Top Cities for Graphic Design Classes & Training

Learn essential graphic design skills and open up a plethora of career opportunities in advertising and branding, including designing logos and creating promotional materials. With in-depth training from Noble Desktop, you can become proficient in Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign, and start your journey to becoming a professional graphic designer.

Key Insights

  • Graphic design is a wide field that involves the use of various visual elements to communicate ideas and messages. It is used in every industry, but is especially prominent in advertising and branding.
  • Different graphic designers work with varied toolsets and on diverse projects, opening up vast career opportunities in traditional print mediums, digital projects, designing logos, and more.
  • New York City, Los Angeles, Seattle, Boston, Austin, Baltimore, Washington DC, Miami, Chicago, and Atlanta are some of the major cities offering robust graphic design training options.
  • Seattle and Washington DC are among the cities with the highest average salary for graphic designers in the U.S.
  • Students can learn graphic design through various methods, including live instruction courses, on-demand training, and free online resources. Noble Desktop offers comprehensive graphic design courses both in-person and online.
  • Noble Desktop offers a Graphic Design Certificate program for students looking to build a career in graphic design. The program includes training in Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, and also helps students build a practical portfolio.

Students interested in learning graphic design in person at a dedicated training facility will find that almost all of their options are located in major metropolitan areas. Since this is also where many of the highest-paying jobs are located, it makes sense that students looking for a career change may want to consider looking at the kinds of cities that offer the most robust training options for aspiring Graphic Designers.

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 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 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 attempts to communicate visually to an audience, they will benefit from either learning graphic design skills or working closely alongside someone who knows them.

New York City, NY

New York City is the largest economic center on the east coast and arguably the most significant economic hub in the country. This means that there is no shortage of firms and companies in the city that need talented Graphic Designers and thus, no shortage of training facilities that teach graphic design. New York is also home to some of the most cutting-edge art scenes in the world and some of the largest cultural museums and galleries in the country, making it a great place to start learning more about creative design skills.

NYC employs the most Graphic Designers of any city in the country and is home to a wide array of in-person training centers, including Noble Desktop, Future Media Concepts, and Shillington School. To learn more about New York Graphic Design training options, consider exploring with Noble’s Classes Near Me tool.

Los Angeles, CA

LA is the largest city on the west coast, and many of the largest tech firms in the country are headquartered here. Tech start-ups and existing firms are always looking for new, talented Graphic Designers, so training options are plentiful. In addition, LA is home to major artistic institutions, including Hollywood. This artistic community makes it a great place to learn graphic design skills, especially if you hope to expand upon those skills and learn motion graphics design or computer-aided animation.

Since it is located near so many art schools, including the UCLA extension, there are many options available for graphic design training in LA. These include the aforementioned UCLA extension, but also include training providers like HeadTrix, Inc. and Ledet Training.

Seattle, WA

Seattle is the major economic and cultural center of the Pacific Northwest, and it is the city with the third-highest average salary for Graphic Designers in the country. This makes it an ideal place to learn graphic design, since so many established tech firms (including Microsoft and Amazon) are already located in the city. Seattle is also home to some of the country’s best design colleges, so students may find the opportunity to work with colleagues or attend classes at universities like Bellevue or UoW.

Seattle is home to a few different in-person graphic design training programs. These include The School of Visual Concepts, Sonic Training, and Luminous Training Works. In addition, many training providers, such as ONLC have training centers in Seattle.

Boston, MA

Often considered the Silicon Valley of the Atlantic coast, Boston is a great place to try and learn graphic design skills. Some of the largest and most prestigious American universities are located in Boston, which has two major benefits for aspiring Graphic Designer. First, there will be many different training options available to you, since university cities tend to have more advanced learning facilities than in other cities. Second, it means that there will be a lot of start-ups and new projects coming out of the research and development done at universities like MIT and Harvard, many of which will need to employ Graphic Designers when they go public.

Just a small sampling of Boston’s live graphic design classes include those provided by PMT Institute, 280 Group, and Digital Media Academy.

Austin, TX

Alongside Houston and Dallas, Austin is rapidly expanding to become an emerging American tech and financial center. Austin has one of the largest and most vibrant artistic communities in the American south, and the city is among the more livable cities in the country in terms of cost. Famously, Austin is home to the South by Southwest art and media festival, making the city a gathering place for professional creatives from around the country.

Austin is home to various graphic design training programs, including Lumenbrite, Digital Media Academy, and General Assembly.

