The graphic design skills needed to become a successful designer are many. From a good understanding of technical aspects to a thorough knowledge of how designing works, a graphic designer must know it all.

But what differentiates good graphic designers from the best?

It is the deep knowledge about the field, current trends, relevant skills, and a genuine interest in design. If you are pursuing graphic designing or are about to make that call, this blog is for you. Read on to discover the top 6 graphic design skills needed to excel in the field.

1. Knowledge of Adobe Photoshop

Out of the 20+ Adobe Creative Cloud apps, Photoshop has to be the most famous one. Popular for its photo editing tools, it is used by graphic designers for editing and enhancing images and designs.

Adobe Photoshop essentially uses pixels to make images and offers various photo editing tools like crop picture, color correction, image resizing, saturation, brightness, contrast, etc.

It can even blur unnecessary noise in pictures and modify shapes, sizes, and colors to make the design visually appealing. Using Adobe Photoshop skills is a task that is unachievable without practice and training.

Online Adobe Photoshop courses are available to help you get started and learn more about it.

2. Adobe InDesign

This graphic design skill is about 20 years old and is relevant even today. It emerged as the most effective tool for graphic designers over the past years. Adobe InDesign is a typesetting and desktop publishing software that replaced Quark on its arrival.

The software may look slightly complicated at first, but with training, InDesign can prove helpful and full of possibilities for graphic designers.

It can aid graphic designers in creating books, magazines, flyers, posters, and other similar things. You can explore more about this software with online Adobe InDesign courses.

3. Adobe Illustrator

Illustrator is probably the 3rd most popular graphic design skill that recruiters look for while hiring a designer.

The third of the Adobe trifecta, Illustrator helps graphic designers create digital images like logos, image illustrations, animated pictures, graphs, etc.

This graphic design software was released in 1987. Adobe Photoshop uses pixels to create images and is based on raster graphics, while Illustrator works with vectors.

Don’t know much about Adobe Illustrator? Don't worry, here are some online illustrator courses for you to explore.

Don’t let the name put you off, you don’t need to have amazing drawing skills to use Illustrator.

The beauty of InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator is that they can be used seamlessly to create designs. For this reason, they rank highly in the essential graphic design skills list.

4. Typography

Did you know there is such a thing as Happy and Sad fonts? The relevance of font styles is a lot more than just the design. It adds to the message and enhances the aesthetic of the design.

This art of writing in certain styles to make the text more readable and visually appealing is called Typography.

The typography in a design can establish brand identity, and well-trained graphic designers understand the science behind the design and utility of a font.

Being an integral part of communication, typography is one of the most important graphic design skills for those pursuing the profession.

Here are some online typography courses for you.

5. Color Theory

One of the most significant graphic design skills is the understanding of color theory. The language of colors is quite cryptic and can have a huge impact on those seeing these designs.

A graphic designer considers the appearance of colors (hue), its purity (chroma), and its paleness/saturation (lighting)
Appealing color schemes make it easier for the designers to communicate with users through appealing color schemes and visual interfaces.

Not only do colors impact the design but also affect human psychology, optical ability, culture, and a lot more. To know more, explore online color theory courses for graphic designers.

6. Storytelling

One of the most important aspects of being a graphic designer is being able to put across the idea behind your design. Be it in in-house presentations, with customers, or clients, a designer has to be well-equipped to explain their ideas and stand by their work, making storytelling a crucial graphic design skill.

Important aspects like inspiration for the design, choice of color schematics and shapes involved, typography, etc., play the lead role in this storytelling, and all of these must resonate with the idea behind the design.

Doing all this is no easy feat, and without creative storytelling skills, it seems almost impossible, making it a crucial graphic design skill today.


There are many graphic designers out there developing new designs every day. To get hired by good companies, you will need to be proficient in the right skill set, a portfolio that showcases your best works, and complete knowledge of the history of design and current trends.

We hope that this blog will help you take the first step towards your successful journey as a graphic designer.

All the best!

Career Advice