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Gold Coast Magazine

10 Tips on Creating Efficient And Meaningful Graphic Designs

Graphic design might seem like a complex discipline to tackle. Even when you master the basics and discover different types of design in art, you might struggle with coming up with ideas, making visuals appealing to both your clients and target audience, and even using basic design principles correctly. How do you navigate this creative landscape and ensure your designs meet and exceed expectations?

Read further to discover the top ten tips that can help you instantly improve the quality of your graphic designs. 

5 graphic Design Tips for beginner creators

10 Tips on Creating Efficient And Meaningful Graphic Designs

Consider the following tips to create robust designs, even if you have little experience. 

1.   Learn and understand design fundamentals

If you’re just starting your graphic design career, you need to become familiar with the basics. Learn the theory of color and shape, and explore the color wheel and composition principles. Understanding these fundamentals will help you create a more balanced and visually appealing design, even without extensive experience. 

After that, consider exploring design eras and the overall history of this discipline. This will help you create authentic retro visuals and cool thematic compositions inspired by different movements. 

2.   Master typography

These days, you can create designs using fonts only—for instance, come up with typographic posters or logo ideas. However, for these ideas to be successful, you need to understand how to work with fonts. 

As a beginner, you might be tempted to use creative and decorative fonts for your designs. However, it’s much better to start with more neutral ones, such as Inter or Roboto, and then move on to more complex font choices. In any case, the rule of thumb is don’t use more than three fonts in a design. Keep in mind that the purpose of design is to deliver a message, not to overwhelm viewers. 

3.   Use negative space effectively

Negative space is the empty space around and between design elements. Using this technique correctly allows you to tell an interesting story—for instance, you could create a poster where the main visual is created by the space between two objects. 

Negative space can also help you draw attention to key design elements and deliver certain messages clearer. For instance, if you want to emphasize that something is small, vulnerable, or lonely, you can surround this object with lots of negative space to convey the right feeling. 

4.   Experiment with layouts and composition

A balanced composition instantly makes a visual look more polished and structured. To learn how to create one easily, learn the most common composition techniques, such as the rule of thirds, balance, symmetry, or asymmetry. 

Keep in mind that the main goal of compositions and layouts is to ensure that your information fits the design and that this information is easy to process. Therefore, although you can experiment and even break composition rules intentionally, you still need to ensure that this won’t affect the readability, idea, and hierarchy of your design elements. 

5.   Try to generate different types of ideas

Different types of design and different customers might require you to come up with diverse ideas. So, you need to train your creativity to be able to generate simple and complex ideas quickly.

Simple ideas are quite obvious, such as a coffee shop logo that has a coffee cup in it. Being obvious doesn’t make them bad; they are only less original. Besides, some clients prefer straightforward communication. Complex ideas, on the other hand, are more metaphorical—like the mermaid on the Starbucks logo. They are more difficult to come up with, and it’s not always easy for an audience to understand them. However, such ideas are more memorable. 

FAQ: How do you make good designs?

To create good designs, you need to start with understanding the purpose of a visual and its target audience. For instance, a black and gold carton of milk might look exquisite and original but, at the same time, seem too unusual and expensive for your target audience. Good design doesn’t necessarily need to deliver an original vision and idea—instead, it has to look approachable to target customers. 

FAQ: What are the five main areas of graphic design?

There are many different types of graphic design, but design can be divided into five main areas: illustration design, motion design, packaging design, print design, and user interface design. However, these areas often overlap—for instance, you can print illustrations or create motion graphics for a website. 

10 Tips on Creating Efficient And Meaningful Graphic Designs

With time and experience, you might want to focus on specific types of graphic designs. In this case, you might want to consider these tips for particular design areas.

1.   Keep your logos simple and scalable

While a good logo can be detailed, it shouldn’t be too detailed. The easiest way to verify level of detail is to try placing your logos on different mockups, from a business card to a billboard. If it’s easy to distinguish and memorize in any size, then you’ve done everything right.

To ensure good scalability, opt for vector files or PNG format when submitting logos to clients. 

2.   Understand print specifications when working on print projects

Thorough pre-print preparation is essential if you want your design to look good printed and on screens. To achieve this, do the following:

  • Save your design in PNG or PDF format;
  • Select the proper color profile—CMYK instead of RGB;
  • Outline your fonts—you can do this by converting them into curves (skip this step if you opted for PDF format);
  • Add bleeds to your design to ensure that no essential parts are trimmed in the printing process.

