How to create a graphical abstract

Graphical abstracts are becoming more and more important. Journal publishers such as Elsevier encourage you to create a concise visual summary of the main findings of your research.

But where to start? What steps should you follow to create the perfect graphical abstract for your article? What tools can you use?

On this page, you’ll find an overview of tips, tools and inspiration to create your own graphical abstract for your next article. Let’s show the world what your research is all about!

Presentation

Workshop VUB LSM PhD Day (March 30, 2021):

Digital tools to create graphical abstracts

You can use almost any graphical tool you want to create a graphical abstract. You could even use just pen and paper, if you like – the story is the most important part of the visual, not the artistic quality. Use the tool you know best, or feel the most comfortable with!

Here is a list of tools to get you started:

Illustrations and icons to use in infographics

Photos to use in graphical abstracts

Color schemes for graphical abstracts

Creating graphs and maps for graphical abstracts

Books that can help you create better visuals

  • Infographic designers’ sketchbooks, Steven Heller & Rick Landers
  • Storytelling with data, Cole Nussbaumer Knaflic
  • Trees, maps and theorems, Jean-Luc Doumont
  • Visual thinking, Willemien Brand

People on Twitter talking about information design

Blogs about information design

Wrapping up

Did we miss something? Which indispensable resource did we miss? Make sure to let us know at koen@baryon.be!

Also, feel free to check out our other resource guides:

Books on a bookshelf - infographics resources

Read more:

This chart is trying to trick you

The original chart in this example is trying to suggest a strong correlation between sugar intake and obesity in the US between 1980 and 2000. It does so by carefully choosing the vertical axis ranges and scaling so both lines nicely fall on top of each other.

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Books on a bookshelf - infographics resources

Research visuals: all the resources you’ll ever need!

If you want to start creating clear and attractive visuals about your research, but don't know where to start, this page is for you! Here's a complete overview of tools, resources and inspiration you can use as a starting point for your designs.

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Small datasets to practice your data visualization skills

When you're teaching data analysis or data visualization, or when you're learning new data visualization tools and techniques, you might be looking for datasets to practice with. Here are some great starting points.

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Behind the maps

In the 30-day Map Challenge, you are challenged to design a new map every day around a certain topic. I participated in November 2020, and wrote this post to share my thought processes, data sources, tools and results!

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Books on a bookshelf - infographics resources

Data visualization resources: all the links you’ll ever need!

You want to start creating clear and attractive data visuals, but don't know where to start? No worries, here's a complete overview of tools, resources and inspiration you can use as a starting point for your designs.

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storytelling with data book dimensions

Storytelling with Data: Dataviz book review

The Storytelling with Data book has been on my wishlist as long as I can remember, because so many people recommend it as one of the must read dataviz books. So let's see what the fuzz is all about - here's my review!

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We are really into visual communication!

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