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Design Elements, 2nd Edition by Timothy Samara

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(F39)_Job:12-40337 Title:RP-Design Elements 2nd Edition
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putting it all together
234
MERGING TYPE AND IMAGE
Two Things Becoming One In the simplest
terms, every design project incorporates
just two different parts—type and image—
and so the most important question to
address, therefore, is: “How exactly do I
put these two different things together?
Getting type to interact dynamically with
imagery, in a unified way, poses a serious
problem for many designers. The challenge
stems from the fundamental differences
between type and everything else.
Sure, type behaves in accordance with the
same visual rules that apply to images (as
we have seen), but while images exhibit
formal qualities in staggering variety, type
is always type: graphical lines, making
patterns of other lines. And these lines are
all words—they mean something, which
inevitably creates a strange disconnect for
designers when trying to analyze its very
specific visual qualities relative to the
more intuitively understandable visual
qualities of pictures and graphical shapes.
The results of poorly integrated type and
image fall into two categories: The first
includes type that has nothing in common
with the images around it; the second
includes typography that has been so
aggressively integrated with image that
it becomes illegible or unnavigable.
Overcoming type’s stark, alien difference
from other visual material and, in so doing,
avoiding either of the aforementioned
Alternating dark and light typographic elements
in the upper portion of this brochure cover repeat the
dark and light value breaks in the landscape image.
ANDREAS ORTAG AUSTRIA
The text, inset images, and linear graphic forms are
organized on a grid of vertical and horizontal axes to
unify their proportions.
LSD SPAIN
Both the type and the spliced image are composed on a symmetrical axis; the
headline’s staggered overlapping, as well as the informational text’s deep rags,
echo this irregular movement in the image.
JUNE KIM/PARSONS SCHOOL OF DESIGN UNITED STATES
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design elements
235
graph, for instance, even while the para-
graph’s optimal width, being horizontal in
proportion, opposes the same foreground
element’s verticality. The fundamental
difference between type’s linear patterning
and the photograph’s continuous tonality
is unavoidable; even so, commonality is
present in at least one aspect between
them—shape—in similar, as well as oppos-
ing, ways. And, there are likely other such
relationships to be found as well.
So, to simplify matters for the sake of this
discussion, it’s easiest to break down these
two states of possible type/image relation-
ship—formal congruence, or similarity,
and formal opposition, or contrast—into
categories that concern only four differ-
ent attributes: shape, texture, value, and
rhythm. Initially concerning oneself only
with these attributes makes it easier to
integrate typography and image overall.
scenarios depends on finding more partic-
ular areas of common ground between the
limited formal qualities that type exhibits
and the more varied kinds among images.
Laying type into or across an image is a
quick way of finding visual relationships.
Their immediate juxtaposition will reveal
similarities among elements in each, as
well as opposition among others. The rag
of a short paragraph might have a similar
shape as a foreground element in a photo-
The staggered movement
and size change of the type
correspond to the vertical
movement of the sewing
machine needle—contrasting
it with horizontal motion—
and the flow of fabric through
the sewing machine.
VCU QATAR QATAR
Combining vertical and
horizontal positioning of type
elements helps integrate the
linear movement of both type
and image, as well as permits
the currency’s denomination to
be read when the bill is held at
either angle.
MARCIA LISANTO/
LAGUNA COLLEGE OF ART AND
DESIGN UNITED STATES
Both the wide callout on the left-hand page of this spread and the
group of shallow columns on the right share proportions with
elements in the image. The relative positions of the two groupings
restate the image’s major diagonal axis.
LOEWY UNITED KINGDOM
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