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All you need to know about Graphic Design
Browsing category: Graphic Design, Web Design

What is responsive web design all about?

August 10, 2014 | by Dale | category Graphic Design, Web Design

You have probably heard about terms such as responsive design, html5, and so on in the past. This is the recent trend in web design and a great leap forward in terms of support for multiple devices, native multimedia playback without the need for additional plugins and so on. In the next couple of sections, we will break down responsive web design and the technologies that have made it possible.

Responsive Design 101

responsive-web-design-300x207In the past, designing a website that would be accessed from both mobile devices and computers was quite a hurdle. A different version of the site had to be built for each screen layout and most of the time, two different sites needed to be build. The mobile site was accessed through a different address such as m.website.com while the desktop version would be accessed through the usual www.website.com. There had to be a different team on each version of the website especially for sites that needed constant maintenance and updates.

Responsive design came along to solve the headache that web designers had been facing for years. With this form of web design, you only need to make one version of the website and it will adapt itself automatically to fit the specifications of the device it is being accessed. This way, both mobile and desktop can access www.website.com and receive the version of the website that best fit their devices. Responsive design makes use of new technologies such as html5, css3 and JavaScript. Let us take a brief look at these technologies.

HTML5

This version of html has been a huge step forward in the world of web design. A lot of new features were introduced in this feature making it possible to watch videos and listen to audio content natively inside the browser without having to install third party plugins. The new tags that were introduced in this version have also made it much easier to get a website up and running with the minimal amount of effort.

CSS3

Disadvantages-of-Responsive-Web-DesignThis is the technology that brings all the beauty to responsive web design. Through the use of media queries, a site can determine the specifications of the device you are accessing it from and format it to make the best use of things such as screen size and processing power. This is all done automatically in the background and ensures a consistent user experience between different devices.

JavaScript

Last but not least, JavaScript can be considered to be the engine that powers websites that are responsive. It is responsible for things such as animations and can be used together with CSS3 to ensure a smooth and consistent user experience on a website. It is also used to build web applications that are fast and responsive.

The three technologies put together are what makes responsive web design what it has become today. They work hand in hand to ensure that you get a consistent, fluid and fast experience when visiting a website regardless of the device that you are using. Even though there are other developments being made in this field, responsive web design has proven to be a life saver for every web designer, website owner and online business.

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What is a Graphic Design Artist?

August 2, 2014 | by Dale | category Graphic Design

A question that many have is what is graphic design, brochure design, business card design. Graphic design is a very important part of web design. Graphic Design is a very competitive industry that attracts talented people with an eye for detail. People with exceptional creative talent usually stand out in this field and are very successful. Experienced graphic designers usually move on and start their own business and produce work for a wide range of customers.

Graphic Designers

graphic-designGraphic designers work for a wide range of clients. They might work for a book publishers, magazine, newsletter publisher, small startups, website owners. They are responsible for creating all types of designs for their clients. The graphic designer works with text and graphics. They are experts at combining the two elements into an artistic masterpiece for their clients. For example, on a web page they might select the right graphics, fonts, logo, and colors for the website. They work closely with the web copywriter to make sure that the design flows together properly. A graphic designer is able to use the text, graphics, images, and colors, to create a website, sales material, advertising material, brochures, newsletters, and even business cards for their clients.

Graphic Designer Typical Duties

The duties performed by a graphic designer during the day are varied. Most start their day in an office or at the computer. They meet with clients and discuss the work they wished completed. They give the clients input on their strategies to complete the job. They work with the client to determine the right advertising message to convey to the consumer. They develop graphics, logo’s, and images for the client. They arrange another meeting with the client to discuss the designs that were created. They complete the designs and publish them for their clients.

Brochure Design

brochure-design-250x250Graphic designers like to distinguish their services by providing their clients with a wide range of services. One very distinctive design service is brochure design. Certainly, brochures are a very powerful marketing tool for the business owner. Surprisingly, a number of business people attempt to design their own business brochure. However, they might lack the skills and necessary creative talent to properly design an aesthetically pleasing brochure that captures the attention of the consumers. Brochure design is best handled by a creative professional that has plenty of graphic design experience and the ability to create attractive designs that market their clients company or business effectively.

Business Card Design

A professionally produced business card is a very effective marketing tool that increases business awareness and sales. Business cards create a strong impression in the customer’s mind that last for a long time. Certainly, it is important that the card create a positive impression. Poorly designed business cards are often discarded. Professionally designed cards create a strong impression and are silent sales partners for the company or business owner. A graphic designer is key to creating the type of business card that is distinguished above the rest. They have the talent to design an eye catching business card design that effectively communicates the clients message.

