Blank business card

Graphics Tips for ID & Business Cards: 6 Tips to Improve Your Designs

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Design, Web

Blank business card

If you’re looking for a way to make a big splash with your business or ID cards but not sure where to start, here are a few tips to help you create sharp, professional, and unique designs that stand out from the crowd.

1. Keep It Simple and Concise

Different fonts can evoke different ideas and themes. So, don’t be afraid to try layouts that not only relay information but also express the individual style of your brand. Also, make sure the language of the wording is clear and concise as well as unique and memorable to your brand.

Your name or company name will be the anchor design of your brand, so build on that. Your reader should never have to guess whose card it is. Try using a free font editor for access to different fonts and designs.

2. Focus on Necessary Information

When first looking at a business card, the eye is often drawn to compelling graphic design. But a great business card or ID will support the overall image and message, further promoting the text information. If the graphic is too elaborate, it can be distracting and lose the reader’s attention.

Conversely, make sure to keep the text limited to only the most valuable and important information, Always remember the goal is to get the message across clearly and concisely.

3. Showcase a Sample

graphic design company display

You will always want to ensure your business cards are printed and designed to specs to maximize their benefit. Make the most of your mini promotion space even when you’re working on a tight budget. Print on both sides in full color and see the card as your personal canvas to showcase who you are.

When working on your projects, make sure you’ve got the best resources possible. With different types of computers, you’ll see the pros and cons of the different user interfaces. So take the time to find the best, most user-friendly and computer for your project.

4. Add a Call to Action to Your Card

It’s vital for any marketing tool that you know your purpose clearly. In addition to a supporting conceptual layout, a call to action is a great way to drive traffic to your product. There is no better time to encourage connecting with your readers, audience, and potential clientele than while they are impressed and inspired by your business card design. This clear call to action helps let them know what to do next.

Keeping a consistent tone in this call to action which also matches your overall design and message are great ways to further establish your brand.

5. Show How Excited You Are About Your Business

Whatever your specialty, it’s vital you consistently show passion for your business and what you do. This helps the reader and audience learn more about your style and focus for the brand you are working to create.

Creative business card design and display

Once you’ve got your design, try experimenting with professional typography as well. You want to make sure that you have complete readability with the text of your cards. Make sure the colors are clear, large enough to read, and have sharp contrast so that your customers, clients, and other personnel don’t have to strain to read it.

6. Get Professionally Printed Cards

The quality of your cards makes all the difference in the world. Instead of trying to DIY this kind of project, go with a professional ID card printer to do the job right.

Just remember, there are many tools out there and you should utilize them! Explore working with color, textures, patterns, different types of printing materials, and more. Realizing that you are only limited by your vision and imagination, you can create something utilitarian, new, and exciting for your company. You might also consider using a compelling photograph to get your idea or point across. Always get permission from the photographer or head to a website that has free stock images. Using colors from your brand logo as a tie-in or going with a font that evokes emotion are also great ways to play on the reader’s brief but impacting experience of reading your business or ID card.

Have fun, be bold, and create your vision today!

Smartphone Photography Tips & Tricks for Beginners

Smartphone Photography 101: Tips & Tricks for Beginners & The Best Apps to Use

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Photoshop, Software

Smartphone Photography Tips & Tricks for Beginners

Not too long ago, if you wanted professional quality photographs you would need to purchase an expensive camera and accessories. To learn how to utilize your new, bulky camera weighing down your neck on its neck strap, you would need to take a class or read a photography book.

Lucky for us, today many smartphones are now equipped with powerful cameras that can take just as quality photos and videos as the professionals can produce. With the slim, lightweight design of smartphones, you can take your photography hobby with you anywhere without the heavy weight and bulk of older cameras. So when a stunning scene appears before you without warning, you can whip out your smartphone and capture that once in a lifetime shot almost instantly.

Not only have smartphone cameras drastically improved in the past decade, but photo editing apps with enhancement capabilities have emerged, allowing you to take your editing process on the road. Start with these photography tips and the best apps available to edit your pics.

Lighting

Photo Courtesy of Unsplash

Lighting is one of the most important aspects of photography, you wouldn’t be able to take a photo without it. Strong lighting, like on a clear, sunny day at noon, produces harsh shadows and strong contrast. A cloudy day will soften your shadows or you may barely see any at all. For example, you will often see portrait photographers using lighting equipment to create soft diffuse light that won’t create strong shadows on their subjects’ faces.

