Layout, Hierarchy & The Gird Workshop

Learning about the fundamentals of graphic design requires me to learn and understand the basic terms and design principles with design. Three of these are layout, hierarchy and grid which I had an introduction to within my lecture. Before this lecture/workshop I had a basic understanding of these principles however, I now feel that I have a greater knowledge and understanding surrounding these fundamentals.

As part of the workshop we had to sketch layouts that we found within design magazines  and decided what gird system they used. I found it useful looking through the design magazines such as the eye and creative review because it allowed me the opportunity to see which layout worked best but also allowed me to see how an editorial magazines use a variety of layouts.

Through sketching these layouts I found that I was instantly looking at certain features or ‘piece of design furniture ‘ first when looking at the spreads. I found that my eye was drawn to images or larger type on the page which is clear evidence of hierarchy working at it’s best. However, within this task I did struggle at point with working out which grid system the designer could be using. Sometimes it was easier to define the grid system because there was clear evidence that type was set in certain columns but others there was evidence of more complex grid systems being used which cause me confusion. Nonetheless I understand how to use a grid system and how vital it is to ensure that a design is balanced. Before the session I thought that a grid could sometimes be restrictive but after the session I now am able to understand and see how using a grid isn’t constricting but ensure that work is still balanced but also creative and contemporary.

The second task was to use newspapers and magazines to create different layouts using a minimum of three elements and a maximum of five. This was a useful task for myself as I find it easier to visualise ideas when I’m physically creating the idea, as it gives me to freedom to move elements around and adapt the design as I see fit. We had to create either a asymmetrical landscape/portrait or/and symmetrical landscape/portrait.

I created one asymmetrical portrait and two asymmetrical landscape layouts. I wanted to experiment with learning more about creating balance within my layouts and I felt I achieved this by create three asymmetrical layouts. I used various elements within each design to create layouts. Before I committed to certain layouts I decided to photography and move elements around then revisit the images to decided which layout I felt worked best.

Personally I felt that the asymmetrical portrait layout worked the best for me as I think the balance is more equal and the path of the eye is easier to see than my two other designs. However, there is elements of each design that I would adapt to improve them. I sketched these ideas out in my sketchbook after discussing them with my peers. I felt that I could have taken inspiration from the design magazines and experimented with more contemporary styles.


We then had a critique session with David and the group which I found was interesting as it gave me the opportunity to see what my peers had created but also too see which layouts worked well and I was able to self critique my work to see what I could do better and improve if I was to do this task again.


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