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Tools Designers Can Use to Tell a Compelling Visual Story

By Gabrielle Kenny

Storytelling is in all aspects of the world — including visual design. Designers tell stories through the eye, creating stunning visual graphics that are so much more than just pleasing to look at. Behind every design is a powerful story, something that holds deep meaning and is conveyed through the choice of typography, color, and composition. All of these elements and more combine to tell a story worth sharing.

As a designer, it’s essential to have access to as many tools as you can, to help tell the stories you need to tell. And thankfully, there are tools online that are entirely useful to designers.

  1. Adobe Color CC

Color alone can tell a powerful story, and a great visual storyteller knows what colors work well together. And Adobe Color CC, formerly known as Kuler, can help you with just that — putting the perfect color scheme together for your project to help further amplify its story. With the ability to pick from various types of color schemes — including analogous, monochromatic, and complementary, this app is your go-to for color palette creation. By picking the ideal colors that work together for your project, the story your design is trying to tell is further articulated and read solely by the eye.

  1. Adobe Spark

Social media falls into the realm of design — mainly speaking about visual posts including images, memes, and GIFs. And that’s where Adobe Spark comes in — helping designers create visually engaging images without having to even pull up Photoshop. Adobe Spark lets you create graphics, animated videos, and even web stories — all for free. With Adobe Spark, you can place various designs of text themes on top of any image you choose — and then automatically share through social platforms right through the app. With Adobe Spark, telling your story through quick but beautiful design is possible.

  1. InVision

Want to make your website mockup come to life without the burden of coding? InVision is a free online app that lets you prototype both desktop and mobile sites — completely for free. By uploading your website flats and adding invisible click-through buttons, this tool transforms your flats into a vision of what your website is meant to be. Websites — they’re the digital face of a company or individual, and need to represent each unique story flawlessly. And with InVision, you can easily bring life to your website goals and help tell your story the way it was meant to be told.

  1. PlaceIt

Designers make ideas and stories come to life visually — whether it’s a product, a website or app design, or environmental design. Before bringing the story fully to life, creating a rendering helps designers get a better idea of what the final product will look like. PlaceIt helps designers get a better idea of their final design with mockups that include mobile and desktop mockups, apparel mockups, and even print mockups. With PlaceIt, designers can get a polished feel for the final story they’re going to tell and how it will look before the final product is created.

  1. Pixabay

A picture is worth a thousand words — but not every designer is a master photographer, or has the money to subscribe to a stock account. That’s where Pixabay comes in — with hundreds of free online stock photos that designers — and anyone — can use for their projects. Pixabay offers the pictures you need in order to finish your design — and tell your story.

  1. Bēhance

Bēhance doesn’t just allow a designer to tell their story — it lets them share their story with the world. Bēhance gives you a window into the world of designers across the globe and lets you browse through various projects. You can create your profile, update your bio, and load your design projects onto your profile for all to see. You can network, search for or post jobs, and interact with other designers and see their projects. With Bēhance, you can get inspired for your upcoming designs by the other stories found there, as well as inspire others with the stories you’ve designed.

With these various free online tools, designers can craft their work telling the visual stories they intend — and even share their stories with the world.

Gabrielle Kenny is an Associate at Woden. Whatever your storytelling needs may be, let Woden help. Read our free Storytelling Blueprint, or send us an email at to discuss how we can help tell your story.