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How to Make Money as a Graphic Designer

Have you ever wondered how to make money as a graphic designer? Now is the time to learn! Keep reading to learn tons of ways to make money with your sketches, doodles and designs.

Over the last twelve or so years, I’ve done a lot of things to make extra money for my family and still be home with my kids.

I ran a daycare out of my house, I sold Avon, made and sold soap, home decor items and gifts, custom photographs, wooden signs and I even sold most of my children’s baby clothes on eBay (some regrets there, I gotta tell ya!).

I’ve done it all, but, learning how to make money as a graphic designer was the best decision I’ve ever made. I love my stationery business and I look forward to working on it (almost) everyday.

I’ve never been one to sit around and watch soap operas…I’d rather be busy. I also enjoy being able to make my own money and still be at home for my children.

Plus, I’m not super social, so hanging out around the water-cooler doesn’t hold any appeal for me and I don’t have any real desire to help someone else build their dream.

Instead, I work hard to build my own. For myself and my family.

It’s not easy and it isn’t always fun. Between my shop, this blog and occasional freelance writing jobs, there are days when I am at my computer or at my worktable from 6:00 am to 11:00 pm.

It’s not your typical 9 to 5 job, but, it’s worth it, because I love it.

Although, I consider myself more a stationery designer or doodler than a graphic designer. I don’t have any formal training in graphic design, I’m entirely self-taught and I’m pretty stinking proud of how far I’ve come over the years…

I used to use a great deal of premade graphics.

Today, I draw or digitally design everything myself.

Do You Want to Learn How to Make Money as a Graphic Designer?

If you answered yes, then keep reading.

I can’t promise you’ll have all the answers when you are through reading, but you’ll have a rough idea of where to get started. I can only share with you the steps that I’ve taken over the years to make money as a graphic designer, it’s up to you to use your best judgement about what will work best for you.

So, let’s get started…

What Does a Graphic Designer Do Exactly?

The short of it is a graphic designer designs graphics. Seriously though, a graphic designer does a lot of different things.

From design conceptions, to illustration, to editing, to product conception, to product manufacturing to marketing, there’s a lot involved in a graphic design job or business.

As a stationery designer/business owner, I do it all myself, from idea to illustration to edit to manufacturing to marketing.

If you intend to make money as a graphic designer on your own, then be prepared for a lot of work. It takes a lot of time to develop so many ideas and even more time to execute them.

What Supplies Does a Graphic Designer Need?

Not as many as you might think. Below is a list of supplies I use the most:

  • Pencils – I highly recommend Ticonderoga Pencils – they are the best!
  • Colored Pencils
  • Micro-tip Pens
  • Markers
  • Rulers
  • Erasers (lots of erasers)
  • Graphic Design Software – I use Photoshop and Corel

How Do I Make Money as a Graphic Designer?

There are basically 3 ways to make money as a graphic designer.

  1. Get a job in the field.
  2. Sell your designs for others to use (I highly recommend using the Artist’s & Graphic Designers Market book to help you find the best places to sell your designs.)
  3. Create products and sell your own designs.

What Kind of Products Do Graphic Designers Make to Sell on Their Own?

  • Stationery (Notepads, Note Cards, Invitations, Greeting Cards, etc.)
  • Home Decor (ex. Pillows, Wall Art, Bedding, etc.)
  • Cell Phone Cases
  • Clothing (T-Shirts, Leggings, Scarves, etc.)
  • Kitchenware (ex. Cutting Boards, Dishes, Coffee Mugs)

The possibilities are endless! If you can dream it, you can make it…

Where Do I Sell My Own Products and Designs?


Offline (Local)

  • Individuals
  • Schools
  • Restaurants
  • Doctor/Dentist Offices
  • Municipalities
  • Retail establishments
  • Libraries
  • Churches
  • Clubs/organizations

As you can see, there is a lot involved when you are learning how to make money as a graphic designer. But, it’s not hard stuff…just lots of it!

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I hope that this little post helps you get started in the world of graphic design. It’s a great business to be in, you meet a lot of creative people, plus you get to see your own doodles come to life and head off into the world on their own.

What could be more fun?! It sure beats sitting in a cubicle all day long!

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Have a Spectacular Day!


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Tuesday 7th of January 2020

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