How to Make Your Graphics Picture Perfect: Tips From a Pro Grapho

We all have our strengths and weaknesses. I like writing and reading but when it comes to design I’m about as handy as a screen-door on a submarine. All I can say is thank god for graphic designers!!

Most people have a basic understanding of design, what colours not to mix, how to make text readable, what looks tacky and cheap etc, but it takes a very special person to truly ace design.

Your brand’s visual identity, as portrayed in your logo, branding, blog images and visual advertising content reflects the professionalism and personality of your brand and therefore shouldn’t be overlooked or rushed. We are lucky enough to have a real talented Grapho here at Milk It who has worked hard to build an eye-popping and fluid visual identity for our brand and she’s here to share all her secrets!!! Introducing Nat Pasnin from Natalie Pasnin Graphic Designs!

Today you will learn:

  • The importance of an A+ logo!
  • The 5 most cringe-worthy mistakes a rookie graphic designer can make
  • How to ensure your designs aren’t eyesores

Where do you start when developing a unique brand logo and what should you take into consideration?

One of the most interesting projects that I take on as a Graphic Designer is designing a logo. It can be daunting at times (and stressful) to come up with a logo based on market research, a reflection of my client’s personality and their brand requirements. Narrowing it down to a final approved logo and then seeing it out in the world can be a very rewarding experience for a design.

Why is a strong brand logo critical?

When I create logos, I make sure that it will work in different orientations, sizes, formats and colours. When creating a logo it isn’t just about ‘putting a few fonts together’ or ‘making a symbol’. When I create a logo, I think about how I can innovatively portray the brand name with the symbol, or putting a variation of symbols together to create ONE ULTIMATE symbol.

[Tweet “I think what some people forget is that the style of the logo, now represents the entire brand.”]

From their social media platforms to the website, to even things like the business cards! It’s important when creating a logo, to think of how you create a whole brand from it, with patterns from the lettering, symbols or colouring.

What are the 5 most cringe-worthy mistakes a person can make in graphic design?

The list could be endless! But if I must list the top 5, let’s do it!

screen-shot-2016-11-07-at-11-06-25-pm1. Not Understanding The Brief: Whether the client has not created a clear brief or the designer is too scared to ask questions for clarifications, without a clear idea of what you clients requires you to do can make matters worse and double, even triple your workload! ASKING QUESTIONS WHEN IN DOUBT IS THE KEY TO UNDERSTANDING ANY BRIEF!


2. Font Overload: Using too many fonts, is BAD, really BAD! Having a clear, formatted design is crucial and it’s so important to not use too many different fonts within one piece. You want your design to look consistent and not be confusing or overpowering for the viewer. A general rule is to try to stick to two different fonts, using different weights of the font, different colours or increasing the font size to emphasise particular information.


3. Using ‘Stocky’ Stock Images: Ironic isn’t is? Stock photos being too ‘stocky’. But you know those photo’s where it’s so fake, where the model is laughing while eating a salad or having way too much fun at work with their colleagues? These can sometimes degrade your work, making the brand it is connected to appear cheap and unprofessional! Try to avoid using stock images as the central focus for your work. Make it work with the copy you’re placing it on and be evenly focused (between the image and the copy) And for the love of god, make the photo look at least a little genuine. (PEOPLE DON’T SMILE WITH SALADS!)


4. Not Saving Your Files Correctly: Knowing how to set up your files correctly from the start is vital. There are many things to consider depending on the output of the artwork. Print work is generally set up as CMYK and at 300dpi, whereas for the web it should be RGB (resolution will depend on the client’s needs regarding mobile, Retina etc). It’s important to always consider if a bleed, trim and safety line is required before sending to print (Normally a 5mm would suffice) and think about your file formats, outlining fonts and colour profiles. This may seem like a lot to take in, but learning these processes will save you a lot of time in the long run, ensuring your work is reproduced correctly, keeping your client happy. You know what they say Happy Client, Happy… errrr.


2016-graphic-design-trends-015. Design For Yourself: Finally, it is always absolutely imperative that you stay aware of the fact that you’re designing a project for a client. Easier said than done, when your passionate about what you do and the projects you take on. It’s important that you stick to the client’s brief and don’t make changes accordingly to your personal preferences. The best solution to this battle is to show examples of your suggestions of how you think the design direction should take, as well as their own. That way, they can take an executive decision as to what works best for them and their brand. Showing a visual rather than just a verbal explanation can do wonders! They may not be aware of current trends, or not 100% sure what they want. If they still insist on doing it their way, move on and do your best work under the circumstances. Remember, the customer is paying for graphic design and your job as a designer is to do all you can to help the customer achieve their vision!!

If you like to hear more about graphic design or you just wanna check out some of Nat’s killer designs keep an eye on our socials this month and hit us up on Facebook with some ideas for new blogs.

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