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 Design is where Art and Science break even.



Contents Visual Literacy History of Graphic Design Components of Design -Technicality of Design -Elements of Design -Principles of Design -Layouting -Illustration -Typography -Application -Future Scope

Synopsis With the help of a tropical theme, this book tries to give you an idea of graphic design and how it came into being. We have tried to explain technical elements like grids, typeface, illustrations, etc through tropical components and try to make the experience fun and entertaining as much as possible.








negotiate, and make meaning from information presented in the form of an image, extending the meaning of literacy, which commonly signifies interpretation of a written or printed text. Visual literacy is based on the idea that pictures can be "read" and that meaning can be through a process of reading.

HISTORY OF Graphics are visual presentations on some surface, such as a wall, canvas, computer screen, paper, or stone. It includes everything that relates to creation of signs, charts, logos, graphs, drawings, symbols, geometric designs and so on.


Graphic design is the art or profession of combining text and pictures MINIATURE PAINTINGS in art, advertisements, publications, or websites. The aim of graphics is to brand, inform, and have a specific effect on its audience. Hundreds of graphic designs of animals were made by primitive people in Chauvet cave, in the south of France, about 30,000 BC. Religious DECORATIVE books have used graphics extenDESIGN sively. William Morris had an influence on modern graphics. In ON POTERRY the second half of 19th century his Kelmscott Press produced many graphic designs, and created a collector market for this kind of art. In Oxford he was associated with artists like Burne-Jones, and Dante Gabriel Ros-


GRAPHICS setti. They formed the Pre-Raphaelites group, whose ideas influenced modern graphic ROCK AND CAVE ART design considerably. The Dutch painter Piet Mondrian in the years 1920–21 courageously introduced the style of minimalism in painting. His simple geometric compositions, together with the use of only three basic colors, blue, yellow, and red, in combination with PICTURE, LOGOS black and white created a new AND TRADEMARKS venue for the graphic designers. With time the concept of Communication through pictures and Logos and Trademarks were introduced. By the 90s Infographics, Dynamic Design and Computer ANimation game into existence. In todays times graphic design has penetrated into all aspects of modern life. In particular modern architecture has been influenced by graphics.


COMPONENTS OF DESIGN Graphic Design cannot be explained in a single word or line, You need to understand it in depth and the elements that come into play for a design to be effective and appealing to the audience. Few of the most important components of design are Elements of Design, Principles of Design, Techniques of Layouting and Formating, Typography and word play, Technicalities and Geometrical aspects, etc. Few of these components are further bifurcated into categories which attempt to explain these element in detail. The following pages will guide you to understand graphic designing from a new perspective.

TECHNICALITY IN DESIGN Everything that is created or made be it in a physical form or virtual, if it has certain visual appeal to it then it has certain techniality to it as well. There is a set norm of going about things. Fibonacci series and the Golden Ratio are two such concepts that explain almost why everything around us is they way it is and why it is supposed to be like that not in some different manner. -FIBONACCI SERIES -GOLDEN RATIO

SACRED GEOME infinities live within finite forms, and the chaos of creation is brought to order. The true beauty of sacred geometry is that it satisfies both the right and left brain. Elegant expressions of compelling proportional relationships simultaneously activate the intellectual and artistic functions, merging the rational with the abstract. The journey of life begins with a single cell or circle, which may also be drawn or imagined as a sphere. This is not yet a seed, but its mere potential. This first circle is an abstract concept which serves as the perpetual center point and container for all that comes next. The original circle, when duplicated in connection six times around the central sphere gives rise to a conglomeration of circles called the seed of life. Sacred geometry is the nexus point between physics and mysticism. It is the realm where despite its pervasive usage, the shape is so fundamental to the structure of the cosmos that humans will never grow weary of its perfect harmonics. Would you or anyone deny that this pattern is infinitely pleasing? The days of the week followed by a day of rest, the six heavenly bodies circling the sun and seven chakras with three upper and lower encircling the heart chakra are

