Painting Pictures with Copy

I always cringe when a writer says “I just write the words” or a designer says “I just make it look pretty.” Copy and design are not just friendly acquaintances, they are undeniably interdependent.

Great writers not only think about the verbal communication of their content, they see the visual implications of each word and phrase as they write it. Word choice becomes critical to audience impact and compelling a response. In the same way, great designers use these words as conscious brushstrokes, not just line breaks and paragraphs on a page.

Writing visually not only gives your designer a ready canvas with which to work, it gives your reader a vivid mental picture of the story you’re telling (or selling). And in today’s highly visual society, a mental picture really is worth a thousand words.

Unfortunately, for our militant grammarians out there, traditional grammatical structure sometimes needs to take a back seat for the greater good of impact. Don’t fret. Style and structure can coexist. But be prepared to break a few rules in order to let your copy truly be seen.