Best Free Graphic Design Resources & Tutorials

Interested in graphic design but worried about the costs? Discover a multitude of free resources and tutorials available to help you get started in this exciting creative field and learn about the different careers you can pursue with these skills.

Key Insights

  • Graphic design is a versatile field with applications in various industries, from advertising and branding to product packaging and web designing.
  • Graphic design skills can be useful not just for professionals, but also for small business owners, entrepreneurs, activists, and organizers looking to visually communicate their ideas to a larger audience.
  • Noble Desktop offers a wide variety of free graphic design seminars, available through their official YouTube channel and on their website.
  • Other free resources for learning graphic design include online platforms like Udemy and Coursera, and Adobe's free tutorials and introductory projects.
  • Free trials and programs like Inkscape and Darkboard offer a cost-effective way to practice graphic design techniques, especially for beginners.
  • Noble Desktop provides both in-person and online graphic design training courses, taught by experienced instructors, for those who wish to delve deeper into professional graphic design.

Many professionals are eager to learn graphic design but hesitate because of the perceived up-front costs. While training in graphic design techniques won’t be expensive, licensing the programs necessary to begin composing designs may initially seem a bit intimidating. However, a surprising amount of free resources are available to help beginners get the hang of this exciting program.

Read on to learn more about the different types of free resources and tutorials available to help you learn graphic design.

What is Graphic Design?

Graphic design is a field of creative arts that focuses on projecting visual communication, often built of combinations of text, images, photographs, and other visual elements, with specific goals. Graphic design covers a wide array of different artistic disciplines and endeavors. Still, at its core, it is the act of using visual imagery to communicate with audiences and convey feelings and ideas that language alone wouldn’t be able to express. As a subset of the fine arts, graphic design skills are used in virtually every industry, but they are particularly prominent in advertising and branding. Advertisements, product packaging, logos, branded merchandise, and other promotional materials all demonstrate graphic design skills. Any business or organization looking to reach an audience will want to hire those skilled in graphic design.

Since graphic design covers a wide range of artistic disciplines, no two Graphic Designers will be working with the same toolset or on the same kinds of projects. Some will work in traditional print mediums, such as the publishing or magazine industry. Some will work on designing logos and branded merchandise for companies to place on billboards, hats, and other promotional materials. Some will work on digital projects, building webpages and mobile application assets. Others will design infographics, posters, and signage for activist organizations or non-profits. Graphic design is a wide-open field of diverse artistic endeavors, and learning graphic design skills will open many doors for creatives.

Read more about what graphic design is and why you should learn it.

What Can You Do with Graphic Design?

Graphic design represents a wide-ranging field of visual expression, which means there is virtually no limit to the kinds of images that sufficiently skilled creatives can create. As the field of graphic design is so expensive, creatives can make use of their skills in both professional and personal contexts. As professional Graphic Designers, creatives will be tasked with building imagery that is both evocative and communicates complex persuasive ideas to their audience of consumers. Graphic Designers will build the iconography of companies and brands, build the images that audiences come to associate with those companies, and help construct memorable advertising campaigns, promotional material, and product packaging.

Graphic design skills are also useful for non-professionals who want to persuade large audiences. Small business owners, start-up entrepreneurs, or even creatives working in marketplaces like Etsy may wish to learn more about graphic design to build their brand identities and set themselves apart from their competitors. Activists and organizers can learn graphic design skills to build more visually appealing and persuasive designs for flyers and infographics. Politicians will hire graphic designers to build campaign materials. As long as someone is attempting to communicate visually to an audience, they will benefit from either learning graphic design skills or working closely alongside someone who knows them.

Free Tutorials

Students who want to get a feel for the process of graphic design before they invest too much time and money into professional training options may wish to take advantage of free online training resources and tutorials. These training resources will help students ease into using tools like Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign and will provide students with the necessary background on composition and design theories and philosophies. While students looking to use their graphic design skills professionally will need more advanced training, these online seminars are a great way to start down the path of graphic design education.