TRY IN NATURE wonderful examples of this. On adding six more circles to this ring utmost beauty is achieved in sacred geometry which is equivalent to the flower in nature. The signs of the zodiac which encircle earth, the 12 hours on the face of the clock, 12 disciples of Jesus, the 12 Knights of King Arthur are all shining examples of how 12 is the root no in the code of proportion that governs the solar system. Far beyond any possibility of coincidence, such alignments reveal the divine intelligence inherent to creation. Such mysterious rationality and beautiful order cannot be the result of so many mere happy accidents. The glorious complexity of the Flower is reduced in order to produce Fruit of Life. This little death serves that which is being born. Now simplified, the Fruit becomes the creative framework from which the infinite potential of Metatron’s Cube springs to life. Now, connect the center points of the thirteen circles that compose the Fruit, and you’ll discover a web of interlocking lines that are the two-dimensional representation of the three-dimensional polyhedra that are the complete structural basis for human experience. This multidimensional shape-stack is called Metatron’s Cube.

FIBONNACI SERIES The Fibonacci sequence is named after Italian mathematician Leonardo of Pisa, known as Fibonacci. His 1202 book Liber Abaci introduced the sequence to Western European mathematics, although the sequence had been described earlier in Indian mathematics. The sequence described in Liber

Abaci began with F1 = 1. In mathematics, the Fibonacci numbers are the numbers in the following integer sequence, called the Fibonacci sequence, and characterized by the fact that every number after the first two is the sum of the two preceding ones: 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144...

21 Often, especially in modern usage, the sequence is extended by one more initial term: 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89, 144... They also appear in biological settings, such as branching in trees, phyllotaxis (the arrangement of leaves stem), the fruit sprouts of a pineapple, etc.

13 3


2 1



GOLDEN RATIO The Golden ratio is an extension of the Fibonnaci series. The golden ratio has been claimed to have held a special fascination for at least 2,400 years, although without reliable evidence. Some of the greatest mathematical minds of all ages, have spent endless hours over this simple ratio and its properties. But the fascination with the Golden Ratio is not confined just to mathematicians. Biologists, artists, musicians, historians, architects, psychologists, and even mystics have pondered and debated the basis of its ubiquity and appeal. In fact, it is probably fair to say that the Golden Ratio has inspired thinkers of all disciplines like no other number in the history of mathematics. You can witness the presence of the gold ratio in all walks and aspects of life. For example - Architecture, Music, Nature, Perpetual Studies, Design, Painting, Aesthetics, etc. In mathematics, two quantities are in the golden ratio if their ratio is the same as the ratio of their sum to the larger of the two quantities. The figure on the right illustrates the geometric relationship. Expressed algebraically, for quantities a and b with a > b > 0





Esoterically, Metatron is an archangel, one of the energetic entities that oversee our particular corner of creation. Among the archangels, Metatron is understood to be the architect, the transcendent genius of shape and proportion. Metatron governs the specific logistics by which consciousness is able to take form. Dear reader, at our shared level of experience, the most fundamental forms we can grasp are the five Platonic solids. The tetrahedron, octahedron, cube, icosahedron and dodecahedron are the building blocks of our reality. These polyhedra are the only shapes in existence that have uniform numbers of sides, side lengths and internal angles. They are the only perfectly symmetrical three dimensional forms possible.






The Fruit of Life

Metatron’s Cube

The Flower of Life

ELEMENTS The Elements of Good Graphic Design are the components or parts of a work of art or design. More simply put, they are the ingredients of art. Take one part color, a pinch of texture , and a whole lot of shape and the result will be some well designed graphic design. Recipes may vary, but all works of art and design contain a combination of the following seven elements shown here -







Elements of Design Line Lines, in graphic design, can be used for a wide range of purposes: stressing a word or phrase, connecting content, creating patterns and more.

Size In graphic design, size is used to convey importance, attract attention and create contrast.

Value Value is how light or dark an area looks in a design. It is everything from the darkest of blacks through to the brightest of whites. Used correctly it will create depth, contrast and emphasis.

Colour Colour is used to generate emotions, define importance, create visual interest and unify branding. See our post on Colour Psychology for more detail.

Texture Texture relates to the surface of an object. Using texture in graphic design adds depth and visual interest. This can be applied graphically in the form of pattern or through the choice of printable surface.

Shape The three basic shape types are Geometric (Circles, Squares, Triangles etc.), Natural (leaves, trees, people etc.) and abstract (icons, stylisations and graphic representations). Use carefully to create a visually pleasing design and eye-catching design.

Space A vital part of any good graphic design, Space is the area around the elements in a design. It can be used to separate or group information. Use it effectively to give the eye a rest, define importance and lead the eye to where you want it to travel.