3.   Optimize graphics for each publishing platform

In January 2024, the global number of social media users reached 5.04 billion. For this reason, social media is becoming an even more powerful tool for marketing and brand promotion. Clients, in turn, are starting to look for designers with social platform expertise. 

One of the most important details of social media design is to maintain the image size and layout requirements of each platform. For instance, Instagram prefers square or vertical images, while Twitter favors horizontal ones. Sticking to platform-specific guidelines can help you present your graphics in the best way. 

4.   Tell a compelling story with infographics

Infographics are one of the most interesting and complex design types. They usually require a creator to present lots of different and often complicated information in a straightforward and visually engaging manner. 

To achieve this, focus on storytelling to organize information. Create logical flow, clear visual hierarchy, and relatable visuals to guide viewers through the narrative. Ensure that the data is easily digestible and memorable. 

5.   Consider sustainability and consumer preferences for packaging design

These days, 50% of consumers name sustainability as one of their key criteria when deciding to purchase a product or a service. Companies and individuals, in turn, try to come up with ways to make their goods and services more sustainable.

In packaging design, you can achieve this by using recycled materials and eco ink for print. Choosing laptops that work for hours without charging can also help you reduce energy consumption and make your design process more eco-friendly. A project like this can also benefit your graphic design portfolio.

FAQ: What is the key to good design?

Good design balances form and function. It should not only be aesthetically pleasing, but also deliver the right message or serve its intended purpose. For instance, Apple product packaging looks minimalist, but protects the product efficiently and provides a delightful unboxing experience.

To sum up

Meaningful graphic design involves continuous learning, a solid grasp of design fundamentals, and adaptability when it comes to different design contexts. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced designer, incorporating these tips into your workflow will help you create visually appealing and purposeful designs. Remember, good design is a harmonious blend of creativity, technical skill, and a deep understanding of the intended audience.

Gold Coast Magazine
Gold Coast Magazine

Our in-house team and affiliates bringing you the latest in Culture, Lifestyle and Entertainment from around the globe and the great stories of the Gold Coast

10 Tips on Creating Efficient And Meaningful Graphic Designs

Graphic design might seem like a complex discipline to tackle. Even when you master the basics and discover different types of design in art, you might struggle with coming up with ideas, making visuals appealing to both your clients and target audience, and even using basic design principles correctly. How do you navigate this creative landscape and ensure your designs meet and exceed expectations?

Read further to discover the top ten tips that can help you instantly improve the quality of your graphic designs. 

5 graphic Design Tips for beginner creators

10 Tips on Creating Efficient And Meaningful Graphic Designs

Consider the following tips to create robust designs, even if you have little experience. 

1.   Learn and understand design fundamentals

If you’re just starting your graphic design career, you need to become familiar with the basics. Learn the theory of color and shape, and explore the color wheel and composition principles. Understanding these fundamentals will help you create a more balanced and visually appealing design, even without extensive experience. 

After that, consider exploring design eras and the overall history of this discipline. This will help you create authentic retro visuals and cool thematic compositions inspired by different movements. 

2.   Master typography

These days, you can create designs using fonts only—for instance, come up with typographic posters or logo ideas. However, for these ideas to be successful, you need to understand how to work with fonts. 

As a beginner, you might be tempted to use creative and decorative fonts for your designs. However, it’s much better to start with more neutral ones, such as Inter or Roboto, and then move on to more complex font choices. In any case, the rule of thumb is don’t use more than three fonts in a design. Keep in mind that the purpose of design is to deliver a message, not to overwhelm viewers. 

3.   Use negative space effectively

Negative space is the empty space around and between design elements. Using this technique correctly allows you to tell an interesting story—for instance, you could create a poster where the main visual is created by the space between two objects. 

Negative space can also help you draw attention to key design elements and deliver certain messages clearer. For instance, if you want to emphasize that something is small, vulnerable, or lonely, you can surround this object with lots of negative space to convey the right feeling. 

4.   Experiment with layouts and composition

A balanced composition instantly makes a visual look more polished and structured. To learn how to create one easily, learn the most common composition techniques, such as the rule of thirds, balance, symmetry, or asymmetry. 

