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Career and Education Opportunities for Graphic Designers in Norman, Oklahoma

Norman, Oklahoma provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for graphic designers. About 1,970 people are currently employed as graphic designers in Oklahoma. By 2016, this is expected to grow 4% to 2,050 people employed. This is not quite as good as the national trend for graphic designers, which sees this job pool growing by about 12.9% over the next eight years. In general, graphic designers design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs, such as packaging, displays, or logos.

A person working as a graphic designer can expect to earn about $15 per hour or $32,930 annually on average in Oklahoma and about $20 per hour or $42,400 per year on average in the U.S. as a whole. Incomes for graphic designers are not quite as good as in the overall category of Art and Design in Oklahoma, and not quite as good as the overall Art and Design category nationally. Jobs in this field include: concept artist, multimedia designer, and graphics specialist.

There are thirty-seven schools of higher education in the Norman area, including seven within twenty-five miles of Norman where you can get a degree to start your career as a graphic designer. The most common level of education for graphic designers is a Bachelor's degree. You can expect to spend about four years studying to be a graphic designer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Graphic Designer

In general, graphic designers design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs, such as packaging, displays, or logos. They also may use a variety of mediums to achieve artistic or decorative effects.

Graphic designers develop designs and sample layouts on the basis of knowledge of layout principles and esthetic design concepts. They also maintain archives of images or previous work products. Equally important, graphic designers have to design negatives and prints to produce layout photographs, using negative and print developing equipment and tools. They are often called upon to use computer software to generate new images. They are expected to design graphics and layouts for product illustrations and Internet websites. Finally, graphic designers key data into computer equipment to generate layouts for clients or supervisors.

Every day, graphic designers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to be creative and generate new ideas.

It is important for graphic designers to mark up and assemble final layouts to ready layouts for printer. They are often called upon to produce still and animated graphics for on-air and taped portions of television news broadcasts, using electronic video equipment. They also research new software or layout concepts. They are sometimes expected to talk with clients to consider and decide on layout design. Somewhat less frequently, graphic designers are also expected to photograph layouts, using camera, to make layout prints for supervisors or clients.

Graphic designers sometimes are asked to inspect final layouts and suggest improvements as needed. And finally, they sometimes have to ready notes and instructions for staff who assemble and ready final layouts for printing.

Like many other jobs, graphic designers must be thorough and dependable and believe in innovation and creative thought.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Norman include:

  • Art Director. Formulate design concepts and presentation approaches, and direct workers engaged in art work, layout design, and copy writing for visual communications media, such as magazines, books, and packaging.
  • Camera Operator. Operate television, video, or motion picture camera to photograph images or scenes for various purposes, such as TV broadcasts, advertising, or motion pictures.
  • Craftsman. Create or reproduce hand-made objects for sale and exhibition using a variety of techniques, such as welding, weaving, and needlecraft.
  • Director. Interpret script, conduct rehearsals, and direct activities of cast and technical crew for stage, motion pictures, or radio programs.
  • Display Specialist. Plan and erect commercial displays.
  • Fine Artist. Create original artwork using any of a wide variety of mediums and techniques.
  • Industrial Designer. Develop and design manufactured products, such as cars, home appliances, and children's toys. Combine artistic talent with research on product use, marketing, and materials to create the most functional and appealing product design.
  • Interior Designer. Plan, design, and furnish interiors of residential, commercial, or industrial buildings. Formulate design which is practical, aesthetic, and conducive to intended purposes, such as raising productivity, selling merchandise, or improving life style. May specialize in a particular field, style, or phase of interior design.
  • Multi-Media Artist or Animator. Create special effects, animation, or other visual images using film, video, or other electronic tools and media for use in products or creations, such as computer games, movies, and commercials.
  • Set and Exhibit Designer. Design special exhibits and movie, television, and theater sets. May study scripts, confer with directors, and conduct research to determine appropriate architectural styles.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Graphic Designer Training

Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City - Oklahoma City, OK

Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City, 900 N Portland, Oklahoma City, OK 73107-6195. Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City is a medium sized university located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 5,912 students. Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City has 2 areas of study related to Graphic Designer. They are:

  • Computer Graphics, associate's degree which graduated 13 students in 2008.
  • Commercial and Advertising Art, associate's degree which graduated 11 students in 2008.

