Tips on How to Evoke Emotions with Design


Picture: Tips on How to Evoke Emotions with Design
Every design evokes emotions regardless of its execution

Carolyn Mitchel, the Sales Director at Style Library Contract opines that every design evokes emotions regardless of its execution. Hence, the need for designers to understand emotions and how to evoke them in designs.


​Designs are more of images and styles than they are of words. They are pictorial representations, and these pictorial representations are meant to interpret an idea or a concept, thus, the designer would have to create the design in such a way that users can feel the words the image is trying to pass across, then it can be rightly interpreted, a good feeling gives a good interpretation while a bad feeling gives a bad interpretation.


This implies that a Design can evoke Joy, Sadness, Hope, Despair, Confidence, Guilt, Anticipation, Hopelessness etc. depending. To elicit positive emotions, the designer must pay attention to details and know his target audience. A skull and bone design without the two crosses over it can be interpreted as a motivation for violence when you mean to pass a message of shunning violence.


So, the question is, how can you evoke emotions with your Design?

1. Focus on the Brand Identity and Product Benefits:

You cannot just produce a concept top off your head, your concept must be in line with what the Brand represents and what the Product you are about to design solves. The Brand Identity already has a tone which describes the brand’s ideology and values, while the Product would have benefits for the user, these benefits must be what connects the user’s mind to the problem you are trying to solve, that triangular connection between the Brand Identity, Product Benefits and User needs is what will create the emotional feel in your design. ​


2. Focus on the Users:

It is important you know the target audience for your products before going ahead with your design. Emotions are interpreted in diverse ways for different people. You'll need data like age, income level, gender, location, job title, and so on. The more information you have, the better you'll be able to figure out what appeals to this group of customers or enterprises. Instead of thinking like your client alone, try to think like a customer of this brand. A client will frequently tell you what they believe their customer believes, or, even worse, should believe. It's your job as a designer to see past any preconceived notions and put yourself in the shoes of the customer.


3. Choose the Right Elements:

The proper concept combined with the incorrect design elements will result in confusing signals. Make sure your brand colors, fonts, and even the angle of your lines all contribute to the emotion you are trying to create (the one you’ve concluded on based on number 1 above). Always keep the brand and the audience in mind. For example, Bright colorful colors may appeal to High School Students, while it might give an unserious feel to the aged ones.


Design is beyond putting color and styles together. It deals with shaping people’s mindset and ideologies about things. A design can re-orientate people about an event; thus, it is an art that must be given due diligence when learning.


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