Ten principles of graphic design

Summarized version, as a decalogue.

Portrait of Norberto Chaves Norberto Chaves Barcelona Followers: 3862


1. Conventionality

The sign must be configured according to some combination of culturally active graphic codes. The concept of “new graphic languages” is absurd: if a language is new, it is not understandable.

2. Occurrence

Occurrence compensates conventionality by giving relevance to the message. However, the level of atypicalness required isn't always the maximum possible. Each case require a different level of occurrence.

3. Effectiveness

The sign must fulfill, at least, all the functions it has been created for. Values, such as aesthetics, cannot subordinate the effectiveness of the graphic communique and can, instead, empower it.

4. Property

The sign must be inscribed in the sender's identity paradigm. The signature is not enough: the communique itself must identify the sender. Identity isn't about talking about the sender, it's about talking like the sender.

5. Respect

As it occurs with the sender, graphic must be adjust to and respect the receiver's codes. It speaks for him, so he can understand.

6. Pertinence

The sign must be adjusted to the registry of the communicational link established between sender and receiver. Only knowing that link it is possible to establish the proper tone for each occasion.

7. Density

Between what's empty and what's full there must be a relation of meaning. The sign must be saturated, that is, lacking of zones deprived of meaning. If when eliminating an element nothing is lost, is because that element was unnecessary.

8. Economy

Wasting is communicationally negative. The sign must not contain superfluous redundancy or graphic excess. 

9. Transparence

The sign must lack parasitary significations that operate as noise to its specific message.

10. Anonymity

The sign must be autonomous, reference-free in regards of its production process or its author. The sign isn't its production process' story: it belongs to the sender and its creation must become invisible.

What do you think? Share your comments right now!


Portrait of Norberto Chaves Norberto Chaves Barcelona Followers: 3862

Joel Alejandro Villarreal Bertoldi, translator TranslationJoel Alejandro Villarreal Bertoldi Córdoba Followers: 29

Comments:
3
Votes:
19

Help to spread this article by translating it

Translate to italian
QR code for access to article Ten principles of graphic design

This article does not express the opinion of the editors and managers of FOROALFA, who assume no responsibility for its authorship and nature. To republish, except as specifically indicated, please request permission to author. Given the gratuity of this site and the hyper textual condition of the Web, we will be grateful if you avoid reproducing this article on other websites. Published on 15/04/2015

Download PDF

Norberto Chaves

More articlesbyNorberto Chaves

Portrait of Norberto Chaves
Title:
Every trademark must be...
Synopsis:
Twelve supposedly «universal» rules in designing trademarks.
Share:
Portrait of Norberto Chaves
Title:
A “graphic Houdini”
Synopsis:
The combined role of programmatic restrictions and creativity in the accomplishment of message effectiveness.
Share:

Debate

 logo
Your comment

Login with your account to comment on this article. If you do not have it, create your free account now.

Portrait of Nicole Garzón
0
Nov 2016

Very clever article and way to summarize design principles. Itʼs very important as a designer to know this stuff because it helps us in our daily work. Not everyone understands the concept of graphic design and what it implies which is a problem nowadays. Maybe this principles will help not just designers but every creative.

1
Portrait of Rodrigo Rico
1
Abr 2015

The concept of «new graphic languages» is absurd: if a language is new, it is not understandable.

Ojalá las personas encargadas de cuentas cuando quieren parecer "creativas" leyeran este y entendieran este artículo...

No todos son así, pero si es una generalidad.

1
Portrait of Dragica Petrović
0
Abr 2015

very, very smart ~

0

Might interest you

Portrait of Pau De Riba
Author:
Pau De Riba
Title:
Invisible Design
Synopsis:
After the “premium” stage where design acts as quality mark, good design should become a “commodity”, a component of the welfare society we take for granted.
Translations:
Share:
Main illustration of the article The citizen designer
Author:
Fernando Rodríguez Álvarez
Title:
The citizen designer
Synopsis:
In the dark days that live Mexico, emerges a discussion about how designers get involved with social conflicts.
Translations:
Share:
Portrait of Milton Glaser
Author:
Milton Glaser
Title:
Ten Things I Have Learned
Synopsis:
I'm sharing some things I've learned over the years, which have much to do with what we, the designers, do.
Translations:
Share:
Portrait of Jorge Luis Muñoz
Author:
Jorge Luis Muñoz
Title:
Social design cases
Synopsis:
Social design as a part of graphic design is not only a matter of concepts; it is fundamentally awareness on what is designed and what is done.
Translations:
Share: