Not all of us are professional graphic designers with a fancy degree to prove it. That being said, we all want our printed products to look nice and professional, just on a budget. That’s why we have put together our best tips and tricks for making your design look as professional as possible, without going to art school.
1. Less is more!
We know it can be tempting to keep adding to your design, but please, stop! Limit yourself to one or two fonts on the whole document, as any more than this will start to make the design look busy and mismatched. Same goes with images and other elements, give them space to breathe! If in doubt, take it out!
2. Colour is key
It’s really important to have a cohesive and appealing colour palette. Colour not your thing? Is the thought of trying to put together a colour palette filling you with dread? Worry not, as there’s loads of places on the internet that will do it for you! Our favourite is Coolors, but there’s loads available if you search up ‘Colour palette generator’
3. Proof read
So often, we see documents come through with a variety of spelling mistakes throughout. That’s why it’s so important to proof read documents multiple times before sending them to print. Our best tip is read it, take a break, read it again and then get someone else to look over it with fresh eyes.
4. Be consistent
Once you have created a design, don’t be afraid to reuse it and rearrange it a little bit. It’s so important that a consistent brand is maintained throughout all of your designs. This enables familiarity and shows professionalism and consistency.
5. Create a sense of order
Aligning the elements on your design to each other really helps the design to shine. It makes it legible, crisp and clear. It’s amazing how the order and alignment of text can increase a ‘meh’ design to ‘wow’.
6. Take a break
We mentioned it in number 3, but this doesn’t just apply to there. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a step back. Make a cuppa, have a bath, go for a walk, whatever you do to unwind, and then go back to it later. You’ll be amazed at what fresh, relaxed eyes will do.
7. Create a mood board
We like to compile an assortment of images, typefaces and textures before we get started on a new brand. This helps us gather our thoughts and decide what kind of feel we want to go for in a design. Pinterest is great at creating mood boards, but equally, printing them off and sticking them to a wall also works wonders.
8. Trial and error
You live and you learn! Remember, you haven’t gone to university and learned all about the values and rules of design. It’s okay to make mistakes! Just keep trying out things and eventually you’ll get to a place that you like.
Those are just a few of our best tips for creating good design.