Best Software for Graphic Design

July 28, 2014 | by Dale | category Graphic Design, Tools

Adobe-Illustrator-CS5-Free-Download-ScreenShotsIn the world of graphic design, the tools you use are as important as the work itself. For this reason, it is important as a professional graphic designer to have the right software for the job. This means that the application you decide to choose should have a number of qualities that makes it efficient and fast for any task. At the very top of the list, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator stand out from the rest of the list with a treasure trove of features and add-ons. In the next few sections, we will be taking a look at each of these applications and the features that make them the tools for any graphic design job.

1. Adobe Photoshop

Adobe_Photoshop_CS5_Extended__14066Adobe Photoshop is the king when it comes to digital art software. It is very easy with a vast array of tools and customization options enabling you to arrange your workspace as you see fit. Now with Adobe Photoshop CC, you have many more options that makes work much easier. The camera raw feature has been enhanced enabling you to heal images, create with vignettes that have a greater precision and fix perspective distortions. The Windows 8.1 stylus support greatly improved, you will now be able to work comfortably and efficiently with your stylus. The brush strokes are now smoother with the higher-frequency sampling.

2. Adobe Illustrator

TEhSvseHwuI94vMThis is the king when it comes to vector graphics. With the latest release, you can modify the corners on rectangles making it a very flexible yet powerful tool to have in your hands for those huge projects. With the new GPU acceleration, you can now work much faster when using windows 7 or 8. The pencil tool has been completely rebuilt enable you to express your creativity much more easily. You have more control over every tool in this powerful application in order to be a better graphics and improve the quality of your work. The applications also comes with its own cloud collaboration service so that you can better keep in touch with other team mates on a project. Sharing has become much easier in addition to the online storage service provided.

With Adobe Illustrator on windows 8 tablets with complete support for touch and pen pressure. This enables you to work on just a single device instead of having to buy a separate graphics tablet. You can even have images in brushes making it a very powerful tool to have in your professional toolbox. The focus mask enables you to work with images that have shallow field depths. The engine also offers an increased performance. There are also a number of other workflow enhancements which enable you to work faster and be in greater control of the final result.

As you can see, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator are the best for your graphics design projects. The learning curve is also much easier so you will not take long to learn all the features. This is yet another feature that makes these two great applications the best for all your artistic work.

How to Price Graphic Design Work

July 9, 2014 | by Dale | category Business, Graphic Design

costs-and-pricingOver the years, many designers have had to come forward and ask how to price graphic design work. Well, being able to determine your fees may sometimes be tricky. There is always a fine line between what is too much and what is too little. The truth is that you want your graphic design work to be competitively priced while at the same time ensuring the profitability of your business. After all, we embark on creating a business to make money, right?

Unlike many other businesses that have some fixed costs associated with certain items, graphic design work is more or less the same like an intangible. There is your time, which is the most crucial aspect, plus the total overheads that may include the cost of your office. That is probably your side of the whole equation. On the other side is what the market is able to bear and this may vary greatly depending on the country. This will also depend on how much the client value design, and how much they are willing to part with.

priceWhen making a decision, the first factor may seem a little bit simple, but in real sense, it is complex. You need to ask yourself, how much is this job worth for me? If you feel that, it is an interesting challenge, or some non-profit organization that you think is worthwhile, and has some intrinsic value that makes it more appealing to you, then you should charge less. The truth is that, what you cannot make in terms of money, you would make in experience. All the same, money is a part of it and so you ought to figure out how much money you need to get by, and how much your time is worth.

Remember that in addition to paying for your time, people pay for your expertise and experience as well. You have probably spent many years learning and working for you to get to where you are today. Your artistic talents and skills are what make your result and time more valuable.

The next thing is to figure how long it will take you to complete the job. Although this may be just an approximation, you may want to accurate as you possibly can. This requires asking the client some questions to grasp the idea about the scope of the whole project. This will also include the things that you are willing to provide in the whole process.

Try to find out about the total hours that you will take. The rule of thumb is that, everything takes twice as long and costs double the price of the original estimate. That does not imply that you have to quote twice as much as you think, it only means that you have to add some few hours to cover the overall hassle factor, the headaches, and the glitches.

That said, take a keen look at the potential client and determine how much they are willing to pay. Do not try to gauge them, but instead ask them to pay what they think the design is worth. If you do your job in the right way, it will be a valuable addition to the client’s company and they will always live to remember.