Oklahoma School of Photography - Moore, OK

Oklahoma School of Photography, 2306 N Moore Ave, Moore, OK 73160. Oklahoma School of Photography is a small school located in Moore, Oklahoma. It is a private for-profit school with primarily less-than 2-year programs. It has 17 students and an admission rate of 77%. Oklahoma School of Photography has a one to two year program in Design and Visual Communications which graduated one student in 2008.

ITT Technical Institute-Oklahoma City - Oklahoma City, OK

ITT Technical Institute-Oklahoma City, 50 Penn Place Office Tower, 1900 NW Expressway St.-Ste 305, Oklahoma City, OK 73118. ITT Technical Institute-Oklahoma City is a small school located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 312 students and an admission rate of 43%. ITT Technical Institute-Oklahoma City has an associate's degree program in Design and Visual Communications.

Oklahoma City Community College - Oklahoma City, OK

Oklahoma City Community College, 7777 S May Ave, Oklahoma City, OK 73159-9987. Oklahoma City Community College is a large college located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 12,550 students. Oklahoma City Community College has an associate's degree program in Commercial and Advertising Art which graduated nineteen students in 2008.

Oklahoma Christian University - Edmond, OK

Oklahoma Christian University, 2501 E Memorial Rd, Edmond, OK 73013-1100. Oklahoma Christian University is a small university located in Edmond, Oklahoma. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,161 students and an admission rate of 56%. Oklahoma Christian University has a bachelor's degree program in Commercial and Advertising Art which graduated one student in 2008.

Metro Technology Centers - Oklahoma City, OK

Metro Technology Centers, 1900 Springlake Drive, Oklahoma City, OK 73111-5240. Metro Technology Centers is a small school located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 987 students. Metro Technology Centers has a less than one year and a one to two year program in Graphic Design which graduated five and four students respectively in 2008.

Moore Norman Technology Center - Norman, OK

Moore Norman Technology Center, 4701 12th Avenue NW, Norman, OK 73069-8399. Moore Norman Technology Center is a small school located in Norman, Oklahoma. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 857 students and an admission rate of 61%. Moore Norman Technology Center has 2 areas of study related to Graphic Designer. They are:

  • Web Page, Digital/Multimedia & Information Resources Design, one to two year which graduated 9 students in 2008.
  • Graphic Design, one to two year which graduated 11 students in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Web Professional - Site Designer: A CWP Site Designer implements and maintains Web sites using authoring and scripting languages, content creation and management tools, and digital media.

For more information, see the International Webmasters Association website.

Web Graphics and Multimedia Certificate: Equips the student for work as a Web graphic artist, creating illustrations, pictures, buttons, and other images for use on the Web, as well as the ability to create interactive multimedia designs in Flash or other programs.

For more information, see the International Webmasters Association website.

Certified Web Designer Associate: Web Designer Associates are proficient in the visual arts and creating the images and designs that capture and keep visitors' interest.

For more information, see the World Organization of Webmasters website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Norman, Oklahoma

Norman, Oklahoma
Norman, Oklahoma photo by Okguy

Norman is located in Cleveland County, Oklahoma. It has a population of over 106,957, which has grown by 11.8% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Norman, 84, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Norman are priced at $184,600 on average, which is well above the state average. In 2008, five hundred sixteen new homes were built in Norman, up from four hundred nineteen the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Norman are educational services, health care, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is educational services, accommodation and food services, and construction. The average commute to work is about 21 minutes. More than 39.8% of Norman residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 16.6%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Norman is 4.7%, which is less than Oklahoma's average of 7.1%.

The percentage of Norman residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 44.3%, is less than both the national and state average. Alameda Baptist Church, Alameda Church of Christ and All Welcome Victory Church are among the churches located in Norman. The largest religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the Catholic Church and the United Methodist Church.

Norman is home to the Cerebral Palsy Institute and the Park on Main as well as Owen Field and Rotary Park. Shopping malls in the area include Colonial Estates Shopping Center, Anatole Shopping Center and Carriage Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Norman can choose from Ramada Days Inn, Montford Inn and Guest Inn - Norman for temporary stays in the area.