June 4, 2020

Graphic Design Studio or Agency - what's the difference?

Graphic Design Studio or Agency - what's the difference?
Graphic Design Studio or Agency - what's the difference?
Reading Time
2 minutes

Simple answer – a design studio has 10 or fewer team members and an agency has greater than 10 (Source: Australian Graphic Design Association).

Longer answer – an agency normally has team members with very specific skill sets which may render them harder to employ by smaller studios.

Smaller studios may require team members to have a rounded skill set.

As an example, in a studio a graphic designer may need to be able to handle print, digital, web or sign projects and take them from concept through to finished art.

In an agency, a project concept may be prepared by a graphic designer and then sent through to the finished artist who may check layouts, spelling & grammar, image resolution and then prepare for print or digital use.

Another example is in a website project. In a studio, the designer may come up with the concept and then build the site including SEO. In an agency, the designer may come up with the concept and then pass over to a developer/s who writes the code for the site. It may then be passed over to a specialist in SEO who then makes all the necessary adjustments.

Summary

Essentially, as any studio grows in size, positions become more specific to each team member’s strengths and, due to the increased amount of projects that come through a larger firm, they will then specialise in this niche field.

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