How to Boost Your Design Skills with These Actionable Tips

I hate to say it, but I’m going to anyway. Not all graphic designers can create stunning looking designs.

That’s a tough reality for graphic designers but good looking images and nice fonts just don’t cut it anymore. As a matter of fact, with the design world becoming as saturated as it is, it’s becoming more and more difficult to stand out through the competition.

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Sure, using web-based graphic design tools could give you an edge. However, in practice, coming up with great designs is more than just having fancy tools. You need to have the right skill too.

There’s just one problem: There are dozens probably hundreds of actionable tips you can try to boost your skills but even then you might not be able to create stunning shareworthy designs. It takes skills that not every good designer has to actually stand out.

So how do you boost your design skills?

Fortunately, there is no shortage of great actionable tips to help boost your design skills. And to help you out, we have outlined a few actionable tips that will help you rule graphic design whether you are a self-taught designer just getting your feet wet or a seasoned designer that has been in the game for much longer.
Let’s get started with the first tip.

Take an Online Course on Design

More often than not designers think that they have a solid grasp on graphic design when they don’t. On top of that, they also think that if they practice long enough they can get it right the next time around.

And while true for some people, this isn’t the case across the board. It doesn’t matter if you are a seasoned designer or a newbie, there is a lot you can learn when you do a course on the design. And the best part is that there’s a ton of online courses that focus on developing your design skills. Not to mention online courses are inexpensive and you can do it in your living room.

What are The Best Online Courses for Designers?

InDesign Field Guide

InDesign Field Guide is one of a kind course that’s specifically designed to teach self-taught designers how to use Adobe like a pro.

Adobe Illustrator Basics

Adobe Illustrator is one of the best all in one design tools in the design world. And the Adobe Illustrator Basics guide is a course that teaches designers how to use it to create one of a kind graphic designs.

Network with Other Designers

That’s right. Networking.

By now you should know that being a designer is more than just being cooked up in your living room trying to come up with an amazing design. Yes, you can still be a good designer. But networking with other designers grants you exposure to things that set you apart from the competition. Not to mention it also widens your prospect for new opportunities.

But what exactly is networking?

According to Investopedia, “Networking is the exchange of information and ideas among people with a common interest.”
Let me break this down further:

Networking is more than just handing out business cards and going for brunch with friends. It getting to know people in your field of business and engaging with them to know what they are doing differently. It’s building relationships with professionals in your field and getting valuable insights on how you can create better designs effortlessly.

Gather Design Inspirations and Learn More about their Back Stories

One question that I hear a lot is: How do you think of new ideas?

The truth is every creative experiences occasional creative block. However, if you pay attention to inspirations around you, you’ll get a flurry of ideas to help you create stunning designs. These inspirations could be in the form of viral ads or stories of iconic brands.

Sources of Design Ideas

99% Invisible

One of the places I go to find design inspirations is 99% Invisible. It’s a huge blog and radio show that delves into the subtle yet surprisingly intriguing forces that shape our world. The episodes cover everything from architecture, history, infrastructure, technology and more.

The Great Discontent

The Great Discontent is a kind of old school source that showcases all types of creatives. Unlike most other sources of inspiration, TGD features both the great works and the designers behind the astonishing designs. If you want to get a feel of how other designers generate ideas, this is a resource you need.

Inky Deals

On Inky Deals, you’ll see Overlays, T-Shirt Designs, Lightroom Presets, Fonts etc from around the world. And the best part is that apart from just having amazing inspirations, it also has solid content, stunning visuals, and stylistically varied aesthetics. Plus it’s super easy to filter out a specific topic and narrow your search.

Style Guides

Style Guides kind of falls into its own category of inspiration. It’s an extremely helpful resource that houses an ever-growing collection of resources on design and talks about tools worth using to make your designs stand out.


Being a great designer is more than just getting lucky and coming up with good looking images from time to time. It requires a bit of skill to truly become exceptional.

Fortunately, there’s an easy fix.

With the tips we’ve discussed in this article, you’ll be able to boost your design skills and create better designs effortlessly. Of course, it will also take some practice, but if you put in the work, you’ll be creating stunning professional-looking designs in no time.

Of course, this isn’t an extensive list. So, if you want to build on the tips we’ve discussed, there are plenty of other actionable tips to help you boost your design skills.

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