Home / Learn / Graphic Design

7 Types of Graphic Design

This article will define graphic design and its different types.

Kujtim Aliu

Senior Graphic Designer

7 Types of Graphic Design

Graphic design is sometimes thought of as a single discipline, but there are many different specializations within the field. While some graphic designers are generalists who work on a variety of projects, others specialize in more specific types of graphic design skills.


Take a look at your book cover, social media image, wall painting, and t-shirt graphics! What is it that they all have in common? They are all graphic design examples. Graphic design elements have something to say, perhaps an idea or a message, and it is a graphic designer’s job to bring these elements to life with their skills. 


To effectively communicate the intended messages, graphic designers must understand the basics of design. This article will define graphic design and its different types.

What is Graphic Design?

Graphic design is a broad field that uses graphic components or visuals to communicate information and produce an effect. Graphic design is the art of using visuals to communicate the message of a business. 


Depending on your needs, these visuals can be simple or complex. A business logo or website page layout are two examples. Graphic design services are used by every company and organization to promote and sell their products through marketing. Depending on the ad type, this marketing can be done through websites or infographics. 


These include elements such as forms, colors, shapes, textures, typography, iconography, and more. It also defines the process of creating and developing interactive visual images using the best technology, creative thinking, and basic graphic elements.

Basic Graphic Design Elements

To improve design quality, graphic design includes specific elements and principles. These elements can be used alone or in combination to create eye-catching visuals. Graphic design’s fundamental components include:


  • Color: Using a range of colors to invoke various emotions and associations in design.
  • Form: The three-dimensional aspect of objects and their location in space.
  • Line: A stroke or mark used to define boundaries, or direct attention.
  • Shape: Defined, recognizable forms formed by combining lines and curves.
  • Size: The relative dimensions of design elements that influence hierarchy and emphasis.
  • Texture: The tactile quality or visual feel of a design’s surfaces.
  • Space: The intentional arrangement of elements in relation to one another and the surrounding space.


These design elements serve as the foundation for creating visually appealing graphic materials.


To guide and achieve effective design compositions, graphic designers follow to specific rules of design. Graphic design’s fundamental principles include:


  • Balance: The even distribution of visual weight in a design to achieve stability and harmony.
  • Contrast: The use of different colors, sizes, or styles to highlight and emphasize specific elements.
  • Emphasis: Drawing attention to a specific aspect or element of a design in order to make it stand out.
  • Proportion: Maintaining relative size relationships between elements to create visual consistency.
  • Rhythm: The creation of a visual flow and tempo through the use of repeated elements or patterns.
  • Movement: Creating a sense of motion or direction within the design to engage the viewer.

Types of Graphic Design

Print and web design, animation, and motion graphics are all examples of graphic design fields and specializations. Let us now look at the different types of graphic design.


Branding/Visual Identity Graphic Design

A brand is a relationship that exists between a business and its target audience. A brand identity communicates a business’s personality, voice, and nature, as well as memories, emotions, and experiences. The visual elements of brand identity that act as the face of a brand to communicate those intangible features through images, shapes, and color are referred to as visual identity graphic design.

Designers who specialize in visual identity graphic design work with brand stakeholders to create assets such as logos, typography, color palettes, and collections of images that represent a brand’s personality. With a little help of AI, this can also be done through an AI logo generator that can help in the creation process.

In addition to standard marketing materials and corporate stationery, designers often create a set of visual guidelines for brands (style guides) that describe the best practices and provide examples of visual branding applied through different types of media. These guidelines help to ensure brand consistency across all future applications.

One of the most common types of design is visual identity design. To create design elements that work across all visual media, visual identity graphic designers must have a broad understanding of all types of graphic design. They need to have strong communication skills, conceptual and creative thinking, and a desire to learn about industries, organizations, trends, and competitors.


Marketing Design

Marketing and advertising designs, whether online or in print, are essential elements of any business’s marketing plan.


Because the goal of marketing and advertising is to convince consumers to buy or sign up for a product or service, graphic designers working in these fields need to be experienced in the field of behavioral psychology when it comes to buying decisions.


Graphic designers who specialize in advertising and marketing create items such as:


  • Print & Digital Promotions
  • Social Media Graphics
  • Podcast Cover Art
  • Banners
  • Email advertising
  • Brochures
  • Posters
  • Billboards
  • Presentations
  • Pitch Decks


User Interface Design

The user interface (UI) is the means by which a user interacts with a device or application. UI design is the process of creating interfaces that are simple to use and provide a pleasant user experience.


