Effective vehicle wrap design

Vehicle Wraps and the Art of Design

When people consider design, they often envision it as some sort of magical craft, free of rules, requirements – even logic! The truth is, effective design is based on a core set of principles. These principles can be flexible, of course, but it is still a good idea to familiarize yourself with them. Otherwise, the messages you wish to advertise with your designs could be severely reduced, or even lost entirely. A firm foundation in these principles will go a long way towards making your designs truly pop.

Vehicle wraps can be a particularly difficult challenge, even for seasoned graphic designers. These large format vinyl graphics can be quite expensive, and a few little mistakes here or there can muddle your message into incomprehensibility quite quickly. On the plus side, when it comes to vinyl wraps vs. new vehicle paint jobs, they are far cheaper, easier to remove, & stand out from the crowd – which can be a great boon to your brand.

Design Tips from Adendo

For all these reasons, we here at Adendo wish to provide you with a few brief tips you can implement when considering the design for your next vehicle wrap.

The Importance of Caution

Our first tip – and possibly most vital to firmly install into the forefront of your brain throughout this entire operation – is to double and triple check everything (your designs, measurements, fonts, copy vector graphics, and on, and on…). Vehicle wrap design is complicated and quite expensive (the average vehicle wrap costs anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000) – so taking your time & being cautious will serve you well. If you succeed in this task, and properly maintain your design, your vehicle wrap could even last 2-6 years down the road (pun certainly intended)!

Incorporating Vehicle Dimensions into your Design

Once you know you are about to embark upon the design of a vehicle wrap, it is essential to collect accurate car/vehicle measurements and dimensions into an organized outline. Define your printing process and timeline, including all the technical, creative, & design aspects. Gather any additional body details for your particular vehicle wrap, which will come in handy too.

Next, consider the design itself: possibly the most important part of this whole process. First of all, design with the actual measurements & dimensions of your vehicle in mind. If your business uses a van, for example, it would be nonsensical to slap a vinyl wrap intended for a sports car onto its sides and call it a day. Don’t just design around your vehicle’s dimensions, either. Why not incorporate them into your design? Let that bulbous bumper truly shine! You also shouldn’t overlook your vehicle’s roof design. Not only will wrapping it complete your design’s overall aesthetics and cohesion, you also never know when a helicopter or an airplane will pass by overhead. There’s no reason not to reach for the heavens!

Design Principles: “Less is More”

Next, consider how your vinyl vehicle wrap design will address your brand and market demographics – how will your design draw more people into checking out your business? Brand identity is vital for customer retention and business growth. Your design should capture that brand identity, which you’ve already worked so hard to establish.

When it comes to fonts & copy, this is where those helpful core principles of design start really coming into play. Often, people’s instinct is to plaster their designs with as many different fonts and advertising copy as space will allow. This instinct is understandable. You want your vehicle wrap to stand out! You wish to convey as much information to potential customers as possible in as short an amount of time as possible! Which is exactly why you need to keep the old adage “less is more” in mind!

Consider this, for a moment: your vehicle wrap will be bombing down the street, so passers by or other drivers will have split seconds – if that – to process what your vehicle wrap is trying to say. If you have twenty seven different fonts arrayed in paragraphs and paragraphs of tiny text – exactly none of what you wish to convey will be conveyed. Therefore, limit your design to two or, at the very, very most, three different fonts only. Also, for the love of eye strain, choose a legible font people will be able to read quickly and from long distances. Leave all that fancy wingding-type nonsense where it belongs; on wedding invitations. As for the amount of advertising copy to include in your wrap design? The same sort of principle applies – if someone can’t read it all, easily, in less than three seconds and from a long way away – it is functionally useless. Keep it to under a sentence, or better yet, to a phrase, or a tagline.

Paired with these tips, it is also important to keep your design, overall, uncluttered. Choose eye-catching (not eye-scorching!) colors. Keep it simple. Keep it sleek. Keep it attractive. Keep it modern.

The Wonders of Vector Artwork

Additionally, when considering images – always use vector artwork. Do not use photos. Do not use raster images. Vector images, created and edited in such programs as Adobe Illustrator, Affinity Designer, CorelDraw, FLEXI, etc… – as PDF, EPS, or AI files – will allow you to resize them in any way imaginable. If you use rasters or photos and then later decide you’d actually prefer them larger within the design than you originally created them, you will be out of luck. When you blow them up, they’ll come out fuzzy, stretched; low quality. So it’s safer just to stick with vector images, which retain their original quality if scaled up to any size. Once you’ve saved your vehicle vinyl wrap as a vector file, it will be print ready!

Capturing Audiences with Fleet Wraps

Before too long you’ll be rolling along, wrapped boldly in your brand new vehicle vinyl wrap. Soon, you’ll want to wrap your entire business’ vehicle fleet! These wraps will allow you and your company to capitalize on traffic, connecting with brand new captive audiences. Your vehicle(s) wraps’ effectiveness will entirely depend on your design.

Schedule with an Adendo Advisor today!

In order to successfully meet any challenges you may face when it comes to the creation of vinyl vehicle wraps (& the printing involved in this process), you can easily get the help you need! Simply schedule a 1-on-1 conference with an Adendo advisor today – and you’ll receive expert guidance on creating vinyl vehicle wraps which meet – and exceed – your wildest expectations.

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