If you are a designer who cares about typography, odds are that you regularly try to explain to somebody–whether a client or someone at a party–why anybody should care about typography. In the past decade, awareness of fonts and typography has become a bigger part of mainstream culture than it once was. But all too often one is met with a blank look and/or confusion as to why anyone would bother about such things. This is why we need to learn the appropriate vocabulary and terminology to address the curious and not so curious crowd.
Next week we will see more terms that can help us in the interaction with other designers, clients and more.
Writing content for different platforms requires a varied approach for websites, social media platforms, and print collateral. It requires a certain level of skill to know the difference as well as what ways are most effective. What should remain constant however is that your content be reader-driven and “actionable” to keep readers engaged, educated (i.e. informed) and entertained.
Writing for Social Media
Set the Hook Quick -More concise writing in social media (SM) is the key. Most people are on the move while on SM platforms so it’s imperative that you set the content hook quick with strong points up front and in a pronounced way. There’s so much content out there so this a key way to stand out, engage and create a faithful reader. This ultimately affects the breadth of your audience and long-term followers.
The Risk Factor – Social Media social graces aren’t the same as traditional forums. So feel free to take a risk every now and again. If you have a quirky yet innovative way to capture an audience, SM platforms like Facebook & Google+ are the places to do it. Feel free to mix your SM writing with audio sound-bytes or other platforms like YouTube to really engage and entertain.
Writing for Websites
Standing Out – What ever the main point is of your content, it should be conveyed in a standout way that doesn’t require a lot of upfront reading or navigation. Using bold or differential typeface, different color fonts, graphs, images or infographics allows the reader to get the “gist” or the most important information in 1 minute or less. Make sure these standout points:
- include bold statements about your business;
- engages the audience visually; and
- encourages them to act.
Write Easily Scannable Content – Don’t expect people to pour over your every word on your website. Scannable content is engaging content that allows readers to understand the general basis sweepingly, at a glance. It is easier to read than word-for-word and it allows readers to easily digest the primary information nuggets.
Writing for Print Collateral
Be Promotional & Motivating – Most web and social media content has to appear more informational than promotional. Subtle promotional content requires a certain finesse and is not overly stated or extremely brazen. A great print piece conveys to your clients that you take pride in your business, products or services. Your print collateral should persuade prospects and inform them that you have something valuable to offer them. Ultimately it should showcase your talents and strengths while clearly motivating to purchase your product or service.
The Bigger Picture Copy – Print collateral does so much more than explain your product or services. The quality of our product should be exemplified in your content copy and the copy should reflect in-kind. To me, sloppy copy conveys sloppy business. Remember once in a prospective client’s hands, you have the chance to make not just a client out of them, but hopefully a long-term advertiser via word-of-mouth.
Tail End Tip: Make sure all your content flows smoothly to minimize boredom, confusion or frustration.
Graphic design is an ever changing, ever growing world; so is its jargon.
Sometimes, we as designer,s like things complicated and that includes our “industry talk”. We like acronyms and complex terminologies, that’s why I have decided to put together some charts that will help you relate with design vocabulary. Since this is a huge world, the charts will be divided by subject or niche within the graphic design world.
The first one will be PRINT.
2013 is already settled in, we are half way January and this is the time when trends show their faces; when new color combinations make their appearance and styles decide to stay.
As graphic designers, we are constantly striving to find the latest and trendy ways to improve the entire look of our designs. It is not easy to predict trends for an industry which is changing with the blink of any eye. You never know what is going to be in and what is going to out from the trend list. On one hand you will be designing to please clients by following trends set in 2012 and on another hand, you will be designing in a way so that you can set new trends for 2013. Today, in this article we will discuss some predictions as far as graphic design trends in 2013 are concerned.
