How to Create an Interesting Flat Illustration

Created by Ani Fonny -
 

Finding a creative art style is probably one of the hardest and crucial challenges for every designer. Since there are many ranges of illustration design, one can play around with its stereotypical aesthetic to make an interesting idea. That kind of consideration is not only applied or limited to digital art but also traditional illustration. 

Considering vector images have more advantages in their resolution and usage, many designers can work around its style. People can play around and make their style for various purposes. One of the vector art that gains more attention and its style is a flat illustration. What is it about, and how to create an interesting flat illustration? Here are the details. 

 

About The Style 

Start with the terminology itself. The so-called flat illustration might sound foreign for many new digital artists. However, it is one of the most influential styles in vector art. The idea is not far different than the name itself that highlights the word flat. So, what is it? It emphasizes the same common stylistic feature for numerous vector graphics. 

In other words, graphic designers will use the same interesting feature for many purposes. It can be for advertising or simply artwork. The image style is under the same category called flat design. Vector design mostly refers to the flat style direction that is heavily centered on the minimalistic and visual expressive means. 

Just as the name says, designers create an interesting flat illustration by shedding all the superfluous components and stay with minimalistic style. It is by means a dedication of vector and minimalistic design. As time goes, the vector image style gains or is widely used to counter the ‘rich design’ movement. It is an obvious depiction of the minimalistic vector basis. 

However, flat design and vector illustration also have some other underlying characteristics. One of them is flat 2-dimensional visual details. It makes the vector illustration contrasting more skeuomorphic and highly realistic images. Thus, it makes the style stand out by itself. Considering how unique it is, designers can make more interesting art out of it. 

Created by Green Penguin
 

It is especially true if you know how flat design has been developing and enveloping more fields of graphic design. The vector style also has a more diverse application, which is why it captures the broadest artisans out there. And also, flat illustration is known as a way to enhance usability and visual harmony in many interesting user interfaces.

One thing that makes the flat illustration unique and interesting is its ability to envelop a variety of expressions in the visual design. You can see the vector style reach poster, book covers, magazine, postcard, stamps, print, or even the user interface. In the current trends, many people create vector design styles for websites and mobile applications. 

It became a thing that goes beyond reasons. The flat minimalist and functional vector work better for those who toil with the dynamic project, digital vector illustration. At some point, the vector illustration style itself reached more than just a popular terminology. It set a new direction in the graphic design world that complies with the rich design style. 

Considering the variety of designs and the versatile usage of vectors in general, the style will be one of a kind. It is winning in its place, has value in its artistic approach, and is flexible. But, you cannot simply create an interesting flat illustration without any consideration. Joining the trend is easy, but making it your own is different. 

Created by Sua Balac

 

How to Make Your Artwork Stand Out 

Creating an interesting image is an inspiring movie that almost every designer wants to do. However, to make it your style and get the goldfishes in the pond is pretty much a challenge. Everyone can make a flat design, but what makes your vector stand out is not the same story. Creating an original vector image will demand you to think out of the box. 

So, what makes such a style considered as interesting, good, eye-catching, or flashy? It is not only about color and unique details. It is more about how it defines the feature. To create that kind of design style, one needs to underline some of the important matters. It eventually creates a more definitive impression of recognizable style. 

So, to nail the idea and create an interesting flat illustration, you can underline some consideration. The one and the most grounding one is original stylization. Original art will eventually make your illustration style stand out and be different from others. You also need to consider the non-standard perspective, which is vital in vector design. 

Created by Koma Zhang
 

Vector design has two-dimensional graphics, which makes it lack little details. That is why designers need to create a more non-standard perspective with more thought-out composition. An interesting yet carefully selected color palette also helps create an interesting illustration under the flat design style. 

The nature of interesting flat illustration is the detail restriction. That is why one of the ways to make a better design is by playing around with the color palette and textures. However, there is also the chance of using metaphors to create a deeper meaning. The idea is to create a more meaningful art under the restrictive field, called the flat design style.

If you want to create an interesting design, try to check all of those considerations. It not only works with vector illustration, but it also applies to most of the visual design field. The redline of the idea is to lead you to find out the recognizable style that shouts identity. It does need more research and inspiration, but it is always worth learning and experiencing every time.  

Created by Danii Pollehn

 

Make Your Own Flat Illustration  

As the style is getting popular and getting more recognition, it is harder to stand out. At the same time, the style itself widens its reach, which makes it easier for designers to get lost in the variety of interesting artwork. Along with it, you need to underline to make your vector work have its manner and presentation. 

The idea is to make the image work with your style. It roars with more expressive meaning, volume than others and leaves an impression on people in general. So, how did you do it? Here are some tips and tricks on how to create an interesting flat illustration with your style. Do it as an everyday practice, and you will eventually nail it. 

1. Looking For Inspiration 

Inspiration is one of the fundamentals of many interesting illustrations and designs. In the flat design style, you will find many and endless inspiration out on the internet. The chance to understand the principles and the approaches are easier to do. You can learn how they do the vector illustration work and find what made their work more interesting. 

During this stage, you can emphasize the need for research. Try to understand and find as many flat illustrations as possible. During this time, you will find that every illustrator has an interesting approach that makes them stand out. It can either be their color selection, the shaping, the metaphorical meaning, and the overall detail. 

Created by Balazs Szakonyi

 

2. Avoid Geometry Shapes 

There is one thing that you need to underline to create an interesting flat illustration, the simplistic and minimalistic style. The vector illustration will demand you to use a minimalistic detail without losing its meaning. It is one of the challenges of vector design, which restricts the artist in a way that makes the art stand out. 

