If you were interviewing for your first graphic design position, what kind of questions should you expect? The posting is fairly vague, aside from the assumption of basic design skills.

  • If you give us more detail on a field you are looking for job, that will bring better answers. As said below, it depends a lot on your position, if it's an artist/engineer/apprentice/retouchist/web/magazines/souvenirs/etc..
    – Kromster
    Aug 24, 2011 at 17:00

3 Answers 3


If you're being asked a lot of software questions, then the position likely isn't a graphic design position as much as it is a production artist position. Granted, that's where a lot of us start, so that's not necessarily a bad thing.

I'd never ask a candidate to take a test or produce sample work on the spot or brainstorm ideas for a client. That's all spec work and tacky, at best. If it's an entry level position you are trying to hire for, those questions are irrelevant as they are entry level...your job is to shape and mold them on the job. If it's a upper level position, then such questions are insulting.

Questions I'd want to ask would be mostly centered around the portfolio:

  • What was your thought process behind this piece?
  • Do you have some sketches to show the progression of this example?
  • How did you go about producing this printed piece?

General questions might include:

  • Who are your favorite designers?
  • What typefaces could you not live without?
  • What are you hoping to gain from this job?
  • What areas of design are you strongest in?
  • What areas of design are you less experienced in but interested in gaining more knowledge of?
  • How would you describe your style and/or your design process?
  • Do you prefer designing as a team collaboratively or individually?

In terms of web design:

  • What is your design process?
  • Have you worked in Agile enviornments?
  • How would you rank your skills in: Information Architecture, UI Design, Front end development, Interaction design, User experience, etc.
  • I am a big fail then :|
    – Jack
    Aug 25, 2011 at 5:10

I depends on your job position, is it a web-designer, photoshop-specialist or a vector artist, maybe UI designer?

Here are most common:

  1. Can you show us your portfolio?
  2. Can you take "this" set of photos and achieve "this" effect in output?
  3. Give us 5 design ideas on how to make "this" work?
  4. Take "this" sample and produce the same result in 1-2 hours.

That basicaly covers 90% of questions I've got on job interviews, not to mention "what is your name, where did you studied and worked before" kind of questions. Is that answers your question? I can add more detail if you need.

  • 3
    says about the most important things, though i need to add some things: 5. What programming languages do you know and how well (html, css, php etc.)? 6. What programs do you use (photoshop, dreamweaver, etc.)? 7. Name us 3 websites of which you thing the design is great?
    – Luuk
    Aug 24, 2011 at 8:18
  • 1
    You should post that as separate answer as well, it is good :)
    – Kromster
    Aug 24, 2011 at 8:35
  • will do that. Maybe that is indeed better
    – Luuk
    Aug 24, 2011 at 13:23
  • 1 is valid. The other 3 smell mostly like spec work and should be a huge red flag for anyone being asked said questions.
    – DA01
    Aug 24, 2011 at 15:00
  • The question is about first position, not a high-paid prefessional ;)
    – Kromster
    Aug 24, 2011 at 16:56

The above answer says about the most important things, though i need to add some things:

  1. What programming languages do you know and how well do you know them (html, css, php etc.)?
  2. What programs do you use (photoshop, dreamweaver, etc.)?
  3. Name us 3 websites of which you think the design is great?

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