Hello and welcome to this beginner’s
guide series to graphic design. From what graphic design is, skills to be a graphic designer, design theory, education you need, equipment you need to the graphic design portfolio and interview advice. This series is for anyone at any level. So if you’re interested in graphic design and
considering becoming graphic designer join me as I discuss a series of graphic design topics. So the graphic part of graphic design is made up of visual elements, the building blocks of design. through the harness of our artistic expression we choose these visual elements and arrange them on a surface in
a layout to convey an idea. The basic visual elements that combine
to graphic design include the following: Line, colour, shape, texture, space, form and typography. Whatever work you produce be for a magazine a poster a website or an advertisement these visual elements will play a part in your design. In this video I’m going to discuss the seventh key visual element and discuss typography as a visual element in graphic design. In this video I’ll be referring to some visual examples If you wish to take a closer look at these, you can find them in the downloadable PDF document that accompanies the series link is in the description. So typography is one of the most commonly used elements in graphic design. Type is the most direct way to communicate visually typically set either as headers or in paragraphs. A single letter in a typeface is a combination of geometric and organic shapes which combined together to create a larger shape in this case the letter R.
This unique letter shape is an entity and is part of a complete typeface made of other letter
shapes. The characteristics of every typeface can be broken down into what is
known in design as the anatomy of type. It’s the type of shapes given to the anatomy
of type in each letter that gives the typeface its distinct look and feel. Type is not simply about communicating words,
words are important but what can be equally as important is
the style of those words the typeface and the way they are arranged on a page.
Typefaces can be part of a family of various weights which can be used to express various tones or create visual hierarchy in the design. Typefaces are like voices with accents and dialects which have their own distinct
pronunciations and characters so typefaces don’t just communicate
literally they communicate visually for this reason the choice of typeface
used in the design is crucial to set the intended look and feel, set a tone and
add character to a piece of work. Typefaces have evolved over time, the
first type faces were designed to be practical cut out of wooden blocks or cast in lead
to work in a print press for mass production Others have originated from various design movements but what they all have in common is that they have all been created to fulfil a particular purpose and express a particular look and feel.
Today there are many categories of typefaces such as serif, sans serif, slab serif, rounded, script, blackletter, decorative and abstract to name a few with some sharing characteristics of various categories. Design throughout history has celebrated the shape and form of type and has shown us that type can be both functional and decorative.
The way type has been arranged and the relationship given to it to other elements in compositions has redefined the use of type in design. So looking at the PDF here I have a few examples of functional and decorative typography. The first set of examples showcase
functional uses of type all of these examples are used to
inform and deliver a clear message. The first example is a basic use of type justified and placed simply on a page as one block this has a traditional feel with the use of its serif font. The next two examples take the
previous technique further add more dynamics with more complex
compositions, the examples show type in columns and some type of elements have
been increased and used in capitals to add contrast. In the second example we have
a mixture of type weights applied to the header and sub headers
to create contrast and hierarchy, negative space has been considered to create structure
and allow some type element to stand out we also see some line elements that have
been used to reinforce the visual structure and layout with the headers
and sub headers are used the next example is simple yet dynamic,
here we have a clean bold header with justified type below in a block at a unique angle. Overall this creates a nice contrast with
direction and movement on the page. The next example is simple and bold, here we have a decorative font used for what could be a title or header of a magazine or booklet. Under this we have a bold message capped into a space sealed with two line bars top and bottom the type has been carefully scaled to meet the same width of the top and bottom line bar. Overall this feels bold rigid and strong, assertive. In the last example we have a serif font with thick spines, thin cross bars with exaggerated serifs this font feels quite classy and boutique this has been used here in an interesting layout.
Here we have some larger line type to the top which defines the column widths of the type below the smaller type runs alined left to each
word in the larger type. Here the contrast is not only in size but also in alignment which creates an overall dynamic layout. So even though there are some creative
aspects to these compositions it is not enough to distract from the overall message they only serve to complement and add
sophistication to the message. So the second set of examples showcase
more creative uses of type. All of these examples are used to inform but the priority is placed more on the creative aspect of the look and feel. So the first examples show how print block letters have been carefully chosen and
arranged to look like a face. Here not only are we looking at the type but also the shape and form and texture of the print blocks. In the next example we have 3D degenerated type unlike the functional 2D examples we have added form, shadow, perspective and depth to add visual factors which add dimension. in the next example all emphasis is
focused on the craft of the type we are encouraged to see this as a piece of design art. This is more about the beauty of the geometric shapes the grid and the characteristics
of the letter forms themselves. Here the message is not what the type of saying but what the type of saying about itself. So the next examples test the limits of
order, alignment, legibility and contrast here a lot of words pop out to us in no
particular order. Due to the lack of order and focus the types begin to merge together into an
overall texture and shape on the page. The next two examples take this to the next level here we have almost no legibility of
message to the point we stop looking for legibility but get immersed in the hypnotic shapes. These type compositions have become image textures and now we feel them as opposed to reading them. So from a practical use to a more creative use. In design type can be used to communicate literally and to tantalise the visual senses to engage emotionally. So that is the seventh key visual
element in graphic design. Well I hope you enjoyed this video if
you did hit the like button on my facebook page. If you would like to see more videos like this in future hit the subscribe button and you can also find me on twitter at TastyTuts. In a previous video I mentioned that graphic design
is made of two things: visual elements and design principles. over the past seven episodes we have
been looking at the visual elements now it’s time to take a look at design principles. So over the next eight episode I’m going to be talking more about design theory and talk in detail about design principles that make a piece of graphic design work. So the key principles of design are contrast, hierarchy, alignment, balance, proximity, repetition, simplicity and function. In the next video I’m going to start by talking about contrast as a design principle in graphic design. So see in the next video!