Graphic Design CV Example—Samples and 25+ Writing Tips

A graphic design CV template employers fall for. Build your graphic designer CV fast, with expert tips and good and bad examples.

Tom Gerencer, CPRW
Career Writer at ResumeLab
Graphic Design CV Example—Samples and 25+ Writing Tips

Why’s it hard to write a good graphic design CV?

 

It’s not.

 

But nobody does it.

 

Why not?

 

Poor branding.

 

Fix that, and you’ll get so much work you’ll need a new Wacom in a month.

 

It all comes down to proving you’re no stranger to Photoshop, Illustrator, typography, and print design.

 

But you’ve got to walk a fine line.

 

This guide will show you:

  • A graphic design CV template better than most.
  • How to ace your graphic design job description on a CV.
  • How to write a graphic design agent CV that gets the interview.
  • Why picking the right few design achievements is the #1 key to get hired.

 

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graphic design sample CV

 

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Looking for a different creative position? Explore our other guides:

 

Haven't found what you're looking for? Check all our Professional CV Examples.

  

Graphic Design CV Template

 

Shauna Paiva
Graphic Designer

 

Phone: 501-872-2516
Email: shauna.q.paiva@gmail.com
www.paiva.com
linkedin.com/in/shaunapaiva
twitter.com/shaunapaiva

 

Summary

 

Creative graphic designer with 4+ years' experience. Seeking to deliver design excellence for Erica N. at Google with proven creativity and graphical skills. At KS Inc., developed 350+ projects, slashing costs 20% in 16 months. In team that received 2017 Shopify Design Award.

 

Experience

 

Senior Graphic Designer
Kenna Senno Inc., New York
2016–2018

  • Handled all daily production for high-volume design firm.
  • Led three designers to develop production and graphic materials.
  • Slashed production costs by average of 20% in 16 months.
  • Developed 350+ graphic design projects (catalogues, brochures, presentations).
  • Boosted client transactions by average of 25%.

 

Graphic Designer
Ama Tama Designs, New York
2015–2016

  • In charge of daily design for popular, prolific design firm.
  • Led team project meetings for drive to increase ecommerce client revenue. Project achieved 120% of revenue targets for all client sites.
  • Contributed to design for site that received 2016 Shopify Design award.

 

Graphic Designer
Passalaqua Designs, Inc. New York
2014–2015

  • Created 100+ page designs and 20+ wireframes for several client websites.
  • Used Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign, in daily production.
  • Frequently integrated photographic, graphic, and typographic elements.
  • Commended 4x by management for Photoshop skills.

 

Education

 

BA Graphic Design, Broad Hill State University
2010–2014

  • GPA 3.8 (Magna Cum Laude)
  • Accepted to Senior Achiever Program to create own ecommerce site.
  • Worked for student paper weekly articles illustrator.
  • Pursued passion for online layout and product packaging design.

 

Portfolio at www.Paiva.com

 

  • Web Design. Redesigned website for tripswithbikes.com to elevate the brand and produce easy user experience.
  • App Design. Designed flow of Book Pal App to ensure eye-friendly, smooth navigation through multiple screens.
  • Cookbook Design. Created engaging, clean design and layout for “The Ketogenic Companion.”

 

Additional Activities

 

  • Certified in Adobe CS5 & Autodesk
  • Award: D&AD New Blood 2013
  • Volunteer Work: Designed website for animal shelter that raised donations 25%.

 

Hard Skills: Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, HTML/CSS, Typography, Layout

 

Soft Skills: Communication, Collaboration, Creativity, Time Management

 

Now, here’s how to write a graphic design CV:

 

1. Use the Right Graphic Design CV Format

 

Rule #1:

 

Get graphic design CV format right.

 

If you don’t, the manager knows you can’t tell CMS from crop marks.

 

Here’s how to format your CV:

  • Pick the reverse-chronological CV format. It puts your most hi-res achievement first.
  • Use the best CV fonts, 10–14pt, 1-inch margins, big headings, and negative space.
  • Avoid creative graphic design CVs printed on pizza boxes or brochures. Cute won’t get you hired.
  • Write a one page CV. No more, no less.
  • Start with a CV header. Name, phone number, email address. No snail mail or photo.
  • After the header, add a graphic design CV objective, then work experience, then education.
  • Add CV extras like skills, additional activities, and hobbies to make the marketing manager notice you.

