We make digital things

Custom Illustration Web Design

Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Custom illustration in web design is fast becoming an important aspect of the design process. In this article, we will cover the basics of how custom illustration can be used for web design and utlised to promote your business.

At ID Studio London we have seen a massive uptake in this form of visual concept creation, it is an art form that we enjoy creating and have seen tangible improvements in UX and UI when implemented correctly. 

There seems to be a lot of confusion between graphic design and illustration, some people see it is the same thing and others as completely separate. It is true that they are both visual arts, however, how they are trying to communicate with the end-user utilise different methods.

What is a Custom Illustration design?

We will all have different interpretations, although, personally I believe custom illustration is a visual explanation of a concept or idea, a visualisation to show the end-user a meaning or notion. It communicates a concept and allows for the larger interpretation of a message. To me, graphic design is more traditional, static, using graphics, images and text. An illustration allows for a greater understanding and comprehension of that message. Custom illustration is exactly what it says, custom, something built specifically for exact requirements. Therefore, they take longer than just adding images or photos, however, it can help businesses achieve a lot more such as generating a better understanding and interest of their product or services.

There are a number of different illustration styles, some of the main ones are outlined below:

  • Animation
  • Caricature
  • Hyperrealism
  • Cartoon
  • Fantasy
  • Infographics
  • Photorealism
  • Conceptual

There are two main techniques that can be used for a digital custom illustration:

Hand-drawn artwork to Vector/SVG

One of the great assets of vector files is that they can be increased in size without pixelation (without loss of quality to the image).

Digitally drawn artwork to Pixel or Vector/SVG

*A vector file is the source file, file types include.ai .eps .pdf. svg. using RGB colour values. They are often created using Adobe illustrator and/or other vector-based software. Most web graphics are ‘jpg .gif .png .svg and print-based files include print .pdf and .tiff files type using CMYK colour values.

Where can Custom illustrations be used?

At ID Studio we use illustrations predominately in web design, however, there are many other mediums such as:

  • Magazines
  • Videos
  • Posters
  • Games
  • Art
  • Banners
  • Character design
  • Comics
  • Books etc.

When and why use custom illustration in web design?

By integrating custom illustration within your web design, you can create a design that is unique to your business and helps distinguish you from the competition. It can help your business create a message that is completely tailored, enforcing your brand, business ethos and core business objectives. It can make your website stand out from the competition.

Having said all this, this is not to take away from the effectiveness of photography and images on websites, as they can also be very powerful.

By creating a custom and tailored illustration, you can help engage and interact with your potential customers. It can be used to help encourage your website visitors to complete contact forms, add their contact details, view critical information and to better understand your product or service.

In addition, it can help your website audience better understand your business, creating a visual representation further enhancing the understanding and memorability of your brand and business.

How can custom illustrations aid your website?

  • They can help tell a story
  • Illustrations can help visualise data
  • Provide support for text, help soften up the look and feel
  • Create an emotional appeal
  • Assist in keeping your business memorable
  • Illustrations help your business make a statement
  • Can differentiate your brand

Common mistakes with custom illustration

  • Too complicated and obsessing over detail, I'm not saying don't care about your work but make it is just as important to make sure your illustration works!
  • The design does not reflect or enforce your corporate branding, this is often caused by selecting the wrong colours
  • Fail to establish a theme
  • Lack of planning and preparation can often result in poor quality and ineffective illustrations
  • A common mistake surprisingly, however, supplying the file in the type.
  • Designers not making the illustration entirely about the customer, adding in their 'twp pence worth'. Work to the brief provided!
  • Too much narrative can be detrimental

ID Studio use illustration in many creative ways

If you would like to learn more about custom illustration services at ID Studio, contact Michael on 020 8948 5808. We would love to hear from you and discuss how we can apply our creative thinking to identify and achieve your website core objectives. Keep scrolling for more examples of our work.

Budding Illustrator 

In our family the art gene is strong, here is my thirteen year old illustrating the popular game play interface for Among us, The Skeld. The Skeld is the spaceship by the way (just in case you did not know), the gameplay interface is a very popular 2D map as you see sketched by hand below:

More... are you still scrolling... Awesome!

Michael Macneil