Week 7 – UXD Principles and Concepts

By sethmsparks

Our final week of Module 3: Visual Design and the final week of this course had us studying Aesthetics. We began the week with an overview of a variety of design principles like color, layers, transparency, textures, patterns, and contrast and how they are all defined and used in creating a cohesive, immersive, enjoyable design. I feel like I understand color theory a little better now, especially when considering its additive and subtractive nature across different usages. There are a lot of definitions related to color that I need to spend some time memorizing, so hopefully I can do that before the next course begins.

Along with the presentation, we watched a few Lynda videos on color. Sidenote, I didn’t realize that Lynda was free to us – guess I should say goodbye to what little free time I thought I had. Beyond the physical properties of colors, the videos demonstrated how they can set a mood, and how palettes are designed to evoke emotion and memory and to create a sense of time and space. I think I’ll find myself exploring more of that particular video course if only to better understand how to start developing more thoughtful color schemes (beyond just hitting up a generator online). The last bit of Required Material was a piece on contrast, which was insightful too. Probably worth spending more time there too…

Finally, our assignment this week was to use persona data given to us to design a single page Persona exhibit. I found myself trying to find interesting ways to create a grid system that wasn’t too informed by the articles that we were linked to, but once I was an hour or so in I wished I’d gone with the 11 x 17” paper size as the 8.5 x 11 started feeling cramped. I tried to use what we’d learned last week around font sizing and colors to contrast the appropriate sections of the document while maintaining a consistency that made it all blend well. The only hiccup I had was in trying to settle on a way to handle the “Goals” section of the Main Points. It felt like it should be its own thing, but was included as a bullet within the Main Points list. I took that a cue to treat it like a sub-head of sorts, so I did something a little different with it.

In all, I’m sad to see this course end. I feel like as a concepts course, it definitely did its job or introducing me to a ton of stuff that I only knew a little about, and has me eager to explore a lot more of it in-depth. Here’s to hoping that we will cover more of it later, or that I find time on my own at some point to continue to dig in.

This week’s notes are here. Thanks Jess!