I went on a DesignBlitz this week, I rode around on my unicycle taking pictures of examples of design in search of good use of the elements of design: space, shape, line, texture, color, form, value, type, symbols & metaphors, balance, rhythm, and unity. Here are some of the beautiful sights I encountered in my travels!
This Napa Auto Center sign makes good use of shape as an element of design. The soft corners of the angular shapes contrast nicely with the sharp edges of the text.
Believe it or not, the business this sign is attached to is actually still operating! This sign looks like it made great use of texture back when it was securely in one piece. The round bevel of these letters removes some of the harshness from their angular edges and serifs. 3d letters aren’t very common in this day and age, but they contrast so well against a flat surface. The depth of 3d letters is an element that is very difficult for 2d design to replicate.
Lines like these are a sight for the sore eyes of any design explorer! The lines that extend beyond the sign itself break the rectangular space that most signs are confined to, giving it a certain sense of freedom.
Most design explorers have to travel far and wide to see space used like this! Instead of just being implied by a background color, negative space actually exists between the rungs of this ladder-like sign. This increases the contrast between the content of the sign and the hollow background. I have a lot of 3d signs here; the 3rd dimension opens up the ability to play with depth and contrast in ways that aren’t possible in 2d.
This auto Repair sign makes great use of type. I wonder if they can tune up my one-wheel horse! The cursive font with the cell shaded highlights looks very soft and retro. It is a nice contrast to the straight, angular, modern-looking sans-serif font the information is in.
These are all very attractive signs, but not all signs are created equal. Here are a couple that could use some improvement.
This tire store sign makes poor use of color. The green and yellow are both saturated to the point that they are competing for attention. That yellow is also just really jarring and uncomfortable to look at to begin with.
This sign makes poor use of space. I actually like most of what is on this sign, but the kerning is done irresponsibly. In the phone number, the sevens are a bit too far from the eights, but the rest of the numbers are kerned way too tight. Several of them, such as the five and the dash or the zeroes are actually running into each other. This sign could have been a lot better if more care had been put into the spacing of the phone number.
Here is the Flickr gallery where more of my travels are documented!