4 Important Skills for Digital Arts Degree Graduates

Web designers working together on a project

Digital design degrees serve as an exciting way to specialize in both the technological and creative fields. Graduates with a digital arts degree can go on to become web designers and design sites and applications for the web that are responsive across all types of devices. Web designers use both creative and technical skills to ensure that the online experience is effortless and memorable.

A student in a digital design program will learn all aspects of digital design from conceptualization to implementation in both theory and application, using their creative thinking to develop their technical expertise. While a digital arts degree program encompasses many types of experiences, there are a few key skills that graduates should come away with.

1. Composition

When it comes to the digital arts, composition refers to the arrangement of elements on the screen. A web designer is careful to think about the arrangement of text and graphics. They want things to not only look nice, but be usable. The overall harmony of a site takes into consideration color theory and typography. Online sites need to be balanced as well, with adequate negative space and well-proportioned elements.

2. Software

On the technical side of digital design is software. There are multiple major software programs that digital design degree students should become familiar with, including photo editing programs, those used to create and edit vectors and graphics and page layout and web prototyping programs. More advanced work within a digital arts program will include using animation programs to add motion to custom graphics. Besides software that supports visual creation, future web designers need to know how to use content management systems to streamline their process and share work with stakeholders.

3. User Experience and User Interaction

User experience (UX) refers to understanding through research who the audience is and what they want to accomplish on the site, and designing to accomplish that. Responsive design is a part of the design process that ensures that elements in the site perform properly on different types of devices. Other aspects of UX include a person's emotional response to a site and how pleasing, relevant and meaningful it is. The purpose of thinking and planning around UX is to design content in a way that makes sense and is enjoyable and useful to the user. User interface (UI) is a subset of UX that focuses on the looks and style of a site. Overall, UX and UI are important elements because they determine not only how pleasant the experience is for a user, but how likely they are to return to the site in the future.

4. Graphic Design

Graphic design is a major component of digital design. Students learn systematic processes that can be used to design visual information. Branding, conceptualization, composition, color, typography, illustrative styles, photography, and other elements of graphic design will likely be of interest to the future digital artist.

If you are interested in learning about the intersection between creativity and technology, consider a Bachelor of Arts in Digital Design with an Emphasis in Web Design or learn more about Grand Canyon University’s other digital design programs.

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