To better understand the meaning of Graphic design, it is important to be aware of the elements and principles that make up design. Elements are used in conjunction or opposition with each other to create visually striking and impactful designs.
In this article, we take a brief look at basics of Graphic designs which are sub-divided into these three guides; The Elements, Principles and Components. For this article, we would only be looking into the elements of graphics design.
The Elements: Elements of design are the fundamental parts or aspects used to compose any work of design. It is important for graphics or website designers to know these elements because;
There are in total six elements of a design which you need to be aware of: the line, the shape, the color, the texture, typography and the space.
The Line: It is a form with width and length, but no depth. Line can be long or short, it is usually present in all designs. It can create different effects and visual impact, they are most of the time used to direct a viewer’s vision in a specific direction.
The style of a line can also influence the way the user sees it, the solid lines have a different impact than the dotted ones, because they are more imposing.
The Shape: Like lines, shapes are also associated by the human mind with different movements. For example, circles are associated with movement and nature, while squares are often seen as structured, basic designs. Just like with the lines, the color, style, background or texture of a shape can totally change the viewer’s perception.
Shapes are actually lines combined in different shapes. The forms are still popular and this is because if there is something that needs to stand out, forms are one of the ways to do it.
The Color: The color may even be the most important element of a design, because it offers the most powerful visual impact at a single glance. Color is obvious and does not need basic graphic skills to be noticed. Therefore color theory is very important to know, because not many designers can call themselves experts in this field. Being a master of colors might make the difference between a good design and a stunning one.
The Texture: It’s counter-intuitive to think about texture when the piece isn’t ever going to be touched. Websites and graphic design do rely on the look and impression of texture on the screen, however. Textures can create a more three-dimensional appearance on this two-dimensional surface. It also helps build an immersive world.
Texture styles include paper, stone, concrete, brick, fabric and natural elements, among flat or smooth colors. Textures can also be subtle or pronounced and can be used sparingly or liberally. They work with pretty much everything. Even if they do not seem important, the textures can totally change a website and offer a totally different visual impact.
Typography: Perhaps the single most important part of graphic and web design is typography. Like color, texture, and shapes, the fonts you use tell readers you’re a serious online news magazine, a playful food blog or a vintage tea tins shop. Words are important, but the style of the words is equally essential.
Typography is by far one of the most important aspects of good design. It provides context to visuals and eliminates misconceptions or miscommunications. Designers have a responsibility to insure the right typography is chosen to convey the appropriate message. This is no simple task, but an understanding of the components of typography will allow you to make great design choices.
The Space: It refers to the area that a shape or form occupies. Space as an element of design can be defined as positive or negative. Positive space is the filled space, the object(s) or element(s) in the design. Negative space is the empty space, or the open space between design elements or objects, such as a background..