Graphic design rules pdf

Everyone knows to get better at any art form, you have to first understand the particular tools and procedures that form it. Design is no different from playing an instrument or even a chef making a meal. If the elements of graphic design line, color, texture, shape are the ingredients laid out in front of her and the principles of design movement, rhythm, proportion, etc are the recipe she uses to make the meal, then think of design layout and composition as the final plating.

Sure, the chef could throw everything into a bowl and call it good. Or, she could arrange the ingredients in a way that highlights the individual elements inside; she can deliver a message in a beautiful package. With time and care, she can create an incredible experience for the person consuming the meal. Read on to learn more about the many ways you can structure your design compositions to have the showstopping effect of a perfect seven-tiered cake. Most designers see an invisible grid running through all their designs.

In modern web design, clean grid lines have become popular and almost impossible to avoid. There are a few simple reasons for this: grids make your designs cleaner, more efficient and easier to adapt. Grids bring organization not only to the design, but to the process of creating design.

Say you want to create a poster for a lecture series. Create a strong grid and if the dates, times, images and colors all change, your basic designs will feel related. Instant consistency and less time updating and adjusting. Baseline grids also give you a great roadmap when working in a team.

The 5 rules of design composition and layout

The eye generally needs a place to rest or something of interest to hold it, otherwise people will look at your design and quickly move on. Say you take a photograph of your mom at a family reunion. Your purpose is to bring attention to the moment and the joy of the gathering by making your mom the subject and focal point of your composition. To communicate the message to the viewer that your mom is the focal point, you want to use scale and emphasis.

You could place her prominently in the photograph and make sure she is the largest object in the photo. You could emphasize her by blurring the background to make her stand out or focusing her brightly colored dress. Figuring out the focal point of the design will give your eye the guide it requires to structure the composition, as well as organically build hierarchy. In the design above the focal point is the ridiculous cake—our eyes go right to it and then read the rest for context.With the career field of graphic design becoming more accessible in recent years, everyone wants a piece of the pie.

Unfortunately, most newcomers to the design profession are unaware of certain graphic design rules — especially the ones they should NEVER break. By not following these rules, the result can be a visually jarring design, forcing your target audience to lose trust in your ability or competence.

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Get a Brand Board Template. You have to maintain consistency across all design elements and branded materials so your target audience clearly recognizes that the brochure or flyer in their hand is an extension of the same brand they see on your website. By being consistent with your design and branding on your marketing materials, you are ensuring your brand is never mistaken for another or represented poorly to your target audience.

Legibility is of the utmost importance when choosing fonts, and this applies to both web and print design. For instance, if your target market is predominantly made up of men and women over the age of 55, then it might be a good idea to opt for a san-serif font with a larger pixel size to increase visibility — this can improve user experience and keep customers happy.

In the above example, a subtle overlay of black was added to the photograph to increase contrast, thereby improving legibility when contrasted against the white font, Oleo Script. White against black and vice versa will always have the highest contrast, which generally equates to better legibility. The light-on-dark scheme helps to alleviate vibration or color discord. Remember, bad design always draws the eye and always distracts the reader from your message and your brand. Oftentimes, newcomers to graphic design will use raster-based images in their design.

Whenever they enlarge or reduce the size of a raster-based graphic, they wind up with pixelation. You can avoid this mistake by using larger images with higher resolutions; it keeps them crisp, even after you scale them. Adobe Illustrator is a vector-based application, so any icons created in Illustrator will not become pixelated when resizing.

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Randomly placing graphic elements or text within a design can make your print or web design look unorganized and messy. Messy designs look unprofessional and reflect poorly on your business, and honestly, it takes very little work to align objects properly.

To learn more about font pairings for your website, take a look at our font pairing article. You have to establish some type of visual hierarchy throughout your design.

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This is especially important on pages with many different items of text. In most blog posts like this one you can see size being used to establish a hierarchy. In the example on the right, the visual hierarchy is almost backwards — we want to start reading at the bottom even though it makes more sense to start with the heading.

