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Graphic Design Resume Tips

What can be said about the graphic design resume? Is it a big deal? It doesn't necessarily show your talent or creativity. This is where many people are getting burned. This is huge. It's the first impression an employer gets from you. But don't over do it....

The Layout:

There are a few schools of thought when it comes to the graphic design resume and presentation. A few say go for broke (make it a work of art or funky), and others say to keep it conservative & clean. I think you can have both, but generally lean towards the more conservative approach. That's not to say that the conservative one should lack any kind of flair. It just means that you're not going to push an aggressive funky visual style on someone who isn't looking for it. You should be keeping it clean and simple. It shouldn't be hard to figure out what's going on for the sake of style or artistic interpretation.

Of course there are exceptions to the rule. Some magazines, newspapers & websites focus more on youthful in-your-face layout (like a skateboarding magazine), so they might want to see your creative flare. In the end, it's up to you to decide what kind of format and look to use. I've seen a few (not many) very unorthodox resumes get people design jobs. Just try not to lose the job right away by using a layout that is too wacky. Most entry level jobs in the graphic design field require a more conservative approach. Remember that you have a portfolio that can show this more artistic & crazy side.

No matter what approach you use, there are some design elements that should be strong. Considering that you will not be using many graphic elements, you will have to let the typography do a lot of the talking. Look to have strong alignment to create lines and order, contrasting typefaces to organize and separate text, and effective leading and spacing to give a good balance and feel. The body text should be clean and easy to read. Headers should be bold and contrasting from the body text. Save fancy/wavy type to your name, if you use fancy type at all. Remember that faxing might be done, so design around the idea that everything should look good, even when getting spit out on the other end. It can be a good idea to have an extra layout designed strictly for faxing.

Keeping it to one page is a good idea, but not if you have to cram a load of information in tiny type just to fit it in. Remember that the layout should breathe, and have a strong sense of order and purpose. The employer shouldn't have to "work" to find the information they are looking for, or strain their eyes with tiny type or poor typeface selection. And please, keep the look consistent throughout.

Taking it all Online:

Thousands of people are landing jobs by posting their resumes online using job sites. One such site is Hot Jobs, which has thousands of jobs posted daily, and allows you to post for free. also allows free posting, and is an incredibly well used service that most utilize at one time or another. This is really a no brainer for those looking for work. You might not always land a job this way, but it can't hurt either. Others are finding work this way. Remember to promote, promote, PROMOTE! Don't leave any avenues unchecked, especially free online promotion. What do you have to lose?

If you are taking the online route a bit more seriously, there are other options that you can look at. For a small fee, a few companies instantly distribute your resume to up to 10,000 targeted recruiters. offers free distribution after you have signed up for their other job.

In Conclusion...

Details, details, details... If there is a spelling mistake anywhere on your resume, forget it. If the employer has to work to find information because it's not organized, forget it. If the type is hard to read, forget it. If the look is not consistent throughout, forget it. You must pay attention to these details. These things can be just as important as your actual skills when getting your foot in the door.

Make sure to also check out:

Graphic Design Schools
Picking the Right Graphic Design School
Graphic Design Job Descriptions
Illustration Jobs
Layout Artist Jobs
The Graphic Designer Salary



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Game Art & Design Schools

become a game designer
Become a Game Designer

game programming degree
Game Programming Degree

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Computer Animation Schools


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