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Better Print Design: 10 Easy Tips

Category: Print

print designBleeds are a safety zone
There will always be paper and design inconsistencies. When you leave room on your document for the printer to move around on, you put your designs in a safety zone. To be safe, ensure that colors and designs that touch the edges, leak out about 3 mm on through the sides.

Have a blast with overprint

Sometimes, your budget will limit you to the amount of colors you can use. If you are limited to only 2 PMS colors, experiment with overprint options to explore various depths inside a limited color pallet.

Don’t get stuck in the paper
Many times, you will feel limited to the sized panels of your print piece. If you want to make your print interactive without having to print extra components onto the printed piece, think outside the box. People’s minds will instantaneously fill in gaps to a bigger picture, so using the boarder of your paper can provide for you a unique and creative interaction.

Sizes like to play
Remember, big is great but it isn’t necessarily better. Small square booklets can be used to create interesting reading experiences and are much easier to carry around.

Images Versus Words War!

I will ignore the temptation to clarify the importance of keeping each separate and instead give you a tip for function. If you are working on textual content, there is a time when you can merge text and graphics. By using typography as an element of design, you can increase the concentration on the content and allow for clear readability.

Minimalism is ATTRACTIVE.

Visual noise is never appealing. The brain does not like to process too many things at one time. If your idea requires putting too much on a single page, don’t try and make it fit-come up with another idea. If you have a client asking you to include too much information, you need to have a consultation and explain the logic behind the placement of the graphic elements.

Proportion to avoid Distortion

Sticking to a grid is key in design work. Composition guidelines are a simple way to execute proportion and relationship. You don’t necessarily need to work with a 3-column set up, a 7 column set up can be playful, 2 column overlaps can be tried or a 3/3/1 set up with a sidebar can work well.

The Ruler of Your Design: Typography
Typographical set up cannot be mended with lines and other elements. Whatever font you use will set the stage for the feel of your message. You must consider what type of voice you want the print piece to have because it is what enables you to communicate your message effectively to your target audience. To be safe you can go with Helvetica, Swiss or Akzidenz Grotesk, but it takes a lot of trial and error to find a font that works for you. Play around with a bunch of them to feel out what works.

Strengthen
If you want a title, quote or logo to particularly stand out go ahead and invert it. White against a dark color will give the design and the typography much more strength and impact. If your type size is 8pt or lower, you may have an issue with containing the ink just after printing, but this is also dependant on stock, printing speed and other factors.

In the Haze
If you are not demanding high quality source photographic content, you can have one low resolution photo ruin your work. On the other hand, a great high resolution quality shot can really transform the impact of the whole design.

For any additional questions or design requests, contact Master Print’s creative graphic design services.

Posted on Jul 29, 2010.

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