So–all these memes–eh. Not that they are new but, some have been fun and I've enjoyed reading other bloggers replies and posts. All though I've sarcastically complained about them in the past ( not really, context is difficult with emoticons ) I've decided to start one based on rules. Or laws. Or the rules of using laws. Or the guidelines of law and the rules of established norms...*blinks* –but, I wanted something with creative value to come from this meme. Some small tidbit of information other creatives might have picked up through their professional experience. I'm going to use the Gestalt Laws as a starting point. At the end of the list, I will contribute a few of my own rules ( or laws I use until they need to be broken and redefined ).
If you have been tagged, I hope you'll be willing to take the reigns from here and add your rules. Add the ones that have helped you succeed as a creative person. Perhaps you'll post a helpful law/rule/guideline/norm about; PMS colors, CSS, Software, Clients, Contracts, Media, Graphic Design, Type, Collaboration, Writing, Photography, Motion, Print, Inspiration, Interfaces, Music, Architecture, Industrial, Web–something you've developed as a principle. Something that never fails you.
Or perhaps you've broken some rules subsequently making a new and improved batch.
And now–The Gestalt Laws. ( mine start below these )
1. Law of Proximity
Elements that are closer together will be perceived as a coherent object.
If an element(s) is part of another group of elements, make it salient. If not, provide enough negative space to suggest another quadrant.(me)
2. Law of Similarity
Elements that look similar will be perceived as part of the same form.
3. Law of Continuation
The eye tends to continue contours whenever the elements of a pattern establish an implied direction.
The visuals can guide the eye into a precise direction. Movement is suggested but not clearly visible.(me)
4. Law of Closure
Humans tend to enclose a space by completing a contour and ignoring gaps in the figure.
The eye will connect or disconnect the dots. Negative space helps connect or repel objects and elements. This usually implies a separate or isolated movement away from our initial introduction.(me)
5. Law of Prägnanz
A stimulus will be organized into as good a figure as possible–symmetrical, simple, and regular.
Our eyes and mind will struggle to organize the visual data based on comparison to previous data. We try to relate it to something familiar because it helps identify and clarify the data. Despite the chaos, we will always try to organize the noise against what we've all ready been exposed too.
6. Law of Figure/Ground
A stimulus will be perceived as separate from it's ground.
Logos usually participate in this illusion with reversals of figure/ground as well as false perspectives and forced justification.(me)
7. Everything must translate well in black and white.
All-though the Television and Monitor provide an often harsh contrast due to luminance, all design should be clearly legible with a continuous tone or in grey-scale. Print or screen.
8. Odd numbers.
Every grid, type-cluster, photograph, pencil collection is off-set by odds. Not really the "golden rule," but always work with odd numbers of elements within your creative endeavors. Let the surveyor create the balance.
9. Words are meaningless.
Typography is a series of icons and pictographs that represent phonetics which when placed in a linear-fashion create thought and connect the reader. Read the text you've just type-set out loud. If you find yourself pausing because of line breaks and spacing, your readers will too. ( this blog is severely guilty of this )
10. It's not my fault I'm part monkey.
Everything designed is seen by another human. Respect this and give them credit with intuitive design that teaches something first.
That's my humble contribution. I suppose we could all go on for days but, let's just write a few. So–
Cultivated by design
Graphic Design Blog
A New Wave of Thinking
I made a longer list then usual simply because, I've received a lot of link love from some of you and thought it would be easier to return the favor this way. At the end of this, I will personally hunt down all posts and compile them into one PDF for download.
UPDATE:7.9.07 Asgeir has offered some insightful tips. More to come–hopefully. Thanks Asgeir.
UPDATE:7.10.07 Michael Surtees's offering.