Learn Graphic Design Skills At The Comfort of Your Own Home

June 12, 2014 | by Dale | category Graphic Design

Getting started with graphic design can be a confusing process. There are hundreds of institutions out there and all of them are trying to lure people to join them. Some are genuine while others are just out there to make. This makes it very hard to choose the right one for you. However, did you know that you can learn graphic at home? Learning graphic design skills at your own home is a practical and accomplishable task. You don’t even need expensive or complicated materials and tools. All you need is a computer, time and patience. Read on for more information on how you can learn graphic design without going to school.

Learn Graphic Design skills at Home

1. Get a computer

The first thing you have to do is get a laptop or a desktop computer. You also need to be computer literate. If you are already computer literate, then you must be familiar with some basics. Some basics like cut, crop, copy and paste, rotate, move, paint and others will be of great help to you.

Also lean about the different formats of saving graphics for their different purposes; JPEG, PNG and GIF. Other things you need to know include scaling, shading to add effect, headers, typography, background, boarders, page layout, designing symbols and adding textures and other special effects

 

2. Get Familiar with graphic design tools

Next, you need to familiarize yourself with graphic design tools. For example, the Adobe PhotoShop program is a good image editing suite. As a beginner who wants to understand how to use PhotoShop, you need to learn to use some functions like the lasso or magic wand. Other options you can use for graphic design include PhotoScape or GIMP.

All these tools and programs are very important when it comes to graphic design.

 

3. Look for resources

Find a good online resource or an instruction material pertinent to a tool of choice. When you go online, you will find very many guide books that can greatly help you learn graphics. One useful program is Adobe Flash.

 

4. Practice

After getting useful resources, start practicing. It is said that practice makes perfect and so make sure you complete all the tasks in your guides you have. Keep on practicing until you see some improvements. A good example is a universal graphic-design tutorial that involves creating some background for the computer desktop or a website background. An individual trying to complete such a task needs to see if he/she can create an aesthetically pleasing & professional backdrop.

 

5. Apply your skills

You need to apply your skills to some custom practical objectives. ‘For example, a website template is a good project for beginners .

 

6. Publish your work

After completing a project, publish it for other people to see. For example’, if you were working on one website banner, try to use the banner on a good website and then conduct a poll. Make sure you ask the people who visit the website what they feel and think of your designs. This will also give you a chance to show off your graphics. You can even get some few suggestions from other graphic designers on how to improve your skills.

Know How To Find Graphic Design Jobs

June 1, 2014 | by Dale | category Business, Graphic Design

Best-Places-to-Find-Graphic-Design-Jobs-300x300If you have studied graphics design and are now a competent professional, the most likely thing on your mind is how to put your skills to practice. Indeed, finding a god job is what will make you fulfilled in your career. However, it is without a doubt that there are people who do not find jobs as fast as they want. This is despite the fact that there are many job openings especially for designers. If you have ever found yourself in such a situation, it definitely is because you do not know some of the things that you should consider. Here is how to find graphic design jobs.

Prepare a Good CV

Finding-Graphic-Design-Jobs-300x222You start by marketing yourself to potential employers. These are the design companies in your area or ion the specific area where you would like to work. In order to do this, you should have a presentable CV both in hard and soft copy. You just never know which type the employer will ask for when there is a vacancy. Your CBV should sell your best attributes so as to convince the company that you have something good to add to their work. Remember that when they are hiring you, they do not see to do you a favor but they are looking for way to make their companies excel.

Establish Contacts with Other Designers

Graphic-Design-Internship-300x209You also should start communicating with other designers who influence people in the industry. If you know of a former colleague who has already found employment, keep in touch so that when there is a vacancy, they will not hesitate to inform you. The point here is to take yourself to the employer instead of making them to come for you. The fact that there definitely are many other people who are looking for good graphic design jobs should make you aggressive.

Get Online

menial_1There are people who do not understand that in the modern job market, the best opportunities are found online. Indeed, many leading organizations will post these job advertisements on their websites. Others will use online recruitment agencies in order to find good workers. The reason behind this is that it is easier, faster and cost effective to go online than when doing it the traditional way. Just find an online agency, register and upload your CV as well as anything else that they may require from you. You just never know when that opportunity will come knocking.

Although job opportunities are increasingly becoming scarce, that should not be reason for you to despair. Every graphic designer has that dream company that they would like to work for. However, before you get there, it will be much better if you get involved in other smaller opportunities. You can even get short term contracts from the smaller companies. Not only will they pay your bills – they will make your more experienced and increase your chances of landing the big job. It is all about knowing how to find graphic design jobs.

Basic Tips for Designing a Logo

May 22, 2014 | by Dale | category Graphic Design, Logo Design

Design1-300x277How to design a logo? It is not difficult to do it if you follow some basic tips. There is a huge difference between a bad logo design and one that stands out and that is so suggestive it can represent a company perfectly. By using images and words, you can actually tell the story of a company with a good logo. The completed work should represent everything that the respective business stands for.

