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What are the formal elements of design?
When do you use RGB, CMYK or Pantone colors?
rgb - best for web
cmyk - best for printing
Pantone - when you need a specific color, standardized color, an exact color match, color runs out - runs
What is the additive color system>
when added together, they create white light
What is color value?
The level of luminosity, lightness or darkness, of a color.
Best way to differentiate shapes?
Value contrast. It's better than hue contrast.
What is color hue?
It's the name of the color.
What are the principles of design?
- Visual Hierarchy
The format is the designed perimeter as well as the field it encloses - the outer edges or boundaries of a design.
Format is also used to described the type of application, poster, cd cover, etc.
It's an equal distribution of weight. A balanced composition can be symmetrical or asymmetrical.
Balance is stability or equilibrium created by an even distribution of visual weight on each side of a central axis as well as by an even distribution of weight among all the lements of the composition.
Define visual hierarchy
the arrangement of all graphic elements according to emphasis.
A pattern of elements that causes the viewers eye to move around the page.
A sequence of visual elements at prescribed intervals - across multiple-page formats, as well as motion graphics, is critical to developing a coherent visual flow from one page to another.
where all the graphic elements in a design are so interrelated they form a greater whole
Scale - The size of an element or form seen in relation to other elements or forms within the format.
Proportion - The comparative size relationships of parts to one another and to the whole
The arrangement of visual elements according to importance, stressing some elements over others, making some superordinate (dominate) elements and subordinating other elements.
What is the Golden Ratio?
What are Fibonacci numbers?
Every number in the sequence is the sum of the previous 2 numbers.
What is the Golden Rectangle?
a+b/a = a/b
How does knowing the Golden Ratio help?
Knowing these special ratios and how that can be used to create pleasing visuals helps us to better communicate our message.
What is the rule of thirds
Horizontal and vertical divisions of space. Used to accommodate placement of visual elements. 6x6 grid focal point is one of the middle tic-tac-toe intersections.
What is display type?
dominant type, usually bold, titles or subtitles
What is text type?
Main body of written content, paragraphs and columns
How is the height of type measured?
Body copy should be
14 points and less
Display type should be
Above 14 points
Imaginary line on which the base of capital letters rest
Imaginary line that runs along the top of capital letters
Imaginary line that establishes the height of the body of lowercase letters
The distance from the baseline to the meanline. Typically measured by lowercase x
What is an ascender?
A stroke on a lowercase letter that rises above the meanline
What is a descender?
A stroke on a lowercase letterform that falls below the baseline.
What is counter?
The negative space fully or partially enclosed by a letterform
What is a crossbar?
A horizontal stroke connecting two sides of a letterform (e, A, H) or bisecting the main stroke (f,t)
What is legibility?
–Refers to individual letter forms and how easily one character is distinguished from another
–How easy a particular typeface is to read
What is readability?
- a typeface is arranged on the page
- setting, color, etc.
What does choosing a suitable font depend on?
- –Visual interest: aesthetics and impact
- –Appropriateness: context
- –Clarity: readability and legibility
- –Relationship: integration with visuals
Generally how many fonts should you select?
Generally not more than 2.
- a body font with a large type family
- a secondary font for “call outs”. Secondary fonts can be more playful and
- create a “pop”.
What to use for text heavy composition
- your choices to faces that are eminently readable, as well as a face from an
- extended type family, which offers many options while aiding unity.
- • Best to use serif fonts in large body of
- • Extended type family includes small caps,
- italics, bold, condensed
What to use for text and images composition
(equal volume of text and images):
- a highly readable face based on your design concept, audience, context, a
- typeface that integrates in a satisfactory, appropriate, and aesthetic manner
- with the images.
Font for image heavy composition:
- If an application primarily requires display type (a cover, poster,
- advertisement, splash page, or banner, for example), then your selection is
- primarily governed by concept and context.
Font for caption heavy: (maps)
- the typography in an application is predominantly captions or tables, then your
- selection should consider how readable the face is at a smaller point size and
- how well it integrates with the images.
