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Did You Know That Good Design is C.R.A.P?

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Shelby here! As Pulse’s project manager and former content writer and editor, I have a certain set of skills that I’m most comfortable writing about. These include content marketing, social media marketing, and email marketing – to name a few. However, I’m not as experienced in graphic design and find that I don’t write often enough about the topic. That’s why I asked Pulse’s graphic designer, Branin Blodgett, to help me come up with some topics for audiences who might be interested in learning more about graphic design. One of the first things he said to me when I asked him if he had any ideas, was “have you heard of C.R.A.P?”

If you’re like me and you’re not well-versed when it comes to graphic design jargon and principles, you probably reacted much the same way I did: with an apprehensive “no.”

Branin explained what C.R.A.P stood for, and even though the acronym is a bit silly, the principles it helps graphic designers remember are useful. “They’re basically the four values you should follow to make sure any layout looks professional,” Branin told me. “I use them every day.”
So what does C.R.A.P stand for?

Contrast. The first letter of the acronym stands for contrast, which encompasses a few different elements of design, including color, tone/value, size/shape, and direction. Good contrast in design is achieved by using a combination of these elements to create something that’s appealing to the eye.

Repetition. This point is a simple one: if you’ve used a certain pattern, color, layout, etc. in a design, repeating it will create a cohesive piece that’s pleasing to the eye. In other words, if you’ve used something once, use it again!

Alignment. Every element in a design should be visually connected to another element so that everything fits together like a puzzle.

Proximity. Proximity means that like elements should be placed together; for example, if I placed this sentence beside the contrast portion of up there, it wouldn’t make any sense. Proximity is also a way to ensure your design is user-friendly.

Branin uses these principles every day in his work, so if you’re working on a project that requires graphic design, remember the acronym – it’s hard to forget!

If you need help with your project, Branin creates some beautiful designs and can make something for your business.

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