Develop a Message

Before you design images, you must think about the message that the logo will transmit. Try to make this message original in comparison to the one of the competition. Develop it according to your target audience. You can then include the company name, a symbol of it or an image that represents it perfectly.

Check Out the Competition

Even if your design must be unique, you should always check the layouts of competitor business, just to have a perspective on what successful businesses are using. Develop your logo in the same way, but make sure you are also differentiating it from others.

Make Sure Your Logo Is Clean and Can Be Used Anywhere

A reliable logo is usually the one that can be scalable, easy to remember and easy to reproduce. Using icons instead of photographs is recommended, for improved readability. The logo must be able to look good in black and white, because many times it has to be photocopied, or faxed.

Establish the Main Function of the Logo

A design can have functions like making consumers remember products and services, improving the imaging of a company, establishing trust for a business and making a good impression about the company.

Consider Your Target Market

Knowing who your clients are can be important for knowing how to make your logo more appealing to the respective customers. The logo for a flower shop has to be brightly colored or to include flowers. In another example, a law firm needs to have a logo that will represent power and integrity.

Create a Sketch Draw of the Design

Before actually making the full logo, you will have to create a rough sketch with a pencil and a paper. This method represents a quick way of materializing your ideas. If the sketch draw is not what you desire from the first attempt, grab another paper, but don’t erase or throw away the previous work. Many companies often design dozens of pages before they begin to design the logo on the computer.

Get Feedback from Your Target Audience

Choose a group of people that you may consider they could be ideal customers and show them the all of the attempted designs. They may help you choose the best candidate.

The Ideal Design Has to Be Scalable

Because your logo may have to be used in different ads (newspapers, websites, signage, etc.) the logo has to be adaptable to different size requirements. It has to look good on any size, along with maintaining its integrity.

End Notes

Even if there are many steps for creating a quality logo, these steps are actually easy to follow. How to design a logo? Develop a message, prepare the “terrain”, determine the audience, make a sketch draw and then design the logo using software made for this purpose. If you are passionate about this activity you can make logos for different companies and earn a lot of money.

 

Tips For a Great Brochure Design

May 7, 2014 | by Dale | category Brochure Design, Graphic Design

brochure-designA brochure can either make or break a sale. You might think that physical brochures are not necessary anymore particularly in the digital era, but that’s not true. A professionally designed as well as a printed brochure can actually be a very important lead –nurturing tool. Once you meet somebody face-to-face especially for the first time, it could either be at a certain event, initial sales meeting or trade show; you take your time to study each other’s businesses. however, after you leave, what happens? A good-executed capabilities brochure will definitely remind your prospects of the kind of services you tend to offer and also what sets you aside from the existing competition.

A brochure may be more effective in the first contact than other marketing assets since it’s immediate. Your prospect will not necessarily take time to simply visit your website simply after the initial meeting. Given that your brochure is right there in front of your prospects, it will definitely intrigue them to study more about the business and then afterwards visit your website.

Which are some of the tips on how to design a brochure?

brochuredesignbookEnsure that you put an attention –grabbing cover

The chances are that your prospects have got very short interest spans. In case your brochure cover doesn’t immediately catch their attention and also attract their interest, they will not open or even read the rest of your brochure. In order to attract the attention of the targeted audience, always combine a visually attractive design that has an attention –grabbing headline which addresses a very powerful benefit for your customers.

istockphoto_10217918-my-designHave a compelling content

If at all you care much more about your prospects as well as your business, then you must have a compelling content in your brochure. Your prospects are not concerned about the detailed history of the business but instead, they would like to know how your service or product can assist them save time, get more sales, lower costs, or run their businesses more effectively. Always focus the content on both the problems and also the challenges your clients face and still how you would solve them better that the other competitors. You can use graphs, images or charts to aid support your content whereby you will convey your message very quickly.

A influential call to action

The main reason of the brochure is simply to move individuals to the next stage of the sales sequence. Would you like your customers to visit your site? Pick up their phones and then call you for free estimates? An excellent call to action usually tells your readers precisely what you would like them to do.

publisher-brochureChoose the right paper

Print shops normally use 100 1b or 80 1b paper for printing the brochures. You should choose the right paper for your brochure. Also, using a heavy paper can make you look like a good professional to your potential clients. Also, ensure that visual elements of the brochure such as the color, imagery, logo, color etc align with and also support your brand.

These are some of the tips on how to design a brochure. You can simply use them to perfect your business.

