Humans are visually oriented creatures; we are instinctively drawn to things that please our eye. That is why graphic design is so important, whether you are creating a website or blog or a business card or newsletter. Knowing what kind of graphic elements you’ll need for your design project is the first step towards getting it done. Here are some common design elements and when they are used:
Logos: A company logo is absolutely essential for any new business. You should use your logo in your email replies and on your website, your business cards, your letterhead, envelopes, marketing materials, and any other type of print or digital materials you produce. A recognizable logo goes a long way towards building your brand.
Photography: Websites and marketing materials especially benefit from quality photography. Choose images that fit with the overall color scheme of your site or printed product and make sure they are high-resolution images for optimal viewing.
Cartooning: It’s not hard to find someone to create a cartoon for you, and there are also plenty of websites where you can purchase ready-made cartoons. If you need to explain your business with a step-by-step description of the purchasing process, for example, you could use cartoon people to illustrate each of these steps and make the process easier to understand for the reader.
Icons: icons are images that make things easier to understand on your website. Common examples include the envelope icon for email and the speech bubble icon for comments. In general, it’s best to stick with well-known icons rather than trying to innovate; you want to make your site as easy to navigate as possible.
Background Images: Both websites and printed materials like brochures can benefit from background images. Choose an image that suits your business, but make sure it’s not so “loud” it distracts from the content at the heart of your site or brochure; you want your customer to focus on the content, not the background. For example, if you run a holiday house rental business, you could use a background photograph of a beautiful beach. If you mow lawns, your background could be a freshly-mowed lawn.
The most important thing to remember about communicating through design is that your images must be relevant and memorable – they should directly relate to your business and grab the viewer’s attention, pulling them into the text and sales message. This is the basis of all good graphic design.