Wednesday, July 25

"What am I paying you for?" part4: Proximity

The design principle of proximity is a rather fascinating one. The proximity principle states that elements in close proximity tend to be associated with one another.

Look at this list*. (Click the images for a larger view)

It has many problems plaguing it. If you were to give this list to someone and expect them to understand it you would be greatly disappointed. As it is, the list is a communication mess!

Let's fix it.
We should start by applying our previously discussed principles such as alignment.

It's an improvement but all the elements still sort of all look like a gray blur.
Let's add contrast and repetition.

This is better.
But everything is extremely cramped! Let's apply the proximity principle.

This is nice!
Do you see how everything naturally looks as if it belongs to a very clear group? A sort of information architecture.

Ignoring design principles can get you in all sorts of trouble. Look at this unfortunate design accident.

tsk tsk, someone should have hired a designer.

Those are arguably the four most basic design principles. Contrast Repetition Alignment Proximity, an unfortunate yet memorable acronym. Remember, design is not "just pretty pictures", but the science of making a business' relationship with its target market a pleasant, clear and memorable experience.

*list examples robbed from author Robin Williams.


Paquito said...

The money exchange example is PRICELESS :-)

Nice blog and kind regards from Spain :-)


Tanner Christensen said...

As always, great stuff.

Anonymous said...

lol, yes someone should have hired a designer

Anonymous said...

Why did you copy Robin Williams' book and make it look like your own article? Even the business card is stolen right from her book!

Juggling Jason said...

It is quite clear that I gave Robin full credit for the material of this post including a link to her book. No doubt she would be happy that I am promoting her.