What is Hierarchy and why is it important?
Hierarchy is how certain aspects of your design are arranged and how that arrangement can signify their importance. This may seem like a small, insignificant detail but it is very important. Graphic design is often used as a means of communication between a client and their audience. For example, a corporation like Target trying to communicate to a customer about a sale on blenders.That customer may only look at the sale flyer for 5 seconds so it is our job as the designer to get the important information across quickly so that the customer remembers it. In the case of a sale flyer, the most important element would probably be the tagline "5 DAY SALE" so that the customer knows what the flyer is for immediately. Secondly the customer needs to know what the sale is for so a picture of the products should also be large. Thirdly Targets branding (logo, or color scheme) should be prominent to the customer recognizes what store it is for. Then comes more secondary information like dates and locations. These will be smaller than the tagline and the photo.There are many ways to make the hierarchy clear like size, weight of font, or change of font, and placement on the page. Bold and large font typically signifies importance and smaller font works best for secondary information. So even if the customer throws away the flyer five minutes later, they will at least remember that Target is having a sale on blenders because your design was clear and effective.
I took a photo of my dog outside and it is really nice except there is one section of the grass that is rather brown and dead and it really distracts from my dog. How can I fix this?
One great way to change something so that it doesn't stand out is by using the "clone stamp tool". You will find this tool about halfway down the tool bar, the symbol looks like a stamp. hover over it to make sure it says "clone stamp tool" if it says "pattern stamp tool" then right click and select "clone stamp tool". Now, the way this works is by taking a sample from a different area of the photo and cloning it to placing it over the area you don't want to be seen to cover it up. So to select your sample area click "option", and while holding option, click the area you want to sample. You can make your selection area bigger by clicking right bracket ] or smaller by clicking left bracket [. You will see the selection circle get larger and smaller. Then just click and drag your mouse in the area you want to cover up. This works great in areas that are not the focus point of the photo, like the grass you are speaking of! Grass is small and you won't be able to tell that you cloned another area of grass.
What is the difference between the pen tool and the brush tool?
The pen tool is meant for drawing with your mouse, and the brush tool works better if you are drawing with a stylus on a tablet. The pen tool allows you to draw smooth lines by you manually dropping anchor points to create a line, as opposed to the brush tool that follows your stylus or mouse as you draw and automatically drops anchor points base on your movements or pressure on the stylus. The brush tool also hase many different settings like watercolor settings and dry brush settings to create certain effects. I recommend using the pen tool if you are trying to draw a clean geometric object, but if you want something more stylistic like a hand drawn font, the brush tool can have more character because it typically is not perfect. But there is a way to add character to a pen tool drawing. This is by using the pen tool, but then applying a "brush stroke" to the line TO create the stylistic effect that you are trying to achieve. This is a great way to get a clean base design to make sure it is technically accurate and then focusing on the stylistic qualities later.