There are currently an estimated 266,300 graphic designers in the United States. The graphic designer job market is expected to grow by 4.2% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are graphic designers?

CareerExplorer rates graphic designers with a D employability rating, meaning this career should provide weak employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will need 16,700 graphic designers. That number is based on 11,100 additional graphic designers, and the retirement of 5,600 existing graphic designers.

Are graphic designers in demand?

Minimal employment growth is projected for graphic designers through 2024, due partly to a significant decline in the print media industry. The job market and demand may slow further because of the growth of computer graphics packages and stock art websites which allow writers, publishers, and art directors to produce their own illustrations. In recent years, some publishing firms have outsourced basic layout and design work to overseas firms. This trend is predicted to continue and may have a negative impact on employment growth in lower level, technical graphic design. However, demand should be sustained for more senior graphic designers who focus on developing ‘strategic design’ or communication strategies that give clients competitive advantages in the market. Because these designers must be in close proximity to the consumers they are targeting to identify their needs and interests, their work is generally not outsourced. In addition, advertising firms may hire more graphic designers as they are asked to create innovative and visually appealing promotional materials for a growing variety of products and services. Sought-after job applicants will be skilled in website design and animation and the creation of content for electronic publications, portable devices, and video entertainment. Those who combine this digital expertise with experience in traditional print media will be most attractive to prospective employers. A small number of designers find employment with management, scientific, and technical consulting firms. On average, about twenty-five percent of graphic designers are self-employed. Experienced designers may advance to supervisory or management positions as chief designer, creative director, or art director.

What’s the supply of graphic designers?

The graphic designer industry is concentrated in California, New York, Florida

Graphic Designer job market by state

State Name Employed Graphic Designers
California 30,180
New York 21,530
Florida 13,140
Texas 12,120
Illinois 11,180
Pennsylvania 8,730
Ohio 7,120
Georgia 6,310
North Carolina 6,310
Minnesota 5,960
New Jersey 5,470
Wisconsin 5,450
Massachusetts 5,240
Washington 5,230
Virginia 4,920
Colorado 4,610
Indiana 3,950
Missouri 3,950
Oregon 3,660
Tennessee 3,480
Utah 3,270
Maryland 3,190
Arizona 3,000
Iowa 2,290
Connecticut 2,260
Kansas 2,210
Nevada 2,050
Nebraska 1,900
South Carolina 1,880
Kentucky 1,850
Louisiana 1,720
District of Columbia 1,710
Alabama 1,670
Oklahoma 1,670
Puerto Rico 1,370
Arkansas 1,150
Idaho 1,100
New Hampshire 930
Mississippi 820
Rhode Island 800
New Mexico 740
Montana 690
South Dakota 670
Maine 660
Vermont 610
North Dakota 570
West Virginia 510
Delaware 470
Hawaii 460
Wyoming 300
Alaska 180
Guam 90