Expert Hint: Use a graphic design CV PDF unless the job description says no. They’re noiseless, and in 2019, they’re also machine-readable.

2. Start With a Hero Graphic Design CV Objective

 

What’s first?

 

Lead off with a CV objective (or CV summary).

 

Make it like a hero graphic, with—

 

1. An adjective (Talented, hard-working, creative)

2. Job title (Graphic Designer)

3. Years of experience (3+, 4+)

4. How you’ll help (provide high-quality design)

5. Flashiest achievements (cut costs by 15%)

 

These two graphic design CV examples are your proof:

Good Example
Creative graphic designer with 4+ years' experience. Seeking to deliver design excellence for Erica N. at Google with proven creativity and graphical skills. At KS Inc., developed 350+ projects, slashing costs 20% in 16 months. In team that received 2017 Shopify Design Award.
Bad Example
Graphic designer with 4 years' experience. Handled all graphic design duties and responsibilities at three different design firms. Extremely skilled in Photoshop and Illustrator, with high-level typographic ability.

Bam. That first graphic design CV sample is responsive. The measurable achievements will make hiring managers ooh and ahh.

 

What if You’ve Got No Experience?

 

You’ve still got achievements. Pack them into your graphic design CV objective.

Good Example
Enthusiastic graphic designer with solid web design skills. Seeking to lower the workload of Sara S. at Marketing Cruller, Inc. Recipient of the D&AD New Blood Award, 2013. Designed 3 full web apps. One was written up favourably in SmashingMagazine.

See? No job, but a great graphic design CV summary.

 

Should you write a graphic design CV objective or a CV summary? An objective used to list your goals. In 2018, it’s more powerful to show how you can help.

Expert Hint: Write your CV objective or summary for graphic design jobs last. That’ll give you a whole palette of great material to pick from.

3. Write Gorgeous Graphic Design CV Job Description

 

Here’s the magic:

 

Most won’t write a good CV job description.

 

Do it, and you’ll stand out like Paula Scher.

 

Here’s how:

 

1. Read the job ad.

2. Highlight the graphic design CV skills and duties.

3. In your CV bullets, show you bleed those things.

 

Let these graphic design CV examples paint the picture.

 

Good Example

Senior Graphic Designer
Kenna Senno Inc., New York
2016–2018

  • Handled daily production for high-volume design firm.
  • Led three designers to develop production and graphic materials.
  • Slashed production costs by average of 20% in 16 months.
  • Developed 350+ graphic design projects (catalogues, brochures, presentations).
  • Boosted client transactions by average of 25%.
Bad Example

Senior Graphic Designer
Kenna Senno Inc., New York
2016–2018

  • Handled all daily production for high-volume design firm.
  • Developed production and graphic materials.
  • Worked directly with clients.

Why will #1 excite the art director? It’s those juicy measurable CV achievements.

 

Graphic Design CV Example—No Experience

 

Freelance Graphic Designer
Hartford, Connecticut
2017‒2018

  • Awarded 99 Designs Award for best web & app design, February, 2017.
  • Designed logo for Solomon Grocery and Cafe, Hartford, Connecticut.
  • Designed brochure for Amalfi & Reiger, Inc., Indianapolis, Indiana.

 

Even with no job experience, you can write a graphic design CV sample like that.

 

Bonus tip:

 

Don’t copy-paste CV skills from a list.

 

To hiring managers, that looks like forgetting to k e r n.

 

Instead:

 

1. Spot the design skills in the job ad.

2. List them in your CV for graphic design jobs.

3. Inject proof in your CV bullets.

 

Job ad wants: (1) daily design experience (2) leadership skills (3) strong design skills.

Good Example

Graphic Designer
Ama Tama Designs, New York
2015–2016

  • In charge of (1) daily design for popular, prolific design firm.
  • (2) Led team project meetings for drive to increase ecommerce client revenue. Project achieved 120% of revenue targets for all client sites.
  • Contributed to design for site that received (3) 2016 Shopify Design award.

That graphic design CV example fits you to the job like it was sprayed on. Those accomplishments with numbers do the trick.

 

The ResumeLab builder is more than looks. Get specific content to boost your chances of getting the job. Add job descriptions, bullet points, and skills. Easy. Improve your CV in our CV builder now.

