpin each design with these fundamentals and design theory. This ensures every design created by a Shillington student is well thought out and carefully crafted—a huge benefit when building an impressive portfolio or transitioning into a new career!

3. Teach yourself graphic design software

Graphic design is more than just a creative skill—it requires technical know-how to use the right graphic design tools and software. Graphic designers need to be proficient in programs such as the Adobe Creative Cloud, in particular InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, and the digital design app Figma if they want to create professional artwork. If you want to teach yourself graphic design at home, it’s important to find a way to learn these crucial skills for your future career. Fortunately, with an online course like Shillington’s you’ll learn how to use all of these programs from scratch, even if you don’t have any previous experience, from the comfort of your own home!

4. Practice, practice, practice!

Teaching yourself graphic design online can be a great way to gain the skills and knowledge needed for a successful career in the field. But it’s not enough just to learn the basics—you need to practice your craft and hone your skills if you want to become a working graphic designer. That’s where design briefs come in: they provide real-world challenges that you can use to sharpen your abilities as a graphic designer, no matter how much experience you have.

If you really need practice then Shillington students are given the opportunity to work on over 20 briefs during their online course. These briefs are designed to challenge and push their skills, and allow them to gain real-world experience in the graphic design field. Each brief is delivered and critiqued by Shillington’s experienced teachers, who are practicing designers alongside teaching on the course.

5. Build a graphic design portfolio

When you are teaching yourself graphic design online, the most important thing to do is build a portfolio of your work. A graphic design portfolio is a collection of your best projects or designs that shows potential employers what you can do and demonstrates your skills. It also helps to show off how creative and innovative you can be with design solutions—a must if you want to stand out above other applicants in an increasingly competitive job market.

But if you’re teaching yourself graphic design online, it can be hard to know where to start with a portfolio. That’s why Shillington’s online course is the perfect way to build your skills and create an impressive portfolio that will show employers what you can do. With experienced teachers offering feedback and mentorship, real-world briefs designed to challenge and push your abilities, plus access to industry standard software in Adobe Creative Cloud—Shillington has everything you need to become a successful graphic designer!

6. Network with other graphic designers

Graphic design is a highly competitive field, and as such it’s important to network with other graphic designers if you are teaching yourself the craft online. Networking not only provides an opportunity to learn from experienced professionals, but also allows you to build relationships that could lead to job opportunities in the future. Fortunately, there are several ways for self-taught graphic designers to connect with others in the industry: attending events, joining social media groups dedicated to graphic design, or even taking part in online forums where fellow designers can provide feedback on your work.

Looking to build your first network? Shillington’s online course provides students with immediate access to an experienced network of likeminded creatives who can offer valuable insight and advice. Through these connections, you’ll be able to build and develop relationships that could not only lead to job opportunities in the future, but deep friendships through shared experience.

While it’s true that you can teach yourself graphic design online, we believe that it is not as effective as taking an online course. Self-taught skills often do not have structure and may leave significant gaps that hamper your professional progression later on. Shillington’s online graphic design course is a great option for anyone who wants to build their skills, gain high-quality education and learn with a supportive community.

Apply today for Shillington’s graphic design course and take the first step towards your dream career in graphic design.

Can You Teach Yourself Graphic Design? (2024)


Can You Teach Yourself Graphic Design? ›

The answer is yes—it can definitely be done! With the right resources and tools at your disposal, anyone can become a graphic designer. However, there are some things to keep in mind as you embark on this journey.

Is it possible to learn graphic design on your own? ›

Graphic design is a creative and versatile skill that can help you express your ideas, communicate your messages, and enhance your visual appeal. Whether you want to pursue graphic design as a hobby, a career, or a side hustle, you can learn it on your own with the right resources, tools, and strategies.

