Custom illustrations can be used to give your business a unique edge and help it stand out from the competition and make a memorable connection. From marketing teams to big enterprises, custom illustrations are becoming increasingly popular. With the help of custom illustration services, you can take your marketing graphics to the next level across any campaign. In this blog post, we’ll explore what custom illustration services are, how to find an illustrator for hire, the best illustration services in the market, and how to utilize custom illustrations in your business and marketing strategies.
What is custom illustration, and how does it benefit your business?
You may think that custom illustration services are the same as graphic design services, and perhaps, in some ways, they are. But custom illustrations turn mundane ideas into unique graphic assets. Bye bye, basic graphics and stock photography!
Custom illustration is the process of creating original digital art that often takes the form of unique designs like logos, icons, and other visuals. This type of customized artwork is different from stock images or photos in that it is created with your business’s specific needs in mind. In other words, they are unique visual representations with innovative concepts to complement a brand’s visual identity. They can be used online, on social media platforms, in publications like magazines and books, or even on merchandise; the sky’s the limit!
The use of custom illustrations on your marketing materials can help to give your campaigns a distinct and unique look (and let’s face it, we’re all vying for attention right now). Using custom graphics online will help boost your business in several ways. It helps create a memorable and recognizable brand design that customers are more likely to remember and associate with your business. Illustrations also allow you to communicate complex ideas quickly and easily; a good example would be by including them in a creative infographic design or in a book cover design. Illustrations can also be used to tell stories and engage customers without worrying about hiring a professional photographer for a photo shoot or getting the perfect set to shoot a scene. With a custom illustrations service, you can illustrate any kind of scenario; let your imagination be the guide!
What types of custom illustrations can you use?
Custom illustrations can be used in a variety of ways, from logos and icons to complex visuals and graphic animations. Some of the most popular types of custom illustrations include:
- Illustrated Icons: Illustrated icons are as universal as you can get. Whether someone speaks Chinese or English – everyone knows what a thumbs up means! They are easily recognizable to help convey your message quickly. Plus, once you design a set of branded icons, these can be applied to many different assets.
- Illustrated Characters: Spice up your designs and give customers something truly unique to drive brand recall with lively illustrated characters filled with personality. Characters facilitate a visual identity for your business that humanizes and facilitates connection with their target audience.
- Illustrated Infographics: turn your infographic design into impossible-to-ignore visuals with custom illustrations. These illustrations can help your audience understand complex ideas and data more easily while ensuring brand consistency. Who says data can’t be pretty? Not us!
- Illustrated Maps: Personalize and add extra flair with illustrations like fun creatures or plants, landmarks and memorable details. Not only will this make searching for locations simpler, but also engage people in a way that they’ll remember!
- Illustrated Animations: Illustrated animations connect directly with your audience and allow your customers to engage authentically, even with complex processes or explanations. Illustrated explainer videos help audiences retain more information, too.
- Illustrated Concept Art: Illustrated concept art will take the fantastic ideas that are spinning around in your head and give them form. Colorful and detailed illustrations will bring impossible scenes, creatures, and characters into reality with an extra dose of magical and futuristic flavor that could be hard to find anywhere else.
- Illustrated Fashion Art: With good illustrated fashion art, you don’t have to worry about having a boring wardrobe or falling behind on the hottest new styles because of limited funds or time. Make a bold impression while staying trendy and fresh with illustrated fashion art.
- Illustrated Books: We think all books should have illustrations (the world would be a better place). While we love illustrations for children’s books, where young readers can indulge their imaginations with characters, scenes, and all the details of the story, book illustrations can be as diverse as the world is. From reference book illustrations to novels and textbooks, from cover to cover, a good illustration can make a book even more appealing and memorable, as well as digestible and engaging.
- Illustrated Presentations: Making a good impression at key meetings is crucial, and no one wants to see a stock photo on every slide. Invest in custom illustrations to wow your audience every single time. A custom presentation design with illustrated graphics will give your slides a one-of-a-kind slides look that creates engagement and recall, leaving your audience impressed long after the presentation is over.
Popular illustration styles
When it comes to custom illustrations, there are a number of popular styles to discover that help you communicate to your artist what you’re looking for. Here are some of the most popular styles:
- Hand-drawn: Hand-drawn illustrations are created using traditional drawing tools such as pencils and pens. They are often used to create a more organic and natural look.
- Vector: Vector illustrations are created using creative tools, such as professional software or apps. Vector illustrations are often used to create clean and crisp visuals that can be scaled to any size without losing quality (because they’re actually rendered as a math equation rather than a compilation of pixels)!
- Digital: Digital illustrations are created using a stylus on digital drawings software. They are used to captivate audiences to deliver stories visually.
- 3D: These future-forward illustrations are created using 3D modeling software with brushes and tools that push, pull, pinch, and smooth, making it easy to create detailed sculptures that mimic real-life textures and objects. These are often used to represent a concept more realistically.
How to best utilize custom illustrations in your business and marketing strategies
Custom illustrations can be used in a variety of ways to help boost your business and marketing strategies. Here are some of the best ways to utilize custom illustrations:
- Websites: Custom illustrations give your website a distinctive and unique visual identity. Brands leverage animated illustrations like motion graphics or lottie files to deliver on-page WOW factors that convert at a higher rate.
