Building a Compelling Narrative: Tips for Designing a Visual Story
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 3 min read

As humans, we are naturally drawn to stories. We crave the emotional connection and the journey that a good story takes us on. This is why storytelling is such a crucial part of design. Whether you're a graphic designer, illustrator, or animator, creating a compelling narrative is key to engaging your audience and leaving a lasting impression. In this blog, we'll explore tips and strategies to help you design a visual story that captivates your audience.

Designing a Visual Story

Designing a visual story involves much more than just creating pretty pictures. It's about crafting a narrative that resonates with your audience and evokes an emotional response. This can be achieved through a variety of design elements, such as colour, composition, and typography.


Colour is one of the most powerful tools in a designer's arsenal. It can evoke emotions, set the tone, and guide the viewer's eye. When designing a visual story, it's important to choose colours that complement the narrative and create the desired mood.

For example, warm colours like red and orange can create a sense of excitement and energy, while cool colours like blue and green can evoke calmness and tranquility. By using color strategically, you can enhance the emotional impact of your visual story.


Composition refers to the arrangement of visual elements within a design. It's important to consider how the elements are arranged to tell the story and guide the viewer's eye.

One effective way to create a compelling visual story through composition is to use the rule of thirds. This involves dividing the design into thirds both horizontally and vertically and placing the most important elements along those lines. This creates a sense of balance and harmony that draws the viewer's eye and enhances the narrative.


Typography is another important design element for creating a visual story. The font you choose can convey a lot about the tone and mood of the narrative. For example, a serif font can create a sense of tradition and elegance, while a sans-serif font can evoke modernity and simplicity.

It's also important to consider the hierarchy of the typography. This involves using different font sizes and weights to guide the viewer's eye and emphasise the most important information.

Creating a Compelling Narrative

Now that we've explored some design elements for creating a visual story, let's dive into the narrative itself. A compelling narrative is one that engages the viewer and takes them on a journey. It's important to consider the following elements when crafting your narrative:


Characters are the heart of any story. They provide a relatable perspective for the viewer and drive the plot forward. When creating characters for your visual story, it's important to consider their motivations, personalities, and relationships with other characters. This will help you create a more immersive and enjoyable experience for your audience.


Conflict is what drives the story forward and creates tension for the viewer. It's important to establish a clear conflict early on in the narrative and build upon it throughout the story. This can be achieved through obstacles, challenges, or opposing forces.


The resolution is the conclusion of the story and should provide a satisfying conclusion for the viewer. It's important to tie up any loose ends and provide closure for the narrative. This can be achieved through a happy ending, a bittersweet conclusion, or even a cliffhanger for a potential sequel.

Tips for Artists to Create a More Immersive and Enjoyable Visual Story

Now that we've explored some design elements and narrative strategies, let's dive into some specific tips for artists to create a more immersive and enjoyable visual story.


Research is key to creating a compelling visual story. It's important to understand the audience you're designing for and what resonates with them. This can be achieved through market research, surveys, or even just talking to your target audience.


Storyboarding is a crucial step in the design process. It involves sketching out the narrative and visualising how the story will unfold. This can help you identify any potential issues with the narrative and make adjustments before moving forward.


Iteration is the process of refining and improving your design through multiple drafts. It's important to be open to feedback and willing to make changes to improve the narrative. This can help you create a more polished and effective visual story.

Final Thoughts

Designing a compelling visual story is no easy feat, but with the right strategies and tools, it's possible to create an immersive and enjoyable experience for your audience. By considering design elements like colour, composition, and typography, and crafting a narrative with relatable characters, clear conflict, and a satisfying resolution, you can create a visual story that resonates with your audience.

If you're looking to take your visual storytelling skills to the next level, I highly recommend checking out Lily Stock's workshop, "How to Design Your First Visual Story." This workshop provides valuable insights and strategies for designing a narrative that captivates your audience and leaves a lasting impression. Good luck on your visual storytelling journey!