Do you want to create better graphics for your brand? You’re not a designer but you still want your graphics to look professional? Follow some basic rules and you will instantly improve your graphics.
Create better graphics through a consistent brand style
The first thing to consider when creating graphics is your brand style. If you want to build recognition you have to develop a cohesive style. Using the same colors, fonts, and design elements consistently in all your graphics. If you haven’t defined your brand style yet, it’s a great first step to start by creating a brand board. This board serves as a reference sheet for you. It should include your brand colors, fonts you use for headlines and body copy, your logo and logo variation. Further, all design elements like icons, patterns, or illustrations can be used as accents in your graphics. Having this board can help you to stick to your brand style.
Another way to stick to one style is by creating templates for all graphics which you can use more than once. This can be social media graphics or other graphics you use to promote your business. No more guesswork when you need a new blog post image. You change out the text and add a different photo and you’re done. Every time you start to create from scratch you could be enticed to drift away from your brand style. You’ll often end up with a graphic which isn’t cohesive.
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Create better graphics through composition
Now let’s talk about some simple design principles which can instantly improve your graphics. One thing you want to think about in all your graphics is hierarchy. The way things stand out in your design. You want to make sure that the most important aspect of your design is the most eye-catching one. So before you start to create you need to have a plan for the result. What do you want to achieve with this graphic? This is the number one question. The most important element in your design needs to be the most prominent one. Don’t let people get confused by making everything important. A mistake I see people make very often.
Now, how do you create hierarchy? There are several possibilities but the main aim for you is to build contrast. You can do this through color. Pick a bold color for the element you want to stand out and use softer colors for the rest. Another way would be to build contrast through size. Of course, the main element can stand out if it’s bigger than other elements. Or you can put it front and center and the rest in the background. It will be right in front of people’s eyes.
This brings us directly to the next point. Balance. The mistake almost everybody seems to make is overloading their graphics with too much stuff, too much information, and too many elements which don’t help the cause. Less is more in design. You don’t want to confuse people. This means you have to reduce to the essentials. Everything that doesn’t add value needs to go. At the same time, you’re creating white space. White space is nothing else than the room which isn’t filled with information. It gives the elements inside your graphics space to breathe. And this creates balance.
Another way to create balance is to use color. Like when creating hierarchy, you can use a soft color to balance out a bolder color. It’s all about making your graphics look pleasing.
This one is simple but makes your graphics look more professional. There are invisible lines in every graphic. They build some kind of grid. Every element of your design should be aligned in relation to the others inside this grid. Like you can align text to left or centered, you can also line up other elements on the same invisible line. Leave the same amount of space between several elements or the same space to all corners of your graphic.
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Create better graphics by choosing the right photos
Photos are a huge part of most graphics. Which makes it important to pick the right ones. That’s where we get back to your brand style. A cohesive brand style also reflects in your photos. A simple way to make your photos on brand, even if they are stock photos, is to look for your brand colors. These photos can be easily integrated into your graphics. They’ll build a balanced overall image.
In general, your photos need to communicate the same message as your brand. Which you can achieve by looking for photos with the same mood. This mood can be quirky and bold or sensitive and calm. If you haven’t defined this yet, it can really help to create a mood board first. It always helps to figure out which style best represents your brand. Photos with the same mood have similar attributes. They use the same light or shadow, contrast, or viewing angle. You will find the same objects or accessories again and again. If you edit your photos yourself try to achieve the same look by making the same corrections or using the same filters consistently.
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