Questions tagged [composition]

Questions about the purposeful arrangement/organization of graphic and typographic elements regarding aspects of graphic properties (e.g. shape, size, color, texture, space), visual perception (e.g. rhythm, flow, depth, weight, proportion, balance, gestalt, focus), or communication (e.g. visual analogy, message, overall impression). This might also touch on possible differences based on culture or sub-culture.

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41
votes
6answers
4k views

How often is the Golden Ratio actually used in modern design?

The Golden Ratio is the stuff of legend (and I believe some derision if Pepsi's latest logo change is of any indication) and is purported to have been used in many famous projects. My question is two-...
26
votes
4answers
3k views

How or why do your eyes move away from a focal point to other elements?

In studying composition, we're told to pull the viewer's eyes into the frame using a strong focal point, and then lead his/her eyes into moving around inside the frame and hold his interest inside the ...
18
votes
7answers
5k views

What is minimalism in graphic design?

What is minimalism in graphic design and how can one apply this concept to a design? I keep seeing the term minimalist design while reading graphic-related websites and magazines, but I'm not so sure ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

How can a design be balanced and yet have a focal point?

The concept of a focal point seems to be a fundamental one in web design, yet doesn't a focal point mean a page cannot be balanced? Surely by definition a focal point means that the page's 'weight' ...
12
votes
8answers
535 views

When designing, what techniques can be used for determining if the right amount of “fluff” has been added?

Fluff (N.): something inconsequential Source: Merriam-Webster Online English Dictionary In design, this is often viewed as unnecessary ornamentation. In web design, where load times are important, ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

Is there a name, term, or practice for off-centering things based on volume rather than by width and height?

As an interface designer, and just as a designer in general, I often notice that I feel the need to place things slightly off-center in order to make them appear centered and balanced, due to the ...
11
votes
2answers
1k views

How to create flow and rhythm through composition

Composition is a great tool for creating a visual flow or rhythm to guide the viewers eye and lead them through your content. Thinking about the way you want your users to interact with your content ...
10
votes
1answer
716 views

How do I achieve the equivalent of using small caps in Arabic?

I have this letterhead title in Hebrew, English, and Arabic, in which I set the English to Small Caps (that is, the first letter is a big capital, the rest are small). Now, in Hebrew, the letters are ...
8
votes
2answers
7k views

Why do yellow and red look good together in this photo?

I've been looking into complementary colors and appealing color schemes, and I couldn't find any which suggested that this shade of yellow would look good with this shade of red. However, the picture ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

What are some good resources for web page composition?

I'm looking for resources on the composition of web pages. I'd like to learn about pros and cons of different page layouts and techniques for moving the eye around a page.
8
votes
1answer
1k views

How important is the visual flow of an interface?

I recently had a conversation with a friend about the design of an installer application. I pointed out that its visual flow was confusing. It led my eyes from the left to the right and then up to the ...
7
votes
5answers
7k views

What are the traditional rules for drop shadow direction / light source?

When creating a drop shadow for objects, what is the traditional / classic "rule" for the offset direction? I see so many that are down and right, which results in the light source coming from the top ...
7
votes
4answers
670 views

What is the difference between figures illustration and images?

It is mainly the term "figure" here that I question. Here is the source: http://condor.depaul.edu/dsimpson/pers/typography.html The author of the page seems to distinguish these terms: Figures, ...
7
votes
1answer
407 views

How to arrange the text in the new logo of programmers.SE and its meta?

Our old logo: and its meta version: need to be updated with our new name. We were offered: which has a great mug icon, monitor art, and font. Just not sure about the composition. The text ...
6
votes
2answers
137 views

Are there alternative suites or combinations of apps to Adobe CC that can work dynamically together?

Is there an alternative suite to Adobe CC that have "dynamic links" between apps, or single apps that can update files accordingly to its asset files? Basically, what I'd like is alternative apps ...
5
votes
3answers
892 views

How many colors should be used in a background gradient?

