Wednesday, October 29, 2014

4 Graphic Design Tips to Dominate Your Social Media

Great graphic design is not just for creating ads, logos, and mascots; great graphic design can help you dominate your social media marketing as well by giving your posts something to help them stand out.

When your posts have a great image to go along with them, they get more engagement! Why? For one thing, possibly the main thing, is that it gives your post an appealing visual besides just text. Another reason is because an image can help the message from your post be more complete.

Now, before you just jump into designing graphics and images for your social media posts. There are some prime rules that will help you nail this process down.

  1. Use contrast. Contrast will be great for making your images look sharp. It helps the text jump off the page and catch the eye. Colors that contrast well are not all that hard to choose, light and dark are the simplest ways to go. As a graphic design firm in Chicago, this is something we recommend to those who are venturing into graphic design for the first time. 
  2. Pick a font palette. If your company has a standard set of fonts, that is a great place to start. Having consistency with your fonts will really help build familiarity, great for branding! When you have a consistent set of fonts, it makes design easier and sleek. 
  3. Choose colors. Choosing a color scheme that is good for designs is sometimes hard but when you keep it consistent with your company's color scheme, it can also help with familiarity. Overall, consistency is key. Start with a couple colors and add more on from there; you want to avoid coming across as messy or confused with your colors. 
  4. K.I.S.S. - Keep it simple, Stupid! Sorry, you're not stupid but it's the acronym, you know? It can be very easy to get complex with images; you start with a cool, simple design and then just start adding in one cool thing after another. No, avoid that temptation. Keep the clutter to a minimum and make sure your message can be interpreted correctly! A professional graphic designer will always tell you that a messy graphic is a bad graphic, or they're a bad designer. Using too many fonts, colors, images, shapes, etc. should be avoided. 
Great graphic design can help any aspect of your business, even social media. Does your business need great graphics for social media? How about social media services? Email Integraphix or call us and chat with us about our services. 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

5 Cliché Logo Designs to Avoid

We've said it before and we'll say it again, your logo is the 24/7 visual representative of your brand. Thus, having a logo that is not unique and uninspiring not only means poor top of mind awareness for your brand but also poor reach. As a professional graphic designer, this is a major thing to remember when designing a logo for a brand.

Your logo is the face of your company and should speak about who your brand is. A sure-fire way to get your brand to be lost in the crowd is to fall to one of these cliché design trends.
  1. Putting an arc on top. This is a wildly over-used trend. Sure, putting an arc over the top of the company name for a logo looked cool but not so much anymore. 
  2. Use helvetica in the logo. We get it, it can be a simple, nice font and sometimes when you type a company name in Helvetica, it can look appealing. However, just because something looks appealing doesn't mean it makes for a great logo. It is a great font for certain things, just not a logo. 
  3. Using comic-sans or papyrus font in a logo. These fonts can not only be cliché in a logo but also scream "amateur!" 
  4. Random shapes. The most popular option for this is to have random dots around the brand name but other shapes have happened too. 
  5. Having two letters overlap. This is especially common when the company is someone's name and both parts start with the same letter. 
There are some designs that people use in logos and they can be really cool, don't get us wrong. However, when you have a logo that is easily replicable and forgettable, then so is your company. Hire a graphic designer that can make a you a custom logo that speaks truth about your brand; hire Integraphix, we are a Chicago graphic design firm that specializes in logo design

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

How to Use Fonts Correctly

Believe it or not, using fonts is a big, big deal in the world of professional graphic design. It can be intimidating to the max. You have all sorts of fonts, sizes, weights, etc. A good font can make or break your design and help your message.

Getting a master grasp on how to use fonts can be a huge help in you becoming better a graphic design. As a Chicago graphic design firm, we have compiled a list of 5 ways to use fonts to your benefit.

  1. Use fonts for hierarchy. You can organize font to establish a hierarchy that will encourage people to read certain things first. The human eye will move towards the dominating elements of something such as the largest text and/or color. 
  2. Using fonts for contrast. Making titles and subtitles stand out can be done when you use fonts with great contrast to the rest of the image or graphic. You can do this with different colors (dark/light) as well as styles of fonts (uppercase/lowercase and types). Also, having different weights with your fonts helps, too. 
  3. Using fonts for sake of readability. When you use the wrong font, it can make your text very heard to read, which defeats the purpose of having the text there in the first place. Try to stay away from elaborate fonts and go for contrast such as white text on black backgrounds, etc. 
  4. Be imaginative and creative with your text. You can do things like putting your text into a shape; for example, write a body of text and then when you look at it, you see it is a dog, or something. 
  5. Use fonts that match the message and style of what you want to say. Using a papyrus font will not work when you are creating a graphic for your medieval era event. It just won't. A childish font won't work for you networking event for lawyers. 
Make sure you use fonts in an effective way. When you get careless is when your graphics suffer. As a graphic designer in Chicago, I have learned many ways to utilize fonts to be effective and creative. 

Does your business need design work done to help it stand out and grow? Then don't deny your business the help it needs. Contact Integraphix and see how we can help you! 

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

9 Ways to Make a Graphic Designer Cringe

There are lots of reasons to hire a professional graphic designer. For one thing, it means getting quality work that cannot be replicated, or at least easily. Why is this the case? Well, as a Chicago graphic designer, I can tell you that designers make sure to know the best trends and designs; graphic designers look at how things look on a grand scale as well as the smallest detail.

When something is "off" artistically, it can really get under the skin of a professional graphic designer. Here are some examples.

1. Bad Spacing (kerning). Yeah, it's not what you think it says!

(The Best Feature Flicks (F-L-I-C-K-S) On DVD)

2. Bad typesetting. 

3. Stretching text.
Notice how blurry that is?

4. Multiple Typefaces. Choose 1 or 2 and stick to it.

5. Big red text on posters. This is just overdone.

6. Looks like you just learned how to use Illustrator or other graphic programs

7. Was it designed by a Tween? We get it, animals and other cartoon/artsy things are cute. But less is more. 

8. Generic, cliché posters. Hey man! Come to this party! It'll be the best St. Patrick's Day bash ever! 

9. Saying something needs more pizzaz.