- Social Media: Custom illustrations create presence and engagement on social media. They communicate ideas and concepts to your followers in a way they’ll actually remember and are more likely to share! (And we could all use a free re-tweet in this economy.)
- Packaging: Customized artwork on packaging creates a memorable look for your products that will make them stand out inside a store or supermarket, setting your brand apart visually from your competition.
- Marketing Materials: Custom illustrations can be used to create striking visuals for your marketing graphics, such as flyers, posters, and brochures. Account Based Marketing is on the rise, so illustrating direct mail can help you stand out in the inbox.
- Merchandise: Custom illustrations can be used to create original merchandise, such as t-shirts, mugs, and stickers, catching more eyes on the street than you think!
How to incorporate custom illustrations into your brand
If you think custom illustrations are an afterthought in the realm of branding design, think again. Custom illustrations must be carefully considered when connecting a corporate campaign to your business’s messaging and core values. Without custom illustrations your brand design can be lackluster at best. In 2023, attention spans are shorter than ever, so any opportunity to stand out from the pack and drive brand recall is a no-brainer.
Brands are taking full advantage of custom illustration’s capabilities and weaving it into various mediums including animation, lottie files, digital billboards, and kiosk screen displays. Don’t let custom illustrations become a footnote in your branding strategy – use them wisely and creatively!
What tools can you use to create custom illustrations?
There are a number of platforms that you can use to create custom illustrations. The most popular platform is Adobe Illustrator, an industry-standard vector graphics software. Adobe Illustrator is popular among professional illustrators and designers, and it offers a wide range of tools and features that can be used to create high-quality illustrations. All Design Pickle designers use Adobe and always share the final files as well as source files.
Another popular platform is Procreate, an app that allows users to create digital illustrations in a variety of styles. Procreate is popular among professional illustrators and designers. It also offers a range of tools and features for beginners that make it easy to create basic but original illustrations.
Pro tip: Leverage the power of generative design by supplementing your skilled illustrator talents with AI! It’s a perfect way to start the creative process and communicate your vision with your designers.
How to choose the right illustrator for your needs
It shouldn’t be difficult to find an illustrator! But the reality is that with traditional processes it is extremely time-consuming and expensive. That’s why we take the sourcing and portfolio sifting hard work out of the equation, and we work with you and your brand to pair you with the right illustrators for your brand and campaigns. Sharing examples, creative direction, and your ideas will help us set you up for success, quickly!
- Set up the project’s requirements like you would any other design request. Include your creative brief details, and provide references and examples of the type of illustrations you need. Include everything from your custom graphic art illustration requirements to where and on what platforms this custom graphic art will be used. It’s important to consider illustration styles and how the design will fit with your brand’s aesthetic and the overall campaign.
- Make sure that both parties are on the same page when it comes to deadlines and expectations.
- It’s also important to provide feedback throughout the process and make sure that the illustrator understands your vision. Communication is key when it comes to working with an illustrator, so make sure to stay in touch throughout the project and provide timely feedback. Don’t get stuck in a feedback loop; invest in a tool like Design Pickle’s platform that helps you communicate constructive, actionable feedback quickly and easily.
Illustrations are one of the most expensive and sought-after talents in the creative industry. But that doesn’t mean you can’t get an insanely-talented designer paired with your brand overnight. Design Pickle sources professional illustrators, so you don’t have to — and, you only pay one flat rate for all of your illustration needs. Stop sifting through freelance illustrator portfolios (ugh, yawn), and send your illustration creative requests to an on-demand creative that’s perfectly paired with your brand (and watch the magic come to life)!
How to find quality illustrating services
A graphic illustrator can be hired on a freelance, part-time, or full-time basis to produce work for magazines, books, ads, digital projects, and more. However, while a freelance illustrator is usually the “easiest” way to start, think about how time-consuming (and boring) it can be to give directions about your branding and quality expectations on every project submitted. Instead, how easy could it be to give instructions about your project and as if by magic, having your new project delivered perfectly on brand and visually on trend? Design Pickle’s platform and creatives make that magic come true in each assigned project. Every assigned illustrator works with your brand profile and creative brief to deliver an amazing end result for your campaign, with full visibility and transparency along the way. (And one flat monthly fee – so you’ll never go out of scope again!)
Design Pickle gives you access to unlimited graphics with unlimited revisions. It’s almost the same as having an entire design department at your fingertips (without being able to see them at the watercooler). Our subscription-based, flat rate design service is a great way for medium-sized businesses and large enterprises to get access to high-level creative illustrators and designers without having to add an entirely new team to their payroll.
Custom illustrations can be a great way to give your business a unique edge and help it stand out from the competition, as well as drive brand recall in a time when attention spans are short and digital ecosystems are crowded! From logos and icons to characters and animations, custom illustrations can be used in a variety of ways to create a memorable and recognizable brand.
With the help of custom illustration services, you can take your marketing graphics to the next level and boost your conversions. Book a consultation with Design Pickle today and learn how flat-rate, unlimited design services can scale your brand to the next level.