Design With Purpose

Design with purpose

As writers, we sometimes forget about the other side of the equation. Layout and design is another important consideration when we want to make sure our message is seen and understood.

First, let’s look at the difference between art and design.

Art is interpreted. Design is understood. It’s two different things. Design is about communicating a message. Art is measured based on individual taste. It’s different viewer to viewer. Design is consistent. Good art is a talent. Good design is a skill. You can learn it and hone it and get better at it.

Art is created for sake of expression. Generally for the artists enjoyment. Design is created for the sake of focused communication. As a designer, your job is to communicate a specific message. Designers are amplifiers, usually on someone else’s behalf. Normally, you aren’t doing it for you, designers work for a business or cause.

Design can propel a business towards success. Design can change people’s minds. Design can change the world. Good design can truly change everything.

Always design with purpose. Know our audience, message, and goals. You are solving a problem. The answer to who is your audience is never “everyone”.

You are all creative, but you need to start thinking like a designer.

The type of file matters.

Do you know the difference between Raster and Vector?

These terms are about how much information is contained and where it will be displayed. Information is stored on color, contrast, etc.. Resolution is determined by # of pixels per inch. Just a fun fact, the human eye can’t distinguish much more than 300 pixels per inch. Raster is a fancy term for grid. Can’t enlarge them easily. Logos should be vectors. Vectors are easy to resize.

As a communicator, you also need to determine how your information translates from a printed piece to information viewed on the web. Some formats and files work better in different platforms.

Print Web

CMYK RGB

300ppi 72ppi

PDF JPG/PNG

Color is also important. Color can give meaning and information as well as create emotion. Think about an eye on the stove glowing red. Your brain automatically translates that to mean it’s hot.

It’s also important to know what market your piece will be viewed in. Some colors have universal meanings, but some vary culture to culture.

It’s important to choose the right words to communicate your message. However, utilizing design as a tool can increase that understanding and make it more effective.

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