Graphic Designer Guide + Tips + Example

Nilda Melissa Diaz, CPRW
By Nilda Melissa Diaz, CPRW, Career Advice Expert
Last Updated: August 31, 2023

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Rebrand your career with a top graphic designer CV!  Showcase your problem-solving, creativity and collaboration skills with the help of this guide. We have writing tips and examples to redesign your success.

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Graphic designer example (text version)

Sean Gibson

Brooklyn, NY 11201
555 555 5555
example@example.com

Professional Summary

Creative graphic designer with innovative ideas and a unique approach to visuals. More than 10 years of experience developing designs for print media, online websites, video and advertising. Solid understanding of marketing principles and advertising techniques. Great attention to detail and a talent for creating memorable visual designs. Enthusiastic team player who is committed to delivering top results on time and within budget. Passion for keeping clients satisfied with each project. 

Core Qualifications

  • Research design 
  • Concept development 
  • Digital image generation 
  • Website design 
  • Image manipulation 
  • 2D and 3D modeling 
  • Problem-solving 
  • Time management and multitasking 

Education

School of Visual Arts New York, NY
Master of Fine Arts Design

School of Visual Arts New York, NY
Bachelor of Fine Arts Advertising
Minor – Digital Photography 

Work Experience

May 2015 – Current
GCNY Marketing – Brooklyn, NY
Senior Graphic Designer

  • Discuss project ideas and goals with each client and turn these visions into real visual designs that meet the need using illustrations, artwork, design elements and fonts. 
  • Create over 300 original rich images for company clients using various types of computer software for graphic design. 
  • Deliver top projects that please clients and attract new business, with a 14% increase in client referral rate. 

September 2013 – May 2015
Clutch – New York, NY
Graphic Designer

  • Met with clients, listened to their objectives for the look of their website and developed a prototype design to fit the requirements. 
  • Revised prototype web designs after client review and specific feedback until the final look was achieved. 
  • Completed in-depth product design tests for over 30 projects with help of different software, models and design systems. 

December 2010 – September 2013
Align – New York, NY
Assistant Graphic Designer

  • Designed company logos for various types of organizations in a variety of industries based on line of work, corporate personality and client preferences. 
  • Arranged photographs, illustrations and other design pieces to convey a specific look for a company website. 
  • Brought in more than $750,000 in revenue during tenure with a marketing firm based on proven results and solid, effective design work. 

Honors and Awards

  • ADC 101ST Annual Award, Brand / Communication Design – (2021) 
  • Creativity International Graphic Design and Advertising Awards 2020, Design – (2020) 
  • Recognized by Clutch company as having an excellent client satisfaction rate and awarded with the top design achievement medal from the industry – (2015) 

Professional Affiliations and Memberships

  • American Institute of Graphic Design (AIGA) – (2021) 
  • New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) – (2019) 
  • The New York State Communication Association (NYSCA) – (2018) 

Certifications and Licenses

  • Graphic and Digital Design certificate, Parsons School of Design – (2022) 
  • Adobe Certified Associate (ACA) – (2021) 
  • Graphic Design Specialization, Coursera – (2019) 

Profession Relevant Skills

  • Proficient in all major computer design software including Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Flash, Adobe Fireworks, Adobe Dreamweaver, Microsoft Visio and Macromedia HomeSite.
  • Strong base of knowledge and skill in all elements of design, visual layout, typography, color and drawing techniques.
  • Excellent media and technology skills related to internet marketing, web design, online message platforms and more.
  • Top written and oral communication skills allowing for more productive conversations with clients and colleagues.
  • Committed to delivering strong customer service to each client and dedicating myself to a project until the client is pleased.

Languages

  • English
    Native or Bilingual
  • Spanish
    Professional Working

Hobbies and Interests

I have a strong interest in visual arts beyond graphic design. I am also a skilled painter, sculptor, and drawer. I have had several of my pieces displayed in local art shows and galleries, and work on custom-commissioned pieces for people from time to time. Additionally, I have an interest in interior design and enjoy reading about elements of room decor.

