15% off any purchase over $15 with the discount code "NIGHTOWL"
15% off any purchase over $15 with the discount code "NIGHTOWL"
Cart 0

Find Out What a Mockup Is in Graphic Design

Graphic Design

A high-quality mockup is very helpful for your business because it lets your business partners, investors, and customers see what the final product will look like before you make it. In addition, many designers and artists incorporate it into their design presentations for their clients. Let's learn more about what design mockups are for and what they can do for us.

Illustration of flat lay and folded t-shirt mockup

What is a mockup?

It is a presentation tool used to show how a design will look when it is finished. Most of the time, mockups have a realistic appearance that can be achieved using photographs of actual products or 3D modeling. Its purpose is to make it easier for people to understand the design and give feedback.

It is more focused on the visual aspect, which is a bit different from prototypes. A prototype shows more details, right down to the materials used and how the product works. The locking mechanism on the packaging box is one example.

Illustration of two different colored t-shirts.

Why mockups are used?

  1. Useful in the Design Process

    I frequently use mockups during the design process, from sketching to the final process, to ensure that the layout of the elements looks good on the clothes. It will be easier to check by seeing visual objects as compared to imagining it.
  2. Give Clients or Customers a Good First Impression

    Clients will be able to visualize a design more easily if it is presented on a mockup rather than a flat image, and the presentation will look more professional.
  3. Make It Easier to Get Feedback and Approval

    Because mockups are easily modifiable, you can quickly send revisions to your clients. Some of my clients are printing companies that use it as an initial proposal to make sure that their clients get the fabric color and graphic placement they want.
    For designers, its use can enhance the visual appeal of the final presentation, increase the value of the design, and speed up the approval process.
  4. Helps Reduce Costs

    Imagine that your customers do not know which fabric color to choose. They requested a sample of their designs on ten different T-shirt colors. If you print right on the actual product, this will take a lot of time and money. It would be better to use a mockup to show different color options and get approval before making a printed sample on the actual product.
  5. Helps Start-up Companies

    You don't need a lot of money to test the water. Great for products that are printed on demand or clothing lines with a small budget.

Illustration of a t-shirt and packaging box

Different kinds of mockups

There are different kinds of it because every industries have different needs. Here are a few examples:

  1. Physical Mockups

    This is a printed design proposal that your business partners, investors, or clients can view in person. When I worked at an agency as a packaging designer, there was a specialist who made physical mockups of new dielines to test them.
  2. Digital Mockups

    This is used as an online presentation tool for designs that are typically presented in image or PDF format and are not printed. This type is usually made in 3D and has a realistic texture or uses photos of actual products.
    Most of the people who use it are designers or printing companies that want to send proposals to clients via email.
  3. Clothing Mockups

    This is used as a preview of a design over a picture of realistic clothing so that the idea can be seen better. Most of the time, it's used by T-shirts designer, screen printing companies, and clothing lines. Clothing lines and influencers frequently use it to create polls so that their fans can vote on upcoming designs to be printed.
  4. Packaging Mockups

    Visual Hierarchy is used in packaging design to make sure that the key elements stand out. Aside from that, there is text in several parts of the layout that must be easy to read. Mockups can be used as an initial stage to test all of this.

Illustration of a t-shirt and bubble text

Advantages of Using Mockups

Since this presentation tool is important for your product development, you can enjoy numerous advantages, such as:

  1. You can identify potential issues before manufacturing begins.
  2. It helps you collect the necessary feedback to validate your design concept.
  3. Contribute to enhancing your product's user experience based on customer feedback. For example, you can create a poll to allow your fans to choose which design to produce.
  4. Improved internal and external communication as a result of visual tools that help people understand the design better.

Illustration of a spray bottle and packaging box

I hope this article will be useful to those of you who want to become graphic designers or start your own clothing line. If you want to create a visually appealing design/product presentation, you can find my mockup collections here.

Older Post