The Creative Process

This week I took on designs that were much more, shall I say, involved, but that’s a good thing! Starting out the week, I worked on an “infographic” which is not something that I had designed before, but it allowed me to work on an aspect of graphic design that, I think, gets a bit overlooked in the creatives: layout. “Isn’t your job just to make things look good?” Yes… and no. As a designer, the aesthetic my work is of great importance¬†but part of what I need to look at also is functionality: the “is-it-readable” and “is-it-understandable” factors.

So, I figured that I would post a little something about just how much thought and organization I put into a design! With simpler, less specific designs I sometimes can get away with just diving right into Inkscape, but with things like the infographic logic model and t-shirt designs that I worked on this week, there were a number of requirements, color requirements/ restrictions, and layout constraints, so much more planning had to be done. Typically I hit on four(ish) main steps in my own “creative process”:

  1. research/ notes
  2. sketching
  3. vector sketching/ layout
  4. designing

I’m including an example of how I applied these steps in the logic model design (something similar in reference to the t-shirt design might be posted too, depending on time!).

  1. research/ notes
    I research the design I’m about to do (looking at ticket information, browsing similar designs for inspiration, researching topic, etc.) and compile the information into some form of notes or a chart… I’m that kid that color codes her binders for school to match the textbook. I really like organization, if that isn’t already clear!
    On the left is the rough draft posted in the design ticket, and on the right I transferred that information into a word doc so that I would be able to just copy/paste the information into the logic model at the end.
    notes step
  2. sketching
    This is the sketch I made for myself; it’s very rough, but it at least gets my mind thinking about logical locations for things (but throughout the design process this is bound to change many times!). Apologies about the portrait orientation.
    sketch step
  3. vector sketching/ layout
    In this project, I used another logic model design help me think through possible layouts. I usually organize generic squares/ rectangles on the artboard to get a better feel for where things fit best.
    On the left is the logic model that I was using as inspiration, and on the right is my “blocked out” artboard.
    layout step
  4. designing
    This step is pretty self-explanatory. At this point, the layout should be relatively final and should be almost 100% functional. So far, I only have two iteration of my design, but typically I will have between 3-5 iterations of a similar design by the time I apply feedback from others and myself.
    Here’s what we’ve got so far with this! It’s pretty close to being complete.
    logic model_ ticket #432_revision 1
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