When designing a print ad for your clients, keep in mind these pointers:
- Make sure you set your DPI to 300.
- Listen to what your client tells you.
- Come up with UNIQUE CREATIVE proposition; stand out from the crowd.
- Deliver on time and within budget.
And don’t forget these tips:
1) Remember to bleed:
The bleed is the part on the side of your document that gives your printer that small amount of space to move around paper and design inconsistencies. No matter what guidelines they have on their site, the printer will use anything you throw at them. A 3mm bleed on all sides is a safe standard for your work.
2) Think outside the paper:
The human mind fills in gaps and will see the bigger picture if you aim for it. Using the border of your paper can be great fun and another tool to work with.
3) Paper size standards are great, but don’t let them hold you back:
Square booklets, for instance, make for a more interesting reading experience, while smaller sizes (A5 for example) are much easier to take with you. Fly away from that standard A4 and take some risks.
4) People read:
In conflict with some designers of the last 5 years I still think form follows function. This means in print design: If you’re working on something that contains textual content concentrate on the content.
5) With content, less is more:
If you have some kind of idea that there’s too much on your page, there is indeed to much on your page. Define what’s really necessary and remove any visual noise. It may sound cliche but it’s true: less is more. If the client makes you cram too much content on one page, tell them.
6) Stick to the grid:
Working with grids is the key to good design. Using its proportional relations, composition guidelines for the base of your design is a good idea.
7) Typography is king:
If the typographical setup is bad, no amount of lines or other elements will fix it. The fonts you use the most in your project set the voice for it’s overall feel: don’t pick the first font you like; think about what voice it should have and the best way to communicate this to your target audience. You can have a lot of fun with the basic well designed fonts: Helvetica, Swiss or Akzidenz Grotesk will save you from the worst typographic horror-scenario’s. It takes a while to get to know a font.