I have been seeing a lot of cool inforgraphics in blog posts recently, and sought out to make them myself. As I searched. I came across this blog post about a few sites that will help you make them.
I experimented with a few of the free sites listed, and settled on Venngage as something I wanted to explore further.
The class itself was well-structured. It featured Eugene giving a voice-over of a slide-show.
At the end of the hour-long presentation, all of the slides are available for download, and there is a chance to sign up for a free inforgraphic challenge to continue studying.
All-in-all, I got a lot out of the course, and plan to continue taking more of the courses through Venngage Academy.
The way the course presented infographic development was to think of it like you would a research paper where there is a lot of work that needs to be done before writing begins.
1. Take time developing your topic
When I was teaching 10th graders how to do research, I learned very quickly that a bad thesis could lead to a lot of wasted time and energy. (This is why I always required that my students submit a thesis for approval before getting any research time)
For example, when a student proposed to research why the drinking age should be lowered to 16, I knew that he would not be able to find the right kind of data to support his position.
So, when developing your topic, try to consider a few questions
- Does this topic have any milage left in it? Has it been overdone?
- What is the problem, or need for your infographic?
- Is there a new way to look at the problem?
- Who is your audience?
For more on creating great topics, check out this presentation.
2. Get the right data
In this world of fake news, it is so easy to find information online that is careless at best, and misleading at worst. In order to maintain credibility with your readers, it is important that you get your data from reputable sources.
I am partial to Pew Research, and the US Census Bureau. ColumnFiveMedia created an awesome list on any topic you can imagine that will forever be in my bookmarks.
3. Grids and Colors
At it’s heart, an infographic is a visual medium. So, let’s get visual.
- Make sure to organize your data. Use columns, rows, and white space to layout your information in a way that suits the readers eye
- Use a monochromatic or complementary color scheme. Different shades of the same color always go together, but complementary colors standout when placed side by side. To find a color’s complement, look at the opposite side of the color wheel, so orange and blue. Here’s a great site that will do the work for you.