The huge letters at the bottom literally force the eye of a reader of English to start at the end — crazy, right? I took a little dig at GSP earlier, but the truth is, you can really hurt your relationship with a potential client if your marketing materials are riddled with GSP errors. Always take a little extra time at the end of each project to proofread for grammar, spelling, and punctuation GSP mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes — it can never hurt to have an extra set of eyes.

Oftentimes, people new to design want to cram as many graphics onto one poster or booklet as they possibly can. This is one of those graphic design rules that can make or break your design. Having ample amounts of whitespace within your design can add a greater sense of professionalism and sophistication.

Go ahead and grab the Style Guide Template. It will lead you through the process of mapping out how your brand should be applied on any and all marketing materials. Please enter your name. Please enter a valid email address. Welcome to the club. You like free, awesome stuff, we like making free awesome stuff. Start Kicking Ass!In many ways, layout and composition are the building blocks of design. They give your work structure and make it easier to navigate, from the margins on the sides to the content in between.

Why is composition so important? In short, it's the way your content is arranged.

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It doesn't matter if you're working with text, images, or elements in a graphic; without a thoughtful, well-composed layout, your work would basically fall apart. The key to mastering layout and composition is to think like a designer.

Luckily, it's easier than it sounds. There are five basic principles that can help you transform your work and sharpen your eye for design. Keep them in mind during your next project, and look for ways to apply them. Proximity is all about using visual space to show relationships in your content.

In practice, it's pretty simple—all you have to do is make sure related items are grouped together for instance, blocks of text or elements in a graphic, as in the example below.

graphic design rules pdf

Groups that are NOT related to each other should be separated to visually emphasize their lack of a relationship. All in all, this makes your work easier to understand at a glancewhether it's purely text or something more visual. White space is an important part of every composition. Now, this doesn't mean literal white space ; it just means negative spacelike the spaces between your content, between lines, and even the outer margins.

There's no one way to use white space correctly, but it's good to understand its purpose. White space helps you define and separate different sections ; it gives your content room to breathe.

graphic design rules pdf

If your work ever starts to feel cluttered or uncomfortable, a little white space might be just what the doctor ordered. Alignment is something you deal with all the time, even if you don't realize it. Whenever you type an email or create a document, the text is aligned automatically. When aligning objects by yourself for instance, images or separate text boxesgetting it right can be tricky. The most important thing is to be consistent. It might help to imagine your content arranged inside of a gridjust like the example below.

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Notice how there's an invisible line centering each image to the text? Each grouping is also evenly spaced and alignedwith equal-sized margins. It's this attention to detail that makes the composition easier to navigate. Without consistent alignment, your work could start to feel disorganized. Contrast simply means that one item is different from another. In layout and composition, contrast can help you do many things, like catch the reader's eye, create emphasis, or call attention to something important.

Download EBOOK Graphic Design Rules: 365 Essential Design Dos and Don'ts PDF for free

To create contrast in the example below, we've used colormore than one style of textand objects of differing sizes. This makes the design more dynamic and, therefore, more effective at communicating its message. Contrast is also closely tied to hierarchywhich is a visual technique that can help the viewer navigate your work. In other words, it shows them where to begin and where to go next using different levels of emphasis.

Establishing hierarchy is simple: Just decide which elements you want the reader to notice first, then make them stand out. High-level or important items are usually larger, bolder, or more eye-catching in some way. Repetition is a reminder that every project should have a consistent look and feel.

This means finding ways to reinforce your design by repeating or echoing certain elements.Every creative has their own individual approach, or more importantly their own combinations of the thousands of techniques one can apply when planning a new design project.

But there are some dos and don'ts that always figure strongly in any heated debate about what one should or should not accept as the right way to create the best graphic design.

