September 18, 2021

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Graphic Design vs Visual Design – Which One Is Right for You?

5 min read
Graphic Design and Visual Design

If you ask a person outside the design industry to tell you the difference between graphic design and visual design, there’s a high probability of them saying that they are both the same.

Well, even though they are wrong, you cannot actually be mad at them. After all, these two types of design are often used interchangeably, and they do share a number of similarities.

Then what are differences between graphic design and visual design?

Before you explore the comparative analysis of these two types of design, let’s learn a bit about what is what.

What Is Graphic Design?

Graphic design, as a profession, has been around for a significant amount of time. In fact, the practice dates back to the earliest artwork done by humans. However, the modern-day graphic design that we know started its journey in the form of designs for print publications such as books, magazines, brochures, newspapers, catalogues, etc.

In the earlier days, the responsibilities of a graphic designer would include creating page layouts, marketing materials, advertisements, and other personalised products such as typefaces. In the 1990s, when web designing became a thing, graphic designers found another avenue to showcase their expertise. It was possible because the fundamentals of designing remained the same for both print and digital mediums.

In order to stay relevant, graphic designers need to train on the technical aspects of designing for digital mediums. As more and more people are now choosing digital means of communication over print publications, graphic designers have adapted to the trend.

What Is Visual Design?

Visual design can be described as a mixture of graphic design and user interface (UI) design. This form of design work focuses on the aesthetics of a website or any other type of digital design. Visual designers are responsible for the appearance of the finished product.

Now, you may have confusion since visual design is pretty similar to the digital aspect of the graphic design. However, if you look at visual communication as a term, it actually is much more than just digital designs. In fact, visual communication focuses on the communication of the message visually. Even though the visual design is specifically focused on the look and feel, visual communication is concerned more about communication and less about aesthetics.

Visual designs can also be confused with general web design. While some web designers can be described as visual designers, one needs to know a certain level of coding to be a web designer. At student level they always required a professional and experienced Visual Studio Assignment Help And visual design does not require any coding. Apart from working on designing websites, a visual designer may also need to create entire visual languages for a brand or its product.

Where Do Graphic Design and Visual Design Overlap?

Since both of these professions focus on aesthetics, it is really easy to get confused between the two. Moreover, due to the increasing popularity of communication through the internet and digital platforms, the lines between these two professions have started to blur.

As graphic designers are now moving towards web design, a lot of the work they do overlaps with the functions that the visual designers perform on these digital platforms.

The Major Differences between Graphic Design and Visual Design

There are some significant differences between these two jobs besides the overlap between graphic design and visual design. Those differences are presented in a table format below:

Graphic Design Visual Design
The goal of graphic design is to communicate a specific idea of information through individual creations. The goal of visual design is to craft the brand’s unified image across communication platforms.
Graphic designing can be done on both digital and print publications. Visual designing is focused on digital or web platform.
The core responsibility of a graphic designer is to deliver a specific message. The core responsibility of a visual designer is to determine the brand’s image at large.
Graphic designers focus on a wide variety of designs in print, advertising, information, branding, and sometimes web design. Visual designers focus almost exclusively on creating visuals for apps, websites and digital platforms.
Graphic designing requires skills in online and online design, proficiency with principles of design, and expertise in design software such as Photoshop, Illustrator, Affinity Designer and more. Visual designing requires digital design skills, proficiency with principles of design, and expertise in design software such as Sketch, Photoshop, Adobe XD, Illustrator and more.


Hopefully, this comparison has given you enough insights into the differences between graphic design and visual design.

What Are the Requirements for Having Careers in Graphic and Visual Designing?

As you may already be aware, both graphic design and visual design are very much in demand in today’s job market. So, if you want to pursue a career in either of the two career options, you need to fulfil the following criteria:

  • Requirements for becoming a graphic designer:

You need to be skilled in design software such as Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, Affinity Designer, and Affinity Photo in order to become a professional graphic designer.

You should also consider pursuing a bachelor’s degree in the field of Graphic Design.

Although you do not require coding knowledge to become a graphic designer, it can come in handy if you work in certain aspects of web design. You can learn HTML and CSS, which are useful coding languages for web designers.

  • Requirements for becoming a visual designer:

In order to become a visual designer, you should consider studying graphic designing, fine arts, advertising, and/or communications. There are a number of universities which offer degrees in these fields of study.

You should also consider pursuing a Bachelor of Science in business administration as you will require a certain amount of knowledge of business communications and marketing while working as a visual designer.

You also need to be proficient at using the design software such as Photoshop, Illustrator, Sketch, and Adobe XD. You don’t require coding knowledge as long as you stick to a visual designing job.


Wrapping it up,

There is no denying that the differences between graphic design and visual design are often blurred due to the increasing popularity of digital communication. That is one of the major reasons why people get confused between these two. But now that you have read this blog, you can educate people about the differences between these two design types.


Author bio:RobertSmith is a digital educator, and academic counsellor working on behalf of a reputable firm in Australia. He is also associated with, where he offers java assignment help assistance to students on request.

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