Visual Communication & Data Visualization: A Beginner's Guide to Infographics | Bianca Carague | Skillshare

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Visual Communication & Data Visualization: A Beginner's Guide to Infographics

teacher avatar Bianca Carague, Experience Designer

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      What is an Infographic?


    • 3.

      Elements of Visual Communication


    • 4.

      5 Steps to Making an Infographic


    • 5.

      Step 1: Outline Your Goals


    • 6.

      Step 2: Collect Data


    • 7.

      Step 3: Visualize the Data


    • 8.

      Step 4: Layout the Visual Elements


    • 9.

      Step 5: Add Style


    • 10.

      Final Thoughts


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About This Class

In this Skillshare class, you will learn about the key elements in visual communication as well as the different types of data we most commonly deal with and how to best visualize them. This class is for anyone (students, teachers, entrepreneurs, etc. with any level of knowledge) who wants to learn how to effectively represent data/information through an infographic.

Meet Your Teacher

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Bianca Carague

Experience Designer


Bianca Carague is a designer who builds digital spaces and experiences for social impact.

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Level: Beginner

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1. Intro: Hi. Welcome to my skill shot glass. My name's Bianca get and I'm in experiences. I know. Apparently basing this class, he learned about the key elements in the visual communication as well as some common types of data on how to buy specialized. This is the class for anyone with any kind of background. It's level wanted. Their effectively represent information through visual forms and images. What you learn can be applied in many areas from corporate presentations, even your resume. I in the Consul have learned the basics of making public info graphics and apply what you learn to your own project. Today we accumulate so much information and are confronted with 24 7 But how do we make sense of all this and actually communicate that to an audience? If you've ever stared in a massive spreadsheet of data and couldn't see a president or even had to read 100 beach research paper and then realizing at the end of it that all the information could have been one page of churches images all along, you know how much more effective a visualization could be. Data and information can be so powerful, but they don't mean anything without an intention and the narrative. The exact same set of data, for example, could be interpreted and translated to be completely different things, which makes individual communications such an important and the following videos. I'll be discussing some key elements and visual communication also shows some examples and provide. Tim's resource is and thanks also talked briefly about formulating a clear message, which is important in ensuring that is exactly the job for. 2. What is an Infographic?: first. What is an infographic and Infographic is a composition of images, charts and minimal text that gives an easy to understand overview of a topic. It's a form of visual art that grabs her interests and keeps our eyes on the message. So when we see a charge, we quickly see friends and out flyers. When we see your series of images, we can easily deduce a story. So when we see something, we can internalize it quickly. It's storytelling with a purpose, but why? You're a good infographic, so important our eyes were drawn, the colors and patterns which help us make sense of what we see. We can quickly identify right from blues from square and things like advertisements to movies. Our culture is really highly visual, but it's not just the simplest dressing up a graph to make a pretty or slapping on the in voted in photographic. The plainest graph, for example, could be do boring to catch attention, or it could convey a really powerful point. On the other hand, the most stunning visualizations could just completely fail and miss the point, but it could also speak. Williams have done properly so information and visuals need to work together. It's about conveyed. It's about combining great analysis with great visual story coming. You just really need the balance where the function 3. Elements of Visual Communication: When we create visuals, we control and create communicate you control position, color, contrast, size, shape and orientation to create contrast, repetition, alignment and proximity. And you do these things basically to communicate higher G grouping and sequins. But I'm gonna be focusing specifically on what you can communicate through. An infographic get help. So first is hierarchy. Hierarchy refers to the reading order of a design. So establishes order. Designer needs the first attractive viewer's attention and then communicate and communicate ideas and information in a progressively diminishing matter so you can do this through scale or a proportion contrast color, or even just the positioning of the elements. Elements of the higher contrast, like black on a white background for exact blue crab. Viewer's attention first, as well as warm, bright colors like red or orange compared to cooler ones with no contrast like gray and like blue on, let's say a another light blue background and playing with the size of your elements give you some hierarchy as well. Also, remember that we naturally read from left to right and from top to bottom, so keep this in mind. Would creating anarchy through positioning grouping is important in showing which ideas, information or elements belong together. This could be easily done through color, contrast, scale, shape or even spacing. So see, for example, in the last example here. The squares air grouped as columns first and roast, happened because of the amount of spacing between the squares. So you can also group elements by simply putting borders around them or even putting the group elements over the same color. Cheap now sequence. Just because you labelled on images Number one, it doesn't mean that slippers thing a person's going to look at. So when arranging visual elements, keep in mind a person's natural reading inclinations. So remember that we usually read from top to bottom, right, and our eyes follow where it's most giving it. And the next videos all explained how to make an effective infographic using five simple steps 4. 