me: i'm a graphic designer.
many times my answer is met with smiles and nods. most people don't really get what it is i do all day. some people vaguely understand, and few actually get it.
i sit at a desk.
i play on the computer.
i edit: images, artwork, copy flow, text, layouts.
i mouse...a lot.
i read, re-work, adjust, cut, paste, finagle, stuff 10 lbs into the 5 lb space...
i explain to people that i develop brochures and sell sheets as well as folders. i work on catalogs or print advertisements. i organize information into a print document so that it's easy for the viewer to understand. i write html and assemble online newsletters. i meet with clients (rarely) to discuss project ideas.
i'm also the "little guy" at work. most of the grunt-work tends to fall onto my shoulders. it's a rare opportunity when i get to start a project and really use my creativity. even top-dog graphic designers spend a great deal of their time editing and revising work to make it ready for production. this youtube video perfectly explains what the process of being a graphic designer is actually like. (i wish someone would have shown me this in college.)
in a nut shell, if i do my job correctly, you probably don't notice it. it's when i do something wrong that you pay attention - a misspelled word, a hard-to-read billboard because the text is too small, signage that gets you lost instead of where you are going. the world functions off of design, much of it graphic design.