Noble offers a wide array of free graphic design seminars through the Graphic Design playlist on its official YouTube channel and the Free Seminars page on its official website. These courses include free introductory seminars on Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign alongside seminars detailing more general theories of graphic design and its function in various industries. These courses will allow students to learn the basic features of graphic design tools to begin experimenting with their designs and feel more confident in their skills when they enroll in an online course.

Students can also take advantage of the free articles and resources available on Noble’s Learn Graphic Design page.

Many other service providers offer free online training, including Udemy and Coursera. In addition, for students looking to learn graphic design tools like Photoshop and Illustrator, Adobe provides users with free tutorials and introductory projects through their website.

Free Trials & Programs

One of the larger costs associated with graphic design is licensing the necessary tools and applications. While licensing a single tool may not be that costly, learning to use several can quickly become a meaningful sum. This is especially true as more and more service providers move to a subscription-based model for their programs.

One way to alleviate this cost is to consider taking advantage of free trials offered by service providers. Adobe, for instance, offers new users a free trial of each program in the Adobe Creative Cloud. This time, even if brief, it can be used to take advantage of the free training options made available through providers like Noble and Adobe. Plus, these trials don’t have to be concurrent, so students can opt to block out the most convenient time.

Students may also wish to consider exploring free program options, such as Inkscape and Darkboard. These alternatives are good for students experimenting with practices and design techniques. Still, they come with the drawback of having fewer training options and potentially lacking key features.

Key Insights

  • While there isn’t an inherent cost to learning graphic design, acquiring the tools and the training to use them can be expensive, especially for students wanting to learn more than one application.
  • Students hoping to cut this cost down before diving into more advanced training may wish to consider the free training resources, such as video tutorials and design templates made available through service providers like Noble and software providers like Adobe.
  • Students may also wish to look at free alternatives for creative design tools, such as applications like Inkscape and Darkboard. These tools will have fewer options for training and functionality, but free makes them ideal for students in the early stages of experimentation.
  • Once students feel comfortable with their graphic design skills and want to learn about more professional training options, they can visit Noble Desktop to learn about their options for live in-person and online graphic design training.

Learn Graphic Design with Hands-on Training at Noble Desktop

Interested in learning graphic design? There are a few different options available. It’s possible to either study individual graphic design tools in accelerated bootcamps or learn complementary graphic design skills in more career-focused training programs. Both graphic design training courses are available to students through Noble Desktop, both in-person and online. These courses are taught by experienced instructors who can teach students important graphic design techniques and give them vital feedback on their designs. Even online, Noble strives to keep class sizes small, ensuring that students can interface directly with their instructors. Plus, all of Noble’s courses have the option to retake the course for free within a year. This allows students to hone their skills, cover material that may have given them difficulty, or just get more hands-on practice and feedback on their designs.

For students looking to learn the programs most commonly associated with professional graphic design, Noble offers a wide selection of bootcamps. These include training courses in Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign, all of which are industry-standard tools. These courses will provide students with hands-on training in the advanced techniques to manipulate and edit photos, build vector graphic illustrations, or construct layout designs. Each of these courses will guide students through practical exercises replicating the kinds of projects built by professional Graphic Designers. Each of these courses will teach an individual tool, but because they are all part of the Adobe Creative Cloud, learning one tool will ease future training and greatly expand how creatives can use multiple programs simultaneously.

Students looking to build a career in graphic design may wish to consider Noble’s Graphic Design Certificate program. This accelerated training program will teach students all three major 2D graphic design tools. Students will learn Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign work separately, then they will learn how these programs complement one another, introducing students to new and expansive ways to build graphic designs. Since this is a career-focused bootcamp, students will receive one-on-one career mentorship. The final portion of the course is dedicated to helping students build a practical portfolio of sample design that they can take onto the job market. For students looking to turn a passion for graphic design into a career, Noble’s certificate programs are an ideal place to receive the necessary skills training.

How to Learn Graphic Design

Master graphic design with hands-on training. Graphic design is the production of digital and print media that follows certain conventions of style, color, and typography in order to evoke a positive reaction from its viewers.

Yelp Facebook LinkedIn YouTube Twitter Instagram