7 Time Management Tips for Graphic Designers [Plus 5 Free Online Graphic Design Software]

Home / Others / 7 Time Management Tips for Graphic Designers [Plus 5 Free Online Graphic Design Software]

Everyone has 24 hours every day but some people seem to have more.

They manage to get every work done on the dot, and at times, with more time to spare. Sounds too good to be true? It is possible to accomplish so much even in such a little time. The secret to this feat is time management.

If you are a graphic designer, you do not need to have the power to stop or slow downtime. What you need to master is the art of time management to maximize your productivity and not get caught between projects and deadlines.


Importance of Time Management to Graphic Designers

The graphic industry is highly competitive. If you want to be the top choice among your competitors, being dependable and efficient at the same time will be your edge.

Time management skills are essential to completing any creative task on deadline. Whether you are working freelance or within a firm, the ability to produce exemplary results within the schedule is the key to building a successful career. Enormous requests can’t be avoided when you are working in such a creative industry. This is due to differences in the artistic views between you and the boss. Because being a designer oftentimes demands that you juggle countless tasks, proper use of time becomes even more significant.

Aside from the workload, there are plenty of other reasons why it can be tough for graphic designers to finish a job on time. Whatever the reason may be, when you cannot afford delays, remember that you cannot manipulate time but you can control your own time.


7 Time Management Tips

Here are 7 tips to help you organize your time and become efficient as a graphic designer:


Tip #1:  Arrange your tasks according to priority.

One of the worst things you can do is working without knowing your priorities. Doing this would let you accomplish tasks but not the ones that you should have done first. At the end of the day, you will notice that you accomplished so little because you tend to work with less enthusiasm on the more important tasks.

This is why you need to arrange tasks according to priority when dealing with more than one task. This would allow you to work on the most challenging tasks while your energy and creativity are at their peak. Once you are done with those, you will feel more inspired to work on other tasks. Everything else will be easier for you to handle since you have finished the crucial tasks.  


Tip #2: Make a to-do list for each task.

Some people make their to-do list first before working. You can do it that way, ensuring that they are written according to, again, your priorities. Now, if you already have a list of tasks according to priorities, it would be a lot easier to work on each task if you break them down.

This means that with each task, you have to list down what you need to do to finish it. You can assign a time limit or identify whether those tasks are related to some other tasks. This is why this step should come second because it is not as simple as writing down tasks. You are creating a plan, a summary of what needs to be done so that you can finish each task accordingly.

A to-do list for each task also minimizes errors in a way that you get to see a clear picture of your course of action. This would limit getting things done and allow you to easily identify any mistake on your timeline.


Tip #3: As much as possible, get away from distractions.

One of the pitfalls of working in a distractive environment. It can be as simple as having your phone next to you or as complex as having other people around you while working. Whatever the case, it is entirely up to you to have a distraction-free environment. You must know your focus abilities, right? So if you tend to check messages and social media, try to put away your phone while at work. Find a quiet place on your own if you easily get distracted by other people. If you cannot concentrate with too much noise, splurging on noise-cancelling headphones is such a good investment.


Tip #4: Don’t work on your bed!

A comfy bed is what you use for relaxation. As tempting as it may be, do your best to avoid working on your bed because there is a huge risk of drifting off to sleep. Even your subconscious knows that a bed is synonymous with sleep so it will be of no help when you are lacking some crafty inspiration.

If the bedroom is the only private space that you have, you can try redecorating it to have a specific area for work. A small desk and chair would do the trick, especially when you design it like an actual office space. You can throw in some inspiring pieces, such as artwork or images, to get you in the mood for some creative thoughts.


Tip #5: Take advantage of tools

Aside from being a great source of information, technology also helped open up new opportunities to nurture creativity. What makes graphic designers so lucky today is that there is a wide range of tools to choose from that promote productivity. If you find it difficult to keep track of schedules, a tracker is your most helpful tool. There are even apps that create templates for recurring tasks so you never have to start from scratch every single time.

One great tool for graphic designers is the Removal.AI tool as it helps prepare images for more creative possibilities. Some tools were designed to promote communication. They are extremely helpful during project collaborations.

With so many graphic designers nowadays, you can pretty much find a tool for you no matter what kind of help you need.


Tip #6: Have regular meetings with workmates.

A healthy collaborative environment inspires and also helps you get more creative. It fosters competition, but in a good way especially when you strive to do as much work as your workmates. Regular meetings would encourage team effort because you can see each of your progress.

Think of these meetings as a chance to discuss not only the projects but also your team’s strengths and weaknesses. See where you can help with others’ works and encourage them to do the same. It would be such a confidence booster if you all can see your contributions towards project completion.


Tip #7: Don’t panic – just start with something to do!

