Elements of Design

The elements of design surround us no matter where we go; we are constantly being reminded of the design choices of others by observing the world around us. Where as a design is the overall function of a piece of work, visual design is more about how the design is perceived and liked by others.

There are several principles of Design:

  • Balance is a very important part of design because it allows for objects and shapes to be aesthetically placed around the picture.
  • Contrast is important because it gets the attention of others, it’s meant to grab the eyes away from everything else. It also helps to organize the content of your work..
  • Emphasis is very similar to contrast, but stands all on its own. Emphasis is the element of the work that is supposed to grab the attention, it was meant to be seen first and foremost. Emphasis doesn’t have to be obvious, but can also be implied.
  • Movement is used to express action in a picture. A variety of shapes and lines are used to make it have the appearance of movement. Individual frames and diagonal lines help to lend to the idea of movement in a work of art.
  • A Pattern is a repeated use of a visual element in order to create a rhythm in a work of art.
  • Rhythm allows your work to contain a certain consistency. A pattern is found within a rhythm.
  • Unity allows you to see the relationship among all the different elements in the design.
  • Dominance works with different lines and shapes to assert all the different elements. This is also how dominance works with balance to create unity.
  • Proportion involves the scale of the pictorial elements. Proportion usually must have standards and cannot be made at random.
  • The idea behind minimalism is that sometimes the message can be direct, and all that extra fluff isn’t really necessary to say what you are trying to say.

Here are the examples of design principles that I found in my own environment:


This is an example that I found using color. You can see how all the bright, accompanying colors bring focus to the piece of art in question.


I used this old political poster not just because of the language difference, but mostly because you can see that the letters were supposed to one of the main points of the poster. Large, bold, and black.

IMAG0328I took a picture of this wall hanging as an example of rhythm. There are smaller, repeating patterns that become a part of a larger and more meaningful rhythm.


This is an example I used for metaphor/symbol. Uncle Sam represents a spirit that was uncontrollable during an ever expanding time for our nature. Here he can be seen standing coast to coast of the US, and the print below him read “The Stride Of A Century”. These are symbols for the manifest destiny.

Design is full of nuances and skills to learn in order to better help humans both create and appreciate works of art.

Reading Poster Assignment

For this assignment, I made a reading poster. Although Mr. Beemis had already been used as the main example, I found this picture of him looking so cute and excited and decided I could pass it up.

Now, this assignment was a *little* too easy for 3 stars, so I ended up trying to colorize my picture a bit (it’s a skill I’m still working on).

Anyway, the poster really says it all. Reading is fun! Go do it! And if you’re the only person left on the planter for the love of Pete don’t break your only pair of glasses. Or get eye surgery. I don’t know. He had options.

readingposter copy

Link to Original Assignment

3 Stars

Twilight Zone Venn Diagram

venndiagram copy

I really liked the idea of this assignment and thought that it could easily be applied to the episodes of The Twilight Zone that we’ve all been watching.

For some reason I did “The Invaders” instead of “Eye of the Beholder”, but I’m okay with that. I tried to take a more humorous approach rather than a serious analyses of all the contrasts and comparisons.

Surprisingly, it was a little difficult to make a first. I tried GIMP, then Photoshop, before I finally decided that Ink scape was the easiest program to use for this particular assignment. All in all, in didn’t take too terribly long to make, but coming up with the different similarities and differences took a while.

4.5 Stars

Animated Movie Poster

For this assignment, I made an animated poster for the Twilight Zone episode “Time Enough At Last“. This was my favorite episode so far, but it was also the most depressing so I ended up in bed afterwards and drowned out some of the pain with the ever timely humor of Lieutenant Data. Then I had to work.

This took a little longer than I would have liked it to, but as a wise boyfriend once told me yesterday “Just figure out how to do the layers and Google it before you ask me”. So, I eventually figured out that I could link all the frames of my gif in GIMP and thus scale them all at once, rather than painstakingly one by one.


I tried to use a climatic scene because I feel like that’s how movie posters do, ya know? This one was fun, but definitely challenging.

Link to Original Assignment

4.5 Stars

Break it down, little man.

For the twilight zone assignment, I decided to make an animated gif of the tiny evil alien robot. After watching “The Invaders”  I was pretty set on bringing that creepy little guy to life on my blog.

I implemented the same method that I used for my Petty gif, (that I learned from this awesome tutorial) and it’s really amazingly simple. GIMP is an awesome, awesome tool and in some ways, I like it better than Photoshop.


Call Black Mamba today for efficient evil doing.

Before I started working on the Twilight Zone assignments, I had to do this one first. What isn’t cool about female super villains, right? Here is the calling card I made for Black Mamba, an evil doer from the Marvel Universe.


snakes copy


You wouldn’t surmise it from looking at her, but her powers are actually telepathy.  I guess she just falls in the the whole “Snakes Are Sexy” trope. You know, evil woman seductress and what not. This was probably the easiest assignment so far to do, and it was easily done using layers in GIMP.


Original Assignment