5 Steps to Making an Infographic: so to efficiently make an infographic, you first need to outline your goals. As excited as you might be to just get started making the graphics, you need to first probable. So before making any charts or graphs know exactly what you're making for. The second step is to collect data for your infographic. Be resourceful when collecting data and information, and make sure that your sources air credible or reliable. They're the most important part of your demographic. There's that, Mr Visualize the data. Understand the structure of your data and find a chart that best reflected the fourth step . Facility out your infographic. This will establish the visual flow, and lastly, add some style. Be thoughtful about your choices of color, fonts and shapes to make your infographic aesthetically pleasing and clear. 5. Step 1: Outline Your Goals: So first streamline your message by outlining the goals. Very infographic. It'll help you organize your thoughts and ensure that you're putting together the right content. A good infographic tells a story. It removes the noise and highlights only the useful information. I know that you're creating this infographic so that your audience can gain something very specific for reading it. So before you even begin to think about the layout, charts and aesthetics, think hard about the goals of your infographic. Why are you making it? Avoid confusing yourself with big general goals and instead set clear concrete and achievable ones. So in this case, your goal is to illustrate the difference between sharks and dolphins. You have a subject, a clear subject of focus, and you know exactly what kind of information you you're looking for. You also know that the information you gather will be compared to each other in the end, so structure him for infographic accordingly. Well, they're not. You already have the club founder information you're working with. Outline your infographic. You could even just do it using pen and paper. So first, think about the really question. What is it you really want the same theory, Infographic like Imagine earlier. Be specific and be called next. Determine the supporting questions. What are the sub points that are going? The support you made? Message the Silguy you and narrowing down the kind of data you gather when you do your research. If you don't already have the information and lastly determined the title headers, sub headers and relevant facts when including paragraph backs in your infographic, be sure to only include relevant information that supports your story rather than leads people astray from the main point. And remember the last words you managed to use the better. 6. Step 2: Collect Data: the Step two is to collect data. Pierre Infographic. If you don't already have it, the healthy answer. Each question. You define that one, you're going to need data, and if you already have your own, that's great. But it's not. There's a kind of public data available to you online if you just know where to look. One simple way is the simply Google. This may be the best way to start your research in, since you should already know what you're looking for. Be specific in your searches. But while Google searches are fastened, these'll often end up with Messi data, which could take some time to organize. So if you want to find data that's ready to use, you can look in some existing data repositories. I listed only a few here, but there's a lot more you could find online, especially once specific to your area. 7. Step 3: Visualize the Data: Step three is to visualize the data in your infographic. Now that you have the questions you want to answer and the data you need, the answer them. Your next step should be to decide how to best present that data visually. First, for each piece of data you want to visualize the German mother. The primary goal will be to inform, compare, show, change, organized or reveal relationships. Then use the best practices for that goal to find the right truck for your data. If you want to convey an important message or data point that doesn't require much contacts to understand, the easiest way would be to make a numerical statistics stand out using big, bold, colorful next. The nice thing about the strategy is that it straight to the point, and there's no room for misinterpretation. But sometimes just a single number without any context might not come off is very significant to your viewers, so you can use simple symbols or icons that add a bit more context, like a narrowed emphasize girl for decline. You could also develop extra attention by pairing icons of texts or highlight a percentage or rate with a donut chart or pictograph were accurate. We have representing a proportion is by directly spelling it out in a victor. This is a matrix of icons in which one I can't represents a unit or a group of units. Also, you don't need to create these icons yourself. You can find specific collections of them on, like they're also often sorted by theme, which makes some so amusing to search for. So here, if you up sites that I personally find useful for finding my guns. If you want to show similarities or differences among values or parts of a whole, you can use a bar chart column, chart, bubble chart or bubble cloud the compared independent values. As readers were particularly good at preparing the length of Barzan departure as compared comparing