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Las Positas College Visual Communications

Career Opportunities

With the certificate or AA degree, students can gain entry to intermediate level employment in a variety of design jobs, with an emphasis in web or print production. All students can improve their communications skills and transition into careers in marketing, senior level design positions, and many other media-related careers such as animation and packaging design. Many students who plan a career in visual communications continue on for a Bachelor’s degree.

Below are some general job descriptions for positions you might encounter as a designer.

Graphic Artist / Production Artist

A graphic artist has an eye for detail and sharp technical knowledge. Graphic artists are responsible for making design and layout changes as a design becomes finalized. Graphic artists work closely with the designer to ensure the changes adhere to the designer’s vision, but also makes sure that the design is technically sound and is ready to be sent out.

Job duties

  • Color correct and retouch photos
  • Make layout and text changes throughout the design process
  • Clean up and make-ready files for press or web
  • Maintain archive of images, photos and previous work samples

Job skills

  • Strong Technical knowledge of the latest software and best practices
  • Attention to detail and desire for pixel perfection

Graphic Designer/Visual Designer

A designer’s job is to develop and brand consistency and voice across mediums. The designer’s role will vary by organization but will always be tasked with creating effective and elegant graphic solutions to a myriad of problems.

Job Duties

  • Build design comps and prototypes
  • Develop graphics and layouts for product illustrations, company logos and websites
  • Review final layouts, suggest improvements if needed and make necessary changes
  • Present ideas to clients and receive feedback

Job skills

  • Strong command of typography, aesthetics, layout, and imagery
  • Strong conceptual skills
  • Technical knowledge of the latest software

Senior Designer

A senior designer is more active in the conceptualizing, leading, and managing projects. Many senior designers manage a team of junior designers, establish a consistent visual language, and drive brand and experience values.

Job Duties

  • Create and foster a high level of creativity in teams
  • Conceptualize original designs and present to client
  • Vendor & budget management
  • Team leadership

Job Skills

  • Manage junior members
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • A high level of sensitivity to design trends and communication models

Web Designer

A websites have to be tested across multiple browsers, and be able to work across multiple devices and screen sizes. It’s the web designer’s job to ensure the website works all the time. In addition to maintaining and updating websites, the web designer also creates new designs.

Job Duties

  • Design, build and maintain websites.
  • Ensure cross plat-form compatibility.

Job Skills

  • Strong command of the current web standards and developments.
  • Develop and maintain dynamically generated, content managed websites.
  • Understanding of script languages and managing tools to
  • Evaluate code to ensure that it is valid, is properly structured and meets industry standards
  • Identify and correct problems uncovered by testing or user feedback

Freelance Designer

You are your own boss as a freelance designer! As a freelance designer, you’ll be able to work with many different clients in a variety of fields. It’s never a dull moment as a freelance designer. As a freelance designer, you’ll have to be responsible for everything in a project, from initial concept to final delivery. Don’t forget that you’ll have to be responsible for billing and taxes as well!

Job Duties

  • Work with individual clients and meet all of their design needs
  • Design, production, prepress, you’ll do it all
  • Vendor management and talent management.

Job Skills

  • Strong understanding of current software standards
  • Strong understanding of current design standards and client needs
  • Highly organized and attention to detail.

Art Directors

While the role of the art director can differ drastically from organization to organization, an art director is generally responsible for a design team and establishing art direction for the designers and junior designers. Art directors must also maintain client relationships and work with other internal departments.

Job Duties

  • Confer with clients to determine objectives, budget, background information and presentation approaches
  • Work with department heads to discuss client requirements and presentation concepts and to coordinate creative activities
  • Work with creative directors to develop design solutions

Job Skills

  • High-level strategic thinking
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Collaborative leader with good management skills

Creative Director

As a creative director, you’ll guide and direct junior teams to set a high bar for creativity within your organization. You’ll be responsible for setting a high-level vision for projects, and managing teams to achieve brand and client success.

Job Duties

  • Establish high-level creative direction
  • Manage teams to achieve sophisticated work
  • Client management
  • Vendor and budget management

Job Skills

  • Narrative development
  • High-level strategic thinking
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills

User Interface Designer (UI/UX)

Working with visual designers, interactive designers are responsible for the structure and frameworks for design elements. Utilizing research, user testing, and brand voice, interactive designers establish groundwork for structural success. The user interface design is not the same as “user experience design”, although there is some cross over and in some companies the roles are held by the same person.

Job Duties

  • Build design comps and prototypes
  • Anticipate and map user flows and journeys

Job Skills

  • Thorough understanding of technical tools and languages
  • Logical and brand-specific awareness of information architecture
  • Ability to design interactions to evoke emotions from the user