Art Directors

Arts, Audio/Video Technology & Communications > Visual Arts

Projected Growth: Little or no change

Projected Job Openings

Considerable Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Formulate design concepts and presentation approaches for visual communications media, such as print, broadcasting, and advertising. Direct workers engaged in art work or layout design.

Common job titles of Art Directors include:

Experience and Education

A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for this occupation. For example, a person in this occupation must complete four years of college and work for several years in industry to be considered qualified.

  • 73.58% said they needed a Bachelor's Degree.

  • 17.08% said they needed a Master's Degree.


    Work with creative directors to develop design solutions.

    Formulate basic layout design or presentation approach and specify material details, such as style and size of type, photographs, graphics, animation, video, and sound.

    Review and approve art materials, copy materials, and proofs of printed copy developed by staff members.

    Manage own accounts and projects, working within budget and scheduling requirements.

    Mark up, paste, and complete layouts and write typography instructions to prepare materials for typesetting or printing.

    Create custom illustrations or other graphic elements.

    Review illustrative material to determine if it conforms to standards and specifications.

    Present final layouts to clients for approval.

    Confer with creative, art, copywriting, or production department heads to discuss client requirements and presentation concepts and to coordinate creative activities.

    Research current trends and new technology, such as printing production techniques, computer software, and design trends.

    Prepare detailed storyboards showing sequence and timing of story development for television production.

    Negotiate with printers and estimators to determine what services will be performed.

    Attend photo shoots and printing sessions to ensure that the products needed are obtained.

    Confer with clients to determine objectives, budget, background information, and presentation approaches, styles, and techniques.

    Conceptualize and help design interfaces for multimedia games, products, and devices.

    Hire, train, and direct staff members who develop design concepts into art layouts or who prepare layouts for printing.


Tablet computers

Sketching pencils

Personal computers

Laptop computers

Digital video cameras

Digital still cameras

Desktop computers


Adobe Systems Adobe Creative Cloud

Adobe Systems Adobe Illustrator

Adobe Systems Adobe InDesign


Apple macOS

Atlassian JIRA

Autodesk 3ds Max Design

All Technologies

Computer assisted design software



Adobe Systems Adobe ActionScript

Adobe Systems Adobe Director

Adobe Systems Adobe Dreamweaver

Adobe Systems Adobe Flash

Adobe Systems Adobe Premiere Pro

Apache Software Foundation Flex

Apple Final Cut Pro

Apple iWork Keynote

Atlassian Confluence

Autodesk Maya

Data visualization software

Dynamic hypertext markup language DHTML

Extensible HyperText Markup Language XHTML



Mobile application software


Quark Xpress

Social media software

Tablet application software

User interface design software

Web broswer software




Active Listening

Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.


Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Judgment and Decision Making

Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Time Management

Managing one's own time and the time of others.

Reading Comprehension

Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Complex Problem Solving

Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Critical Thinking

Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.


Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Active Learning

Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Social Perceptiveness

Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.


Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.

Management of Personnel Resources

Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.


Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.


Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Learning Strategies

Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.


Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.


Teaching others how to do something.

Service Orientation

Actively looking for ways to help people.

Operations Analysis

Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.

Systems Analysis

Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.

Management of Financial Resources

Determining how money will be spent to get the work done, and accounting for these expenditures.


Come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Fluency of Ideas

Come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Originality

Listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Expression

See details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).

Sensory Abilities › Visual Abilities › Near Vision

Apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Deductive Reasoning

Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.

Cognitive Abilities › Spatial Abilities › Visualization

Match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.

Sensory Abilities › Visual Abilities › Visual Color Discrimination

Generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Category Flexibility

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