Web Design Theory Tutorial: Why Graphic Designers Are Not Artists

Graphic designers are not artists.

Yes, we said it.


Sure being artistic carries water in the design world; but, being artistic isn’t necessarily what people and clients need to fill up an empty cup, so to speak.

Now if you’re in the graphic design industry you know that being a graphic designer is all about helping clients fulfill one main goal.

Below, Learn iT! Anytime highlights what this goal is and answers why graphic designers are simply not artists.

Why Do People And Businesses Hire Graphic Designers?

The reason why people and businesses hire graphic designers is because they need professional help with visual communication.

By trade, graphic designers are visual communicators who communicate visual messages on the right mediums to do one thing: influence buyer behavior.

How Does A Graphic Designer Influence Buyer Behavior?

People buy things to fill an emotional void, which is later than enforced by a logical explanation. For instance, a girlfriend may buy a pair of shoes because it makes her feel sexy, then later justify this impulsive emotional buy by coming up with a logical explanation like how she needed red shoes anyway, you know, to match her new red dress.

And cue in the graphic designer.

Here, a graphic designer helps influence buyer behavior by first identifying the buyer’s emotional goal upon entry. Then, a graphic designer’s next duty is to visually communicate or design a medium so that it helps the target buyer reach his/her emotional goal as fast as possible.

Everything a graphic designer does is geared around a client’s demand to influence audience behavior, which is easier said then done.


Graphic designers first and foremost are visual communicators. Yes, being artistic does offer advantages to clients however it isn’t always required. In business, artistic integrity takes a back seat to sales and efficiency. Yes, it’s a tough pill to swallow, especially if you’re an artist. Do you think graphic designers are artists? Share your thoughts below, we’d love to know. Until next post!

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