Become fluent in 'designer'

Designers have a vocabulary that may not be familiar to everyone. (Sorry, I forget that sometimes) but if I use a term that you're not familiar with, please just ask me and I'll be very happy to explain further. Knowing the right terminology will help us communicate with one another and get the results you envision.


Alignment is the position of text or graphics, whether left, right, centred or fully justified.


In design, balance involves the placement of elements on the page so that the text and graphic elements are evenly distributed. There are three ways to achieve balance: symmetrically, asymmetrically and radially.

  • Symmetrically - is achieved when all design elements are equal on both sides of a central line

  • Asymmetrically - When graphics and text are not equal on both sides of a central line, a design is said to be asymmetrical.

  • A radial design is one in which elements radiate from a central point, creating balance.

Brand Assets

The individual elements that form the brand. Brand assets include the fonts, colours, illustrations and other resources that must work together to form the distinct appearance of a brand.

Brand Guidelines

A document listing the rules of a brand and providing guidance for understanding its vision, personality and attributes. Brand standards inform staff and external agencies how the brand operates and how the assets should and shouldn't be used.

Brand Personality

What personality traits does your brand carry? What tone of voice will you use to communicate with your audience?

Brand Values

Brand values are the internal characteristics that establish a brand’s unique positioning amongst competitors.

Colour Palette

A brand’s colour guide that consists of primary and secondary palettes of print and digital colour values that dictate all usages of brand assets to ensure consistency.


Composition is the arrangement of design elements that form a whole image. Also referred to as layout.


HTML stands for HyperText Markup Language. This is the standard coding language for websites that creates all of the fonts, colours, graphics and links you see online.


A small, graphic representation of a brand. An icon helps users recognise a brand and illustrates what a brand does


A brand’s most important and recognisable visual representation.

Lorem ipsum

Lorem ipsum (also known as dummy text) is used as a placeholder that will be swapped out later with the actual copy.


A typographic logo that visualises a company’s initials.


The understanding that a brand asset is consistent with how an audience expects a business to look. A business that is consistently on-brand builds lasting, loyal relationships with its customers.


The act of updating or revising a brand.

Stock photo

Stock photos are licensed images created by a third party. Using stock images saves on the cost of having a professional photoshoot.


A short phrase that communicates a brand’s personality and energy in a distinctive catchphrase.


Any instance of interaction that a brand has with its audience. Examples: A website, business card, product packaging, social media post or an online review.

Typographic System

A system of fonts used within a brand’s visual identity to keep it consistent.


A brand’s logo that includes the typography of a full company name without other visual graphic components.

White space

White space a.k.a negative space is the part of the design that is unmarked by imagery or text.


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