You want to become designaffin(er), but don't know where to start? With the following 5 tips you will learn! To do this, it is important and necessary to deal with the subject matter intensively. So tooif you want to learn why a design works (or not). In turn, you can incorporate this knowledge into your work and benefit from this ongoing increase in knowledge in the long term.
To identify what makes a (good) design and what it can be judged by, there are a few possibilities.
We give you 5 tips on how to build or expand your understanding of design.
1. acquire the principles of design
Design principles? Yes, they exist! They were defined at the end of the 19th century. Since the middle of the 20th century, people have begun to implement them. Their Roots lie in behavioral psychologybecause it influences how designs are perceived and accepted by users. For example, the right design can control how likely something is to be purchased or what the consumer perceives as most important!
Good designs can also be created without the design principlesbut if you take a closer look, you will see that these principles were unconsciously followed nevertheless.
Memorizing the design principles will certainly involve effort, but In the long run, it helps you gain a better understanding of design. Once you are familiar with the principles, the next step is to look at how they are used in the many different types of design.
2. analyze the designs of other people
To get a feel for design, it makes sense to deliberately pick out designs to analyze in detail. Disassemble them into their individual parts and use categories to inspect what you like about the design and why. You can do the same with designs you don't like at all.
Question why the design gives you that feeling! Is it the colors, the layout, the fonts, etc.?
The next time you hold a book in your hands, for example, consciously take a few minutes and ask yourself the following questions:
/ How do I like this design overall?
/ How do I find the color palette used?
/ How do I like the typography? How is the readability / size of the font?
/ Do I like the overall arrangement and depending on why is that?
Also deliberately deal with designs that you do not like at all and make a note of what bothers you. This will help you filter out whether you don't like the design due to certain contradictions or it simply doesn't meet your taste. This way, you'll find out where your personal preferences go, which in turn will let you Find your own style can.
Another tip: Explicitly research the work of the best designers in a particular field to see what makes these creatives stand out from the majority and what impact these specialties have!
3. details make the difference – pay attention to them!
There are many good designs and yet only a few that really stand out – because they really surprise, overwhelm, impress or fascinate.
But what is the secret behind these special works? The details! And this does not necessarily mean playful elements or the like, but subtleties that are usually perceived only at 3rd or 4th glance. But especially this close look is worthwhile, because detailed work has that certain something. Using a certain size font affects the design just as much as rounded edges on a graphic – all these little things affect the overall look of a design!
In the end, of course, it is the overall composition of a work that evokes the reaction – but how does it come about in the first place? This is what we need to find out, because it is precisely this that makes the design lively and unique.
4. put on the design glasses when you look at your environment
Our entire everyday life is characterized by design – intentionally and unintentionally. On the one hand, everything we use every day has been designed. Whether outer packaging of food, cars, pens or even the couch in the living room at home –everything was designed by people.
In the same way, however, there are also an incredible number of elements that simply exist. Nature is a spectacle in itself and offers such diverse design inspiration! In order to promote one's own creativity, it helps to look at things that have not been „specially“ designed. Natural elements such as leaves, snowflakes or even tree bark provide a whole new input in terms of shapes, structures, colors, etc,
Want to find out why certain designs work the way they do? Try to recreate them. Observation alone won't always help you, so hands-on exploration is an effective lever. It can make it clearer to you how what is structured and, consequently, how it works.
Tip: Practicing observation promotes the sharpening of your own senses. Build into your everyday life the concrete practice of noticing things and asking yourself: What do I think of this? What do I like about it and what don't I like?
5. get inspiration from other niches
As is so often the case, breaking out of one's everyday life is usually the greatest source of inspiration.
Simply immerse yourself in other worlds and see how design works there!
For example, when creating a video, it is obvious to look at videos of other people/companies who have already produced something similar. But it's not really a different world, even though the industries might be different. Of course, that's not wrong, but does that really bring a breath of fresh air to your ideas?
In this case, why not get inspired by things like paintings, furniture, buildings or magazines!
In the first moment this seems to be quite absurd and you might think: „What does this have to do with my business?“. With this you are absolutely right – in the best case nothing at all! These things have entirely different design elements, hues, textures, etc. that can inspire you to project these qualities onto your work!
Engaging with designs outside of your niche is definitely a challenge! But it is worth it, because even if they take place on completely different levels, you learn so to appreciate design based on the principles – completely without the usual preconceptions of how a good design should look „“. Your eye will open to this perception over time, which can be a constant source of inspiration in your everyday life!
With these 5 tips you can train your eyes to recognize (good) design and implement – try them!