The Power of Visual Storytelling
The old saying, “a picture is worth a thousand words,” stays true. There’s a reason visual storytelling has been used since the caveman era. The human brain can process pictures 60,000 times faster than text, and ninety per cent of the information processed by our minds is visual. Therefore, visual storytelling has become vital to a brand’s success.
The Basics of Good Graphic Design
First, let’s briefly look at three fundamentals of graphic design.
1. Consistency is Key
Consistency in design elements is the cornerstone of compelling brand storytelling. A consistent visual brand fosters familiarity with your audience, whether they encounter your advertising, visit your website, or drop by your business in person. This includes using consistent colours, fonts, and visual elements. Focus Communications passionately believes in this design philosophy and has even integrated our brand colours and visual elements into our office space.
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2. Simplicity is key
Keeping your design clean and straightforward makes it more accessible to your audiences and better communicates your messages. Amazon Pharmacy used this philosophy during the COVID-19 pandemic. This service was relatively new, and Amazon needed to explain what it was to customers very simply. Using photos of prescription bottles and copy that reads “your nearest pharmacy is just a click away,” Amazon successfully communicated its new service in very straightforward terms. Simplicity is key when crafting graphics for your business.
3. Tell Your Story
Every brand has a unique story, and design can help you tell it. Consider creating visual narratives that display your brand’s journey, values, and the problems you solve for your customers. Storytelling humanizes your brand and makes it relatable.
The Limitations of Canva
While Canva offers many convenient quick-and-dirty tools for an easy social media post or report cover, it also has many restrictions. While it’s nice to have access to so many tweakable templates to make quick content, these somewhat generic templates can also water down your brand. Remember clip art?
The Limitations of Adobe Photoshop Generative AI
Artificial Intelligence tools are exploding into our workspaces. Adobe’s new Generative AI feature harnesses the power of the technology to generate anything you can ask of it instantly. However, this tool has many limitations and can only be used sparingly in its current form.
Let’s look at a quick example.
I used the generative fill function and asked it to add a lollipop into the hand in this picture. Below are the three examples it came up with.
As you can see, only one of the images generated added a lollipop into the photo. However, the lollipop looks very odd and isn’t on a stick. All three images also flip the hand, so it faces the wrong way, making it look awkward. AI-generated designs may lack the creative spark and nuanced understanding of your brand that a human designer can provide. As seen in the pictures, it may not be able to follow your instructions as you intended.
So, how can a human professional graphic designer help your brand?
The Role of a Professional Graphic Designer
Consulting with a graphic designer is essential for achieving a cohesive and effective visual strategy. Designers bring expertise and creativity to your visual branding. They deeply understand design principles and can make beautiful visuals that align with your organization’s messaging. They can also ensure design elements are consistent across all platforms. A good graphic designer can also work with you to create visuals that resonate with your unique story and values. If you don’t like how something looks, you can talk with them and ask them to make changes. Unlike generative AI, you can clearly communicate with a professional and collaborate to make the end result.
In conclusion, while the accessibility of design tools like Canva and the emergence of AI-powered software appears to make design more accessible, they cannot deliver the creativity, expertise, or nuance that a professional can.