0 What Do You Consider Good Design?

It seems that it would be a wise idea to have a col­lec­tion of good design to study and learn from. Do you have a folder or file that you keep out­stand­ing design in? I do! I don’t put as much into it as I would like to, but here are a few of my favorite pieces and why I like them.

Business CardThere is one glar­ing prob­lem with this first piece: I’m not sure what the com­pany name is! Is it I (as in G, H, I, J, K, etc), or is it 1 (as in 1, 2, 3, etc)? Well, at any rate, I know they serve cof­fee, drinks and food, so I guess that’s good. The biggest rea­son I like this busi­ness card is because of the way they wrote the phone and fax num­bers. They are pre­sented in the way that we say them: the area code, first three dig­its (pre­fix) and the last four num­bers. I think it would make it easy to dial and not lose your place while look­ing back and forth between the phone and the card. It also seems like a very trendy place to be. I get that feel­ing from the font. I also like that the card uses a ver­ti­cal ori­en­ta­tion rather than a hor­i­zon­tal one; that is dif­fer­ent from the norm.

Cirque du Soleil Desktop

This is a Cirque du Soleil desk­top. I like the com­po­si­tion in this one, par­tic­u­larly the sense of direc­tion. In west­ern cul­tures, we read from left to right, top to bot­tom, so nat­u­rally we start in the upper left hand cor­ner. There is a nice open space there to ease the viewer into the lay­out. Then we come across, mov­ing to the right and we find the logo. We hit the parade of men walk­ing down to the text (the two cir­cles are there just in case your eye tries to wan­der a lit­tle too far, they push you back up into the text). We fin­ish read­ing the text and make our way over to the pic­tures. What a nice lit­tle trip! The pho­tos also serve to anchor the lay­out and give it a lit­tle weight at the bot­tom so it feels like it’s fin­ished. We could, how­ever, con­tinue up to the line of men and back through the piece.

Lumiere Condo Brochure

I really like Cody Curley’s work. This par­tic­u­lar page is a brochure he did for Lumiere Con­dos. I like this page in par­tic­u­lar because it has a very calm feel­ing. Cody pro­vided ample room around the text for our eyes to rest and the space also serves to empha­size the writ­ing. It feels very sophis­ti­cated; it doesn’t need a lot of in-your-face design to make its point. The jux­ta­po­si­tion of the ele­ments in the photo (round spoon, square sugar, round cups) he chose for this lay­out is also pleas­ant, orderly and sophisticated.

IBM Annual Report 2003

Annual reports from high end com­pa­nies, like this one from IMB Pro­vides many sam­ples of good design. Here is a neat exam­ple of the whole com­po­si­tion being one com­plete piece. There is no sep­a­ra­tion of text and photo; the text is inte­grated into and designed to be a part of the image. I enjoy the typog­ra­phy on this page, too. The design­ers thought about what was impor­tant and empha­sized that with color, size and style (reg­u­lar, italic, bold, small caps).

Online Secret Logo

I know Toon from the Estet­ica Design Forum that I am a part of (which is a great place to dis­cuss and learn about design, by the way). He is an excel­lent logo designer and Online Secret is one of my favorite logos of his. Toon incor­po­rated the idea of a secret into this logo quite effec­tively. The beau­ti­ful round serif that he used for the text also lends a sense of suave and upscale atmos­phere. I don’t know any­thing about what this client wanted, but that’s what I get from the final result and I can mimic these aspects in a design where I do know what a client is look­ing for.

Of course we can’t for­get about web design among all this print stuff, and for that I turn to Jon Tan’s site. In com­par­i­son with many other sites out there, Jon has man­aged to set him­self a part with his sexy use of typog­ra­phy (hey, how would you describe it?). In his About sec­tion, he states that “the design grew out of thoughts on West­ern type and print ver­sus Chi­nese typog­ra­phy and cal­lig­ra­phy.” I like the clean, no-nonsense lay­out he presents and how he has found ways to make the hier­ar­chy work almost entirely through typog­ra­phy alone. The sparse use of color also allows its use to make quite a state­ment; it really stands out when its present.

About The Author

This blog was created by ELO DESIGNER to share his wealth of knowledge and researches with other designers and design lovers, to give them guidance and inspiration. Comments and suggestions are always appreciated. Thank you. Follow my daily design links on Twitter or Add me on your social network.

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