Monday, May 5

Six Visionary Rules of Design

Well, they're not visionary, just basic common sense really. And they're not really rules more like good reminders. But I wasn't in the mood to make the title of this article "six basic common sense good reminders of design". What I did do though is translate each "rule" into latin so that they sound visionary and authoritative.

#1: Levo. Sursum. Penicullus
Pick. Up. A. Pencil

I've already elaborated on this so I'll spare you.

#2: Teneo vestri thema
Know your subject

Other wise known as research. Before even picking up your pencil it's important to know your subject. If you are designing for a restaurant, what food do they serve? What does it taste like? What sort of clientèle do they have? What is the main competitor? What are the exact coordinates? Of course, the amount of research you do will vary from project to project but there is always time to squeeze in research.

#3: Nixor intellego calx
Strive to understand the objective

Knowing the subject, what is the objective of the design? Ease of use? Promotion? Attract new clientele? Keep existing customers? Knowing the objective will help you stay on track.

#4: Vindico est melior quam "frigus"
Appropriate is better than "cool"

What message can you deliver through the design that will make the design reach it's objective? If you are designing a package for a cellular phone, you will surely not approach it the same way you would a package for a soy milk product. A design doesn't have to look cool, it has to be appropriate.

#5: Vestri intentio non super utor vel nocens utor presencia
Your design must not overuse or misuse software effects

It's so easy to fall in a rut of using drop shadows, gradients and other neat effects. They are quick, easy and fun. BUT, it's important to not use these effects as a crutch. There is no substitute for rigorous application of solid design principles.

#6: Clementia in otium strenuus
You must take a break

My favorite one! Deadlines, nervous clients, "enthusiastic" art directors, they can be great motivators. However, nothing beats a little downtime to refresh your creative batteries!

Next article will go into more detail about those software effects that are so often abused. Until then, vis exsisto vobis!*

*may the force be with you

image: public domain


Shayla said...

Lol! A very "frigus" article ;)

Ambiblog said...

Nice writeup Jason. Love the humor. ;)

ink said...

Just discovering your blog, and with this one you've hooked me.
Every designer should have this six basic common sense good reminders of design hanging on the wall behind their mac. We tend to forget the simpliest things in order to remember how to do fancy things, or what likes the client the most, or these kind of things, i know you know what i'm talking about. Greetings from México City

Juggling Jason said...

I'm glad you enjoy this blog's content. Unfortunately though, I do not update it as often as I used to. But I still do enjoy writing the occasional article.

Check back again soon for a guest writer!