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Packed with practical advice but presented PDF in a light-hearted fashion, Graphic Design Rules is the perfect book for the ever-growing group of non-designers who want some graphic design guidance. And for more experienced designers, individual entries will either bring forth knowing nods of agreement or hoots of derision, depending on whether or not the reader loves or hates hyphenation, has a pathological fear of beige, or thinks that baseline grids are boring.

In the style of a classical almanac, entries combine a specific rule with a commentary from a variety of experienced designers from all fields of the graphic design industry. Grouped into six ePub colour-coded chapters - typography, colour, layout, imagery, production, and creative thinking - the reader can either dip in at random or use the book as the source of a daily lesson in how to produce great graphic design. Reviews of the Graphic Design Rules: Essential Design Dos and Don'ts Until now about the ebook we have Graphic Design Rules: Essential Design Dos and Don'ts feedback customers have never yet remaining their overview of the sport, you aren't make out the print nevertheless.

Although, in case you have presently read this book and you're simply able to help make their findings well have you take your time to go away a critique on our website we will release equally bad and the good testimonials. Put simply, "freedom connected with speech" Most of us completely helped. Your own suggestions to book Graphic Design Rules: Essential Design Dos and Don'ts - some other audience will be able to determine with regards to a publication.

This sort of guidance will make you far more United! Peter Dawson Unfortunately, presently we really do not possess any details about the actual designer Peter Dawson. Even so, we would value in case you have any specifics of the idea, and so are able to present the item.

graphic design rules pdf

Deliver the item to all of us! The ways to access all of the check out, in case every detail are usually genuine, we are going to submit on our web page. It's very important for individuals that each one correct in relation to Peter Dawson.

Most of us appreciate it beforehand internet marketing prepared to go to meet up with people!Search for: Search. Search Results for "graphic-design-rules". Graphic Design Rules is a handy guide for professional graphic designers, students, and laymen who incorporate graphic design into their job or small business.

Packed with practical advice, this spirited collection of design dos and don'ts takes readers through rules like knowing when to use a modular grid—and when to throw the grid out the window. All designers will appreciate tips and lessons from these highly accomplished authors, who draw on years of experience to help you create good design. Its creators take risks, challenge the norm, and pave the way for new ideas.

This book presents design that is truly innovative -- in hopes of encouraging all designers to "break the rules". Gero,Fay Sudweeks — Computers. Author : John S. Designers are amongst the primary change agents for any society. As a consequence design is an important research topic in engineering and architecture and related disciplines, since design is not only a means of change but is also one of the keystones to economic competitiveness and the fundamental precursor to manufacturing.

The development of computational models founded on the artificial intelligence paradigm has provided an impetus for much of current design research -both computational and cognitive.

These forms of design research have only been carried out in the last decade or so and in the temporal sense they are still immature. Notwithstanding this immaturity, noticeable advances have been made both in extending our understanding of design and in developing tools based on that understanding.

Whilst many researchers in the field of artificial intelligence in design utilise ideas about how humans design as one source of concepts there is normally no attempt to model human designers. Rather the results of the research presented in this volume demonstrate approaches to increasing our understanding of design as a process. This book tells that story in detail, defining and illustrating key developments and themes from Graphic Design Concepts N.

A — Business. Author : N. This second edition evolves concepts presented in the original and adds information of greater depth and detail.

It is the most compact and lucid handbook available describing the basic principles of layout, image making, colour usage, typography and visual narrative - and how to put it all together. Design Elements not only offers a thorough understanding of the rules of design, but also shows you how to break those rules without compromising communication or confusing your audience.

Design Elements Tim Samara — Design. Being a creative designer is often about coming up with unique design solutions. Unfortunately, when the basic rules of design are ignored in an effort to be distinctive, design becomes useless. In language, a departure from the rules is only appreciated as great literature if recognition of the rules underlies the text.

Graphic design is a "visual language," and brilliance is recognized in designers whose work seems to break all the rules, yet communicates its messages clearly. This book is a fun and accessible handbook that presents the fundamentals of design in lists, tips, brief text, and examples.

