Graphic design is one of the most creative professions. Besides the fact that it requires a thorough knowledge of different design software, it also requires out-of-the-box thinking and vivid imagination. But sometimes, graphic designers may feel stuck and struggle to come up with ideas. To make their creative juices flow again, every designer needs to find a source of inspiration in graphic design.
Whether you are a graphic designer, creating a logo or an ad banner, an illustrator working on a magazine cover, a self-starter, just working on your first project or a very experienced graphic designer, in this article, you can find a lot of interesting ideas to overcome your creative block and start designing awesome graphics again.
Note that we gathered not only well-known online resources here but also a lot of offline sources of inspiration. So, anyone can find here some helpful tools to find inspiration in graphic design.
Offline Sources to Find Inspiration in Graphic Design
First, let’s start with some offline inspiration source ideas. Your first thought, as a designer, might be to go to Google and search for designs to explore to get inspired. Although, it doesn’t always work. Sometimes, the best idea is to cut off from every digital source and immerse yourself in the offline world.
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Most people travel to relax and to change their routine for some period. Travel helps to immerse into new cultures and people and get new experiences. What some people may not know about it, travel can also be a great source of inspiration. By exploring new places, people, cultures, and languages, you leave your comfort zone and challenge yourself to adapt to a new place.
Of course, not everyone has the possibility and resources to instantly buy a flight and go to another country, but it’s not necessary to be an expensive and far away trip. You can simply go to another city or village in your country, even for a few hours. Or you can go hiking with your friends, or maybe alone. The idea is to forget about your project for some time and just explore a new place.
Visiting Art Galleries and Museums
When you’re out of ideas, your first thought to generate new ideas will be to explore more designs that are similar to your project. In most cases, it can help to understand what you need to do with your project, but sometimes it may not be enough. Besides exploring designs and artworks, similar to your project, you can also explore artworks that are about entirely different topics.
So, if you have some time for a break, you can go to a local art gallery or exhibition to find inspiration. Especially in Modern Art Museums, you can find a lot of creativity and non-traditional methods of displaying emotions through art. Try to deeply explore the artworks and understand how the artist was able to convey a certain feeling through their work of art. All of these can help to spark your creativity and find new ideas.
It’s easy to get lost in your head when you’re doing creative work and need to think about something new. Sometimes it’s better just to leave the office or home and take a 30-minute walk. Try to forget about the work you are doing and start noticing the city’s architecture, people, the clothes they are wearing, streets, trees, etc.
A study by Stanford University has found that walking can increase creativity by 60%. Take regular walks during the week and try to clear your head from thoughts about your project a bit. You can also go hiking, ride a bike, or do other sports activities to help you distract from routine thoughts.
People are social creatures, and talking to your friends, family, or colleagues can help you distract a bit and regain your energy. People who surround you have a big impact on you, so when you can’t come up with new ideas, try to talk with your colleagues or like-minded people and discuss things related to design or even not related to it.
If you don’t have pals in the industry, you can find them on social media (we’ll talk about them later), meet them and try to socialise. Learn how they come up with new ideas and how they find inspiration in graphic design.
Practising for Fun
Another way to make your creative juices flow again is to practice. Forget about your current project for a moment and try to practice for fun. Play with colours, draw or make sketches without thinking about the final result. Do not post it on social media; in fact, try to distract yourself from all your social accounts too.
Just create something using design software or even the usual paper and pencil. Do not try to make something meaningful from it. This will help you distract from the real world for a moment and immerse yourself in a fun and creative process. Maybe along the way, you will come up with something interesting.
Online Sources to Find Inspiration in Graphic Design
Now, let’s get down to some online tools for graphic design inspiration. Sometimes all you need is to simply explore different design works, logos and illustrations, experiment with them to come up with the design idea you need.
