Friday, March 1, 2013

FRIDAYfinds! - Why we love beautiful things


There is a definite revolution taking place in the science of design 
and yet its rare when I find a really thoughtful article about it.
So when I came across this in the New York Times
I wanted to pass it along to you.

We all instinctively reach out for attractive things
and yet we're just beginning to understand why.
Color is one example.  
According to recent research in Germany, just glancing at shades of green
can boost creativity and motivation.
It's because we associate green with food-bearing vegetation
and the promise of nourishment and the comfort it brings.

We have long known that color moves us but now, armed with the "WHY"
designers can apply this knowledge in ways that will have a more profound effect on 
people and their environments.

Think about the hundreds of situations where color can create positive emotions. 
Hospitals, daycare facilities, classrooms, the workplace and our homes 
can all reap the benefits of this research. 

But color isn't the only breakthrough in the science of design.

In 2009, a professor at Duke University demonstrated that our eyes
can scan an image fastest when its shape is a
GOLDEN RECTANGLE.
(Subtract a square from the golden rectangle, and what remains is another golden rectangle - into infinity)
He found that this shape was the ideal layout for a paragraph of text,
which made for easier reading and retention.   


The unique properties of the golden rectangle, or Magical Proportion (about 5 x 8)
have been a source of inspiration
 for philosophers, mathematicians and artists for thousands of years.
It provided the underlying structure for the facade of the Parthenon and Notre Dame
as well as the shape of something we are all familiar with...

ipodtouch
There is no doubt that Apple understood the power behind the 5 x 8 proportion!

I think the best way to sum up this rather complex concept
is to share a direct excerpt from the article,

"We think of great design as art, not science, a mysterious gift from the gods,
not something that results just from diligent and informed study.
But, if every designer understood more about the mathematics of attraction,
the mechanics of affection, all designs from houses to cellphones
to offices and cars - 
could both look good and be good for you."



"EMBRACE THE JOYS OF GOOD DESIGN!"

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