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F.I.R.S.T. Institute Blog

Frances Johns's blog

Design Industry Tips: Is a Graphic Design Career Right for You?

Think of the last product you picked up, saw on TV, or read about online.

Sure, you’re interested in the product because of how it satisfies your needs, but you probably wouldn’t have given it a second look if not for the efforts of the design team that made the real magic happen!

The Opportunities a Music Production School Can Offer You

There are a variety of different programs out there for music production. These programs include courses at more traditional colleges and universities, and some are found at schools that focus on digital media. For those of you searching in Florida, there's one music school in Orlando you should be considering. That school is F.I.R.S.T. Institute, which has programs focusing on recording arts and music production, specifically.

Design Industry Tip

Graphic designers have their work cut out for them when they strike out on their own and begin to make their mark — the design industry is constantly changing which makes standing out and getting noticed a challenge.

Design Industry Tips: 5 Tips For Marketing Yourself in Graphic Design

There are many different paths a designer can take throughout their graphic design career including (but not limited to) being an in-house designer for a specific company, being a member of a studio or agency, or pursuing freelance graphic design. No matter which route you choose, you’re going to need to decide how you’re going to tackle some of the design industry’s most common issues facing designers of all ages and experience levels. Learning how to market your graphic design skills and business can help you overcome these hurdles.

Design Tips: Adobe Illustrator Quick Start Guide

Despite its name, Adobe Illustrator is not the exclusive domain of cartoonists and other artists who work primarily through the digital equivalent of more traditional mediums; many have replaced pen and paper with a stylus and drawing tablet, but the theory is much the same.

Graphic designers 


Illustrator Quick Start Guide: Meet Adobe’s vector design program

Adobe Illustrator CC

Adobe Photoshop Quick Start Guide For New Graphic Designers

This won’t be your typical Adobe Photoshop quick start guide — we’d like to focus on getting you set up to succeed right from the start, and that means exploring the less flashy and glamorous parts of Photoshop use before you move on to creating your first masterpiece. 

Graphic Design Principles: Understanding Fundamentals of Photography

Photography doesn’t have to be all huge lenses and tripods and cameras that easily cost more than your car—you can get started with an inexpensive point-and-shoot camera for under $100. Most cameras in this price range have the same resolution and features that much larger and more pricey models had just a few years ago. Understand the fundamentals of photography can do wonders for your career in the design industry. Find out more with our beginner's guide!

Developing a Compelling Graphic Design Portfolio

If you're looking to become a graphic designer, you've probably realized that you're going to have to show potential employers your best work if you hope to score an interview. If you have examples of designs you've done that have been printed, you can (and should!) bring a physical portfolio with you when pitching your ideas for a project or going after a job opportunity. Developing a showstopping graphic design portfolio doesn't have to be difficult!

What Does a Typical Graphic Design Salary Look Like?

As a graphic design school, one question we hear often is, “What's a typical graphic design salary?” Students are concerned that they're undervaluing themselves and their work, or that they're limiting themselves by living or working somewhere other than where the money is.  

The Biggest Mistakes Made by Graphic Designers and How to Avoid Them

The graphic design industry has its fair share of "sins" and faux pas like any other industry. What's unique in the design industry is that instead of comments like, “Oh no, not that belt with those shoes!” designers tend to hear, “Oh my, look at that type! Looks like somebody skipped out on kerning...”

Design Industry Tips: Using Pinterest for Graphic Designers

Pinterest is an amazing tool for designers – it can be used to store inspiration and ideas for client projects, interact with other designers, or even become a part of a pitch or project bid!

Graphic Design Tips: The Big Mistakes that Graphic Designers Make

There are Do’s and Don’ts in any profession, and graphic design is certainly no exception! Because good design is all about using visual elements to share a message, you’ll want to watch out for these common design slip-ups and avoid letting any of them sneak into your work. Read our Graphic Design Tips for more!

Graphic Design School: How Long Does it Take to Learn Graphic Design?

How long does it take to learn graphic design? That depends entirely on what your post-education career goals look like. Time spent learning the ropes and bringing home that coveted certificate or diploma can take as few as 6 weeks, or as many as 6 years – that’s essentially the difference between a program that offers a basic certification and earning a full Master’s degree in Graphic Design. Read more to learn how long graphic design school might take for you!

How to Create Logos and Other Graphics in Adobe Illustrator

Vector graphics are to raster graphics as apples are to oranges — They share some distant similarities (both can edit and create graphics) but they are very different in form and function! Raster graphics are typically created and edited using Adobe Photoshop, and Illustrator is king in the world of vector graphic editing and creation. Seems simple enough!