the segments of a pie chart, for example, so when showing comparisons of independent values, BOY column charts would be the best. For the most part, bar charts and colored drugs could be used interchangeably. But if you want to compare the change in some metric over time, it's better to stick with a column charts and the timers represented from left to right. And if you happen to have long labels for each data point like when you're trying to serve years olds, for example, the horizontal bar chart is a better choice. It allows extra space for each label so that you can avoid vertical or angle texts, which are hard to read and note the order of the bars here. Since the data set has no inherent order, starting the bars from greatest Lisse adds an extra dimension of information. Next, use a bubble trying to compare independent values with clear out pliers and a bubble chart values represented by Circle area instead of by darling. Since we're not particularly good at making precise judgments of circle area, it's a good idea to use bubble charts when only when they're clear out liars or large gaps between each value. I'd also recommend excessively labeling each bubble with its value so that there's no room for misinterpretation and to compare values within a whole. Use a pie chart. Don't try pictograph or every month I tried to the simplest way to visualize simple part. The whole relationships make your pie tribes easy to read by ordering segments from greatest police and starting the segment at 12 o'clock and could the new it clockwise? Also little trying to a maximum of seven segments. And if there is a certain value you want to emphasize, you can pull out a slice of the pie or even enlarge it. And to give it more emphasis, make sure you give these values the boldest color or the highest contrast file pie charts of the most familiar and easily understood. They do have some limitations. So if you want to compare the compositions of multiple values, use a stacked bar or SAT culture and take note in your charts. Put the most emphasis on the data itself, the most important data and information to be visualized with big images and contrasting colors. The good lines and numbers Air units on the horizontal of vertical access, on the other hand, can can take the back seat. Make them thin and lightly colored. So it's not to let them distract from the more important parts of your infographic, which is the actual data. And if you want to show dreads over space or time, you can use a line chart or an area chart to show changes. Letter continuous over time, you can use 1/4 plus map, also known as a map trying to show spatial data or a timeline to show events are each chronologically over time. Tagline doesn't always have to be done in a linear way, though you can be a bit more creative if you want to show groups patterns, rank, order, Think about the structure of your information and find a chart that best of black fast structure. So I think these under bit self explanatory. The simplest form of Infographic organization is a list. Use a list special Radical order. What you want to provide extra information about each other list doesn't have to be so boring. Go ask relevant icons and images to make it more compelling. Use a flow chart if your goal is to show a process when organizing information and a flow chart, you'll pretty much a lion to basic principles. These are using shapes and border street groups and using lines and arrows to indicate the relationship between groups or to connect them. Also, if you want to show hierarchy, a pyramid track could be good. And when you want readers to be able to look up specific values, you can use a table to shore at your order. Next Tuchel relationship Between ideas. You can use a Venn diagram where you have the differences on the outer parts and similarities what you're comparing in the part Money intersect within the latest that, though you might want to reveal relationships by correlation and distribution. So if you want to be a more complex relationships among things you can use, a scattered blood or history scatter plot would be for when you want to display two variables for a set of data. It's the easiest way to explore potential correlations. But we do variables, and you can also use this. Reveal the distribution, clustering and outliers of a set of data. Then you can use a history Graham to reveal the distribution of a single variable. This is pretty much how many people display age demographic data, and it's great for all kinds of distributions. These are only the name few, though They're just so many desert kinds of charts out there, and you didn't really need online visualisation tools. I listen if you down here, but there's were, and you could find the light that at the end of the day, there's really no one. Magic bullet friend Infographic. The visualizations will really depend on the specifics of a data and how you want to communicate your information. But now you should pretty much have everything you need. The big, appropriate transfer age set of data you want to visualize. Just think about what exactly you want to emphasize. Choose your tried score dignity. 8. Step 4: Layout the Visual Elements: step forest, The lay of the elements of you. Infographic. When all that's left is layout and design, think about how many elements you haven't. How you're sorry you should flow and choosing. How did they get a graphic? Putting? Your first element on the page can be a bit adopting, though, but there are few hacks to make things easier and keep you from just guessing. Just remember that your goal is to create a natural information flow so you can start by telling your reader what they'll gain from your photographic, for example, by turning the burning question into your header and then follow up with the charts that address the supporting questions. And lastly, at the aborted details they got you. Elements with a symmetrical grid can also be an easy way to elevate your infographic. It also gives some basic order and keeping in mind that we naturally read from left to right and top to bottom. It could be used to direct your readers, gaze from element to element. One way is to use a center single column layout for content with linear flow. To make comparisons, you can also use a two column layout and when the reading order is it so important, you could use a multi sexually out. But whatever they do use, make sure that you space your elements evenly to create a sense of structure and balance. 