Archive | November, 2011

Basic Design Principles

28 Nov

The Non-Designer's Design BookThe four basic design principles:


I two items are not exactly the same, then make them different. Really different.

Our eyes like contrast.

Creating contrast is just fun.

Add contrast through your typeface choices, line thicknesses, colors, shapes, sizes, space, etc.

Don’t be a wimp.


Repeat some aspect of the design throughout the entire page.

Being consistent.

Create repetition to enhance the design and the clarity of the information.

Be conscious  of the value of contrast.


Nothing should be placed on the page arbitrarily. Every item should have a visual connection with something else on the page.

Avoid using more than one text alignment on the page.

Center is weak.



Group related items together.

Avoid too many separate elements on a page.



Make contrast with type, size, weight, form, structure, direction, and color.

Contrast heavy weights with light weights, not medium weights.

Warm colors come forward; cool colors recede. Experiment with the colors of black text.

Think more in terms of horizontal type versus tall, narrow columns of type, rather than type on a slant.

Caps versus lowercase is a contrast of form, as well as roman versus italic or script. Scripts and italics have similar forms-don’t combine them.

Don’t use all caps.

Never put two typefaces from the same category on the same page.

Never put two sans serif typefaces on the same page.

Combining sans serif with serif is a time-tested combination.

Name the problem, then you can create the solution. Find similarities-not the differences.




Social Intelligence

15 Nov

Social IntelligenceSocial Intelligence (SI) is the ability to get along well with others, and to get them to cooperate with you. Sometimes referred to simplistically as “people skills,” SI includes an awareness of situations and the social dynamics that govern them, and a knowledge of interaction styles and strategies that can help a person achieve his or her objectives in dealing with others. It also involves a certain amount of self-insight and a consciousness of one’s own perceptions and reaction patterns.

From the standpoint of interpersonal skills, Karl Albrecht classifies behavior toward others as falling somewhere on a spectrum between “toxic” effect and “nourishing” effect. Toxic behavior makes people feel devalued, angry, frustrated, guilty or otherwise inadequate. Nourishing behavior makes people feel valued, respected, affirmed, encouraged or competent. A continued pattern of toxic behavior indicates a low level of social intelligence – the inability to connect with people and influence them effectively. A continued pattern of nourishing behavior tends to make a person much more effective in dealing with others; nourishing behaviors are the indicators of high social intelligence.