My “Design101 with Senpai” Experience
The beautiful journey with Senpai Henry began 6 weeks ago and each week of learning up until now has been all informative and mind-blowing. All I saw design as was a plan of something like a building, a car, a structure or just aesthetics, but I found out that design is more than just all that; Design is everything and everywhere.
Also, I discovered that design has basic needs it must satisfy before it can satisfy higher-level needs, this idea rests on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Some of this hierarchy of needs are Physiological needs, Safety needs, Love and belonging needs, Esteem needs and self-actualization needs. This Maslow’s hierarchy of needs must be met before a design can actually have that “wow” effect on us.
It was finally clear to me how some things naturally get the attention of the eye at first glance, either on a website, in a building or anywhere whatsoever, this is made possible by the visual hierarchy.
“Visual hierarchy refers to the arrangement or presentation of elements in a way that implies importance. In other words, visual hierarchy influences the order in which the human eye perceives what it sees. ”— Wikipedia.
Visual hierarchy’s most prominent property is size i.e when a text or a picture is way bigger than it’s neighboring counterparts, it will definitely be seen first. Other properties of visual hierarchy are color and space respectively and this brings us to the Gestalt principles.
“The whole is greater than the sum of its parts” — Kurt Koffka.
This phrase is like a simple definition of the general idea behind the gestalt principles or principles of grouping. Some of the gestalt principles are Proximity, Similarity, Closure, etc. I made some iterations of few gestalt principles as seen in the images below.
A great percentage of designers and even front-end developers just go straight to their computers and start designing and adjusting the design until it fits. This is not totally a bad practice if you’re good at what you do, but having a sketched wire frame on paper first increases productivity because you would know exactly what your end product should look like.
Also, when designing with your design application, might be Figma, Sketch, etc, it is best practice to layout your wire frame on a grid, this makes the work aligned, professional and pleasing to the user’s eyes. This will also make the website or interface easy to navigate.
Typography, Fonts and Color Theory
“Typography is the art and technique of arranging type to make written language legible, readable, and appealing when displayed.” -Wikipedia.
I realized how important typography can make or mar a perfect design, how to pair typefaces well, creating readable designs and also selecting appropriate typefaces for a design project. Also, I learned that typography can also be used to denote hierarchy or meaning to a text, for example, when text is in italics, you automatically know that this text might be important or might be a quote.
Finally, I learned about color; color is one of the most difficult aspects of design, especially when it comes to matching two or multiple colors for a design. In order to properly understand how to effectively pick and match colors for a design, I learned about a few color concepts and some color terminologies and this, in turn, made it easy for me to create a color scheme that I used in my most recent project. The Traditional Color Scheme types actually made creating a new color scheme easier for me.
My Design 101 final project was a design of a demo restaurant website layout. In this project, I applied everything or almost everything I’ve been learning over the weeks to it to make it candy-looking for the eyes. It was not easy but it was worth it and I’m quite happy with what I managed to produce. Attached below is a picture of my work.
This past six week has been one of the best six weeks of my Design and Creative life. It has been fun as well as educative, not only in the design aspect but even in the writing aspect. Writing is something I don’t enjoy doing but Henry Senpai showed me the importance of writing to a designer’s life and this has been pushing me to keep trying to improve on it and this is what I’m doing and will be doing.
If you enjoyed some or probably all of my experience that I’ve summarized here, please give me as many claps as possible.
Thanks for reading!