5 essentials of a top graphic designer CV

  1. Contact details

    In your contact information, include your full name, city, state and ZIP code. Add your phone number and email address. As a graphic designer, you must include a link to your professional portfolio. Make sure it’s updated with your best work. Also add your LinkedIn profile or any other professional networking profile.

  2. Personal statement

    The personal statement, also called a professional summary, will introduce you to the hiring manager. Grab their attention in no more than five strong sentences describing your best skills, professional accomplishments, job-relevant skills and years of experience. 

    If this is your first job, you can include accomplishments and projects from your college years and internships.

  3. Skills

    Show off what you bring to the table and let the recruiters know if you have the necessary skills for the position. Create a bullet list for easy reading and add a balanced mix of hard and soft skills. If this is your first job as a graphic designer, include transferable skills from other roles.

  4. Work history

    List your work history in reverse chronological order. For each entry, include the company name, workplace location and dates of employment. Under each job, add a bulleted list with achievements reached while at that company. For example, an important campaign you collaborated with, a large scale project, awards received, any leadership role you played, and so on. 

    First job? You can include relevant work experience from extracurricular activities, professional and personal projects, community service and volunteer experiences.

  5. Education

    In the education section, use bullet points to add your school, degree and graduation date. If you graduated more than 10 years ago, you can skip the year. Under each school, add important projects or achievements, like an internship, award or scholarship. Don’t forget to include your membership to student organizations.

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Do’s and don’ts for building a graphic design CV

  • Use measurable achievements to describe your graphic design skills and experience.
  • Use action words to make an impact on your graphic designer CV.
  • Tailor your CV to your target graphic designer job.
  • Use keywords from the job description throughout your graphic designer CV.
  • Format your graphic designer CV so that it is easy to read by ATS software and human eyes.
  • Lie about your graphic design experience and skills.
  • Boast about your “incomparable” graphic design abilities.
  • Include irrelevant personal information such as your ethnicity and age.
  • Add skills and experience not pertaining to being a graphic designer. 
  • Forget to proofread. A graphic design CV with errors is unprofessional.

Top 4 tips for acing a graphic design interview

  1. Research the company.

    Make time to learn all you can about a company, its mission and values. This will help you are more prepared for the interview and get a feel for the company culture. Before the interview, you must make time to learn about the company, its mission, goals and values. This knowledge will help prepare you for the interview and to get a feel for the company culture. Plus, it will show the hiring manager your genuine interest, commitment and desirable skills for candidates.

  2. Practice at home.

    Get ready to excel at your interview by practicing the most common interview questions. Research and write down the answers to practice. 

    Here are a few examples of interview questions:

    You can also perform a mock interview. Ask a friend for help, and have them ask interview questions and provide feedback on your answers, tone and body language. You can also write down the answers and continue to practice in front of the mirror. You’ll be so prepared, there won’t be time for nerves!

  3. Be proactive and ask questions.

    Be prepared to ask questions at the end of your interview. Have at least three questions ready. Take a look at the ones we have suggested below. Being ready to ask this type of questions will impress hiring managers and will help you feel even more confident. 

    Pick from the list or be inspired by it to create your own: 

    • What are the expectations for this position?
    • What are the company’s biggest challenges?
    • How has this role changed in the past years?
    • Why did you choose to work for this company? 
    • What tools do you provide your employees to excel at their position?
  4. Round up your references.

    Stay one step ahead of the recruiter. Have your references ready once you start the interview process. Contact previous managers and colleagues to request being reference in your job search. Reach out to people who can vouch for your work and skills. Let them know where you are in the process, and when they can expect a phone call or email.  The hiring manager could also request a recommendation letter, so make sure to ask at least two of your references if they’re willing to write it. 

    If this is your first full-time job, you can request a reference from a former professor, community leader, volunteer coordinator or classmate that can vouch for your skills.

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