Designers are people with a desire to create. They combine practical knowledge with artistic ability to turn abstract ideas into formal designs for the merchandise we buy, the clothes we wear, the publications we read, and the living and office space we inhabit. Designers usually specialize in a particular area of design, such as automobiles, industrial or medical equipment, or home appliances; clothing and textiles; floral arrangements; publications, logos, signage, or movie or TV credits; interiors of homes or office buildings; merchandise displays; or movie, television, and theater sets.
Designers sometimes supervise assistants who carry out their creations. Designers who run their own businesses also may devote a considerable amount of time to developing new business contacts, reviewing equipment and space needs, and performing administrative tasks, such as reviewing catalogues and ordering samples. Design encompasses a number of different fields.
Commercial and industrial designers, including designers of commercial products and equipment, develop countless manufactured products, including airplanes; cars; children's toys; computer equipment; furniture; home appliances; and medical, office, and recreational equipment. They combine artistic talent with research on product use, customer needs, marketing, materials, and production methods to create the most functional and appealing design that will be competitive with others in the marketplace.
Graphic designers use a variety of print, electronic, and film media to create designs that meet clients' commercial needs. Using computer software, they develop the overall layout and design of magazines, newspapers, journals, corporate reports, and other publications. They also may produce promotional displays and marketing brochures for products and services, design distinctive company logos for products and businesses, and develop signs and signage systems - called environmental graphics - for business and government.