Baltimore, MD

Located on the heart of the eastern seaboard on the Chesapeake Bay, Baltimore is a thriving city that offers plenty of training options for students looking to learn graphic design. Baltimore is part of the DMV metropolitan area and, as such, is located close to other major metropolitan areas that you can explore for work and training. Baltimore itself is one of the country’s oldest and most beautiful cities, and Baltimore has a thriving art culture that Graphic Designers will benefit from being a part of.

Graphic design training programs in Baltimore include in-person offerings from Ledet Training, ONLC, New Horizons, and Certstaffix.

Washington, DC

The other major city in the DMV metropolitan area, Washington DC is one of the fastest-growing cities in the country in terms of graphic design careers. Home to most aspects of the federal government, DC is a great place to work and train if you want to become a Graphic Designer to work on political campaigns, at advocacy firms, or at non-profit organizations. Washington, DC. also boasts the 4th highest median salary for Graphic Designers in the country, and it is located very close to Alexandria, Arlington, and Baltimore.

Some of the in-person graphic design courses taught in Washington DC include classes taught by Lumenbrite, Ledet Training, General Assembly, and Future Media Concepts.

Miami, FL

Miami is one of the largest economic metropolitan areas in the country and, thanks to a number of recent local, state, and federal initiatives, it has become a major tech hub of the American south. Miami also has the advantage of being one of the most beautiful and inviting cities in the country, home to a thriving art scene and located near the amazingly beautiful Miami Beach, with only a short drive separating you from the Florida Keys. All of these reasons make Miami an attractive city in which to learn graphic design skills.

A few Miami-based graphic design classes are offered at IronHack, The Academy, and Miami Ad School.

Chicago, IL

Chicago is America’s third-largest city and it is the largest major population center in the Midwest. It is home to many Fortune 500 companies, including Orbitz and Grubhub, and it is an emerging leader in the FinTech industry. Chicago is a major American cultural center and it is home to some of the largest and most significant entertainment venues in the world. If you are interested in a career in promotional media or advertising, there are few better cities to receive your training in than Chicago. It is also the home of the third most graphic design position in the nation.

Some of the different graphic design training programs located in Chicago include those offered by CTS Training, Ascend, and Training Connection.

Atlanta, GA

Atlanta is home to some of the largest companies in the United States, including Home Depot, UPS, and Delta Airlines, not to mention Coca-Cola. Since it is the home to so many consumer companies, Atlanta is a good place to begin your graphic design career by looking for guided training. As venture capital keeps flowing through Atlanta, training facilities are more than ready to help students prepare for entry into the workforce. Atlanta is also one of the south’s major cultural centers, and since it was home to some of the most important social movements in the nation’s history, it is also a good place to find work in the non-profit sector.

Many graphic design training programs call Atlanta home, including the Emory Continuing Education program, Ledet Training, and Georgia Tech Bootcamps.

How to Learn Graphic Design

Students looking to learn graphic design skills have a few options for how to receive their training. They can enroll in live training courses, take a self-paced on-demand course, or ease themselves into the tools of graphic design by taking advantage of free training resources. Each graphic design training option has certain advantages and disadvantages, so students should consider their needs and learning styles before deciding.

The most immersive learning options are live instruction courses, both in-person and online. These courses give students hands-on experience using graphic design tools, and students will benefit from working directly with live instructors who can provide students with vital feedback on the progression of their designs. In-person courses also let students work with like-minded colleagues and receive networking opportunities that can benefit them long-term. However, these courses can be somewhat restrictive in where they are offered. Online training options offer the same benefits as live instruction but can be taken from anywhere. The drawback to these courses is that students must supply and maintain their own technology.

Students looking for more flexibility in their graphic design training may want to consider on-demand graphic design training. These courses let students control the pace of their own learning, letting them study and practice their graphic design skills when it is most convenient for them. These classes are ideal for students with inconsistent schedules or other obligations that make live training impossible. The downside to these courses is that without a live instructor, there is no one to provide feedback on a student’s designs, which is a vital aspect of creative skills development.

Students who don’t feel ready to enroll in a graphic design training program may wish to consider exploring the options for free online training. These tutorials won’t replace professional training, but they can help students become comfortable with the necessary skills to ease them into more professional training options. Noble offers free video tutorials on the Graphic Design playlist on its official YouTube channel. In addition, students looking to learn more can consult Noble’s Learn Graphic Design hub to find articles, tutorials, and free learning resources related to graphic design tools and techniques.

Read the full guide on how to learn graphic design.

Learn Graphic Design Skills with 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 crucial 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. You can also browse the full list of schools for graphic design classes on the Noble website.

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.

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