Design Thoughts

Design Thoughts

I find layout and design easy. I just intuitively know when a page is balanced, what colors go together, what colors are painful to the eyes etc. I did not have to study color theory to understand color theory. When I took design at college when I was 18 it was an easy A. I saw a lot of my classmates struggle with somethings that I just knew. I grew up an Army brat. When the duty station was in Europe my parents took us to art museums. I started looking at fine art in kindergarten. I loved it. I think this early exposer to art is why somethings are just second nature to me.

We were assigned this week some videos on design. I enjoyed them very much. I got a look at what goes into making book jackets, movie posters, and a good title sequence. While I find it easy to lay out a drawing or painting picking the right type face is a different matter. Fonts are lovely little pieces of art that can convey meaning. In the title sequence for “Stranger Things” you just know it is the 80’s horror genre. They picked that font because it was on so many books in the 80’s. It conveyed a time period with the font style. Fonts can give you information just as well as the words written with it can.

The video for the curious

Have you ever noticed movie posters look similar to each other? I know I have noticed a few here and there that remind me of each other. But there is a code or theme to the colors used. White background red letters comedy. Yellow is usually an independent film. Blue with man running action thriller. These common threads lead back to highly successful movies that used those design elements in their poster advertisements. Movie poster art has its own history that it builds on. If it worked before then why change? I will include the video so you can fully curb your curiosity.

I also had the pleasure of watching an interview with Chip Kidd. He spoke about his work on making book jackets. He explained how the title of the book and the art of the book jacket need to come together to give the viewer a better understanding of what the book is about. The art on the jacket is more than just trying to catch the viewer’s eye. The cover needs to convey the type of story or theme of the story inside. It sets the tone of the words on the page. It gives the reader an idea of how they should interpret the words. A good book cover does more than just help sell the book.

Between the Lines: Chip Kidd – Alexander Street, a ProQuest Company

Between the Lines: Chip Kidd. . (2017).[Video/DVD] CreativeLive. Retrieved from

Good design work makes use of negative space, color, font, and layout. When you look at something a common as an advertisement you are looking at graphic design. Art is everywhere.

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