The Graduate Outlook for Top Film Schools in Florida

Let's face it, the film industry is notoriously competitive. Luckily for graduates coming from film schools in Florida, there are new jobs being created and becoming available daily, and opportunities for success and advancement are everywhere. By attending a film program, you will have the knowledge, skills, and practical experience needed to join the ranks of film and video production experts working in the field right now! 

The Degree and Diploma Options Available at Audio Production Schools

Do your dreams of the future include working behind-the-scenes with top recording artists and other celebrities? If you answered yes, then an audio engineering education might be just what you need to take the next step forward. Read on to learn what kinds of options are available to you when you decide to pursue an audio production education!

Why You Should Give Film Schools in Florida a Chance

The film industry is among the few that haven't been dramatically affected by the economic decline the US has been plagued with the past few years – this means that some of the most rewarding jobs are likely going to be found in film! Why not make a living doing what you love? Here's the good news: you don't have to go to LA or New York to get a fantastic film education! Film schools in Florida can offer you everything you need to be on the road to rewarding film careers.

F.I.R.S.T. Institute: Why You Should Choose Film Schools in Florida

You have a goal in mind, but do you have an idea of the milestones you'll need to achieve on your way to the top, like getting a diploma in film from a top film program? Ask yourself what your dream job is — not something general like becoming a director or producer, rather something more specific like becoming the person responsible for setting up, maintaining, and then breaking down the equipment used during a production.

Your Film Questions Answered: How to Become a Director

You're watching a movie, and you feel the urge to do something differently on screen. Maybe it's changing the lighting, the music, or the angle of the camera during an awesome, dramatic moment. Whatever the reason, you know that you want to get your hands dirty and create the ultimate movie experience!

So, what's holding you back from becoming a director that Hollywood is waiting for?

Myth vs Fact: How to Become a Director in the Film Industry

There are some film industry myths that have taken on a larger-than-life quality. When someone asks how to become a director, they often receive advice that is both inaccurate and conflicting. This leads to confusion and often dissatisfaction with both education options and job opportunities.

Film School Tips: How to Become a Director in Today's Job Market

Becoming a director in today's fast-paced film industry can seem like a daunting task, but the key to learning how to become a director isn't a secret! You just have to know who to go to, and the right questions to ask. Read on for more Film School Tips on how to become a director!

Life After Graduation From a Music Production School

Picture yourself in a program at a music production school — you’re working toward your goal of a music production career, you’ve completed all of your group and individual projects, and have even worked through an internship or two, and you’re looking forward to graduation day!

How Can Music Production School Help You Become a Music Producer?

Are you interested in learning how to become a music producer? There are a few routes you can take to this exciting career, and you may have been weighing the pros and cons of attending a music production college to help you get where you want to be. Look no further! The name gives it away, attending a music production college is a great way to learn the ins and outs of becoming a music producer!

The Pros of Attending Video Production School in Orlando, Florida

There are several schools in the Orlando area that offer courses and degree programs in the film industries. They offer a variety of courses that allow a student to earn a degree or obtain a certification in a specific aspect of their chosen industry.

What Careers are Available to Graduates of Audio Production Schools?

An audio production education can open a lot of different doors in the audio engineering industry after you graduate. You could work in a music studio as many graduates do, or you can pursue a job in radio, television, or theater — the opportunities are endless. Audio production graduates have even found work in live music and computer gaming!

Design Industry: What is a Graphic Designer and What Do They Do?

What is a graphic designer? What do graphic designers do? A graphic designer is someone who works with the elements of design (color, space, typography, etc.) to create materials that communicate a message. They often use a combination of traditional and digital media to create their designs, and their work can be seen everywhere from billboards to web ads to cereal boxes.

What Art Colleges Can Do For Your Graphic Design Career

As an aspiring graphic designer, you’re learning more every day about your career options — There are so many things that you can do in a graphic design career once you’ve completed your art and design industry education!

What Does a Typical Graphic Designer Job Description Look Like?

What is graphic design? What does a typical graphic designer job description look like? What does a graphic designer do? These are almost trick questions, as there is no one-size-fits-all job description when it comes to the graphic design industry.

You Ask, We Answer: What Do Graphic Designers Do?

What do graphic designers do? With a loaded question like this one, there are so many answers that we almost don’t know what to say. To start with, graphic designers are masters of positive and negative space. They can manipulate form to meet function. A design takes on a life of its own and becomes so much more than ink and paper, or pixels on a screen. Graphic designers are artists, marrying the old and new worlds of design to create something entirely unique and intensely real. 

What is Graphic Design and Can Anyone Learn How To Do It?

The first part of this question is easy to answer in that graphic design has a definition. According to the Webster dictionary, the term graphic design means "the art or profession of using design elements to convey information or create an effect." This is mostly accurate from our point of view — of course graphic design jobs can be highly specialized, but it’s a fitting general description.

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