9. Step 5: Add Style: Lastly, add some style after you've gathered and laid off your data, you can manipulate the design elements and add some flair to make your infographic more aesthetically pleasing and clear. Use repetition, consistency and alignment in your infographic and add some extra graphic elements to make your compositions more impactful and consistent and easy. Way to pull off your composition together is to repeat basic shapes to reinforce the underlying grid at bats of consistency. You could also use basic shapes that emphasize headers, endless elements to reinforce important concepts in the text. You can also use icons, so but just remember to keep the icon, color, style and size consisted all throughout and pull everything together with extra background japes. But whatever you do, make sure that the repeated elements you add are aligned because even the slightest Mr Lightman, it's gonna be very distracting. Next, we have negative space or whitespace. This basically adversely areas of the page that don't contain any text or images, and it's just as important as any other element of design. Just like when you take a photo for it. Is that you, the space on the sides of your subject so in an infographic. You should also leave space around each made element or group of elements in infographic. So that means making sure that your margins and gaps Vivian unrelated elements makes it easier for your viewers Understand which elements are grouped together. Now you're probably wondering how you're going to manage to choose the red color saree and photographing that there's a reason I'm mentioning this last. It's because, well, colors of powerful communication tool. A truly great design should be just as effective in black and white as it isn't color. So I really just think of colors just an added bonus, to highlight important information or to group related elements. But dont overlook neutrals because they're so easy to work with, and when you saw offset bright colors that can really pull together composition. Now, if you really don't know what color combinations to use their some free tools online that just make sure you don't use to many and remember that the less number of colors you managed to use to make it infographic clear and captivating, the better 10. Final Thoughts: so just to wrap things up again infographics air helpful When you want to provide a quick overview of a topic, explain a complex process. Display research, findings of survey data, summarised long articles or reports. You can also use infographics if you want to compare and contrast multiple options. Ideas. Andi. Also they're very useful and raising awareness about issues or cause. But no matter how excited you are to get started, don't just jump into the design process without a game. Plan outlines the goals of your infographic. First, collect your data. Choose a way to visualize it. Lay out your charts, sex and images and add some style and be thoughtful about all those things. So that said here some last few reminders and best practices for when you create your next infographic, Start your child access at zero and using durables. Cryptic Works. One of the biggest data visualization areas is at sister vacation, starting the access of a bar or a line chart. Values other than zero is your best that distort in your data and having your readers misinterpreting and misunderstanding produced 90 day. Your data should always be the start of the show data visualization expert. Every tough, for example, coined the term data and racial to emphasize the importance of minimalism and track design . Basically, it means that most of the ink required to print a graph should directly represent the information. So things like borders, good lines, background colors and other extra decorations that should take a back seat to the other charts. Attacks that actually means something and represent you need up. So do your best. The light of labels and grid lines diminish colors, eliminate backgrounds. Avoid boyars and helplines. If you don't need them, there's no need to be so fancy. And don't forget labels, legends and annotations. Labels are your friends. Misinterpretation is not so. Use sharply bulls headings that allegations to explicitly state the things that you want your readers to know, and so that to avoid misinterpretation. And while legally lines, bars or points tried to avoid relying on a separate legend, if you can avoid it, put the labels as close to the corresponding data points as possible so that your reader doesn't have to search and trying hard to match up with the labels and with data points. And also don't forget to include your sources. You could put your data sources at the bottom of the infographic at the right or the left side and small type. Next, use color for a function, not decoration Colors play a significant role in how busier Infographic will appear to make sure things don't get too messy. Don't use more than six colors in the track. And when you've got more than one child limit infographic. Use those colors consistently across all of your times. Also don't rely on color to make the trek eligible. Your charge should be just as meaningful in black and white as it isn't color. So thanks for taking my class. You can find the class project below the justice that created Infographic of there s a beef burger favorite meal. So please do posted and shared with the community. It should be fun