The greeting card industry is a growing field thanks to the development of the Internet and e-cards. Whether the card is made of paper or is designed to be sent electronically, greeting cards are often created by graphic designers. Designers either work on a freelance basis or are employed by a greeting card publisher.
Obtain your bachelor's degree. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, graphic designers are usually required to have an undergraduate degree. Take classes in design, drawing, painting and illustration.
Conduct market research, if you plan to work as a freelancer. This includes studying the work of other greeting card designers to get a better sense of what design aesthetic is currently popular. Go to your local card shop and browse its inventory to see which styles of design are best for which type of card.
Create a website that highlights your particular style. Inexpensive web hosting is available from sites such as Google Sites and Weebly.com.
Decide whether you would like to sell your designs online, through sites such as CafePress.com or Zazzle. These sites offer freelancers an opportunity to sell their work for a commission. Alternatively, you may approach traditional greeting card companies, such as Hallmark, and offer your services. Generally speaking, larger publishers tend to use in-house talent but may on occasion consider work from freelancers. The most recent copy of the Artist's and Graphic Designer's Market lists the contact details of those companies that accept freelance submissions.
Send a query letter to greeting card companies before sending a design, to determine if they accept work on a freelance basis.
The market for graphic design is highly competitive and you may be required to work long hours to meet tight deadlines.