When it seems like photography just isn’t the right medium for what you’re working on, don’t forget about the creative power of illustrations.

In the hands of a talented and capable artist, the right combination of lines, curves, and color can evoke any feeling or emotion you wish. Take a look at what makes vector drawings such an effective element in visual content creation.

Powerful Simplicity

Never underestimate the power of a single, black line. Masterfully rendered contour drawings can say as much or more as the most detailed, colorful composition. If visuals seem superfluous, don’t be afraid to start small and simple.


Search tip: Try using keywords such as line art, icons, black and white vectors, thin line vectors and simple vectors.

Attractive Accents

Accents make for another nice introduction to vectors and illustration. The right image can work wonders in helping a brand stand out, whether it’s applied to a logo, favicon, menu bar, or perhaps as an indicator of serialized content. With so many different options to choose from, there’s bound to be the perfect fit for any field or audience.

Search tip: To find the right accent pieces for your needs, try accent, design elements, brand elements, watercolor, brush stroke, painted vector, and ribbon vector.

Abstract Concepts

Vectors also offer a great way to express abstract ideas that might escape traditional photography.  Certain concepts in modern technology – like cloud computing, for instance – are especially challenging to photograph, and often a skillful illustration is a way to convey much more.

images, stock, illustration, idea, lightbulb, brain, faucet, istock, getty images

Search tip: Some common abstract concepts that vectors can help illustrate are concept vector, technology concept vector, and business metaphor vector.

Creative Alternatives

Finally, vectors and illustrations simply provide a fresh, different approach to visuals . They are inherently attention grabbing. Take the aerial view still-life, for instance. This increasingly popular photography trend can be found all over the internet — accompanying blog posts, appearing on landing pages and in social media feeds. It’s a great look, but when it starts to show up everywhere, it starts to blend in – or worse, get ignored completely. A vector is an unexpected way to achieve this look so your message will stand out.

Search tip: Use these keywords to find still-life vectors: aerial view vector, birds eye office vector, and  flat tech vector.

 Explore our collection of creative vector illustrations at iStock by Getty Images