This book reveals the reasoning graphic designers use to inform the fruits of their occupation by defining a collection of fifty golden rules that some of the most brilliant minds in design follow. Essentially, this text declares why virtuoso designers do the things they do.Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read.

Other editions. Enlarge cover. Error rating book. Refresh and try again. Open Preview See a Problem? Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page.

Peter Dawson Foreword. John Foster. Tony Seddon. Ask any graphic designer the world over about their preferred approach to setting type, choosing a colour, or beginning a new layout, and you will rarely get exactly the same answer twice. Every creative has their own individual approach, or more importantly their own combinations of the thousands of techniques one can apply when planning a new design project. But there Ask any graphic designer the world over about their preferred approach to setting type, choosing a colour, or beginning a new layout, and you will rarely get exactly the same answer twice.

But there are some dos and don'ts that always figure strongly in any heated debate about what one should or should not accept as the right way to create the best graphic design.

Packed with practical advice but presented in a light-hearted fashion, Graphic Design Rules is the perfect book for the ever-growing group of non-designers who want some graphic design guidance. Get A Copy. Paperbackpages. Published September 5th by Frances Lincoln first published August 1st More Details Other Editions 2.

Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.Graphic design is a highly sought-after skill. Still slick tools are only part of the puzzle; you still need to develop an eye for what works visually and what detracts from your message. Here are eight basic design principles to keep in mind when working with visuals and creating graphics.

Alignment is an important fundamental of design, since it helps create a sharp, ordered appearance by ensuring the elements have a pleasing connection with each other. Aligning objects properly will clean up a design and eliminate the messiness or sloppiness that can occur when elements are placed randomly. Made with Adobe Spark by beeheartsyou.

This is called hierarchy and it can be accomplished in a variety of ways—larger or bolder fonts, placing your most important message physically higher than other pieces of information, or using shapes to frame the focal point. Utilizing this principle in your design starts with your message first and the goals of your design. Figure out what the most important piece of info is first. Perhaps you want the main message of your design to be a quote, but you also want to let viewers know how to follow you or that you have a sale.

We suggest designing your main message then adding additional text and using the design wheel on iOS to get suggestions for ways design multiple elements in one design.

We discussed different ways to play with hierarchy in designs at greater length during a Facebook Live broadcast with pro designers from the Spark team. Catch the replay below! Contrast is an important principle of design because it lets you draw out the most important elements of a design and add emphasis. Contrast happens when two design elements are in opposition to each other, like black and white, thick and thin, modern and traditional, etc.

Repetition is an important design basic because it helps strengthen the overall look of the design. It also ties together different elements to help them remain organized and more consistent.

Consistency and repetition is especially important in branding because you want your particular look to be instantly recognizable.

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Read about how blogger Planning Pretty uses Spark Post to create a consistent brand with her imagery. Pro-tip: You can create one master design and duplicate it for slight modifications with just one tap.

Proximity is also helpful in creating organization on a page, since similar or related elements should be grouped together to create a relationship between them.

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Ideally you might cluster the elements together in a way that helps to declutter the overall design. Spark Post pro-tip: Did you know the design wheel on iOS matches existing styles in the document before suggesting new styles?

graphic design rules pdf

This is the quickest way to make one piece of text look the same as another. Balance gives a design its form and stability and helps to distribute the elements evenly throughout your design; this even spacing will offer an appearance that is professional and attractive instead of being jumbled and messy.

Symmetrical balance weights the elements evenly on either sides of the design, while asymmetrical uses contrast to even out the flow of design i. Need more design inspiration? Check out our inspiration galleries! Color is a significant part of design and should be considered carefully each time you start a new design.

Colors are largely responsible for dictating the mood of a design — each color has something a little different to say.

Green tends to make people think of non-profits or the environment, while red causes stormy emotions like anger, blue is more calming and passive, and yellow creates a sensation of happiness.

To aid legibility, consider adding a gradient background behind text, especially if your text color is at all similar.