Design Tips & Tricks: Intro to Graphics

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    Animation Pagoda Staff
    Animation Pagoda Staff
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    Printing High Quality Images and Resolution

    Unlike images intended for the web, you want print images to be fairly large with very high resolution. 1020 px may look ok on a computer, but it isn’t going to work well for large prints. 300 DPI or around 300 pixels per inch is recommended, so an 11×17 inch poster should be around 3300px across. In general, it is best to always save projects and files at higher resolution and cut it down when needed for web projects. Be sure to use CMYK colors for printing, and be aware that print ink is generally slightly darker than the images on a computer screen

    Photography.Tutsplus: Understanding Printing Paper Types

    Summit Printing Pro: Guide to Paper Types

    PrintHandbook: Paper Sizes Chart

    Color Models

    Forget all the rules you learned in kindergarten about the primary colors being red, blue, and yellow. CMYK colors are Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black. They are used for inks in color printing. CMYK is subtractive, meaning that the colors merge into black when added together, like mixing paints.

    RGB uses Red, Green, and Blue. RGB is additive, meaning when the colors overlap they produce white light. RGB is based off of the physics of the light spectrum, and is used for stage lighting and images on computer screens and digital devices. RGB ranges from 0 to 255, with 0 representing black and 255 representing white.

    The HSB color model adjusts variances in Hue, Saturation, and Brightness. It is also sometimes referred to as HSV, or Hue Saturation Value.

    The HSL model represents Hue Saturation Lightness, with Lightness being the amount of white


    Lime, Blueberry, and Razzmatazz might make good names for crayons, but the names do not describe colors in a manner that is quantifiable. To address this, a numbering system was created for 16,777,216 colors in the spectrum. This allows accurate replication of colors from one project to the next. Because Hexadecimal is number based, it also conveniently translates well into binary.

    On computers, Hexadecimal is set up so that each color takes up 8 bits, for a total of 24 bits. Every two space represents one color, so #F0AE66 would be three RGB colors F0 AE 66. The values range from 0 to 255, but since there are only two spaces per color, 255 has to be translated into base 16. Counting in Base 16 looks like this: 00 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 0A 0B 0C 0D 0E 0F. #000000 represents Black, #FFFFFF is White, #FF0000 is Red, #00FF00 is Green, #0000FF is Blue, #FF00FF is Magenta, #FFFF00 is Yellow, 00FFFF is Cyan.


    The Pantone Matching System works the same way as Hexadecimal, except the color codes only apply to print, not digital. Hexadecimal and Pantone colors do not match up perfectly. Pantone swatches are intended to be used to keep colors used in branding or commercial products the exact same shades and tints. Graphic designers can also show Pantone swatches to clients and not have to worry about them later complaining that the color is different than what they asked for.

    Color Theory

    Choice of color scheme is very important in all realms of animation, design, and video. A lot of people don’t realize how much color can alter the appearance of a design or composition. Sketches or thumbnails using just pencil or pen and paper might look ok in black and white or grayscale. But then when it comes time to add color, the colors you pictured in your head don’t really work out so well in application. By then, it might be too late in the production process to try and go back and fix things. It is generally recommended to start introducing color studies by at least the final steps of pre-production. Don’t wait until the last step.

    Many designers keep a Pantone swatch booklet within easy reach in their studios. There are also many free online color scheme tools. Look for the hexadecimal number to duplicate exact colors. Creating color swatches and color schemes is useful for any design project

    Blender Guru: Understanding Color

    Color Relationships


    Color Theory Continued

    Josef Albers is credited for bringing serious scholarly attention to color theory in his book Interaction of Color. The book is filled with pictures of plain geometric squares of varying colors, illustrating how different colors looked side by side. Certain combinations of colors would cause two squares of the same color to create an optical illusion of appearing different shades. This effect has been termed the Law of Simultaneous Contrast. It’s a principle to keep in mind when creating strong color graphics that pop.


    Elements of Art and Principles of Design

    Familiarize yourself with these guidelines, or keep a printed out copy next to your computer or workspace. They form the core underlying theory behind all types of design.

    The Virtual Instructor: Art Fundamentals

    Design Aesthetic

    A lot of websites will offer “10 easy ways to become a better graphic designer.” This is slightly oversimplifying the process. Design is extremely complicated and hard to define. It takes methodical planning, but the best designers also rely on intuitive choices. There are no rules to follow that will automatically make a design succeed, and any logo, poster, or font that looks effortless probably went through a whole lot of discarded ideas and revisions to create.

    Another side effect of following prescribed design guidelines is that designs tend to all come out looking the same. Students are taught to imitate the styles of successful professionals or to produce the kind of generic work that sells, instead of developing their own unique look that will stand out. Even though the designer should always seek to put the client’s interests first, doing nothing else besides creating soulless, self-effacing corporate logos over and over will not make for the most satisfying career. The best designers are the ones who are smart about choosing clients that allow creative freedom. These designers create their own unique stylistic brand that businesses see and want to adopt.

    Break the rules and do something different. Helvetica may always be a reliable font, but it is a safe choice that’s been done before. You’re never going to distinguish yourself as an individual doing what everybody else is doing.

    Design School: 10 Rules of Composition All Designers Live By

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    I liked this idea, really perfect source for logo redesigning. Does this covers rebranding of logo? I am eyeing this site for my rebranding needs and I want complete redesigning of logo.

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