Mini-review & Competition: White Space Is Not Your Enemy

A beginner's guide to communicating visually through graphic, web and multimedia design

Designing a brochure or web site without an art background? Step away from the computer and read this breezy introduction to visual communications first. Written for non-designers, White Space is Not Your Enemy is a practical graphic design and layout text introducing the concepts and practices necessary for producing effective visual communications across a variety of formats, from print to Web.


Who's this Book for?

The books is for the "beginning" visual communicator. Whether you're already a media pro or hoping to be one soon, it is your introduction to graphic design and layout. White Space is Not Your Enemy covers the basics quickly without being too boring.

What You Will Learn from This Book:

This beautifully illustrated, full-color book covers the basics to help you develop your eye and produce attractive work. Topics include:

  • The basics of effective design that communicates its intended message
  • Pre-design planning
  • 13 Layout Sins to avoid
  • Basic typography
  • Working with color
  • Storyboarding for video, Web, and presentions
  • Information graphics
  • Mini Art School-all the basics in one chapter
  • Outputting your work
  • Finally-the basics of layout, design, and visual communication for print and web in one easy-to-digest book!
  • "Try This" sections in each chapter include fun, hands-on activities to develop skills.
  • The companion web site includes text and photo support material; video clips that put the principles in practice; interactive multimedia components; and links.


Our friends from Focal Press are giving away 5 free books. All you need to do, to enter the competition is to continue the following line: "A beginner's Guide to Communicating Visually through Graphics, Web and ..."

Send your answer to this e-mail address, before Wednesday the 16th of March 2011. Don't forget to include your post address and phone number (required for international shipping) in the e-mail.

Table Of Contents

Chapter 1: What is Design?

Making Visuals & type play nice in space

  • Form follows function in design
  • Design drives visual culture
  • Graphic design communicates
  • Make picture & words work together in space
  • Know the rules. Break the rules if you have a reason
  • Try this

Chapter 2: Step Away from the Computer

For research & brainstorming

  • Research
  • Brainstorming
  • Thumbnail sketches
  • Try this

Chapter 3: I need to Design this Today

The Work-every-time layout

  • Why the works-every-time layout works
  • Parts of the works-every-time layout
  • Step 1: margins
  • Step 2: columns
  • Step 3: visuals
  • Step 4: cutline
  • Step 5: headline
  • Step 6: copy
  • Step 7: tags
  • Final thoughts
  • Try this

Chapter 4: Lauout sins

13 amateur errors

  • Sin No.1: things that blnk. Incessantly
  • Sin No.2: wraped photos
  • Sin No.3: naked photos
  • Sin No.4: bulky borders & boxes
  • Sin No.5: cheated margins
  • Sin No.6: centering everything
  • Sin No.7: 4 corners & clutter
  • Sin No.8: trapped negative space
  • Sin No.9: busy backgrounds
  • Sin No.10: tacky type emphasis: reversing, stroking, using all caps & underlining
  • Sin No.11: bad bullets
  • Sin No.12: windows & orphans
  • Sin No.13: justified rivers
  • Try this

Chapter 5: Mini Art School

The elements & principles of design

  • Element No.1: space
  • Element No.2: line
  • Element No.3: Shape
  • Element No.4: size
  • Element No.5: pattern
  • Element No.6: texture
  • Element No.7: value
  • Principle No.1: focal point
  • Principle No.2: contrast
  • Principle No.3: balance
  • Principle No.4: movement
  • Principle No.5: rhythm
  • Principle No.6: prespective
  • Principle No.7: unity
  • Try this

Chapter 6: What is Grid?

& When do I need one?

  • Grid vocabulary
  • Creating & using a grid
  • Other approaches to designing a grid
  • Breaking the grid
  • Try this

Chapter 7: Layout

Where to put your type & visuals for impact

  • How do I know where to put my stuff?
  • Where do I put the rest of my stuff?
  • Order & organization
  • Layouts with multiple topics on the same screen or page
  • Multiple-page layouts
  • Exit here
  • Try this

Chapter 8: Type

What you don't know can hurt you

  • Font, typeface, font family, glyph
  • Choosing & using fonts
  • Applying additional font styling
  • Typesetting for extended amounts of copy
  • Type: not just for reading anymore
  • Icing on the cake
  • Try this
  • Special section: what you need to know about logo design

Chapter 9: Color Basic

Choosing & using color

  • The power of color: impact, organization & emotion
  • How to choose color: culture
  • How to choose color: history 
  • How to choose color: nature
  • How to choose color: color science & the color wheel
  • Color technology: that's not the color I chose, what happened?
  • Working in cmyk color space
  • Working in RGB space
  • Tips for designing with color
  • color rules!
  • Try this

Chapter 10: Adding Visual Appeal

Working with photos & illustrations

  • Image content
  • Resolution, file format & size
  • Choosing more than one photo
  • Ethics of editing
  • Diversity as craft excellence
  • where to get photos
  • Alternatives to photos
  • Try this

Chapter 11: The Scoop on Infographics

Maximum information in minimum space

  • A terse history of infographics
  • You mights need an infographic if...
  • 21st century multimedia infographics
  • Graphics packages
  • Ethics
  • Designing infographics
  • Try this

Chapter 12: Storyboarding 101

Planning visual storytelling

  • Getting started
  • Framing the shot
  • Perspective
  • Pov
  • Camera angle
  • Movement
  • Continuity
  • Transitions
  • Lighting
  • audio
  • After the storyboard
  • Try this

Chapter 13: Multimedia components

Sometimes more is more

  • Working with images
  • Video clips
  • Working with audio
  • Animation
  • Interactive multimedia
  • Try this

Chapter 14: Designing for the Web

Starring on the small screen

  • How the web works (the 5-second version) 
  • What to expect when working with the web sites
  • Designing for the web
  • Preparing simple graphics for the web
  • Designing web pages & web sites
  • Other design considerations
  • A web site isn't always the best tool for the job
  • Multimedia web sites
  • Keep on your toes
  • Try this

Chapter 15: Fit to print

An overview of papers & printing

  • Plan ahead for printing: Choosing paper
  • Types of printing & printers
  • Get a printing estimate
  • Prepare your document for printing
  • What to give the printer: a checklist
  • Now what?
  • Other things your printer can do
  • Try this

Chapter 16: Conclusion

Now that you know enough to be dangerous, thanks for stopping by

  • Everything is changing
  • There's nothing new under the sun
  • Sometimes you just need to hire a professional
  • Words of encouragement


Lubov Cholakova

Lubov CholakovaLubov has been with DMXzone for 8 years now, contributing to the Content and Sales departments. She is bringing high quality content in the form of daily blog updates, reviews, tutorials, news, newsletters,update emails and extensions' manuals. If you have a product that needs publicity or any other questions about the entire DMXzone community, she is the one you can contact.

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