Sunday, July 15

"What am I paying you for?" 4 part series on basic design principles


Design is more than making things look pretty. There are very specific and concrete principles your designer applies in order to communicate your message in the most effective way. These principles or laws are many and often are very difficult to balance. In this 4 part series I'm going to describe the four most basic principles of design and how your designer uses them to help your business.

The first of these principles is CONTRAST:

Our mind understands many things by comparing.
If I say that the above pencil big or small, how small or big do I actually mean?

It's very small if you put it next to this hippo!

but very large next to this ant.
The contrast of the hippo/ant comparison helps us understand more precisely what I really mean when I say "the pencil is small" or "big".

Here is how it works in a more practical application.

In this sentence, which WORD stands out the most?

Is it "word"? Of course it is! The striking contrast makes you notice it and remember it. I'm sure you can easily see how contrast applies in advertising to emphasize features and benefits of a product or to draw attention to something in particular.

Unfortunately contrast is sometimes in an inefficient way. A designer, in his well stocked tool box, keeps CONTRAST handy and knows how to use this tool in conjunction with others to make your advertisements and other visual business elements operate at peak efficiency.

Next: part 2, repetition

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