Information graphics, more commonly known as infographics, are representations of information displayed in a visually appealing way. They have of life of their own; they tell their own story; and they make their own arguments. Text, tables, charts, and pictures are common elements used throughout an infographic to communicate ideas to its viewer.
Why use an Infographic?
An infographic is easier to consume; it summarizes data which allows the audience to better understand the information. One should be able to read through the infographic and understand the content without further explanation; thus, it stands on its own. Not only are they comprehensible, but they can be extremely eye catching as well. An aesthetically pleasing infographic can grab one’s attention. People may stop to read it, or even share it through social media sites. Either way, your information is spreading!
There are different options available for creating an infographic including Piktochart, Venngage, and Easel.ly. You can find several online tutorials for these websites, but these are three I have previously used: Piktochart tutorial, Venngage tutorial, and Easel.ly tutorial. This tutorial will focus on Piktochart.
Before designing your infographic, you need to define the message you are trying to convey. What information is necessary to keep your infographic clear and concise? You can answer this by going through your information and highlighting key terms and ideas. By narrowing down your information, you are keeping your project relevant and organized and saving it from being extremely text heavy.
Now that you have your information prepared, you can start the design. Start with a theme or color scheme. You can either choose a pre-designed template or start from scratch. There are endless options; your infographic could be fun and colorful like a comic book or simple and classy using only black and white. Whatever you decide, make sure it suits your information. Next, apply text using easy-to-read fonts at appropriate sizes. Your text should also stay consistent; try not to use numerous fonts. Consistency is key when designing! Other visual aspects you should pay attention to include the amount of empty space, the composition balance, and the flow of information.
Images and charts are nice ways to grab the viewer’s attention and present information in non-textual ways. Sites like Piktochart have an array of images one can search from and then apply to their design. However, graphics should only be used to enhance the meaning of your text. They must be clear, legible, and easy to comprehend; they should not need an explanation. If inserting a graphic or picture from the internet, do not forget to cite it! Using graphics from the Creative Commons (CC) is a great way to prevent any copyright issues. CC licenses are often “some rights reserved” as opposed to the typical “all rights reserved”. Thus, CC creators generally want you to use their work as long as you credit the creator.
Below are screenshots offering a step-by-step walkthrough in using Piktochart to make an infographic. These images do not cover every detail and click that goes into making an infographic, but they cover the basics!
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