But it is not a simple vector image with minimalistic pictures. The art of flat vector illustration is on how it uses metaphor, non-geometrical shapes, and unique representation. So, how to create an interesting flat illustration? The first thing that you can do is doing the manual pencil and sketchbook design. It will be the start of your process to create the art. 

To make it more interesting, you can play around with the sketch and make as many designs as possible. The good thing about manual sketches is that they won’t take up much time to create style. It is getting faster since flat illustrations only need small detail. You don’t need to think about complex digital pictures because minimal color and pattern are enough. 

Another good point of doing sketches for your vector illustration is the ability to draw quickly and find bold lines. It is also easier to do than doing it on the computer or so. You can make interesting movements, shapes, poses, actions, and others. It even allows you to create shadow and depth using darker shades. 

The key point of doing interesting sketches itself is pretty much experimenting, analyzing, and creating a design. You will have to play around with many different shapes, which are not only and limited to geometrical contours. In this case, try unconventional shapes such as hypertrophied or squircle. Your options to create vector flat illustrations are endless. 

You can also work around shapes such as rounded or sharpened ones. The sense of shapes and unique depiction can help contribute to adding details. It also makes an interesting highlight that helps add drama. It creates an interesting character's emotional state or helps tell the nature of the movement of your vector image. 

The idea is to learn and experiment. It is also worth mentioning the inspiration. Some of them might help you create a fun and interesting flat design. They might also give you ideas on how to create such an impact in a very flat and minimalist design. It is an interesting intake, which makes the vector illustration need a lot of practice to master.  

Created by Lu Gallo

 

3. Taking Metaphors 

Have you ever considered how such an image can feel different and fit with the purpose? One thing that helps designers create an interesting and meaningful image is by taking the original metaphor. Most of the time, due to the minimalistic style, flat design is lacking in detail. Thus, it can hinder people from understanding the idea behind the illustration. 

But it can be avoided if the designer creates a vector image with metaphor. If you want to create an interesting flat illustration that shouts out your style, you need to make it eye-catching. The key is different but also meaningful. It should be a flat design image that leaves an impression and makes an interesting or impactful effect on the audience. 

And so, you can create the idea by not catching the first image that comes to mind. The best example is a flat illustration that shows a basketball player making a slam dunk. It is pretty much a perfect and interesting image for the sport. However, it also works the same to pinpoint the idea of achieving a business goal. How so? Because both of them emphasize goals (ring and objective). 

In user interface design, the flat illustration design not only makes a unique picture but also creates a great metaphorical meaning. It looks original and interesting to see since it creates a distinctive impression. It is something that makes the style stand out and also leave more impression, which is important in the vector design for websites. 

Created by Matt Chinworth

 

4. Adding Color To Emphasize Idea 

Just like many other interesting vector images, the picture uses limited color to enhance its versatility usage. Is it something that you should be afraid to? No, it is not. The restricted color palette and lower details are the challenges every designer needs to work. It is especially true for those who are working with vectors. So, how to take advantage of it? 

If you want to create an interesting flat illustration, the best way to add depth and emphasize ideas is color. Color can create drama, accent, and mood. The right color style or palette will bring a primary effect on the whole vector image. At the same time, it helps strengthen the idea and message. How so? Understand that every color has a different meaning. 

If you put green, it will create a more natural and down-to-earth impression. Other than the meaning, you also need to consider the tone contrast and the composition. The key to an interesting vector is making everything clear. To do it, you can create and use colors. But then check the flat picture in black-and-white mode to ensure reliability and contrast.  

Created by Fireart Studio

 

5. Playing With Angles

With color, you can add depth and contrast. It will help you a lot when playing with angles. When you are developing an interesting illustration with distinctive angles, make sure everything is correct. Underline that flat design style is very limited, which then restricts people from making a 3D impression. Drawing a vector image with angles will shed a rigid opinion. 

You can imagine how the picture would look from different angles, such as from a bird's eye or frog's eye. How about an angle that shows the third years old point of view? Everything will look tall. It is something interesting to add to your vector design style illustration. However, again you will need to understand the purpose and composition. 

Make sure that you create the illustration style according to the purpose and goal of the picture. It is also understandable to create an interesting picture style that makes you comfortable. However, it is also important to make sure everything looks balanced. The flat style will demand you to think further since it does not allow a detailed element in it.  

Created by Donghyun Lim

 

6. Trying Different Composition And Perspective 

The process to reach success is not easy, which is the same when you create an interesting flat illustration. To help state the proper meaning, idea, and goal, you need to underline composition. A balanced vector style creates a clear meaning for your illustration. So, what kind of impression do you want to create in the vector image? 

To create tension or dynamic effect, you can play around with a tilted perspective. If you want to create a calm-looking illustration, you need to ensure everything is balanced. Some of the keys styles are scaling, accent, and position. You can plan out the interesting flat illustration through sketching. So, you can catch every detail and composition.  

Created by Менделеев Маркетинг

 

7. Using Texture 

Since flat style is pretty restricted in the implementation, most people play around with interesting colors and texture for extra impact. You can do the same as you create the vector image. Some surfaces such as dots, stripes, or lines make a clean geometric detail. You can also add texture to create interesting physical materials, such as scuff marks. 

To make the vector image have more depth meaning. Texture also helps a hand-made effect. The individuality and the design itself pretty much make the style look more dynamic. At some point, full-color patterns or colored photos also help create applique work. Do not forget to add textures to create an interesting flat illustration. 

Created by Ann-Sophie De Steur

 

Final Words

Get inspired, learning, research, and experiment are what every graphic designer needs to create their interesting flat style. In the case of flat illustration, the key is minimalistic design. It is a vector art that is not easy to nail since you have to stick around with a flat design yet still emphasize meaning. So, start with looking for inspiration and play around with your vector illustration.  

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