Keep in mind that the main goal of compositions and layouts is to ensure that your information fits the design and that this information is easy to process. Therefore, although you can experiment and even break composition rules intentionally, you still need to ensure that this won’t affect the readability, idea, and hierarchy of your design elements. 

5.   Try to generate different types of ideas

Different types of design and different customers might require you to come up with diverse ideas. So, you need to train your creativity to be able to generate simple and complex ideas quickly.

Simple ideas are quite obvious, such as a coffee shop logo that has a coffee cup in it. Being obvious doesn’t make them bad; they are only less original. Besides, some clients prefer straightforward communication. Complex ideas, on the other hand, are more metaphorical—like the mermaid on the Starbucks logo. They are more difficult to come up with, and it’s not always easy for an audience to understand them. However, such ideas are more memorable. 

FAQ: How do you make good designs?

To create good designs, you need to start with understanding the purpose of a visual and its target audience. For instance, a black and gold carton of milk might look exquisite and original but, at the same time, seem too unusual and expensive for your target audience. Good design doesn’t necessarily need to deliver an original vision and idea—instead, it has to look approachable to target customers. 

FAQ: What are the five main areas of graphic design?

There are many different types of graphic design, but design can be divided into five main areas: illustration design, motion design, packaging design, print design, and user interface design. However, these areas often overlap—for instance, you can print illustrations or create motion graphics for a website. 

10 Tips on Creating Efficient And Meaningful Graphic Designs

With time and experience, you might want to focus on specific types of graphic designs. In this case, you might want to consider these tips for particular design areas.

1.   Keep your logos simple and scalable

While a good logo can be detailed, it shouldn’t be too detailed. The easiest way to verify level of detail is to try placing your logos on different mockups, from a business card to a billboard. If it’s easy to distinguish and memorize in any size, then you’ve done everything right.

To ensure good scalability, opt for vector files or PNG format when submitting logos to clients. 

2.   Understand print specifications when working on print projects

Thorough pre-print preparation is essential if you want your design to look good printed and on screens. To achieve this, do the following:

  • Save your design in PNG or PDF format;
  • Select the proper color profile—CMYK instead of RGB;
  • Outline your fonts—you can do this by converting them into curves (skip this step if you opted for PDF format);
  • Add bleeds to your design to ensure that no essential parts are trimmed in the printing process.

3.   Optimize graphics for each publishing platform

In January 2024, the global number of social media users reached 5.04 billion. For this reason, social media is becoming an even more powerful tool for marketing and brand promotion. Clients, in turn, are starting to look for designers with social platform expertise. 

One of the most important details of social media design is to maintain the image size and layout requirements of each platform. For instance, Instagram prefers square or vertical images, while Twitter favors horizontal ones. Sticking to platform-specific guidelines can help you present your graphics in the best way. 

4.   Tell a compelling story with infographics

Infographics are one of the most interesting and complex design types. They usually require a creator to present lots of different and often complicated information in a straightforward and visually engaging manner. 

To achieve this, focus on storytelling to organize information. Create logical flow, clear visual hierarchy, and relatable visuals to guide viewers through the narrative. Ensure that the data is easily digestible and memorable. 

5.   Consider sustainability and consumer preferences for packaging design

These days, 50% of consumers name sustainability as one of their key criteria when deciding to purchase a product or a service. Companies and individuals, in turn, try to come up with ways to make their goods and services more sustainable.

In packaging design, you can achieve this by using recycled materials and eco ink for print. Choosing laptops that work for hours without charging can also help you reduce energy consumption and make your design process more eco-friendly. A project like this can also benefit your graphic design portfolio.

FAQ: What is the key to good design?

Good design balances form and function. It should not only be aesthetically pleasing, but also deliver the right message or serve its intended purpose. For instance, Apple product packaging looks minimalist, but protects the product efficiently and provides a delightful unboxing experience.

To sum up

Meaningful graphic design involves continuous learning, a solid grasp of design fundamentals, and adaptability when it comes to different design contexts. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced designer, incorporating these tips into your workflow will help you create visually appealing and purposeful designs. Remember, good design is a harmonious blend of creativity, technical skill, and a deep understanding of the intended audience.

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Gold Coast Magazine

Gold Coast Magazine

Our in-house team and affiliates bringing you the latest in Culture, Lifestyle and Entertainment from around the globe and the great stories of the Gold Coast