*When trying to understand a concept it is said that you must start from the basics. Hence here are examples of elements of design that are explained through the most basic aspect that surrounds the world that is mother nature.

PRINCIPLES Principles of Design and Elements of Design go hand in hand. Principles of Design are also a very important aspect of Graphic Design, just like how Elements of Design are. Just like how every game has a certain set of rules to follow, Graphic Designing also has to follow certain norms and conditions for it to be effectve and conviencing. It is not a compulsion to follow these principles, however a good designer should always keep these bullet points in head while creating an artwork.








Principles of Design Balance Balance is the distribution of the visual weight of objects, colors, texture, and space. If the design was a scale, these elements should be balanced to make a design feel stable. In symmetrical balance, the elements used on one side of the design are similar to those on the other side; in asymmetrical balance, the sides are different but still look balanced. In radial balance, the elements are arranged around a central point and may be similar.

Emphasis Emphasis is the part of the design that catches the viewer’s attention. Usually the artist will make one area stand out by contrasting it with other areas. The area could be different in size, color, texture, shape, etc.

Movement Movement is the path the viewer’s eye takes through the work of art, often to focal areas. Such movement can be directed along lines, edges, shape, and color within the work of art.

Pattern Pattern is the repeating of an object or symbol all over the work of art

Repition Repetition works with pattern to make the work of art seem active. The repetition of elements of design creates unity within the work of art.

Proportion Proportion is the feeling of unity created when all parts (sizes, amounts, or number) relate well with each other. When drawing the human figure, proportion can refer to the size of the head compared to the rest of the body.

Rythm Rhythm is created when one or more elements of design are used repeatedly to create a feeling of organized movement. Rhythm creates a mood like music or dancing. To keep rhythm exciting and active, variety is essential.

Variety Variety is the use of several elements of design to hold the viewer’s attention and to guide the viewer’s eye through and around the work of art.

Unity Unity is the feeling of harmony between all parts of the work of art, which creates a sense of completeness.

Understanding Elements of Designs and Principles of Design becomes easier when you try to study it with the help of exapmles. The book has attempted to explain them with the help of exapmles taken from tropical elements in the nature. Line, Size, Balance, Colour, Proportion, Shape, Pattern, Movement, Space, etc can all be explained through natural elements such as leaves and flowers. If you go to check you can find all the above mentioned elements and principles in and around you. May it be in 2D format or 3D. You see lines, colour balance, pattern, etc in all the plants and flowers you notice. They all blend in with their surroundings like they’re a part of it. You will never spot any plant, tree or flower, where atleast one of these elemnts/ principles are existing.

Sketch or Stick pictures of one example each - Pattern, Movement, Spacing and Texture

LAYOUTING Page layout is the part of graphic design that deals in the arrangement of visual elements on a page. It generally involves organizational principles of composition to achieve specific communication objectives. The high-level page layout involves deciding on the overall arrangement of text and images, and possibly on the size or shape of the medium. It requires intelligence, sentience, and creativity, and is informed by culture, psychology, and what the document authors and editors wish to communicate and emphasize -GRAPHIC LAYOUT -WEB LAYOUT.

GRAPHIC LAYOUT Mondrian Layout Mondrian layout refers to the forms: square, landscape or portrait, where every field is parallel to the presentation field and loads the image in order to form a composition that is conceptual.

Circus Layout Circus Layout doesn’t imply standard layout. It refers to the irregular composition of elements.

x Multipanel Layout




Multipanel layout is divided into various sections or theme in same shape such as rectangle, square, cube, etc.

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Silhouette Layout Silhouette layout refers to the layouts in the form of illustration or photographic technique, highlighted only through shadow. Presentations can be shaped text-rap or spot color illustration or refracted smooth image pickup along- with photographic tech niques.

Big-Type Layout Big-Type layout lay emphasize on the font styles and big font sizes so as to grab the attention of the audience. Big-type layouts are usually used for creating headline.

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Alphabet-Inspired Layout In Design MOTHER NATURE Alphabet- Inspired Layout focuses on the Best Teacher

arrangement of letters or numbers in an appropriate sequence or forms a word or enhanced to give an impression of story or an idea for the advertisement.


