The use of textures can dramatically improve your print design work. You can (if used sensibly) add more depth to your work, whether your work be business cards, advertisements or posters. The results of using texture in your print design projects can be completely different every time, depending on various factors such as what textures you use, how many textures you use, and how you apply them to your work.
This post showcases a great selection of print design projects that make good use of textures; making the work more visually appealing. The showcase is followed by a small selection of useful links and resources.
This article was originally published in March of 2009.
Textures in Business Cards
Although there are thousands of textured business cards out there, it's not very often you're actually given one. Most business cards are very simple, which is usually suitable for the company they are representing, although there are a lot of simple cards being used to represent companies that could do so much more with their corporate image, such as landscaping and construction agencies. Below is a selection of great textured business cards.
The use of texture in this card is incredible. A little bit of grunge mixed with paint and splatter marks is (usually) never a bad thing, and the composition of this card shows how to do it perfectly.
Redbox Media use a subtle grunge texture in the red of their business card to make it just that little more appealing. The digital texture of the lined paper and coffee stains, combined with the 'hand-drawn' style typography make this card very unique.
Well, it's quite obvious what the texture is used for in Marko Manojlovic's card. Although very simple, it's interesting and definitely appeals more than a standard plain card!
Colokial use texture in their business card to give it a worn-out and stained "tropical" look. It works very well with the color scheme of the logo and that little touch of Spot UV makes it so unique!
The texture used in Hypno Liberate's card adds a lovely vintage look to the design, matching the corporate brand of the company well.
Textures in Printed Advertisements
In my opinion, textures are used to their greatest advantage in print advertisements such as billboard posters and postcards. Taking a look at the selection of superb designs below; you can clearly see the huge difference adding a little bit of texture can make.
This fantastic advertisement for a hair product is incredibly clever and is made up (almost) entirely of hair texture. The addition of someones face in the bottom center of the poster makes it a little comical, too.
This great poster to encourage people to stop smoking has a great three-dimensional look to it which was created using textures. In fact, without the textures in this poster, there'd be nothing left!
These clever Pepsi Max posters (see other one above) show a depressed lonely calorie, advertising that Pepsi Max is a one calorie per can soft drink. The use of textures make the illustrations much more interesting to look at, and just gives them that extra "Oooomph"!
The use of an old stained piece of paper in this poster makes it individual and much more interesting. The way it works so well and merges in with the model and birds is superb!
Textures in Poster Design
A lot of the creative posters below actually rely on textures - without the texture in the images, some of the designs would be fairly simple and quite boring to look at. The following collection shows that texture really can bring your work to a completely new level!
"First Date With Alice" has an excellent yet simple composition and a beautiful, bright color scheme. The texture makes the poster a lot more interesting, adding different shades of color to the main shapes in the center of the poster.
This poster makes use of subtle texture to just a little more depth in the background of the piece.
Like in the Pepsi Max advertisement posters showcased earlier in this post, this poster uses textures to add new life to the otherwise flat vector illustrations. The extra noise gives it a that little extra detailing it needs to keep you looking at the poster for a longer period of time.
Light grungy textures are using in the posters "Squares" to give it an interesting background and to add a little extra noise to the model and other various shapes used in the composition. Without it, the overall feel of the poster would be completely different.
First of all, I have to say "wow!" What a great poster! The vibrant colors mixed with the grungy textures and superb lighting effects make this a stunning one, definitely worthy of going on the office wall!
This Abduzeedo poster uses texture to add a retro look to the otherwise plain background. A slightly grungier texture has been used to make those clean-cut abstract shapes fly into a completely different dimension!
Last but not least, this great poster titled "Axygene" uses plenty of different textures to bring the poster to life, as well as using a grungy eraser brush to remove areas of the right-angled corners.
Links & Resources
Freebie Roundup: 12 Places To Download Free Textures
A round-up of 12 superb places to download free, high-resolution textures.
200+ Textures, Brushes, and Fonts: Ultimate Grunge Roundup
A huge compilation of grunge resources such as textures, brushes, and fonts.
300+ Vintage Style Textures and Photoshop Brushes
A collection of over 300 vintage style textures and brushes to use in your designs.
50+ textures for Your Design Appetite
A lovely collection of high-resolution and free textures to use in your everyday work.
The Big Collection Of Free Design Textures
What seems like a never-ending list of free textures that you can download and use in all of your own designs.
Textures in Modern Web Design
A showcase of 50+ incredible uses of texture in fresh and modern web design.
Dirty Design: Create a Grungy Thriller Book Cover
Create your own grungy book cover using plenty of textures and techniques.
How to Make a Highly Textured Site Layout in Photoshop
In this tutorial, learn to create a textured site layout by layering multiple images.
Create a Leather-Textured, Realistic Briefcase Icon
Learn to crete a realistic leather briefcase entirely from scratch using layer styles and textures.