Five Graphic Design Faux Pas You Need to Avoid

March 26th, 2018

Graphic design gives you the opportunity to express your brand in a concise and put together way. It is proven that people are more visual creatures, so be sure that your composition is pleasing and perfectly on brand. Even if you are just beginning your artistic journey, there are a few easy mistakes that you can make that need to be avoided. Your friends here at Saxton Horne are here to be your style icons (something that’s easy for our creative team) and show you five mistakes you need to avoid as you are creating your brand’s visual materials.

Pay Attention to Letter Spacing

Kerning is the technical term for the amount of spacing between letters or characters in a piece of text. You might not think it would make much of a difference until you see a sign where a C and an I combine to create a U, or a C and an L combine to make a D. With bad kerning, Saxton Horne can become Saxton Home. Work slowly and properly to ensure legibility.

Know Your Medium

As we all know, people are spending more and more time on mobile than any other platform. Seventy-one percent of internet consumption, including consumption of your ads, will take place on mobile. Optimize your creations for the platform in which they will live.

In addition, be sure that all of the images you create for your various social networks are sized correctly. The perfect size for Facebook isn’t necessarily the perfect size for Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, or other platforms. Research how to optimize your designs differently for print, digital, social, and more.

Going Crazy With Typefaces

It’s fun to combine a few fonts for a project, but you have to keep it cohesive. Using more than two or three fonts max, will lead to a look of disorganization and unprofessionalism. Viewer’s eyes won’t know where to focus and the entire aesthetic will be thrown off. Make sure the fonts have a sense of commonality and cohesion and that they convey the feeling of the project. In other words, don’t pick a cool font for the sake of picking a cool font.

Avoid Low Quality or Distorted Photos

The age of information has given us quite a few excellent stock photos… and quite a few weird stock photos too. If you ever need some afternoon entertainment, challenge your coworkers to see who can find the worst stock photos, but never use bad stock photos, even if it’s easier. Go the extra mile for your work and hire photographers, take your own stylized photos, or find new ways to create your final product. Be sure that you are also never stretching or pulling photos, distorting your final creation.

Failing to Honor Client Needs

Everyone should have their own creative aesthetic, and we love seeing individuality in all compositions. But if you are designing for a client, don’t get so caught up in your own personal aesthetic that you forget the needs and wishes of your client. Communicate with your clients effectively to make sure you fully understand their needs and they fully understand what spectacular talent you can bring to the table.

We hope you’ve found these tips helpful and that you now feel fully capable of taking the world of graphic design by storm. Like all skills, proper composition takes a lot of practice so don’t be afraid to explore new ways to create. Play with standard conventions like we do in our agency and find your niche. Our creative department is always happy to speak with you and your team to give you confidence and skill as you create. Come check us out at Saxton Horne and let’s grow together.

Also published on Medium.