Sunday, 29 May 2016

Design School ~ Balance

Creating Balance on a scrapbook page means making sure the elements on your page feel visually balanced. It's about taking in the size and visual weight of the things happening on your page and ensuring their distribution on your canvas is harmonious. 

Visual weight is gauged by the size, colour and complexity of the object- while my rectangle above is much bigger than the circle the blackness 'weighs down it's side of the canvas because of the 'weight' of the black.

When the two objects have the same visual weight the balance shifts to the larger object.

Complexity/interest (like we often see in a photo) also add weight. The objects above are fairly well balanced out the rectangle weighted by it's size and the circle by it's complexity.

Often checking the Balance on our page is about seeing if it 'feels good'. Or visually checking if you feel like it would tip a scale in one direction or other. Your layout may feel top-heavy, or it may be leaning more to one side or the other. Some times we can utilize these features but sometimes it just feels off.

Symmetrical Balance- Creating an axis on our page and make a design that is mostly symmetrical is an easy way to create balance on a page.

Horizontal Axis- top and bottom have the similar visual weight.

Vertical Axis- left and right have the same weight. 

Project Life pages are a great example of using symmetry to help provide balance- this one is symmetrical on both the horizontal and vertical access. Although the red card has more weight then the one with the hearts making the page feel a bit lopsided- do you feel that? 

Asymmetrical Symmetry

 The items on this page aren't symmetrical - but each grouping carries a similar weight and their placement in opposition to each other makes the balance out. The flow from top to bottom on the diagonal also makes this page comfortable to the eye.

The two sections on this page aren't the same size but they balance out for a few reasons- items that are higher on the page have more visual weight. Brighter colours like those in the title carry more weight. Items further away from the centre gain more weight. The top grouping is isolated by white space and more isolated in general which also lends it more weight.

Asymmetrical Balance can be harder to achieve- but often pages with asymmetrical balance have more energy are more visually interesting to the viewer, so it's worth the effort. For some more tips on Asymmetrical Balance this post at Get it Scrapped

To check the balance on your page- ask yourself where your eye goes- is it drawn to an element because it's too large for the page, or too bright, too dark or too complex. If so... can you change that element to something more suited? Or can you add something elsewhere on the LO to balance it out?

Why not have a look at your own pages and see how you have automatically achieved balance? Or find the pages that didn't feel quite right and ask yourself if it's because they are unbalanced?

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