Coming up with an idea for a design can be a difficult process and I think most people believe that a graphic designer is like a “Genie” and is able to just come up with ideas at will. As much as most designers would love to take credit for being able to just have design ideas pop into their head, they tend to also need to do research just like any other “Mad Scientist”. We’re not really mad, but it’s fun to say!
Let’s look at some different ways that designer come up with ideas for their graphics.
Let’s be honest, the inventors of Google are head and shoulders about any other search engine. They are constantly innovating and finding ways for their search engine to be on the top end of any search and being a resource for searching images is one great way to use Google. Once you get to Google, enter the specific design type that you’re looking for so you can see what is already out there.
Now these searches are not intended to copy other people. It’s intended to see what already works as well as what is already out there so you “DON’T COPY” as that’s a big “No No” in the world of graphic design. Don’t become a black sheep!
Say you’ve got a new company and you want to see what other companies, like yours, is doing for their current logo, a comparative analysis is the perfect direction to go. In a Comparative Analysis, you look at all companies that you feel are peers of yours to be able to see how they designed their logo so that you can find similarities within a business sector so you can follow some of the directions as well as determine how you can set yourself from the pack as well. Depending on what your company is, you can look at a national comparative analysis or a local one. Obviously the smaller the company the more local you want to look.
Sometimes you’ve got an idea for a business and your focus isn’t necessarily trying to see what the crowd is doing, but maybe it’s to try and set a specific tone or style for your design to represent. In that case, you’ll want to do research on a specific theme or style. For example, if you want a modern theme, you’ll want to do a search of modern logos so that you can get a feel for what makes a modern logo or what coloring works well within a specific style.
Thinking Outside of the Box
Sometimes, graphic designers want something original or something that no one else in the world would think up. In that case, you’ll want to focus on something outside of the box to get that original look. The only thing you’ll constantly want to focus on in this case is to make sure that your final design represents your overall business message. For example if you are a cleaning company, you want to make sure that someone gets that message and doesn’t look at the final design and question what you do. The problem that too many people forget is that a logo design isn’t always for themselves. It’s the public that they serve. So just because you like something and really want a certain design, doesn’t necessarily mean the design is best for your business.
It may seem like ideas come from trees (just like money right?), but in truth, you’ve often got to find inspiration in something. Hopefully some of these ideas will help you find new design ideas for your next project!
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