How to Create Stunning Instagram Graphics without a Professional Designer
April 5, 2019 by Alexz Miller
Last Updated: March 20, 2020
The quality of the Instagram graphics you post can make or break your success on social media, especially if you’re conducting business on the app.
Your Instagram account should be considered your online store front. You want potential customers to take one look at your feed and know exactly who you are, what you sell, and what your brand represents.
As a social media platform focused primarily on sharing images, Instagram is perfect for impactful visual marketing that communicates your brand image.
Because of its visual nature, there is a common misconception that you need a professional graphic designer to run an account. Not so! While one is great to have, they aren’t a necessity for creating quality Instagram graphics if you use these pointers!
Adjust Colors with Photo Editing Tools
When focusing on visual marketing, color can make all the difference. Colors contribute significantly to communicating mood and a certain message, and how you adjust their vibrancy and tone brings a new dimension to your images.
To keep your profile consistent and bring that “wow” factor to your grid, follow an Instagram theme to tie your Instagram graphics together.
Decide what style fits your brand’s personality and whether you want to incorporate your brand colors into each piece. Some to consider:
- Cozy vintage – Emphasize the earthy tones in your image. Choose filters that add muted, warm browns, reds, and oranges.
- Light and relaxed – Select filters that lower the color contrast in your image. This works best when applied to pictures with light, pastel colors as a base.
- Bold and vibrant – This theme is all about making the colors pop. Select filters that deepen the hues of colors and increase overall brightness.
(Source: Instagram, @highendhippie, @taramilktea ; Instasize)
Other than using filters, here are a couple more photo editing tips so that you can get your vision just right:
- Highlight contrast between lights and shadows by turning a photo black and white, easy to do by applying a filter or turning color sliders all the way down.
- Lower the saturation on overly-bright photos to bring the focus back to the main subject.
Bonus Tip: To make sure all of you Instagram graphics match your brand image and are created on time, you need to create a workflow for your process. This might include creating a content calendar or a style guide so you have all the necessary resources to consistently churn out stunning Instagram graphics.
Hone Basic Typography Skills
Adding text to your Instagram graphics grabs attention and provides additional context for what you post. Digital posters for promotions or events especially need text, as users skimming through their feed likely won’t read captions closely unless the image really catches their eye.
You don’t need to be a designer to know the basics of what makes text look good. Here are a few easy-to-apply typography lessons:
- Consider alignment when placing text. It may be instinctive to center-align everything, but that can make the text harder to read and may interfere with the rest of the visuals. Choose alignment based on readability and aesthetic—and don’t mix different kinds.
- When pairing two fonts, the larger should be more elaborate, while the smaller must be clearer to keep readability.
- Size matters! Use size to emphasize keywords and phrases.
If you’re short on time, there are editing apps and software willing to take the guesswork out of arranging text.
Find a reliable photo editing app with a text styles option: these usually contain predetermined fonts arranged in an attractive way, meaning that all you need to do is select the place and adjust size and position.
Learn Simple Photo Composition Tricks
To craft a more interesting grid, you need to take better and more varied photos. Simple composition tricks can make all the difference.
The first, and most important tip: use photo grids for better Instagram graphics. If you’re using an iPhone, you’ll need to go into your settings to turn the ‘grid’ on in your Photos and Camera app. This will provide a series of nine boxes in your viewfinder so you can easily position your subject.
Try these easy photo compositions techniques:
- Rule of Thirds – The most famous. Place your subject off-center, either on the left or right vertical lines of the grid or where they intersect with the horizontal ones.
- Symmetry – Place your subject right in the middle three boxes of the grid, dead center. This works best with subjects whose sides mirror one another.
- Frame within a Frame – Find something to surround your subject with. Look through a window, take it from beneath an arch, and more.
- Leading Lines – Take photos or create graphics that show lines leading toward your subject. This is popular when shooting on roads or pathways.
- Negative Space – No frills, no distractions. Make sure your subject has nothing else around it, so the eye is naturally drawn to it.
Combine these tips, keep practicing, and your Instagram graphics will look amazing in no time!
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