Our theme for this week of the course will be design, which is one I’m very much looking forward to! To start out, I read a few resources on design to learn more about it. Like many topics on this course, I don’t have much experience with design (except perhaps with PowerPoint design, which I’d like to think I have skills in).
First, I read the Vignelli Canon, which is a book illustrating the principles of design before the modern age of digital storytelling, though I was still able to find it relevant to digital storytelling. As Vignelli mentions, design is timeless and a good designer should be able to apply what they’ve learned to many different types of design. After reading this, I’ll be sure to ensure that what I design has purpose, which I thought was one of the most important intangible things he mentioned; every small choice that’s made with a particular design should be to achieve some goal, which may be complex but not too complex that the goal is lost. I learned from this reading that the goal should be of the creator of the desgn and for it’s audience, which is something I haven’t thought of much before, but will be thinking about this week. Another interesting section of the reading was the typography one for me, because I too always think there are far too many fonts to chose from, and it’s difficult to decide between them. I think his advice on narrowing the pool of fonts is helpful, because while it’s nice to have variety, there can be too many to choose from. I also appreciated the discussion on using contrast, such as with color or font size, and the importance of having white space. It’s interesting to think that white space is something that matters because we don’t usually think about that, but Vignelli reports that it can be even more important than the space we fill. Overall, I enjoyed Vignelli’s reading, especially because the pages themselves were filled with examples, and the book itself exemplified the principles he was discussing, such as the grid lines which were displayed over the section explaining grids in design.
Next, I read this article on Chip Kidd’s book for children on graphic design. It presented information in a friendly and informational manner, and I enjoyed reading the article and seeing all the attachments that were linked with it. The quote from Kidd’s book which says “Everything that is not made by nature is designed by someone,” resonated most with me here, because it really got me thinking about how true that really is, and how design infiltrates every part of our lives. This article provided more of an idea about how important design is in the world, and why it’s something both kids and adults value studying, since it is all around us. It is even in speed bumps, Kidd mentions, which is an excellent example of great design. One link I enjoyed following from this article was this one which is an article about the relationship between people and objects and how it’s evolved. It really highlights how design has developed in the modern age, digitally, in that we expect to be able to interact with objects these days, which is something that has changed. Overall, This provides a more modern perspective than Vignelli’s reading, though both were quite interesting.
I’m excited to explore these design principles and others this week!