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The Average Salary of a Newly Qualified Graphic Designer

by Johnny Kilhefner

The job of a graphic designer is to combine art and technology to create visual concepts either by hand or with the help of computer software. Graphic designers work with text and images, and may work in different industries, such as marketing and web design. The salaries of newly qualified graphic designers vary by industry and geographic location.

Average Salary for Graphic Designers

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage of graphic designers was $43,500 as of May 2010. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $26,200, while those in the top 10 percent earned more than $76,910. These statistics reflect the earnings of graphic designers in all industries and locations, as well as self-employed graphic designers.

Average Salary by Location

The geographic location of the position may have an effect on his income. The area of the country that earned the most was Washington, D.C. Graphic designers in Washington earn as much as $66,030 a year. New York graphic designers earn about $59,580 a year. The state with the most graphic design positions is California, where the average annual salary for these positions is $57,140.

Average Salary by Industry

The industry in which the graphic designer works has a tremendous effect on her income. Graphic designers working in printing and other related support activities earned $40,010 a year, while those working in in the federal executive branch earned $75,570 a year. Advertising and public relations pays designers about $49,740. Designers working in computer system design can expect to earn as much as $54,240.

Career Outlook for Graphic Designers

The graphic design industry is expected to grow due to increasing Internet usage and advertisement needs. Graphic designers are needed to design websites, create company logos, design government proposals and optimize mobile images. While 10-year job growth of 10 percent is expected, there will also be intense competition in the field of graphic design.

About the Author

Johnny Kilhefner is a writer with a focus on technology, design and marketing. Writing for more than five years, he has contributed to Writer's Weekly, PopMatters, Bridged Design and APMP, among many other outlets.

Photo Credits

  • Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images