How long does it take to self teach graphic design? ›

Rough Estimates of How Long It Takes to Learn Graphic Design
Level of ProficiencyTime Required
Basic understanding of graphic design principlesA few weeks to a few months
Proficiency in design software like PhotoshopSeveral weeks to several months
Ability to create simple design projects6 months to 1 year
2 more rows
Apr 5, 2024

Can I get a job as a self taught graphic designer? ›

The exciting news is that your path to graphic design proficiency is no longer exclusively tied to formal education. In 2022, landing a graphic design job hinges on cultivating fundamentals, gaining practical experience, understanding client dynamics, and bravely putting yourself out there.

Can I learn graphic design if I don't know how do you draw? ›

Note that graphic design is a skill that can be learned by anyone, regardless of drawing ability. By studying design principles, learning design software, practicing regularly, seeking feedback, and building a portfolio, you can become a successful graphic designer without any drawing experience.

Is 30 too old to learn graphic design? ›

Dispelling Myths Surrounding Age and Graphic Design

Concerns about a certain age remain prevalent. Therefore, it is necessary to stress that there is no specific age limit for graphic designers, and there is no average age for graphic designers.

How do beginners learn graphic design? ›

How to learn graphic design
  1. Learn the basics. ...
  2. Build your skills with online courses. ...
  3. Master the ins and outs of design programs. ...
  4. Create a portfolio of projects. ...
  5. Grow your network. ...
  6. Get some work experience. ...
  7. Continue to learn and grow.
Nov 29, 2023

How difficult is graphic design? ›

Learning graphic design is not hard, but it does require creative thinking, an aptitude towards art and design, and time and dedication. Graphic design requires learning the necessary tools, as well as understanding and applying the principles and theories of design.

Will AI replace graphic designers? ›

As artificial intelligence (AI) becomes increasingly advanced, many people are wondering if graphic designers will eventually be replaced by AI-powered tools. While it's true that AI is transforming the way we create and design visuals, it's unlikely that graphic designers will be replaced entirely.

How difficult is it to learn graphic design? ›

Students may be worried that learning graphic design will be difficult or costly. For the most part, this isn't the case. Graphic design tools are fairly easy to learn, and students can become proficient enough in programs like Photoshop and Illustrator within only a few hours of training.

How to start as a graphic designer with no experience? ›

There are a few key steps to starting a career in graphic design: learn the principles of design, enroll in a graphic design course, practice graphic design tools, work on projects, and build your graphic design portfolio. The first and most obvious step is to learn about graphic design theory and elements.

Is graphic design a realistic career? ›

Yes, graphic designers are in high demand. From 2022 to 2032, graphic designers' employment is expected to grow by 3% per annum, or roughly as fast as the average for all occupations.

Can you call yourself a graphic designer without a degree? ›

A degree is not a prerequisite for a career in graphic design; having a strong portfolio showcasing talent, skills, and creativity carries more weight. Graphic Designers in the United States earn an average salary of $58,000 with higher earnings in states like New York, New Jersey, and California.

How do I know if I will be good at graphic design? ›

Graphic designers have big creative energy at heart. They love to come up with new ideas and get excited by exploring possibilities. Whether you have a preferred artistic style or like to mix things up, you love bringing a vision to life. You also enjoy going through the creative process and seeing where it takes you.

How do I know if I would like graphic design? ›

Graphic design also requires personality and work style. You need to have a personality that suits graphic design, such as being creative, curious, flexible, and collaborative. You also need to have a work style that fits graphic design, such as being organized, detail-oriented, and self-motivated.

Can you be a graphic designer with just a laptop? ›

You want a laptop that's light enough to be portable but powerful enough to do complicated work. The most important specs to look at for graphic design are the operating system, CPU, the memory or RAM, the storage drive, the display type and size, and color accuracy.

How can I practice graphic design at home? ›

12 Graphic Design Practice Exercises
  1. Design something for an imaginary client. ...
  2. Redesign an existing brand. ...
  3. Create a logo for yourself. ...
  4. Drawing and sketching. ...
  5. Offer graphic design work to family and friends. ...
  6. Other design exercise games.
May 28, 2020


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