What Is a Computer Graphic Artist?

A computer graphic artist primarily creates artwork with computer software. He or she may work in the multimedia, film, or game animation industries. A computer graphic artist may have earned a Bachelor of Science in Applied Computer Graphics or even a Bachelor of Science in Engineering in Digital Media Design. Schools offering 3D Animation degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Overview

A computer graphic artist is also known as a graphic designer. These professionals create digital designs, photography, and drawings with computer software programs. Their designs are used for brochures, websites, signs, posters, video games, logos, newsletters or advertisements.

Important Facts About This Occupation

Similar OccupationsDesktop publisher, art director, multimedia artist and animator
CertificationOptional for career advancement, provided by computer software vendors
TrainingMost graphic artists complete postsecondary education; internships are often beneficial
Work EnvironmentStudio with drafting table and computer

Specializations

Someone who works as a 3-D computer graphic artist may specialize as a modeler animator or texture artist. Modelers convert art concepts to 3-D models using various software applications. Animators animate character models and other associated objects like cars. Texture artists create the visible areas in the animation. Moreover, computer graphic artists help architects visualize buildings, create special effects for film studios, and make TV commercials for companies.

Skills and Abilities

A computer graphic artist needs to possess a variety of skills. Most importantly, these artists need proficiency in relevant software applications, including Photoshop, Maya, and After Effects. Strong creative and problem-solving abilities are essential, along with an eye for detail and composition.

Duties and Responsibilities

Duties performed by computer graphic artists vary depending on where they work. Artists design, create, administer, and maintain websites. Furthermore, they produce and implement multimedia presentations and logos.

Computer graphic artists working in the animation industry create models of environments, props and characters, as well as add color, texture, and lighting to models for final renderings.

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the number of employed graphic designers is expected to increase 7% between 2012 and 2022. This is slower-than-average growth compared to other occupations. As of 2014, the median salary among graphic designers was $45,900.

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