Make it pretty. The statement that is nails on a chalk board for any graphic designer. It's a common misconception that graphic design is just decoration or making something look "good." When it comes to making effective designs, it's important that the first thing that you do is toss this idea out of your head. See graphic design is all about intentionality and if you are creating something strictly out of aesthetic you are not designing - you are making a pretty picture. Graphic design is finding the balance of aesthetic and functionality. It's delivering messages in a compelling and creative way - turning complex information into simple and digestible nuggets. Get it yet? Let's break it down into 5 tips for designing effecting visual communication:
- All the fonts you use should be legible and thoughtful for what you are communicating. When choosing a font think about what it is saying about your message. Is your message fierce? Use a bold type. Is it girly? Use script font. Is it simple? Use a light and easy to read font.
- Less is always more when applying to typography and really anything design. Don't just throw different font families together because it's "pretty" without thinking about WHY you did it. Remember your number one goal for design is to deliver the message in the most clear way.
- Limit your palette to 5 or less colors when designing a layout or graphic.
- Colors all have subconscious meanings! So get more intentional and learn up on your colors, then use them when their meanings apply.
- Three things to remember when it comes to icons - simple, understandable and universal.
- They are meant to enhance understanding in a quick way and never distract.
- Icons should be limited to one color.
- There should always be a obvious hierarchy and it should be presented in a way that allows the reader to easily navigate through the page.
- using a grid and alignment system will help maintain consistency.
5. NEGATIVE SPACE
- Keep significant negative space.
- When there is too much information in a layout, messaging becomes cluttered and incoherent.
Do you feel like a professional graphic designer now? Good.