Many photographers’ favorite time of day to shoot is sunrise and sunset. At these times, the sun’s rays are low against the horizon and pass through more of the atmosphere, giving you the dazzling pink, purple, and orange colors in the sky. Remember: tapping on your phone in dark or light areas will adjust the focus and brightness of your photo.

When taking photographs indoors, keep in mind that different light bulbs will produce lighting with varying color temperature scales. This may cause your photo to appear very yellow or blue. You can always use a photo editing app later to correct your coloring issues using a white balance feature, but don’t be afraid to play with color when you’re shooting because some amazing photos can come out of it.

Close-ups and Zooming

Smartphone cameras have amazing technology that allows you to get extremely close to objects and capture obscure details that would otherwise be overlooked. Professional photographers would traditionally require a macro lens to achieve photos with magnification. You will be able to get similar results, simply by getting close to your subject and tapping to center your area of focus.

Photo Courtesy of Unsplash

Beware of your smartphone’s zoom function. This option may seem quite tempting to get “closer” to an object, but generally, this function will only crop your photo. Zoom in too far and your image will become pixelated and low quality. In this instance, a traditional camera with a zoom lens is capable of taking higher quality photos from afar.

Landscapes and Framing

Composition is essential to any photo or painting. Let’s discuss the law of thirds. In professional photography, a canvas is divided into 9 equal parts. Using these invisible guidelines to place horizon lines and vertical subjects creates a more appealing visual. For example, when you place the horizon line in the center of your photo, the onlookers eye isn’t sure whether to view the top or bottom first. Moving the horizon line to either the top third or bottom third creates a focal point for the viewer’s eye to start at.

Photo Courtesy of Unsplash

You can also use objects in your scene to create framing in your photo. Placing a tree or edge of a building on one side of your photo can help create the intended focal point. Photographing a scene just outside of a window frame, doorway, or small opening can make a shot more interesting.

Depth

Photo Courtesy of Unsplash

Creating depth isn’t always easy, but it can bring an otherwise flat photo to life. There are multiple ways to bring depth into your shots. You can try changing your standard viewpoints, like getting low to the ground or shooting from a high viewpoint. Use objects in your foreground to give a sense of how far away and epic your background scapes are. Another option would be to utilize a blurring brush in a photo editing app to blur out your background and bring the subject to the forefront.

Related article: Free Stock Photo Sites For Designers

 

Photo Editing Apps

Photo Courtesy of Unsplash

What comes next? Photo editing, of course. There are many tools out there, from free online editors to free photo editing apps available designed specifically for your iOS and Android smartphone. Here are some of the best that we’d recommend downloading now:

PhotoDirector

PhotoDirector is a free photo editing and adjustment app. This app includes many of the standard photo editing options you want, like straightening, cropping, tone adjustment and a wide selection of filters to bump up your snapshot. It also includes some great features like “content aware removal”, which lets you easily get rid of a photobomber in the background or telephone wires overhead without changing the dynamic of your shot. You can even use a “skin smoother” tool to smooth out skin flaws in a portrait.

Snapseed

Snapseed is a free photo editing app designed by Google. It features an array of 29 detailed editing options including RAW editing, color and white balance, contrast, vignettes and filters, healing brush, mark ups and tuning. You can easily undo and redo your edits. The app also offers you optional insights and tips to better use the app and advance your photography skills.

Adobe Photoshop Express 

Adobe Photoshop has been an industry standard for decades. The free Adobe Photoshop Express app brings some of their editing options straight to your phone. While not as powerful as the software for your computer, users can still make fine-tuned image adjustments, add filters and frames, straighten and crop images, add text, create collages, and apply blur.

VSCO

VSCO is another free app for iOS and Android phones. Like Snapseed, they also offer many tips, tricks, and tutorials to improve your photography game. VSCO provides basic to advanced editing tools and will give you access over 170 presets in their library. Some of these must be purchased through the app. You can also join their community, post content and view work made by other creatives around the world.

 

Stay Charged

Whether you’re out in the field using your phone’s camera or editing image, you may find this will drain your battery quicker than everyday use. It’s never a bad idea to carry a portable battery charger to keep your phone alive all day long, so you don’t miss out on that special shot or lose any work you’ve done editing!