One work disaster that almost every graphic designer faces from time to time is an unfinished job on a deadline. When this unfortunate situation happens, the most common reaction is succumbing to panic.

You just need to accept that there are uncontrollable factors no matter how hard you try to put things in order within the given time. It can be because you were distracted, last-minute project changes, or there are simply too many tasks on your plate. Instead of panicking and freezing in the process, try to concentrate on what you can do at the moment. You can take that moment to reflect on your progress.

Focus on your achievements that day then make another plan for the next day. You must not feel defeated just because you were not able to beat the deadline. Take it as an opportunity to do better next time. Some may say it is procrastination but it is being realistic. 


5 Free Online Graphic Design Software

Even if graphic design is your passion, you will still find it frustrating to do the same tasks in every single project. In the worst cases, some will find simple tasks to be boring and monotonous. When this happens, remember that technology is your best ally.

Aside from managing your time, you can use several automated tools to help increase your productivity. Routine work is still working and it can be tiresome.  A free online graphic design software will allow you to shorten the time spent on repetitive tasks so you can use more time to either do more tasks or to recuperate.

Here are the top tools that you can start exploring:


Tool #1: Removal.ai

Your go-to bg remover 

About the tool

Removal.AI is one of the leading background removers today and it works using Artificial Intelligence technology.

Why use it?

Because of its advanced image processing methods, Removal.AI can create outstanding outputs at a much faster rate compared to editing photos by hand. It is highly dependable and very easy to use so you can afford to let it do all the tedious work and focus all your creative energy on finishing other tasks. It is a great tool to have if all you want is a simple yet very powerful free online graphic design software since it has a built-in photo editor.

Key features of free plan

A free plan lets you use the background remover for free, including the advanced photo editor. It is perfect for personal uses or photos up to 0.25 megapixels.

What more can you get if you subscribe

Aside from a higher resolution for downloads, subscribing to a plan would allow you to process thousands of images for as low as $0.03/image. The plans are varied so you can choose according to your needs. This makes it easier for you to scale up or down at any time.


Tool #2: Pixelied

Your one-stop online graphic design software

About the tool

Even the most seasoned graphic designer cannot avoid getting low on creative juices. Pixelied is a nifty tool with ready-made templates, stock images, mockups, etc., that you can easily edit to make your design.

Why use it?

You need Pixelied if you are after doing more designs within a strict schedule. You can simply choose the template, make adjustments, then download your work.

Key features of free plan

You can use this free online graphic design software so you can test the waters and see how the tool works. Although you will have the basic features, including 1GB of storage, the free plan does not give you priority support.

What more can you get if you subscribe

You can fully appreciate all the tools and unlimited access to premium templates with a paid plan. You can also share the tool with up to 2 team members so you can collaborate on your project designs.


Tool #3: Pixelixe

Your image automation partner

About the tool

It is kind of challenging to design unique graphics. Pixelize helps graphic designers to create unique banners, social media graphics, and more seamlessly.

Why use it?

Pixelize has a very huge library of images, fonts, icons, photo filters, etc. that it can be impossible not to find anything that you need for any design imaginable. It has an automatic image generation feature so you can create different variations for your graphics.

Key features of free plan

You can start using Pixelize for free for up to 50 document creations only.

What more can you get if you subscribe

Depending on your plan, you will get unlimited document creations and automate documents for as much as 300,000 images per month. Each plan also comes with free storage and hosting.


Tool #4: Krita

Your open-source painting tool

About the tool

As a free and open-source program, Krita allows graphic artists to use professional art tools for free.

Why use it?

Krita is developed by professional graphic artists. It is the best solution in creating digital art files.

Key features of free plan

Using Krita is free and anyone can access all of its features.

What more can you get if you subscribe

Although there are no subscription plans for using Krita, everyone is encouraged to either donate or buy Krita merchandise. All proceeds are for the development of the software.


Tool #5: Vectr 

Your vector editing software

About the tool

Vectr is a simple tool to create vector graphics easily.

Why use it?

Vectr is so simple to use even for non-designers. This means that you will have plenty of time to work on something creative instead of learning how the tool works.

Key features of free plan

You can create beautiful designs immediately using Vectr’s intuitive tools. The resulting images are crisp and clean.

What more can you get if you subscribe

Vectr collaborates with Pixlr for more advanced graphic design tools. You can try this tool for free but more extensive tools are only available on the paid plans.



As a graphic designer, the most challenging part of the job is not only how to stay creative but more on how you can work on all your creative ideas before the deadline. It would be very helpful if you know that it will be impossible to succeed in this career if you cannot manage your time well.

This era is probably the most incredible for graphic designers because there are plenty of productivity tools, such as free online graphic design software, to help with both time management and the actual designing process. It is high time to explore the limitless possibilities that technology brings.


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