chapter  2
12 Pages

Step Away From the Computer

Research & Brainstorming

Professional designers know that effective graphic design begins with research: information gathering and critical thinking about the project at hand. Next comes brainstorming: tapping into creativity and putting pencil to paper. Even the humblest design assignment necessitates collecting basic information about the design's purpose and deadlines. At the other end of spectrum, a high-stakes campaign demands extensive research, analysis and planning culminating in multiple coordinated designs accountable to measurable objectives. There is no single magic-bullet solution to any given design project. Instead there may be dozens of possible solutions. The goal is to find the one that best achieves the project's communication objective and also appeals to the boss or client. The Web design equivalent of the thumbnail sketch is the wireframe. A wireframe is used to work out ideas for the general page layout and interface. All designers expect to go through many design iterations before and after they turn on the computer in order to complete a project.