 

create your CV now

 

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Nail it all with a splash of colour, choose a clean font, highlight your skills in just a few clicks. You’re the perfect candidate and we’ll prove it. Use the ResumeLab builder now.

 

Graphic Design CV Skills List

 

Remember, Don’t use skills lists.

 

For reference, here are the most important:

 

Graphic Design CV Skills
Hard SkillsSoft Skills
PhotoshopCommunication
IllustratorCollaboration
AcrobatTime Management
Free HandColour Theory
SketchingPlanning and Organisation
Print DesignLeadership
InDesignProblem Solving
HTML/CSSCreativity
Corel DrawTechnology
TypographyResearch
LayoutTaking Criticism

Expert Hint: Got stock imagery skills? Those are in demand. Check out this study by Graphic Design USA.

4. Turn Boring Education to a Reason to Hire You

 

Who cares about education?

 

The sad truth? On graphic design agent CVs: nobody.

 

But—

 

Use your CV education section as a rebrand and you’ll stand nine feet above the rest.

 

These graphic design CVs examples show how:

Good Example

Education

 

BA Graphic Design, Broad Hill State University
2010–2014

  • GPA 3.8 (Magna Cum Laude)
  • Accepted to Senior Achiever Program to create own ecommerce site.
  • Worked for student paper weekly articles illustrator.
  • Pursued passion for online layout and product packaging design.
Bad Example

BA Graphic Design, Broad Hill State University
2010–2014

  • GPA 3.8
  • Received degree.
  • Excelled in accounting classes.

That first graphic design agent sample is a Rembrandt. Those achievements prove your passion. Why?

 

You cared about it way back when.

Expert Hint: Is your graphic design CV experience thinner than a raster layer? Show more CV education achievements like teams, groups, and projects.

5. Beautify Your Graphic Design CV With These

 

Most graphic design CVs look identical.

 

Like Lorem Ipsum text.

 

Make yours stand out, and you’ll look like David Carson in a world of kitsch.

 

To do it, add CV extra sections that show you love design.

 

These two graphic design CV examples will help:

Good Example

Portfolio at www.paiva.com

 

  • Web Design. Redesigned website for tripswithbikes.com to elevate the brand and produce easy user experience.
  • App Design. Designed flow of Book Pal App to ensure eye-friendly, smooth navigation through multiple screens.
  • Cookbook Design. Created engaging, clean design and layout for “The Ketogenic Companion.”

 

Additional Activities

 

  • Certified in Adobe CS5 & Autodesk.
  • Award: D&AD New Blood 2013.
  • Volunteer Work: Designed website for animal shelter that raised donations by 25%.
Bad Example

See portfolio online at www.paiva.com

 

Additional Activities

 

  • Walking my dog.
  • Collecting vinyls.

Striking.

 

Those first graphic design CV samples stick out like a Banksy. They prove you love your art. That means you’ll self-motivate.

Expert Hint: For rave reviews, add a cover letter to your CV for graphic design jobs. Your job options will fractalize.

Double your impact with a matching CV and cover letter combo. Use our cover letter builder and make your application documents pop out.

 

create your cover letter now

 

CREATE YOUR COVER LETTER NOW

 

Want to try a different look? There’s 18 more. A single click will give your document a total makeover. Pick a cover letter template here.

 

Key Points

 

For a great graphic design CV:

  • Use the graphic design CV template up top. It’s got all the elements to get you in the door.
  • Customise your graphic design CV like a Maceala MacKenzie original. Each bullet point should match the job description.
  • Don’t be arbitrary. Even education in a CV for graphic design jobs should show accomplishments that fit.
  • Add aesthetic extras like conventions and pro associations. But—only if they match the job offer.

 

Do you need to write a cover letter as well? Check out the guide to write a cover letter for a Graphic Design position.

 

Got questions on how to write a great CV for a graphic designer? Not sure how to show graphic design on a CV? Leave a comment. We’re happy to reply.

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Tom Gerencer, CPRW
Tom Gerencer (CPRW) is a Certified Professional Resume Writer, career advice writer and a resume expert at ResumeLab. Tom has been featured on BBC News, NBC, The Economist, Business Insider, Fast Company, and dozens of other outlets. His insights, commentary, and articles reach over a million readers every month. With inside knowledge of key industry players and in-depth research, Tom helps job seekers with advice across all professions and career stages. Tom holds a degree in English from Colby College.

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