WEB LAYOUT Static Layout



A static page layout often referred to as “fixed layout” or “fixed width layout” uses a predefined page size and doesn’t changes with the browser width. That is to say the page layout might have a permanent width. Traditionally web pages were built in static mode until the introduction of media queries and responsive web designs back in the year 2010.


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Liquid Layout Liquid layouts are often referred to as “fluid” or “fluid width” utilizes relative units rather than static or fixed units. Generally a liquid layout works on percentages rather than pixels, however relative unit of measurement can also work, for example, ems.




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Responsive Layout Responsive page layouts employees both relative units and media queries, appar ently combining the concepts of liquid and adaptive layout. A responsive layout is generally referred to mobile friendly layouts, which get expands or contracts in width. A responsive layout will get mold in the same manner as liquid layout. Also, if the browser goes beyond stipulated width as defined by media query breakpoint, then page layout will change drastically to suit a wide or narrow width.




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Hybrid Layout Hybrid layout is popular web page lay-out ing design among all. As the name suggest the resultant layout is the blend of various types of layout. That is to say the layout combines various units and concepts to make sure that the design flexibly adapts to browser’s viewport only while retaining a definite level of control over parts of a web site that calls for more fixed structures.







ILLUSTRATION 'An illustration is a visualization or a depiction of a subject made by an artist, such as a drawing, sketch, painting, photograph, or other kind of image of things seen, remembered or imagined, using a graphical representation. The word comes from the Latin word illustra'tio, illu'stro meaning enlighten, irradiate.' Illustrations and visual effects play a very important role in graphic design because even if the content or text of a particular article is hard to comprehend through the help of pictures and graphics the reader can atleast grasp a little bit of what the author is trying to convey. However a designer should always strike a balance between the text and graphics he is using in his artwork, neither of the two should overpower the other to achieve a good and efficient output.

TYPOGRAPHY Typography Rules every Designer should know. Typography is one of the most important and gratifying components of graphic design because when you actually know the rules and origin of your craft it is easier to break or alter them. •The first step is to learn the basics. The composition of a type face consists of specific vocabulary, accurate measurements and central specifications that should always be identified and taken into consideration. •Taking note of font communication on type face selection with the audience in mind. Eg. not using a elaborate rainbow colored font for a law firm brochure. •Understanding kerning to fine tune the space between the characters to produce a streamline unified pairing. •Limiting your fonts to two or three type faces with one font for the body and another for the header and third for the sub-head provided there is cohesiveness in the pairing. •In font pairing the challenge is to pick a second font which is as captivating as the primary type face without losing the overall uniformity or consistency of the design. •Practicing correct alignment as it is an imperative concept of typography.

•Left alignment is easy on the eyes whereas right alignment gets the text nicely arranged on one side if used properly. •Bringing visual hierarchy into play by stressing the significance of certain type of lines to guide the eyesight of the audience in a particular order. •Work with grids to ensure every little thing on the page is put in relation to something else to produce logical and visual harmony. •Prioritizing readability so that one does not use a dark text on a dark back ground or a small font in a high contrast image. •Chose a palate font wisely and pin point the right colours intended for the design so that the font colours are not too distracting or make the message confusing. •One of the easiest ways to take the design to the next level is to get a handle on ‘widows’ and ‘orphans’ so that a line of text that is part of a paragraph or a single word is not shifted to the next column or left hanging on its own. •Avoid stretching the fonts to make them taller or wider because sometimes distorting the type face may take away its efficiency and value.

•Remembering that white space is not an empty space. It helps to focus more on a particular part of your composition. It not only lets the design ‘breath’ but it stabilizes the design components and adds a level of sophistication to the design effortlessly. •Use and treat typography as art as fonts are carefully fashioned and can become a valuable advantage to your design tool box. •Design is like fashion. Trends come and go. Monitor the popular font trends that dominate your niche. •A designer must know what tools fit the task so that the right tools will be used though the popular ones designed by Adobe may be pricey. •Adhere to grammar rules so that ma jor pit falls like ampersands, double spaces after punctuations and hyphens and dashes are avoided helping one to create a professional looking design. •Giving good design is a continuous learning process. Study existing type face illustrations and figure what makes them engaging and effective. •Try to spot fonts and graphics that catch your attention or inspire you. •And finally constant practice helps to sharpens your skills.








