Defining Good Design

Design serves a purpose in spreading knowledge. Graphic design is made to promote an idea or a product, either for love or for profit. However, it all boils down to one thing — conveying a message. Design should emphasize the message it wants to convey, and good design clearly communicates its message. Is it easy to identify good design? Defining good design might be a little subjective; as the cliché goes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But, if we assess the design piece through its elements, we can somehow differentiate good design from a bad one.

  • Target Audience
    Good design is when its message is successfully delivered to the audience it is attempting to capture. Is the message clear? Does the design appeal to the target audience? This is effectively achieved when graphic designers imagine themselves as part of the target audience. That way, they would know what the audience wants and what would be appealing to them. Good design should motivate, inspire, and grab attention.
  • Imagery
    When the graphic design has photography involved, the picture should, of course, be clear and without pixelation or unintentional blurring. The picture used should be original and specific. Most importantly, the colors in the photo should go with the rest of the design, and the photo itself should be relevant to the message. Stock photos are also sometimes used. In that case, the stock photo used in the design should not look out of place.
  • Colors
    Colors represent certain ideas, suggest feeling, and inspire emotion. Colors also have a powerful psychological effect on us. Color is a very important element of design. The color in the design should set the intended mood. It should also be used consistently throughout the design. If a certain shade of color is used in the logo, it should be continued all over the design. If multiple colors are used, they should match well and should be used harmoniously.
  • Fonts
    Many graphic designs use typography to deliver messages. What can convey messages more effectively than words, right? Typography is how the text in the design is arranged and displayed. The typeface and fonts used in the design are critical on how the message is presented and interpreted. Fonts should be able to grab the reader’s attention and to keep them reading until the end of the copy. They should be able to add life to the graphic design.
  • Composition
    The composition of the design is an important element as it helps lead our eyes to the most important and most interesting part of the design. A good composition allows the viewer to easily grasp the key points by just scanning it.

Finally, you would know that a certain graphic design is good if all the mentioned elements are used in harmony. Good design doesn’t need to tell you bluntly its purpose – increasing brand awareness, introducing a new product, or optimizing sales. A design is good design when you already understood the message on a subconscious level, comprehending it clearly even before taking the time to digest the information. Good design will attract your attention and will encourage you to continue.