48 Graphic Design Interview Questions & Answers
If you are a graphic designer and you're looking to get your first graphic design job, you probably aren't familiar with the interview process for such a role. While job interviews vary widely depending on the company, and your field of work, it's always a good idea to come prepared. You probably shouldn't study every single question and answer but it can be helpful to get an idea of the interview process and possibly ease your nerves a bit. The list below is a large collection of examples of questions that you might get asked. Underneath some of the questions, we give a rough description of how to answer them. No job interview will likely come close to asking all, but it is likely that you'll hear a few from this list.
Examples of general life questions
Just as is the case in any job interview, you'll probably first get asked a few personal questions regarding your free time and personality. Most of these questions won't have much of an impact on a company's decision to hire you if you are honest and don't give them outlandish answers. They are mostly asked to give them a rough idea of who you are.
How are you doing?
What are your hobbies?
How would you describe yourself in three words?
What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?
What do you consider to be your biggest failure?
What are your strengths and weaknesses?
What is your greatest fear?
What is most important to you?
What is your ultimate goal in life?
What tips would you give your younger self?
Examples of general career questions
After the personal questions, the interviewer will probably follow up with questions that are more related to your career in general.
Why did you become a graphic designer?
Describe when and how you found out you like design and how this led to you creating your first design work and, if applicable, describe the process of getting your first design job.
What career would you have if it weren't in graphic design?
Describe other jobs related to graphic design or your other hobbies, you would've considered.
What is your career goal?
Describe your dream position at the company or describe an alternative career path.
Why do you want to work here?
Describe the reasons you like the company and position you are applying for.
What other company do you wish to work for?
List some other companies that you like. This can for example be one in the same industry or one relating to the role you're applying for.
Do you prefer to work alone or as part of a team?
While many companies look for employees that work well in teams, it depends on the company's scale whether you actually end up working with others or mostly work alone.
How do you handle negative feedback?
If you've been working as a graphic designer, or created work as an amateur designer, you likely already have some experience in working with all kinds of feedback as it is an important part of the design process. Most companies will be looking for someone that can work with negative feedback but doesn't blindly follow all feedback.
How do you incorporate feedback into your work?
Just as is the case with negative feedback, companies generally will look for someone that is able to use feedback to improve their work but won't blindly follow their orders without discussing their reasoning.
How do you give feedback to others?
You will most likely also need to give feedback to others within the company. Describe how you would offer constructive criticism or positive feedback to, for example, another designer you're working with.
How comfortable are you with short deadlines?
While the number of tight deadlines differs a lot from company to company and especially between different industries, it's likely you'll encounter one from time to time. Describe if you struggle with tight deadlines and what you do to mitigate that.
What do you do to meet deadlines?
Describe how you work under pressure to finish your work in time.
How do you deal with stress?
If you experience a lot of stress on and off work, describe what you do to reduce stress. An example may be yoga or meditation.
Do you have any side-projects you like to work on?
Working on a personal side-project is a great way to keep on learning more and it also signals that you are passionate and enjoy what you do. Describe what side-projects you're working on and why, and how you got started.
Examples of general graphic design questions
Can you describe your design process?
Describe your entire design process, from brainstorming to sketching to prototyping.
What is your favorite part of your design process?
What part of the process is your favorite? This can, for example, be sketching out designs or brainstorming ideas.
What do you do to improve your design skills?
List the design courses or other design resources that you use to learn more about design.
What makes a good graphic designer?
This is a hard one as there are a lot of factors that make someone a good graphic designer. Some simple examples are creativity, consistency, being open to learning and being open to criticism.
What makes you a good graphic designer?
You can answer this question in the same way you would the previous one but, of course, relating it to yourself.
What are your favorite sources of design inspiration?
List the websites and books you use or places you visit to get inspiration. Some simple examples are Dribbble.com, Instagram or a local museum.
Which graphic designer is your inspiration?
Describe what designers you look up to and whose work you use as inspiration. Possible answers could be famous designers like David Carson, Saul Bass, Paula Scher or Stefan Sagmeister.
How do you deal with creative blocks?
A creative block is often the result of a lack of inspiration which is why you can answer this question in the same way you would answer the question about how you get inspired.
What should be a designer’s priority while designing?
This is a hard question to answer as there are a lot of factors to keep in mind when designing but a possible answer would be for the designer to strike a balance between creativity and the company's brand identity while solving problems with design.
What do you think the next big design trend will be?
Nobody can accurately predict the next big trend but keep in mind that old trends often repeat themselves in some way which also is the case for many big design trends.
What is your favorite project that you’ve worked on?
Look through your portfolio and think of all your past projects to find a project you like if something doesn't immediately come to mind.
According to you, what is the role of a graphic designer?
This will differ slightly from company to company but the role of a designer essentially comes down to solving problems through design and visually communicating ideas.
What design that you worked on do you consider to be your best work?
Just as with your favorite project, look through your portfolio and try to think of designs you created at previous employers if something doesn't immediately come to mind.
Can you give an example of a design that you like, created by someone else?
Look through your favorite places for inspiration and the work of inspiring designers to find a design that you like and think of some reasons why you like that specific design.
Can you give an example of a design that you dislike, created by someone else?
As a professional graphic designer, you probably notice bad designs all the time. Try to look out for them and think of some reasons why you dislike that specific design.
What are some design changes you would suggest our company make?
Try to look for things such as inconsistencies in design or things that you think don't fit the brand identity.
How do you measure the success of your designs?
Typically, the success of graphic design at a company is measured in the same way a company's success is measured. This can, for example, be an increase in customer satisfaction or an increase in sales.
What software do you use in your design process?
Describe what software you use when designing. Keep in mind that the company's preferred software usually is listed in the job description.
What other tools do you use in your design process?
Describe the other tools you use besides your main design software. This can, for example, be an iPad you use to sketch out design ideas.
What design tools are you familiar with?
Describe what software and other physical design tools you are familiar with. Again, keep in mind that the company's preferred software usually is listed in the job description.
Do you keep up with design trends and how do you do that?
Every graphic designer keeps up with the current trends in some way. Whether it be through design magazines or through looking at work while searching for inspiration.
Examples of technical graphic design questions
While technical questions aren't as common in graphic design job interviews as, for example, a developer job interview, some companies use them to try and test your knowledge regarding graphic design. Obviously, there are thousands of possible questions they can ask you but these are some examples of possible questions.
What are the graphic design principles?
The main graphic design principles most often include some of the following; contrast, balance, white space, emphasis, movement, repetition, rhythm, pattern, proportion, hierarchy, unity, and variety.
What is color theory and why is it important in graphic design?
Color theory refers to a set of guidelines for using and mixing colors in graphic design.
What is the pen tool, lasso tool, clone stamp, etc.?
If the interviewer wants to test your experience with a certain type of software, they might ask you about some of the functions or tools from that software. This should already be easy for you if you use the software regularly.
What is the golden ratio and why is it used?
The golden ratio is a mathematical ratio that is used a lot in design to create natural-looking shapes as it is commonly found in nature.
These are just some examples of graphic design interview questions that you may get asked during your job interview. Use them to get an idea of what you might get asked and to come prepared. Good luck!