5 Basic Elements of Good Visual Design for Website and Mobile Apps

At least 65% of people are visual learners, meaning they grasp more through seeing stuff than reading it. This statistic and others like the fact that the human brain can process images in as little as 13 milliseconds – enough to show the massive impact of graphics design, isn’t it?

Whether it is a website or mobile app, visual design always makes more impact, making online graphic design services even more crucial. Correctly done visuals by an experienced graphics artist are more likely to lead to conversions than even the best-written content. 

It is vital to understand what visuals graphics are all about and the elements that define the best ones to ensure proper implementation. A good starting point is making sure you know precisely what visual design is. 

What is Visual Design?

Visual design is all about designing visually appealing screens or user interfaces. It focuses on the aesthetic appeal of a website or mobile app by strategically using colors, images, shapes, fonts, and various other elements. 

The aim of visual design is always to draw users’ attention and ensure they stick around your website or mobile app longer. Also, well-implemented visual design should not take anything away from the written content on the website or other functions of the mobile app. Instead, graphics design enhances the content to build user trust and improve the overall experience.

Any visual designer that you hire to do graphics for your site needs to understand these critical points. This ensures what they design does not look out of place on the website or mobile app.

Elements of Good Visual Design

In the world of visual design, there are no hard or fast rules to adhere to. Nothing is written in stone here, which means there is more than enough room for creativity. 

Although you might not have to conform to specific standards and strict requirements, there are some fundamental elements of visual design you need to keep in mind. Understanding these elements ensures you get the most aesthetically appealing designs.

  1. Lines
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Image: Pixabay

Like a physical drawing that starts with simple pencil strokes, lines are also the primary form of visual design. Graphic designers define lines as simple connections between strokes, and they are the building blocks for even the most complex graphic design.

Sometimes creative freelance graphic designers will use lines as standalone visuals to represent basic images of things like animals or patterns. Although lines can seem simple and basic, they can still have a personality of their own. 

There are also countless options for representing lines in your graphics design as you can have them smooth, textured, continuous, thick, or even curved. With enough creativity, you can use lines to make some awe-inspiring graphics design.

  1. Color
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Image: Pixabay

Colors are a fundamental element in graphics design, and they are perhaps the most crucial thing one needs to create aesthetically appealing designs. However, there is a science behind using color in graphics design, whether you are making a creative logo design or a theme for an app.

Understanding color theory is vital for all visual designers. It ensures they end up with designs that pass across the intended message and appeal to the eye. Remember, the color you choose creates a specific tone and mood for your graphics design, and so it has to be just right.

Besides setting the tone, color plays several other vital roles in graphics design. Key among these roles include bringing out certain emotions. Additionally, color can help set contrast, harmony, and variety in a website or mobile app.

  1. Shapes
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Image: Pexels

Like lines, shapes are a fundamental element, and digital designers will use them for almost all their projects. Shapes are typically two-dimensional and often placed in a self-contained area, and their primary role in visual design is to give the design some structure and stability.

Although geometric shapes like circles, rectangles, and squares are the most commonly used ones, there are almost countless other options. These options include mechanical shapes that feature precise edges or corners and organic shapes designed to mirror the natural world by providing textures and edges with a more natural feel and look.

There are also abstract shape types that can be very useful when you want to give some symbolism to your design or even add some variety to your website’s visual design.

  1. Texture

Although lines, shapes, and colors can give your visual design texture to some extent, you still need to work on the overall texture. Proper texture ensures the design has more depth and looks intriguing enough.

It is not always easy to bring out texture in an image. Still, a senior graphic designer with adequate experience should not have any issue giving graphics almost any kind of texture. They use different visual design tools and careful choice of other things like shapes and colors to bring out the desired textures.

But despite texture being a fundamental element in graphics design, it is crucial for any designer or graphics design agency you employ to use it in moderation. Without moderation, texture can be overwhelming and can easily take over the design.

  1. Space

Space surrounds and divides the different elements in visual design. Contrary to what some might assume, it has an integral role. How you use space and other things like its size and color can make or break the graphic design.

Although white space comes to mind when many people think about space in visual design, the space on your pieces does not have to be white or even empty. Therefore, graphic designers need to pay enough attention to space to ensure they do not end up with a chaotic design.

That said, the most important thing where space is concerned is to make sure there is ample of it so your design can breathe and does not appear overwhelming. Also, ensure the color goes with the theme of your visuals and not just restrict yourself to using white space only.

Other Important Characteristics of Good Visual Design

  • Simplicity

Simplicity is the key to graphic design that appeals to different kinds of audiences. Even the most famous graphic designers always keep their work clear and simple as this is what the audience finds appealing,

Avoiding things that might overwhelm and overcomplicate the visuals, like extraneous elements and 3D charts, is the way to go. Simple designs are appealing and easier to understand, which is vital when making visual designs for marketing campaigns.

  • Quality Content

Although visual design largely relies on presenting the message using images, the content still matters a lot. Any content that is part of the graphic design needs to be high-quality and presented in a way that is easy for the readers to follow and understand. 

  • Tone and Subject

The tone and subject of the visuals need to match the message you are trying to put out there. For example, if they are for an e-commerce app, they should demonstrate this subject with everything from the color to the art and other elements.

  • Legibility

Legibility is vital because if your audience cannot read your marketing poster or any other visuals, they will not have the intended effect. However, illegibility is a rookie mistake that you never have to worry about using a professional graphics design company.

  • Proportionality

A common mistake that some people make in visual design is failing to keep things proportional, which often leads to cluttering and the graphics look unprofessional. Everything needs to be appropriately sized and proportionate to the overall size of the visual you are creating. But, like with legibility, this is rarely an issue when getting the job done by a professional graphic design agency.

Wrapping Up

Visual design is a core element that determines the success of any website or mobile app. Regardless of your niche, there will always be a need for some form of graphic or visual design. Although you can do some basic ones on your own using the many free visual design tools out there, it is always better to leave the job to a professional.

With a graphic design agency, you get a pool of highly experienced graphic designers that will deliver professional-quality visuals and do it within a shorter time. Additionally, agencies offer a wide variety of products and can take care of all your visual design needs, which is quite convenient.

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