This is a perfect site for exploring creative ideas and finding inspiration for graphic design. It focuses on the visual and typographic work of designers from all around the world. You can search for design works by choosing a colour or colour palette or by their collections. Here, you can find different kinds of imagery, from photography and illustrations to logos and icons.
As its name suggests, this website shows some of the best identity designs from all around the world. This can immensely help you when you’re working on branding, logo design, packaging or any other visual identity-related projects. This website contains brand designs from different industries designed by professionals from designers in Mexico, Sweden, Vietnam, the USA, France, Australia, Brazil and England.
Baubauhaus was named after the first modern design school in the world, and probably all designers from around the world have heard about it. Here you can find design works not only about graphic design but also related to UI/UX, photography, posters and many more. So, whenever you feel stuck on any project, just browse the designs of this website to find some inspiration.
Fonts In Use
Sometimes it’s really hard to find the perfect typeface for a project, as there are millions of good typefaces out there, and trying and testing them on your project would take too much time. This is where this tool can help you. There are tons of design works here that show the typefaces on real projects to help designers to see their desired fonts in use. Besides that, if you struggle to find a perfect typeface for a project, you can read their blog or simply browse the typefaces from their collections and find what you are looking for.
Wix is a cloud-based platform for website creation and development. It also has a great blog to help designers find inspiration. Its blog contains useful articles about logos, illustrations and many other topics about design. This website will be helpful not just for inspiration but for self-learning and enhancing your skills as well.
Social networks belong to online resources, of course, but as there are a lot of social networks out there, it’s better to mention them separately. These social media channels are a great place to explore others’ works and find inspiration in graphic design. Here, you can find different social media channels that will not only help you find inspiration but also find lots of like-minded designers.
Dribbble should be at the top of your bookmarks list. It’s one of the best resources for graphic and web designers. Here, designers from all over the world post their works, comment on others’ works, find colleagues and find new jobs. And best of all, whenever you need inspiration, Dribbble can help too. As thousands of designers share their works here, you can find some really good stuff here that can help you in your design project.
This is another great social network specifically created for designers. Behance is similar to Dribbble. Here designers share their works, create portfolios and even look for new jobs. You can explore the designers’ works here and follow them to see more of their content. This is a great resource for finding inspiration.
Pinterest is a very unique social network and probably the best place for designers to look for inspiration. You can search for anything on this social channel and find millions of ideas, tutorials and other wonderful resources. Pinterest is probably one of the first tools that designers use when starting a new project, doing research or trying to find inspiration.
Instagram is focused on visuals and aesthetics, so it’s no wonder it has made it on this list. You can find lots of designers here who share their works to get inspired. Or you can also search with hashtags to find the perfect style or idea for your next design project. It’s also a great tool for finding new connections and new jobs.
You probably wouldn’t expect Twitter to be here, but it can actually be quite a good resource for designers too. The creative community is pretty active on Twitter, so you can learn a lot about the design trends and designers’ community here. Look for your favourite designer and follow them to explore their works and thoughts about different areas of design and, of course, to find inspiration.
Hopefully, our list of resources will help you find inspiration in graphic design. Every designer, whether a beginner or an experienced professional, has at least once found themselves in this state when it seems like the project is stuck forever. Luckily, that’s not true; you just need to find your own way to get inspired and continue creating the most unique and outstanding design works.
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What do graphic designers do?
Graphic designers create different kinds of visual imagery to convey a certain message to social groups. Graphic designers create visual materials for advertisements, brochures, magazines, product packaging, etc.
Can a non-designer create a logo?
Basically, anyone who can work with some design software can create a logo. Though, professional logo designers would better know how to design a logo that shows the brand’s unique aspect and conveys its main message. So, if you need to create a logo for your brand, it’s better to entrust it to expert designers.
Which one is better: a graphic design agency or a freelancer?
Everything depends on your needs; it’s wrong to say that agencies provide better quality. There can be a lot of agencies that are not as professional as some freelancers. Here we highlight all the important differences between freelancers and agencies that can help you decide between these two.