Concept Before Creation.

Developing a creative and effective piece for a designer is a whirlwind. Balancing strategy, client requirements, design, and time can feel like a traffic jam. When one factor is placed before another, any number of problems can occur. It’s important to have a foundation for your ideas before jumping in and designing a “pretty piece.” Start sketching. Start jotting ideas. Find inspiration. When doing these things remember your objective. Instead of moving a box around until an overlay creates an interesting pattern, sketch your idea as it relates to your objective.

Tricks to Get You There

Keep in mind, these tools are not for everyone. People arrive at their conclusions in different ways, and the ends usually justify the means in the world of design. But when looking to boost your ideas try using these tricks:

Stop Thinking Like a Designer

As a designer myself, it is easy to jump right in and start designing. It gives me more time to create my ideas in the software and makes me look speedy doing a project. I need to get out of my own head. Instead of making designs that you think would impress designers, get into the target audience’s identity. I’m a middle-aged mom that treats Kohl’s as a second home! I’m a suave business man with a side part and cufflinks with my initials on them. This is vital when creating a piece that is effective. A client needs a piece that represents them and their target well and hits the nail on the head, not just something that shows your abilities in Photoshop.

List Your Ideas Before Your Designs

A simple, easy way to remember your ideas first is to list your ideas before your design elements. Know that your building block is your overall idea. Far too often a beautiful piece will be made that unfortunately means nothing; this is where we hear the most subliminal messaging attempts ever! Keeping an idea top of mind will give you freedom to use your creativity more effectively. There are millions of pretty designs in the world. The tools to create your ideas are still very important, but having your ideas rooted in more than software gives an idea the ability to stand out from just a well-designed piece.


  • Start sketching. Keep the pen moving.
  • First ideas are usually the worst ideas, run through your mind to find the right one.
  • Think like your audience.
  • Always remember your objective.