Type has two primary goals. The first is to convey information (what the actual words say), and the second is to add further context to the information. A typeface helps form that critical first impression about your message; before the viewer even reads what the words say, the typeface offers important clues. This is why it is so important to choose the right one. As you can see above, typefaces are so much more than just stylized alphabets; they have personalities that come across immediately and inform the viewer.
Color is a tricky element in design, and made even more challenging when incorporating images into a layout. It can be difficult to know what colors are going to complement the image and the overall design. There’s a lot of science surrounding how to mix and match colors, but John McWade of Before & After offers some foolproof ways to pick the right colors from an image in his course Before & After: Things Every Designer Should Know.
Many believe that drawing is a skill you’re born with: If you weren’t lucky enough to get that gene, you’re destined to draw stick figures. Not true! Drawing is a skill that anyone can learn. It’s like skiing or writing or cooking; the more you do it, the better you’ll become. Walt Stanchfield, an American animator, once said, “We all have 10,000 bad drawings in us. The sooner we get them out, the better.” The fastest way to do this is to embed drawing into your daily routine. In Drawing Vector Graphics, author and illustrative designer Von Glitschka shares his thoughts on how to make this happen.
One of the greatest challenges faced by freelance designers and design firm owners is knowing when to decline work. Not all jobs are created equal, and just because you like the client, or the pay is good, or it seems like an interesting project, doesn’t mean the job is going to benefit you or your business.
Let’s say it’s a company whose mission you admire and want to support, but they have a small budget and the schedule is too tight for the scope of work. The best-case scenario is that you’ll end up working too hard for too little compensation. The worst-case scenario is that you won’t be able to produce work you feel good about because of the time constraints. Additionally, you may even have to pass on another job that would have been more beneficial to your business.