What is graphic design?

Article by Stuart B

Posted Monday, January 3, 2022

Example of abstract graphic design

What is meant by the term graphic design?

This is a simplified explanation of the question.

Graphic design is everywhere we look, although you would not make the correlation without really thinking about what you are looking at. I am talking about things you would see everyday like billboards, posters, those logos on your cup of coffee packaging and, of course, the websites that you look at.

Graphic design is the art of communicating an idea or a message through a visual representation and influencing perception and eliciting emotions.

We also know graphic design as communication design, meaning that graphic designers are basically visual communicators.

The elements and principles of graphic design.

These include Lines, colour, shape, space texture, typography, scale and balance. Put these together and you have a piece of work that conveys a message of some sort.

let’s have a look at those in more detail.

  • Line:
    No matter what piece of work you look at, lines will be present. Be it straight, curved, thin, thick dashed, long or short, lines will connect two points together. Especialy useful for breaking up and dividing space to better grab the viewers attention.
  • Colour:
    One of the most important elements, colour can affect a design from the first glance. We can use colours everywhere in design, from a background colour or to add to lines, shapes and textures. Colours can also portray an emotion or a feeling.
  • Shape:
    We can also call this form. We can use shapes in a multitude of ways from using a circle to signify unity to a square to signify structure, most designs have at least one shape in its design.
  • Space:
    The use of space in a design can break it up making it more readable to the eye. Incorporating space also gives the design a structure, giving other elements the chance to be enhanced.
  • Texture:
    Used more and more in graphic design these days, texture can be added to backgrounds, shapes or be used to give a more three-dimensional look.
  • Typography:
    Text can add more meaning to other elements and should set a visual balance that sets the tone of the piece. There are many text styles out there and it is the job of the graphic designer to pick, or even create a new font to go along with the piece of work at hand.
  • Balance:
    Deciding how design elements are distributed in a piece gives stability. We achieve balance through shapes, colours, typography and lines.

What are the different types of graphic design?

  • Visual identity design:
    This focuses on corporate branding, so your logo, colours, typography all come into play. This can help achieve a strong and memorable brand identity.
  • Marketing design:
    Used to sell products or services, this type of graphic design will be the design of posters, brochures, billboards, packaging television adverts, video and social media posting.
  • Web design:
    Using structure, colour, typography, and imagery web design will also encompass UX design to give an appealing and easy-to-use interface to a company’s or individual’s products, services or information.
  • Motion graphic design:
    Being a new addition to the graphic design term in recent years, motion graphics are quickly becoming more in demand. Using graphics in motion, including animations, trailers, title sequences and even video games, this part of graphic design is fast becoming a very popular part of the toolkit.

A brief description of the aforementioned UX (user interface design) design:

UX design focuses on how a user interacts with, in this case, a website. The goal of this is to get user satisfaction through usability, accessibility and interaction. The best example of this is to look at web design. UX design will help you to guide a visitor through your pages and highlight what you want them to do while giving the user complete satisfaction through easy to navigate graphics and links.