Design Principles

Posted: April 11, 2012 in Uncategorized

                Today’s class in English 1102 featured presentations on Alignment, Chunking, Contrast, Consistency, and Tension. All of those topics are fairly simple when considered individually. They could even just be thought of as natural techniques most people use or consider when creating a visual aid. Tension is the design principle with the most grey area or confusion but with a bit of research it can be figured out. What I found interesting and talked about little during presentations was the overlap between the five design principles covered.

                In just the background of a PowerPoint presentation Alignment, Chunking, Contrast, Consistency, and Tension can all be observed and utilized. To describe this background using all of them would be a background with waves around the edges. The waves should be aligned with the edge of the slide, not randomly placed in the middle of the page or at odd angles. Along with the placement/alignment is chunking. Waves should be in similar sections, or chunks. If waves were thrown around the page and spread out that would be distracting to the reader. Contrast and consistency go together as well. To create attention for the content of a PowerPoint contrasting colors may be used. At the same time the colors need consistency. If some colors are pastel, all should be. If some are pastel and others are not it would look sloppy. Contrast can still exist between colors such as red and yellow side by side. Consistency and Tension go along here too. Tension can be created with the lack of consistency or consistency in almost all areas but a couple. In the wave example this could be smooth big waves around most the paper, but then for tension created in conjunction with consistency the waves around a portion of the slide would be short choppy waves.

                Different ways these principles overlap could be talked about for pages, but the wave PowerPoint background example was an attempt to cover as many as possible in a reasonable length blog post. In the upcoming class presentations even more ways the principles overlap will arise and be interesting to observe.


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