Make Your Marketing Grow Green

By Harlan West, Design and Marketing Professional with more than 25 years of experience designing materials for major healthcare organizations, municipalities and large corporations.

The Power of Green: Green Can Grow Your Marketing Campaign

It’s time to look at color as an important factor in corporate communications. Since it’s still spring, let’s use the color green to spice up our marketing campaigns.

Green squares2Designing with green

Some words that come to mind when using a bright green color include: freshness, spring, life, St. Patrick’s Day, gardens, plants, thrive, growth, rebirth, health, lime, vegetables, recycling, sustainability, “go”, moving ahead, and environmentally friendly.

Here’s some ideas: Continue reading

This Mother’s Day, Give Mom Flowers—By Design

harlanwestblogphotoBy Harlan West, Design and Marketing Professional with more than 25 years of experience designing materials for major healthcare organizations, municipalities and large corporations.

 

The other day, I was at the car wash and discovered an interesting photography effect using closeups of flowers which appeared on greeting cards. I felt that this effect could be duplicated and modified using layering effects from Adobe Photoshop. It gave me an idea for this coming Mother’s Day.

Here’s (3) samples of what I came up with…

Yellow-Mothers-daypattern Pinkflowerpattern Purple-flowerspattern
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Marketing Materials are More Effective When you “Paint” with Your Content

harlanwestblogphotoBy Harlan West, Design and Marketing Professional with more than 25 years of experience designing materials for major healthcare organizations, municipalities and large corporations.

This week I met an interesting landscape designer who creates drought-tolerant gardens with a wilder more natural feeling. While we were discussing a new garden at my home, she made a very interesting point. She arranges plants or as she says, “I paint with plants.”  In short, she creates a visual masterpiece by painting with the subject matter.

With respect to corporate communications, we basically paint with a non-paint medium. As designers, we paint with puzzles and pieces and patterns. You can try this by finding a natural resource that is related to the theme of your product or service and then “painting” or designing with it to give a lush feel to your publication.

PAINTING WITH PATTERNSPatternsSMALLER

Here’s some elements that provide great design enhancements:

 

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Jumping Off the Edge

At HWDS, we often like to break out of the box. Recently, we have been adding unique edge treatments to photos.  These border effects can spice up any publication. Our goal is always to remain fresh, especially when creating monthly newsletters.

Too often we see photos with the standard rectangular or square shape.  As a result, we started jumping beyond the edge and adding an unusual graphical element as a border.

Here’s some examples of special effects that we created for the edges of photos.

1) The Curve Effect.  Here a curved band of color defines the bottom edge of the photo.  This is a great technique for newsletters on tropical vacations, beaches or summer fun.

curveborder

2) The Bubble Effect. These bubble shapes define the edge of photos.  This is a great technique for newsletters or publications on water issues.

bubbletreatment

3) The Star Effect.  These star shapes create an interesting edge for any photo.  Stars are wonderful elements to use for newsletters or articles that require a celebratory theme.

starborderpsd

4) The Type Effect. Here, the type is filled with the image and is actually an extension of the scene.  This is a great technique for newsletters on travel, tourism or special events.

typeborder

For the newsletter below, we used the bubble effect. This effect works well when the newsletter has lots of white space.  A fun type treatment that works well with the waves in the water was also used for this design.

We believe that it is best not to mix to many special effects in the same publication. Consistency and simplicity of design is critical to creating a successful corporate communication. In fact, we adhere to this approach with all the designs we create for our clients.

Newsletter sample using the bubble effect

Newsletter sample using the bubble effect

To find out more about how we can help create an interesting edge effect for your company’s newsletter, collateral or e-publication, contact HWDS at hwdesign@west.net.

Go ahead take a risk and straddle the edge!  You’ll be glad that you did.