I want to say that you should have a professional designer for every job, but I realize that some companies don’t. Whether it’s a budget issue or a general disdain for people in the artistic community, the reason doesn’t really matter. You’ve decided to take on the job of a graphic designer and need some advice. Well, here are a few simple tips.
Break Up Your Copy
Break up your text into smaller digestible chunks. You can separate out your text by making columns, headlines, captions or just smaller text blocks or paragraphs. It’s good to think of your text as a shape or various individual shapes. This will help you draw out your layout.
Sketch Your Layout
It’s good to create a little sketch of what you want your layout to look like. I’m not talking about anything detailed just a general blueprint with simple shapes or boxes that represent images or text. Think of your layout as a bunch of empty boxes or rectangles that need filled with images or text.
Think About Order of Information
Imagine that the viewer isn’t going to read everything on the page and organize the information accordingly. What is the most important information that you want to make sure your viewer sees? What is the least important? Do your headlines separate from the body copy? Are your captions competing for too much attention. Things that are important are usually larger than the unimportant information.
Get Great Images
Great images will help your design look professional. You can choose from thousands of great images for cheap at many of the microstock sites like istockphoto.com. It’s worth it to get the right image that fits the theme of your design. Also, getting an image at the proper resolution will make sure that your image prints properly.
Keep it Simple and Organized
Try to keep your design simple and organized. You want your design to looked planned and uniform. Limit yourself to a few colors, fonts and font sizes. Make sure things line up at the edges. Keep items of similar importance the exact same size. The best designs are often the simplest. Don’t try to overwhelm people with too much information or images.
Well, that’s all my tips for the amateur designer. Remember if you make a mess of your layout, the professionals are always eagerly waiting to clean up your disaster. Best of luck!
This post was written on IllustrationInfo.com. Content copyright 2007 Cory Thoman.