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Design Process: From Pencil To Pixel

Every designer has a process to help them tackle a project and come up with a killer solution. Here you’ll get a peek inside my brain with a basic step-by-step look at my process. As an example, we’ll be using an infographic I designed for our Rush River Brewing Co. case study.

Step 1 – Research and Inspiration

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After a quick brief of the project, the work begins. I typically start with research and inspiration, which amounts to a lot of Google searching and hitting my favorite design blogs.  I do this to get a better understanding of the project, see what’s been done before, and imagine what could be.

Step 2 – Sketching 

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Now that I’ve got a few good ideas floating around my head, it’s time to get them down on paper. Sketching is one of the most important steps, allowing for rapid-fire ideas, without all the roadblocks of the computer.  I try to keep these rough, as not to get too attached to any one idea.

Step 3 – Taking to the computer

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Once I’ve narrowed my sketches to the best of the best, I’ll take them to the computer and bring them to life!  Sketches don’t always translate perfectly from pencil to pixel, so it takes some tweaking and playing around to get things looking right. During this step I’ll also find the right typefaces and develop a color palette to work with-lucky for me this work was already done! All throughout this process I have others check out my work and give me their thoughts. It’s always good to have a fresh set of eyes and on a project you’ve been staring at for hours.

Step 4 – Finalizingfinal-infographic

It’s time to cross the t’s and dot the lower case j’s. In other words, check the details. While this is my least favorite part of the process, it’s an essential step to take a design to the next level.  Check everything, make sure it’s perfect and then check it two more times. And that’s it! By this point I have something I’m happy to show the client.

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