 

Tips On How To Use Graphic Design To Help Grow Your Business

April 12, 2014 | by Dale | category Graphic Design

Graphic design is basically the arrangement of images and text in a proper and easy to understand way so as to convey a particular message. In a business, the role of graphic design is quite significant as its effect is felt in a variety of media such as business cards, newsletter design, logo design, letterheads, website design, annual reports, flyers, and brochure design amongst a whole list of other enviable activities. At the core of graphic design is the ethos that people get more interested in things or items that are visually more appealing. For any entrepreneur or businessman it is therefore imperative to fully appreciate how graphic design help grow your business. It does this through several ways;

It captures the interest of clients

good-graphic-designWhether it is a product or service, if it is properly packaged and well presented to the masses, it is bound to grab their attention and create some positive buzz around the product or service. A well designed website is bound to attract more clients and have them spend more time on the site than they would otherwise have. Improved client traffic can be easily translated into profits for an organisation if there are proper planning and structures.

Good Design Affords you better Presentation

marketing-infographic-300x259-300x250Irrespective of the market space you may be playing in, the truth of the matter is that competition is bound to be very stiff. Proper graphic design on your packaging or in your flyers is bound to give you an edge over products or services that have not engaged proper or qualified graphic designers in their marketing or product development team. This offers you an opportunity to push more products or services to your end consumer.

Has a very high return on investment

Unlike many other facets of the business whose overall impact on the business bottom line can be difficult to quantify or actualize, the overall impact of graphic design on your business is easily measurable. The effect of it on your business can be far reaching to say the least. The effect of a well designed logo can at times be the difference between success and failure of your business. A well executed product launch with a well designed product can either leave the company in the red or steer it to the next level and ensure growth.

Your Clients will be happy

Happy-ClientsAs any business enterprise will acknowledge, there is nothing more important to any business than a happy and satisfied client. A well packaged, colorful and properly delivered product or service is bound to leave your clients grinning with joy. No amount of money or advertising can replace that feeling and level of trust such a client has. Satisfied and happy clients always end up being repeat customers who you can count on at any given time to support your business endeavors. Such clients also tend to be brand ambassadors who will be able to market your product through word of mouth at virtually no cost whatsoever.

It is worth noting though that like any other business endeavor; graphic design should and must be implemented with care and after detailed and painstaking planning so as to ensure its success.

The Link Between Web Design and Graphic Design

April 2, 2014 | by Dale | category Graphic Design, Web Design

Is-a-web-design-degree-worth-it-245x300While web design and graphic design may have their differences, they are not completely like chalk and cheese because they do share a lot of things in common! When you understand the differences between these two, you will be able to approach your design correctly. In order to understand the differences and to grasp the similarities between the two better, it is necessary to have a clear idea of the two.

The term ‘graphic’ design is concerned with the process of presenting ideas through typography, images, graphics and so on. Therefore these apply to the print industry mostly. Such designers are generally involved in branding materials such as posters, brochures, print work or artwork used on websites. The term ‘web design’ on the other hand refers to the process of presenting ideas on the World Wide Web through the websites. Unlike graphic designers, web designers have to be careful about the screen resolution and size of the graphics, at times even compress them in order to ensure that the website is not weighed down by the graphics.

How Graphic Design and Web Design Are Related

web-design-tipsWhile these two may not be the same thing, they do share a lot of similarities and are not completely distinct from one another. Precisely speaking, these two are interlinked with one another in a variety of ways. Out of the two, graphic designing is definitely harder because it is a more complex process. Nevertheless, both graphic designing and web designing use typography and they swear by JPEG images in order to create the desired effect. What makes JPEGs so useful is the fact that these can display millions of different colors; so these are ideal for graphic designers to create print designs. Also, JPEG is a format that is widely supported by all internet browsers like Google Chrome, Safari, Opera, Internet Explorer, Firefox and so on, therefore even web designers like to work with JPEGs.

Another major similarity between the two is the fact that both make use of color tone in designs in order to create the right mood. Apart from colors, both graphic and web designers value the art of choosing the right font in order to make an exceptional design. Whether it is the print designs or the website ones, one shouldn’t take chances with fonts. In the field of graphic designing, the most commonly used fonts are Verdana, Arial and Times new Roman. So, you will find a lot of graphic designers and web designers using these fonts for their outputs.

Although web design and graphic design are said to be dependent on the creativity of the designer in question, these still have to observe certain rules, principles and trends in order to produce a good quality design. Also, both these processes require the designer to identify and understand the flaws pertaining to their designs from the viewpoint of the audience so that their designs would be able to successfully influence the prospective customers and target audience.