good design #1

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Good design is everywhere. Appreciating its environment in which it is found is half the fun. This little bar is Bailey’s favorite for backpacking. (Whether it is because of the design, the flavor or its nutritional value; I’m not sure.) Purchased at REI, this PRO BAR is unassuming amongst the hundreds of other bars on the shelves whose design is equally as impressive or should never have been printed. I chose this specific one because its aesthetic is very similar to how I think about design.

First off the background is an actual painting. It describes, in great photorealistic painterly detail, the contents of the bar. The color palette, drawn from the painting, is simple but perfectly eye-catching. The main font is a slab serif whose consistency allows the viewer to read it in all its sizes and weights, not to mention provides an open ground for the simple script font which is the main focus. The rectangular green title of the bar is framed by the circular white area that is again framed by the rectangular shape of the bar. These nesting shapes allow the eye to move smoothly around the design keeping the focus on the center where all the important info is while still appreciating the beautiful painting in the background.

This balance of elements is often my goal in every design: a textured element (usually a background or photograph), some kind of clean, open space that leaves room for legibility and locating the focal point and last but not least a font that ties together the attitude and personality of the design. In my designs I also try to include an element of hand-created. Whether it’s a font, drawing or painting I think it’s important for our society to see the beauty in something created by hand and the inclusion of that aesthetic in everyday design. While I type this (slowly, but surely) on my iPhone, I realize that the written language is typed rather than actually handwritten but I hope for the continuation of art forms like calligraphy, cursive and any type of handwriting or painting. They show the ability of humanity to create something no technology can produce.

Making letters burdened with affection, not perfection. -unknown

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