Some platforms don’t allow videos or animated pics, but there are other ways to get the illusion of motion even though you’re using a static image. While not replacing a proper animation, they are simple to use and have a subtle, unexpected effect.
There are many fantastic pics out there with motion illusion. One thing I normally don’t like about them is their psychedelic design. Here are two examples with a more contemporary look and feel:
They work best in a narrow format such as a newsletter, where the motion illusion becomes apparent, once the user starts scrolling up and down the screen.
I recently came across this ad from 1925, featured in Taschens’ book about the bauhaus period. It was deliberately factual, describing the technical highlights only. It appears almost naive in comparison to the complex colorful ads we’re used to today. Rom magazine though, is now trying a new (old) approach. As described in this article, their ads regain credibility through limiting their clients’ freedom in design.
I agree that sometimes less is more. Too much blabla distracts from the core message and good design needs a clear focal point. Our lesson: Nothing stands out if everything is highlighted as important. Also, when designing an ad, have in mind where it’s published. On a static website it might need some bling and a spread in an otherwise black and white newspaper might gain attention with a colourful design and bold typography. When advertising in a high-gloss magazine though, a design-reduced ad with white background will often be your best choice.
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I’ve often used a similar concept for newsletter designs. This method triggers the reader to scroll down and reveal the full content and newsletter information.
Here are two examples of newsletters I’ve created for fashion-webshop Luxengo. Instead of one image for each category-link, I’ve used only one main image, split up into several smaller ones. Nice little side effect: We only had to buy one stock image instead of six.
There are many platforms where this concept might work well. Have you tried it on any other social media channels?