I have blogged about the definition for composition. Inside the definition I made mention of the arrangement of components. I would like to give the definition for components as well as resources I use for each.
Components are the visual elements used in any design and may include images, illustrations, icons, typography, edges, backgrounds, lines, or shapes. Basically it is the stuff, if any, you put into your graphic design work. The size and arrangement of these assets gets back to composition, but without these elements composition may not necessarily be possible.
Here is a small list of resources for some of the components that I use regularly. First I like to use textured backgrounds of all kinds. From specific like a brick wall to abstract textures that I use simple for displacement maps in Photoshop. I have found that I can find simply any kind of texture from a website called CG Textures. You name it they pretty much have it; check out their website. You’ll love what you find.
Another resource that I use often is in my own personal collection of books. It is the Pantone Guide to Communicating with Color. This is great resource for choosing color combinations I use for various projects. I have even shown it to clients and had them pick colors directly from the book. Money well spent in my opinion. You can pick up a copy from Amazon.com.
My last go to resource doesn’t cost me much, but is vital to my particular design process. I like to use the conventional pencil and paper to sketch a layout before I start working on the computer. Even for page layout. This helps me gather my components and saves me vital time in the long run.