A child is born. He learns to listen, to read and then write. But before that he understands the loving look of his mother and smiles back. This is the power of vision. It has been proved that, the visual pictures which we see have long lasting impacts on us, of all the information we learn.
It does not matter where you are, attending a presentation, playing an online game, doing some research for your course; you will agree that the information in front of us becomes more attractive and clear, if it has some graphics attached.
What is Infographics? In simple terms, using pictures, symbols, colors, shapes, icons etc. to communicate complex and sometimes boring information quickly, clearly and interestingly is “Infographics”. It seems difficult, to depict the seemingly complex piece of knowledge, as a piece of cake. But you can learn & create it on your own easily. Don’t you believe me? Here are some tips to create beautiful Infographics,
Tip 1: Understand the basic Structure of Infographics
There are three basic elements,
There can be two levels of Infographics,
- One level deep – It is simple and basic. Visual remains same throughout the design and has shallow depiction.
- Two levels deep – It is more advanced and theme based. It has reference icons, color coding, and shape groupings, image holders etc. It represents factual data with lot of calls and references to statistics.
Tip 2: Select pearls from the ocean and Plan
Today when hell loads of information is at your disposal, it is difficult to dig out the relevant and correct information. Before you start creating your design, you should always do deep research. Your data representations should be backed by the facts. Pick the real gems and discard the irrelevant information. Do some planning about its depiction. Data to graphics ratio is best when it is 1:1.
Tip 3: Who are audiences
Demography plays an important role in anything you design or create. Perceptions, age, likes and dislike will have a great influence on how your design will look to the reader. If you are creating your design for a 10 year old kid’s, it has to be different from what you are creating for an office. So check out the audiences first.
Tip 4: Create a Skeleton for your creation
Use Flowcharts representing the sequence of your information from start to end. Use words, arrows, boxes to visualize the flow of the information and to group the relevant data together. Flowcharts make the sequence of operations look simple and easy to understand.
Tip 5: Add Colors to what you create
Consider an example: When you are crossing a traffic light/signal, Green color represents a “GO” and Red color represents “STOP”. Similarly the use of colors scheme in your designs symbolizing different elements will keep the reader stick to the design and prevent him to get confused in case of huge and complex Infographics. Use as many colors you are comfortable with, but make sure you assign those properly before you start to design.
Tip 6: Use Graphics correctly
What you see is what you get. The are two kinds,
- Theme based graphics – Theme has to be the central idea about what you want to share. Use it when data/information is less statistical. Using your theme properly will help a reader to take a glance of the centre point or crux of the information you want to deliver.
- Reference based graphics – When you have lot of content to share, it is always better to use visual pointers to relevant data. It will remove any clutter from your design and make it look simpler though informative.
Tip 7: Know some Tools for help
Here is a list of some tools available which can make you feel like a designer,
- Visual.ly at http://visual.ly/
- ManyEyes at http://www-958.ibm.com/software/data/cognos/manyeyes/
- Stat Silk at http://www.statsilk.com/
- Creately at http://creately.com
Well, these are just few tips and you will discover more when you actually start creating your own infographic. It is in your hands to make it interesting or boring, deeply informative or superficial. How you impart the information and knowledge is up to you.
Your Infographics should not only be conceptually sound, but accurate and easy to understand too. Last but not the least tip is, just keep yourself at the place of the reader and you will know what you need to do.