A user interface includes everything with which a user interacts—the screen, keyboard, and mouse—but in relation to graphic design, 


UI design focuses on the user’s visual experience and the design of on-screen graphic elements such as buttons, menus, micro-interactions, and more. A UI designer’s job is to strike a balance between aesthetic appeal and technical functionality.


Desktop apps, mobile apps, web apps, and games are all specialties of UI designers. They collaborate closely with UX (user experience) designers (who determine how the app functions) and UI developers (who write code to make it function).


  • Graphic design examples for user interfaces
  • Designing a website
  • Theme design (WordPress, Shopify, and so on)
  • Interfaces for video games
  • App design


UI designers must be team players with strong graphic design skills as well as a thorough understanding of UI/UX principles, responsive design, and web development. In addition to graphics apps, they need to be familiar with programming languages such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.


Publication Design

Publications are long-form works that communicate with an audience by being widely distributed. Traditionally, they have been a print medium. Think of books, newspapers, magazines, and catalogs as examples of publication design. However, digital publishing has recently seen a significant increase.


Publication graphic designers collaborate with editors and publishers to create layouts with carefully curated typography and associated artwork, which may include photography, graphics, and illustrations.


Examples of publication graphic design:


  • Books
  • Newspapers
  • Newsletters
  • Directories
  • Annual reports
  • Magazines
  • Catalogs


Publication designers must be skilled in communication, layout, and organization. They have to understand color management, printing, and online publishing in addition to graphic design.


Packaging Graphic Design

To protect and prepare products for storage, distribution, and sale, most require some form of packaging. Packaging design, on the other hand, can communicate directly to consumers, making it an extremely valuable marketing tool. Every box, bottle, and bag, every can, container, or canister is an opportunity to tell a brand’s story.


Packaging designers create concepts, mockups, and print-ready files for products. This calls for in-depth knowledge of industrial design and manufacturing as well as specialist knowledge of print processes. 


Because packaging design touches so many disciplines, it is not uncommon for designers to find themselves creating additional elements for a product such as photography, illustrations, and visual identity.


Packaging designers may be generalists or specialize in a specific type of packaging (such as labels or beverage cans) or industry (such as food or children’s toys). Their work requires exceptional conceptual and problem-solving abilities, as well as a solid working knowledge of print and industrial design. 


Motion Graphic Design

Motion graphics are graphics that move. Animation, audio, typography, imagery, video, and other effects used in online media, television, and film are examples of this. As technology improved and video content became king, the medium’s popularity skyrocketed in recent years.


“Motion graphics designer” is a relatively new design expertise. Previously restricted to television and film, innovations in technology have reduced production time and costs, making the art form more accessible and affordable. Now, motion graphics is one of the most recent types of design and can be found on all digital platforms, opening up an array of new areas and opportunities.


Examples of motion graphic design:


  • Title sequences and end credits
  • Advertisements
  • Animated logos
  • Trailers
  • Presentations
  • Promotional videos
  • Tutorial videos
  • Websites
  • Apps
  • Video games
  • Banners
  • GIFs


Motion graphics designers start by creating storyboards, then use animation, video, and traditional art to bring their ideas to life. Depending on the industry, a solid understanding of marketing, coding, and 3D modeling can be valuable assets.


Environmental Graphic Design

You may have noticed paintings on the streets; this is an example of environmental graphic design. The goal of environmental graphic design is to visually connect people to places, making their overall experiences memorable, exciting, and educational.


Graphic, interior, landscape, and architectural design are all combined in environmental graphic design services. As a result, the designers have backgrounds in both graphic design and architecture.

Final Thoughts

We’ve looked at seven different types of graphic design, each with its own purpose and power. Graphic design is about presenting messages and stories through visuals, not just about aesthetics. They integrate creativity and technology, psychology and aesthetics, and function and form. Graphic design crosses boundaries, cultures, and industries, addressing the universal human desire for communication and expression. 


Graphic design is a language that leaves a lasting impact on our perceptions and experiences. It’s a form of storytelling that turns products, spaces, and digital platforms into attractive stories. Whether you’re an experienced designer or a visual arts enthusiast, it’s essential to recognize the artistry and influence that graphic design brings to our world. It’s a world where imagination knows no bounds.

More Content Hub