It’s that time of year again when we create and send our very own Christmas card. We’re continuing last year’s educational trend of exploring a different aspect of design psychology and a glimpse at the thought processes that go into our design decisions for web and print.
The principle is simple (which also allows us to indulge our penchant for minimalist design) – people generally tend to focus on, and process, information based on visual hierarchy. This design is based loosely on a popular graphic that we use to illustrate the concept (with a festive twist of course).
We find that most people tend to read the text by order of size, not position. This is in contrast to the traditional reading pattern in English, whereby people tend to read from left-to-right first, and then top-to-bottom. By adjusting the size and contrast of the text, we can prompt people to read in a different order. Sometimes even when they’re expecting it.
As ever, the inside of our card lets people see behind the curtain and explains the concept a little:
If you’re interested, there are two concepts at play here:
You can use different things to establish a meaningful visual hierarchy, including the size, colour, weight, position and contrast of an element relative to other elements. It helps users to prioritise information by breaking up the experience. By contrast, if everything is calling for attention on a webpage, nothing will stand out at all.
The human brain is constantly taking in far too much information from the surrounding environment to fully process, so it pays attention to what seems like the most important information and disregards the rest. Understanding this, we can attempt to influence what people see and register first by design.
Most of all thanks once again to everyone who worked with us, in whatever capacity this year. We’d like to wish all of our clients, suppliers, partners, friends and the people we’ve had the pleasure of speaking to this year a very happy holiday. We look forward to seeing you all and continuing the good work in 2023.