CHARACTERS An individual symbol of the full character set that makes up a typeface; may take the form of a letter, number, punctuation mark, etc.

A short line or stroke attached to or extending from the open ends of a letterform; also refers to the general category of typefaces that have been designed with this feature.





Literally “without line”; the general category of typefaces (or an individual typeface) designed without serifs.

BASELINE The imaginary line on which most letters and other characters sit



The imaginary line that marks the upper boundary of capital letters and some lowercase letters’ ascenders (see Ascender definition in the next section).

The height of a typeface’s lowercase letters (disregarding ascenders and descenders)



LETTER-SPACING The uniform amount of spacing between characters in a complete section of text (sentence, line, paragraph, page, etc.).

The horizontal spacing between two consecutive characters; adjusting the kerning creates the appearance of uniformity and reduces gaps of white space between certain letter combinations





A single linear element that forms part of a character; may be straight or curved


The main (usually vertical) stroke of a letterform


Bandages COUNTER

An enclosed or partially enclosed area of white space within a letter; could be bounded by curves, strokes, or stems.

FOOT The part of the stem that rests on the baseline



A piece of a letter that extends below the baseline


The point where a stroke connects to a stem

Eternal JOINT


paycheck The uppermost connecting point of a letterform where two strokes meet; may be rounded, sharp/pointed, flat/blunt, etc.

A part of a lowercase letter that rises above the main body of the letter (above the x-height).



Vertex - The point at the bottom of a character where two strokes meet.


A horizontal stroke that does not connect to a stem on one or both ends


Crotch - The inside angle where two strokes meet


A curved stroke extending down from a stem.

A curved stroke extending down from a stem.





A curved stroke that is continuous with a stem ARC


The opening or partially enclosed negative space created by an open counter.



ag ag


A type of letter that has two counters (as opposed to the single-story version, which has only one counter)


The end of any stroke that doesn’t include a serif; includes ball terminals (circular in shape) and finials (curved or tapered in shape).



Create a new decorative typeface keeping these pointers in mind.


APPLICATION OF DESIGN After reading this book you come to know that Graphic design is everywhere. In fact, you will see hundreds of examples of graphic design every single day, and most of the time, you won't even realize the impact it is having on you. Graphic design can serve many functions, and to that end, it wears many hats. Just a few of the uses of graphic design include: Signage Corporate identity/ Branding Packaging (everything from bottles to appliances) Printed materials (books, flyers, magazines, newspapers) Online (banners, blogs, websites, etc) Album covers Film and television titles and graphics T-shirt and clothing designs Greeting cards

FUTURE SCOPE •Design has come a long way since the early days and it will only continue to innovate in the future. •Without design the world that we live in would be completely boring and lifeless. •Graphic design is highly inspired by technological advances and as programs, softwares and technology is released, graphic designers start to manipulate them to create new trends and styles of the future. •Freelancing in graphic design is predicted to increase in the next few years. The graphic design jobs is also predicted to increase by about 13% as the need for design will increase amongst small businesses, advertising companies and design firms will rise. •In the future more and more graphic designers will chose to pack on the skill of web design into their work. •While Responsive Design is popular today, there are still many website that aren’t optimized for mobile devices. By 2033 responsive design will not only take the screen size into consideration but websites will also be developed using online psychology theories.

•Many individuals will double up as both as web and graphic designer to earn more money and this will only increase in the years to come. •The concept of Image Blocking is likely to increase. Websites like Pininterest eliminate the text and fix the images in the block style and this trend is likely to evolve more. This grid style image blocking will eliminate the amount of text that is used on websites. By 2033 it is predicted that this style will be in full-swing. • Such responsive design will include things like using certain colours to trigger certain emotions among users. Some of the leading voices of the industry is as under: •Vladimir Gendelman Founder and CEO of Company Folders, Inc : The future of graphic design is going to be elevated to new heights by being fused with augmented reality and eventually, 3D printing. •PJ Richardson Creative Director & Co-owner of Laundry: It is also predicted that in the next 10-15 years, the separation between technologically driven design and graphic nostalgia will broaden. Books, posters and signage will still exist with unusual new twists. And Virtual reality will be fully functional via contact lens or brain implants and will require a new type of interactive meets motion graphics meets filmmaking approach to graphic design.



Tropical Paradise.  
Tropical Paradise.