16 Jun 2018

PRINCIPLES OF DESIGN AND COLOUR COMBINATIONS

Humans love color. Color plays a key role in logos. Some colors can have different meanings, even opposing meanings, based entirely on context and application. There are few things in design that are more subjective or more important than the use of color. A color that can evoke one reaction in one person may evoke the opposite reaction in another, due to culture, prior association, or even just personal preference. A great web design is so much more than just delivering content and making it look good.

Color is one of the most powerful tools in a web designer’s toolbox. It can be used to attract attention, express meaning, create desire, drive conversions, and even earn a customer’s loyalty. But how can color accomplish all of this and still maintain a consistent brand identity? The answer is to develop an effective color scheme. Every website design project should begin with a thoroughly-considered color palette that is used consistently throughout the entire website. Color can be used to convey meaning or information about the brand, as well as create a sense of uniformity and cohesion between different products on the website. Color contrast can be used to highlight specific products and give strong directional cues.

In 2018 color gradients are literally everywhere, from websites to Twitter headers, and even presentations. Instagram always ahead of the curve has used it in their branding and logos for the past few years. Traditionally, companies have a few colors that they use across all of their branding and design work. This helps people recognize them out in the world, on social media and other places online.

In design, red can be a powerful accent color. It can have an overwhelming effect if it’s used too much in designs, especially in its purest form. It’s a great color to use when power or passion want to be portrayed in the design. Red can be very versatile, though, with brighter versions being more energetic and darker shades being more powerful and elegant. Netflix too employs the power of red; its logo is a simple rectangle with bold lettering. Yellow is often considered the brightest and most energizing of the warm colors. It’s associated with happiness and sunshine. In your designs, bright yellow can lend a sense of happiness and cheerfulness. Softer yellows are commonly used as a gender-neutral color for babies (rather than blue or pink) and young children.

Green is appropriate for designs related to wealth, stability, renewal, and nature. Brighter greens are more energizing and vibrant, while olive greens are more representative of the natural world. Dark greens are the most stable and representative of affluence.

Technology brands like Dell, IBM, Intel, and AT&T take advantage of blue’s trustworthy message; they create products that people rely on day after day. Brands that sell appliances and machines love blue as well; GE and Ford both use it. The world’s biggest social network FACEBOOK is blue. In design, the exact shade of blue you select will have a huge impact on how your designs are perceived. Light blues are often relaxed and calming. Bright blues can be energizing and refreshing. Dark blues, like navy, are excellent for corporate sites or designs where strength and reliability are important. For a company whose core values are transparency and trust, this probably is not an accident. A company that serves as a conduit for billions of dollars, PayPal, also prefers the color blue. Chances are, this helps to improve their trustworthiness. If they were to try, say, red or orange as the theme color and branding, they probably wouldn’t have the same level of conversion.

Dark purples can give a sense of wealth and luxury in design. Light purples are softer and are associated with spring and romance. Neutral colors often serve as the backdrop in design. They’re commonly combined with brighter accent colors. But they can also be used on their own in designs and can create very sophisticated layouts. The meanings and impressions of neutral colors are much more affected by the colors that surround them that are warm and cool colors.

Black is professional and credible, but it can be edgy as well. When used as more than an accent or for text, is commonly used in edgier designs, as well as in very elegant designs. It can be conservative or modern, traditional or unconventional, depending on the colors it’s combined with. In design, black is commonly used for typography and other functional parts, because of its neutrality. Black can make it easier to convey a sense of sophistication and mystery in a design. Technically, black and white aren’t colors. Black is the absence of color, and white is a combination of all colors. Technicalities aside, though, black and white along with other neutral hues make for striking logos, using them together makes for a logo that is timeless and beautiful. Nike and Puma use black for an edgy vibe, while newspapers and other publications use black and white for the combination’s balance and simplicity.

White is clean and pure. In design, white is generally considered a neutral backdrop that lets other colors in a design have a larger voice. It can help to convey cleanliness and simplicity, though, and is popular in minimalist designs. White in designs can also portray either winter or summer, depending on the other design motifs and colors that surround it.

In design, brown is commonly used as a background color. It is also seen in wood textures and sometimes in stone textures. It helps to bring a feeling of warmth and wholesomeness to designs. It is sometimes used in its darkest forms as a replacement for black, either in backgrounds or typography. Beige in design is generally used in backgrounds and is commonly seen in backgrounds with a paper texture. It will take on the characteristics of colors around it, meaning it has little effect in itself on the final impression a design gives when used with other colors. In design, ivory can lend a sense of elegance and calm to a site. When combined with earthy colors like peach or brown, it can take on an earthy quality. It can also be used to lighten darker colors, without the stark contrast of using white.

Orange is a color that does not let anyone pass by without taking a look. It stands out in a crowd and sends a message that says, “I’m not afraid to be the center of attention.” Orange is creative, youthful, and enthusiastic. employs orange as a key element in its logo; pairing orange with black and white takes away some of its “in your face” quality, and it comes together with the other colors to create a logo that is both tough and attractive. Gray too plays an important role in the logo world, especially when it is shined to a silver finish. Car companies like Mercedes-Benz and Honda use logos that feature silver.

The designer’s role is to build clear and understandable communication through the impact of color. It is fascinating because anyone can understand the basics and use those principles to design.

 

Article by: Blessing Bassey

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