For on-screen design (web or desktop applications), in areas where there is significant background space visible, a subtle gradient adds a lot to the look of the app/page/image. How many colors (max) ...
5
votes
3answers
903 views

Logo design - image beneath text - can it work?

I am hacking together a temporary logo for my software startup company. I have a good single-word communicative name and geometrically shaped logo. To me, the two look best when text is positioned ...
5
votes
1answer
502 views

Graphic design/color compositions for waveform presentation

I have a dashboard of data, on which one of most important elements is a waveform of medical data (a real-time stream, in most cases it would be ECG waveform). I am looking for a way to present this ...
5
votes
1answer
3k views

How do I make objects and text stand out over a busy photo background?

I frequently have to place objects and text on photo backgrounds and some backgrounds make it hard to see the objects. To get good contrast I will try to pick a background image that has large flat ...
5
votes
1answer
681 views

Textbook layout including examples of two different computer programming languages?

I am currently producing a new edition of an old book of mine; this new book will incorporate code samples from several different computing environments. What I want to know is: what is the best way ...
5
votes
2answers
94 views

instructions to give photographer when shooting for web

I work with a team of graphic designers. The most common challenge we have is how to use photography which is great by itself, but when it comes to using these on placements across the website or app, ...
5
votes
3answers
597 views

What should be the relation between margin and padding?

In grid-based layouts, should there be any relation between margins (the distance between elements) and padding (the distance between an element content to its edges)?
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Critique: Are these text-based logos positioned comfortably, and do they convey elegance?

Something is amiss about this logo I've made for myself. I am a design student, and soon-to-be graduate. This logo will go on my business card and possibly other promo things in order to allow me to ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Are there any specific composition rules for web design? [closed]

Are there any composition rules specific to web design, or that are otherwise elevated in importance in the context of web design? There are probably some aspects of composition that would be more or ...
4
votes
1answer
550 views

Is it OK to layout landscape images vertically in a book?

I am currently laying out a book (poetry). There are a few images to be placed at various points throughout the text. Most of these are portrait orientation. For various reasons it is necessary for ...
4
votes
4answers
668 views

Should the F-Pattern be considered in all designs?

The F-Shaped pattern is a pattern found in an eye-tracking study as the primary areas people glance over when reading a website. http://www.useit.com/alertbox/reading_pattern.html Is this something ...
4
votes
1answer
668 views

Should highlighted quotes in an article be aligned with the body text?

I am wondering whether quotes need to be included in text positioning. See example below: Is this correct? Or should the quotes be disregarded when positioning the text? What's the best way to ...
4
votes
1answer
703 views

What are the correct set of principles of Design ?

I have started the design learning road from scratch using Teach Yourself Graphic Design: A Self-Study Course Outline. In the first section it mentions design principles. The first link : Principles ...
3
votes
4answers
605 views

Need feedback - Can the composition/colors of this design be fixed if something is lacking or is not a better fit?

My boss didn't found it (images are at bottom) perfect. Although he couldn't explain it specifically, but he gave an hint about light / color tone / background and sky related problems. After talking ...
3
votes
5answers
2k views

Tips for creating a mosaic of one photo from a set of photos

I want to create a mosaic from a set of photos I already have that will give me another photo. So a set of architecture photos that will give me a big photo of it's creator (the architect). The result ...
3
votes
2answers
358 views

client logo - large dropshadow and awkward angle - looks terrible on any media, any guidance?

I am reluctant to post the actual logo for risk of repercussions, but I have taken away any identifiable features, leaving the "problem" parts. Here is the logo on a white background: It looks awful ...
3
votes
1answer
342 views

What are some styles for laying out lots of images in a confined space?

I'm working on a project that's 11"x17" tall, has the bottom 1/5th reserved for the logo/calendar elements and the top 4/5ths for some sort of collage-esque image. Basically, I have six photos I need ...
3
votes
1answer
159 views

Van de Graaf Canon and title pages

I am currently working on typesetting a book and I have been fairly consistent about following the Van de Graaf canon. However, the question arises when dealing with the front matter, whether it is ...
3
votes
2answers
768 views

Color scheme for three different goals

I want to preface this by stating that I am in no way an expert in design or colors and their meanings. I am looking for three colors, each of which have a different meaning and goal associated with ...
3
votes
2answers
210 views

When trying to achieve the “ideal” letter count per line how do you balance container size and font size?

