Graphics and images, as well as their quality, have a significant impact on how viewers perceive your website. Learning the fundamentals of graphic design gives you the ability to create effective images, both in web design and in life in general.
This thorough guide by the University of California Berkeley Library directs you through the elements and principles of art and design along with visual examples. The video below from the Goodwill Community Foundation provides similar information.
The tutorials below elaborate on fundamentals, which hold for digital and other mediums:
- “Beginning Graphic Design tutorial”, Goodwill Community Foundation
- “Design elements and principles”, Canva
Digital design involves some additional technical considerations beyond the standard elements of art and design. Digital images come in many sizes and formats, and learning their different advantages is important in graphic design.
Here are some tutorials on digital graphic design:
- “A Guide to Common Aspect Ratios, Image Sizes, and Photography Sizes”, by Alex Chem for Shutterstock
- “Everything You Need to Know About File Types for Design”, by Aaron White for Shutterstock
- “Best Image Formats for the Web — High-Quality, Small File Size”, for Shutterstock
Computer-generated imagery programs, or CGI, create digital images. While many operating systems have graphics programs of varying usefulness built in, Adobe Photoshop is the most culturally-relevant and popular example of such a program. That said, there are alternatives, like those provided in this list by @XdanielArt.
Not all graphics software is desktop-based; some programs do not even require a laptop. Web-based design apps like Canva can be used from a user’s built-in web browser. Canva is a browser-, desktop-, and mobile-based creation platform with a variety of templates, stock footage, branding, and built-in social media integration. The platform is tuned towards social media content creation, providing templates for different platforms and types of content. If you are interested in learning how to use social media effectively at length, check our Social Media page.
Canva is free to use to a point, but its additional premium features are made free as well for qualifying nonprofit organizations through this application. Canva also provides lots of free learning resources about their platform and about design, marketing, and branding in general.