There are many different jobs in advertising. Whether we handle account management, media planning, or sales, there are many positions that run an agency. One position we are familiar with is creative. The actual designing of a piece to deliver a message. Although many of us may not work in creative field, we still may have to contribute to a design project. When creating your next concept keep these principles of design in mind. You will be able to effectively create a piece that illustrates to the professional designers your intentions while saving them a lot of time so they don’t have to decipher our stick figure drawings.
“Deciding what not to do is as important as deciding what to do.” – Steve Jobs
Good design is simple. The more that is added to a composition creates more elements that subtract from the main idea of the entire piece. Know what you want to say and say it.
This design concept allows your composition to ‘pop.’ It creates a visual element that draws our attention and keeps the viewers focus. Good contrast keeps your design from just being words on a poster because it hooks the readers in with a visual element that stands out from the norm. Yet, this element must be used with simplicity. A giant shape in the center of the piece whereas the message or idea is out of sight only creates confusion.
Elements repeated further emphasize an idea. Whether it be a word, a shape, or a color. This concept applied but used differently throughout the piece visually reminds the viewer of a specific concept. Remember “The Rule of Three.” This concept is used in writing, presenting, design, and many other forms of visually representing an idea.
“Color does not add a pleasant quality to design – it reinforces it.” – Pierre Bonnard
Deciding a color to design with is an important step in the creative process. How we perceive color can further emphasize elements being used in the composition. That is because there is meaning to color. We give representation to color and these interpretations provide further depth to what we are attempting to accomplish. A cheat sheet to when considering color to use:
- Red: associated with energy, war, danger, strength, power, determination, as well as passion, desire, and love.
- Orange: depicts joy, sun, enthusiasm, fascination, happiness, creativity, determination, attraction, success, encouragement, and stimulation.
- Yellow: arouses cheerfulness and mental activity, use to evoke pleasant, cheerful feelings.
- Green: the color of nature. Symbolizing growth, harmony, freshness, and fertility.
- Blue: associated with depth and stability. It symbolizes trust, loyalty, wisdom, confidence, intelligence, faith, truth, and heaven.
- Purple: a color associated with royalty. Symbolizing power, nobility, luxury, and ambition.
- White: representative of purity, goodness, innocence, and perfection.
- Black: depicts power, elegance, formality, death, and mystery.
(The Color Wheel – See Color Theory in Action, 2015)
In life, we are aware of our surroundings. The same falls true to design where we must consider relative space throughout the entire composition. Overcrowding or having too many elements in a single space are boring or too busy respectively. When designing, we must keep in mind the use of negative space in the entire piece. Can the eye still freely move around the design? If the answer is yes, then you have likely successfully employed a correct amount of negative space in your piece.
Color Wheel Pro – Color Meaning. (2015). http://www.color-wheel-pro.com/color-meaning.html