“Anything from 45 to 75 characters is widely regarded as a satisfactory length of line for a single-column page set in a serifed text face in a text size. The 66-character line (counting both letters ...
3
votes
3answers
407 views

Critique: How to make a better visual distinction between content and options in a post?

I have a design that currently looks something like this: I feel that there should be some sort of visual split between the main content of the post and the options below it (the up and down arrows, ...
2
votes
4answers
378 views

How legible is a right-aligned same-line header compared to a more conventional left-aligned separate-line?

I maintain an internal weekly newsletter* sort of thing with zero or more points of interest* for each of a couple dozen people*. It's organized in groups within columns with a header for each such ...
2
votes
2answers
342 views

Using solid color photos on solid color background

I've been trying to figure out how to get this to look right for the past week. We just got permission from a photographer to use some of her excellent photos of vegan food. Here's one: However, we ...
2
votes
3answers
120 views

How to improve horizon on image?

I'm making a scene in Photoshop which should look something like a field of grass and the sky. However I just can't make it work. Feels like there's something missing. In my opinion it is due to ...
2
votes
2answers
86 views

Is there an ideal number of points of interests in web design? How many is too much?

I want to make a website, but I have too many important elements for that. I tried to simplify the structure, but it became boring to look at and tiresome to navigate. Is there a rule or tip for ...
2
votes
2answers
557 views

Working with alignment and balance

I know this is all subjective, but I'm hoping there are general principles here that will mean this is a valid question. Take a look at the layout below. In the past (before I tried to learn about ...
2
votes
2answers
165 views

Design “join page” and guide them graphically from left to rightside towards a join button

Im having this big horizontal bar see image above, and want to "guide (read force)" the users from reading the text on the left to clicking the join button on the right. Are there any thoughts on how ...
2
votes
2answers
59 views

Compositing and creativity with badly cropped/taken photos

Apologies if this has been asked before and if it's inappropriate in this network. I have a group photo(of people) I have to work with that is poorly taken. The people at the edges are partially cut ...
2
votes
2answers
189 views

I designed a game that makes my eyes tired

I try making a game where you draw physic lines and need to deliver a ball to the exit. I created several levels and found that I cant play it. My eyes get tired and hurt after 10 minutes. Maybe the ...
1
vote
3answers
333 views

Critique: Help with placement of logo elements in relation to each other for a web and app-based music service

I've developed a logo for a web and app-based music service. I'm pretty happy with the shape of the icon, it's very close to what I envisaged before making it. However, I can't seem to find a ...
1
vote
1answer
131 views

How to design arrow links between two nodes?

I'm building an algorithm for drawing directional lines between two nodes. In the trivial case of one link it works fine. But this method fails when there's a reciprocal line it overlaps the first ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

How to create a grid system on a tri fold leaflet or brochure in InDesign

I’m new to working with grids and tri folds, and I was wondering if anyone could help me out? As you well know when creating a tri fold, the fold in panel width becomes a different size than the ...
1
vote
2answers
38k views

How can I achieve opacity gradient effect in After Effects CS6?

Basically I have a composition layer that needs to have sort of fading out effect on it. I can achieve this in PS CS6 by aplying a vector mask on a layer and then choosing opacity gradient and ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Books/Rescources for Composition and Layout for Print?

I'm starting my education in Graphic Design soon (once I finish my current degree) and I'm pretty much immersed myself information in preparation including textbooks that I will be using and websites (...
1
vote
1answer
415 views

InDesign: should a baseline grid be used for 190-page magazine?

I've always used a baseline grid until now for magazines up to 90 pages, but this magazine will be around 190 pages - it is more like a book - so do I need to make it with text aligned to baseline ...