Having worked in the field of design we can choose to specialize in a certain area. Including, being an illustrator, graphic designer, multimedia, editor, or even UI/UX designer. It’s called to make your skill broader and become the type of designer you want to be. So what is the difference between all the types of designers?


Specialist Designer
Specialist Designer image by Heysalsal

A specialist is a designer who dives into one type of design. Like become just Illustrator, or become an interaction, visual or motion design and expert in that kind of field. Being a specialist is more common if you work in large companies. Which is when they have a lot of designers. Some of the companies we talk about are Google, Facebook, and Amazon.

Benefits of becoming specialist

Focus on one subject

If you want to become a specialist in your related field. You can enjoy one of the types of field you working, without anything to bother you. It makes you enjoy your work and know better about the subject than any other subject.

Deep knowledge of the subject

Knowing is one of the keys to becoming a master of design. So if you become a specialist in one of the subjects you can get more information about the related subject you working at. For example, if you become a UX Designer you can get to know how interpreted data into visuals.

Become the expert

a specialist is someone who is already an expert and you will get known because of that. It will make you an expert in the industry you work in. and your expertise in a particular type of design will always see as good or great.


Generalist Designer
Generalist Designer image by heysalsal.com

A generalist is a designer which has a broad number of skills and responsibilities in their related field. The type of work which having this kind of designer if you work as an entry-level job or work in a small startup. Because a small of people who work in the company made the design do much work, many people also stay in generalist design roles for their entire careers.

Benefit of Generalist

Expanding your skill

Different from specialists who focus on one subject. If you become a generalist you will keep expanding your skill in any field you work in. So having many skill and any knowledge about the related field you work. and it’s good for someone who just entering work-life in the creative or design field. Also its will help you to avoid many Misstep Designer Need To Avoid


As what we say about Generalist you will try many responsibilities and find an area of your field. and because of this you can know about yourself more and can be a specialists designer in the next future.

Fresh and keep new

Having many responsibilities will make your job never be the same every day. Sometimes you work as a designer, or sometimes you work as an animator, and it will make you feel every day everything is new.


A t-shaped designer is someone who has broad skills in design but is a specialist in one particular skill set. Why t-shaped? because the verticals line represents their expertise in one area, and the horizontal line symbolizes their related skill in a broad number of areas. Having a T-shaped designer will also help your team since they come with the benefits of specialists and generalists and the same time.

each designer tends to have a little of T-Shaped in their abilities, even for someone who just started their career. It’s something that time will tell when you do many projects you working on. As you get better in some field you will start to be an expert in one particular area.

Becoming a t-shaped designer is also the fruit of hard work. when you wanted to learn or develop your skill in a specific area. For example, you wanted to become an Illustrator and you practice every day and it is making you better and better along the way.

What should I choose?

Experience speaking, when you just start to work in creative industries I recommended you become a generalist at first, and along the way when you started to get to know about yourself, you can be started as a Specialist or become a t-shaped designer.

Why generalist first? because if you become a specialist you will face anyone who has many experiences in projects so will be hard to compete with them. so having many broad skills in your skillset will open up job opportunities.

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