How to facilitate reading:
–Long line lengths impede readability
–Very small point sizes and extreme column depths impede reading
- –Very open spacing and very tight spacing
- impede readability
- –Left justification or justified text type alignments are most readable (depending on
- –When composing text type, headings, and subheadings, break text into manageable
–Avoid extreme rags, widows, and orphans
How to achieve emphasis within an entire composition using typography:
–Emphasis by isolation
–Emphasis by placement
- –Emphasis through scale (size relationships of title to subtitle to text as well as to
–Emphasis through contrast
–Emphasis through direction and pointers
–Emphasis through diagrammatic structures
There are also ways to achieve
emphasis in text type/body copy:
–Type style change
What is kerning?
What is leading?
What is word spacing?
The horizontal space between words
How is leading measured?
- •The vertical space between lines of
- •Measured in points (same as type
How is kerning and word spacing measured?
In points, same as type
When designing text, check what?
- –check word spacing, line length, widows, orphans, and the raggedness of a ragged
How much leading does body text need?
Less than 8pts needs more leading
Rules for mixing type
- •Experiment with type:
- sure typefaces are visibly different to not appear as a mistake but as purposeful.
- –Make sure there is a purpose behind the selection of the combination of the
- typefaces. How do they in a sense reflect each other? Provide harmony?
- •Limit mixing and select for
- to limit to 2 type faces
- –Best to limit ornamental and highly decorative fonts
What are the characteristics of Creative Thinkers?
- •Courage: Fear quashes creative risk taking
- and supports playing it safe. Courage coupled with intellectual curiosity fuels creativity.
- •Receptiveness: Being open to different ways of thinking as well as constructive criticism allows you to embrace possibilities
- and new ideas.
- •Flexibility: Not only do an agile mind and
- flexible personality allow you to keep up with the times, they allow you to bend with the path of a blossoming idea or let go of a path that is not fruitful.
- •Being Sharp-eyed:
- Paying attention to what you see every day allows you to see inherent creative possibilities in any given environment.
- •Seeking and Recognizing Connections:
- Creative people are able to bring two related or unrelated things together to form a new combination; they arrange associative hierarchies in ways that allow them to make connections that might elude others.
What is creative thinking?
- •the ability to stretch beyond the
- ordinary, to be original, innovative, and flexible in one’s thinking.
What is a design brief?
•a strategic plan that both the client and design studio or advertising agency agree upon; a written document outlining and strategizing a design project.
Also called creative brief, brief or creative work plan
What are the five phases of the design process?
- •Orientation > Analysis >
- Concepts > Design > Implementation
Phase 1 of design process
become familiar with assignment, graphic design problem, client's business, product, service. learn the audience.
Material gathering: to design you must learn about the sector (product, service, company, company history)
Phase 2 of design process
- -Organize information so it's broken down into analyzable parts
- -Define and examine each part of problem
- -Draw conclusions based on analysis to move forward to next step
Phase 3 of design process
(Conceptual Design/Visual Concepts)
A design concept is the creative reasoning underlying a design application; it's the guiding idea that determines how you design.
- Concept generation process:
Phase 4 of design process
- 1. Thumbnail sketches (done by hand, not on computer)
- 2. Roughs
- 3. Comprehensives (close to finished design)
Phase 5 of design process
Student - print or show to instructor on computer
Professional - Digital prepress (prepare files, font & image folders)
Craftsmanship - skill and dexterity of execution.
Presentation - the manner in which comps are presented to client
What are the classifications of signs according to semiotics?
- -Icon (you don't have to learn it, like a symbol of a tree)
-Index (gives you a piece to guide you)
-Symbol (are learned, like a peace sign)
What is semiotics?
The study of signs and symbols
What are the 3 categories of visual/type integration?
- –Supporting partner: a classic “neutral”
- typeface works cooperatively with the visual as the “star.”
- (This is, by far, the biggest category.)
- –Sympathetic type and visual relationships.
- (This is the next biggest category.)
- –Contrasting type and visual relationships.
- (This is an under-utilized category.)
What are the 3 tenets of composition?
-Action (visual energy of a surface. action through contrast or counterpoint)
-Arrangement (alignment: wrap-around, edge. point of entry. transitions.)
-Articulation (how well you express and how fully you craft transitions. create interesting form, harmony)