At Station Four, we recently launched a website for Jacksonville's Downtown Art Walk.
The website employs a variety of digital and traditional illustration techniques. In the course of that project, we researched the variety of ways in which designers incorporate illustration in their websites. In this post, we list out 20 great examples of website designs that incorporate all kinds of illustration styles and techniques.
The background's main purpose is to visually reinforce the content of the site by giving it a place to “live”, so a creative, illustrative background can help the site's story. Flat-colored, vector-styled images can encompass a wide variety of styles. The flatness of the colors makes for a highly stylized and crisp type of illustration that seems to be fairly common across web designs.
Arguably less common is the more painterly types of illustrations. Hand-rendered drawings are very organic by nature which makes for a very unique appearance when juxtaposed with the high structure of typefaces and web grids. These types of images can be significantly looser than rigid vector art, which makes them a great tool to “soften” the atmosphere of a page.
Homepages often feature large images to visually entice a visitor to stay on a page. While photography is a common image type for these types of homepage approaches, an illustration can add a unique flavor to a page.
Illustrations are almost always a great way to demonstrate complex ideas. Due to the fact that every illustration must be custom-made by a person, the uses for them are limitless; illustrations can tell a story, elaborate a diagram, display a product, or do anything you want it to do!
Text is a complicated subject, in regards to the web. There are a lot of rules and complications that can pop up when selecting a typeface, and the work towards font integration is ever improving. Image-based text is a way to sidestep that trouble. Not only does illustrated text contribute to your site's theme, but the fact that it is comprised of letters means that visitors will read and interact with it, tying them even tighter with the website.
Illustrations can be used in any or all ways desired; an entire page can be almost entirely illustrated, if that is the intended direction. Using tremendous amounts of illustration in a website not only serves as a great tool for unity, but also makes for a bold statement that is almost guaranteed to set a site apart from others.
Senior Designer at Station Four