Ellipsis: Design Principles & Fundaments

This second session of core workshops with Ricardo has really helped me see that we follow and think like designers but we just haven’t mastered the way of articulating these ideas in a professional manner.

Principles of Design describe the ways designers use the elements of art in their practice; the main fundamentals are as follows.

  • Balance: A distribution of visual weight on either side of the vertical axis. Symmetrical balance uses the same characteristics; asymmetrical uses different but equally weighted features.
  • Emphasis: Used to make certain parts of a piece stand out. It creates the center of interest or focal point.
  • Contrast: The arrangement of opposite elements in a composition so as to create visual interest.
  • Movement: How the eye moves through the composition; leading the attention of the viewer from one aspect of the work to another. This can create the illusion of action.
  • Repetition: The pattern of specific visual elements such as a unit of shape of form. A method used to organise surfaces in a consistent regular manner.
  • Unity: Visually pleasing agreement among the elements in a design. It is the feeling that everything in the piece works together and looks like it fits.

These are all things I know that I use in my work ‘because it means my work looks good’ but now I hope I can explain my reasoning in a much more sophisticated way and therefore it seems I know what I’m talking about.. I can hope anyway..

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