The Non-Designers’ Design Book

I can scratch something on paper, not too ugly.
I can edit photos with PS, only for basic functions.
Never think about design before coming to write a web app.
I finished reading this non-designer’s design book at the last day of 2013.

Four Basic Principles in Design:

Contrast

Repetition

Alignment

Proximity

1.Proximity: Group related items together.
Avoid too many separate elements on a page.
Don’t stick things in the cornea and in the middle.
Avoid leaving equal amounts of white space between elements unless each group is part of a subset.
Avoid even a split second of confusion over whether a headline, subhead, caption, graphic, etc. belongs with its related material. Create a relationship among elements with close proximity.
Don’t create relationships with elements that don’t belong together. If they are not related, move them apart from each other.

2. Alignment: nothing should be placed on the page arbitrarily. Every item should have a visual connection with something else on the page.
Avoid using more than one text alignment on the page.
Try very hard to break away from a centred alignment unless you are consciously trying to create a more formal, sedate presentation. Choose a centred alignment consciously, not by default.

3. Repetition: Repeat some aspect of the design throughout the entire piece. The purpose is to unify and to add visual interest.
Avoid repeating the element so much that it becomes annoying or overwhelming. Be conscious of the value of contrast.

4. Contrast: if two items are not exactly the same, then make them different, Really different. Don’t be a wimp.
The purpose is to create an interest on the page, and to organise the information.
Avoid contrasting brown test with black headlines. Avoid using two or more typefaces that are similar.

Six Variations of Type:
Size
Weight
Structure
Form
Direction
Colour

Categories of typeface
Old style: body actually reading
Modern:striking appearance
Slab serif: Advertising
Sans serif: no edge
Script:mimic handwritting
Decorative: fun, distinctive

It also provides major concepts for designing Business Card / Envelope / Flyer / Newsletters / Brochures / Postcards / Newspaper ads / Websites.

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