Designers have a lot of fonts available to select from. However, selecting typography is no longer a small decision and selecting a trendy typography design is very important. Predictions are that 2013 is going to be a great year for typography as it will be given much, much importance. In fact, typography will become an integral part of any design. Designers will no longer replace text with the beautiful images and will try to enhance design’s beauty through typography. By 2013, it is expected that designers will give typography a lot of importance, almost being considered as the foundation of any design. It is expected that most graphic designers will focus on coming up with unique typographical styles for a particular design, since typography cannot just attract readers, but promote unique beauty as well.
Last year, many corporations re-design their logos to be much simpler and cleaner than before. In 2013, we expect many other companies to follow suit with these clean and simple logo designs. Simple and striking illustration styles are expected to become popular in the new year and usher in a new appreciation for minimalist design.
This one makes me a bit sad (not that I’m too old, but I still love my prints). People is opting to read materials from an e-reader or tablet everyday, it only makes sense that they would purchase their magazines in the same format. Digital magazines and catalogs are growing in popularity as the prices of tablets come down and more people purchase them. Interactive ads and animated photographs and illustrations add interest and attraction to e-publications for both the consumer and the magazine companies and adds an extra layer of interest to this new format.
When printed, it will be cool
We already mention how everyday materials are going digital, printing is expected to take a turn for the higher-end market, with experimental printing processes and high quality papers and inks. Great designs are expected to rule the printed magazine world, with an emphasis on tactile qualities. While printing may not be popular for the average magazine or newspaper, the people who really appreciate printed materials (me), are in for a real treat.
It is very important to have a strategy for the year and to plan properly. It is nice to follow trends, but always following some basic design rules and, of course, aesthetic
appealing. The mentioned graphic design trends are only predictions by some of the experts and along with these we can definitely see a lot of other trends in 2013. Are there any trends that you think will hit the designing world in 2013? If yes, please share them with us.
If you have been reading my posts for quite a bit, you already know how much I love typography and how I feel about applying good typographic techniques to all designs.
While researching for ideas in the trendy subject of Infographics, I stumbled across lots of cool infographics for typography. These designs will bring my old typography posts to life.
1. Cliff Kuang present a great guide to recognize typefaces. We can revisit some old post on typeface selection for your brand.
2. The Evolution of Typography presents letter forms within a Venn diagram, and uses type to illustrate the changing tides of font style.
3. Utilizing a different trope of scientific-diagram-turned-font-infovis, the Periodic Table attempts to organize fonts by relationship and complexity.
Last week we learned what infographics are. We walked trough some basics steps in the creative process, learning why it is important to plan and research. If we don’t condense the information we can end up with more text than graphics and we also need to choose the typographic style matching our design. In order to be able to create an astonishing infographic we also need to take into consideration the following details.
Scheme your colors or working on your color schemes – colors are vital. Choose those that create great impact. Take note of color psychology, using colors that fit the topic you are working on. It doesn’t necessarily need to be colorful; some infographics use only few colors but are still effective.
Who is your audience? – infographics are popular because they constitute an easy way to tell a story. Stories are always directed to a group, select your target audience and work around it, this will make or break your purpose.
Choosing graphics – there are two kinds of graphics in infographics, Theme Graphics and Reference Graphics.
- Theme graphic is the defining visual of the design and is usually always included in the infographic, except when the infographic is more statistics based. Choosing the right theme graphic will tell you reader at a glance what knowledge you wish to share.
- Reference graphics are not mandatory in the design. They are usually icons used as visual pointers to avoid cluttering up the design when a lot of content needs to be represented. They are brilliantly capable of making numerous references using the same instance. Sometimes words aren’t even necessary if powerful reference icons are used, a practice more and more designers are using in a bid to make their infographics as word-free as possible.
Design – good design is always effective. If we speak of visuals, a good design will always hit the mark. No matter how simple your infographics are, use your creativity to make the design appealing. When we speak of design, colors, type, layout, and the use of white space, all matter. People would stare longer at an infographic, which has a good design.
With all this basic information we are almost ready to build our infographics. What other ingredients would you add to spice up yours?