Meaning of Shapes
The use of circle, squares and triangles have a larger value than you may think. They can sometimes be subtle as elements within a design or directly in front of you – My emotional relation with squares, circles and tringles.
“I found I could say things with colour and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way” – Georgia O’Keeffe
I believe these three shapes hold a strong importance, they are seen around us every single day. Shapes are a powerful way to communicate, they are a building block in our visual vocabulary. Each shape has its own set of characteristics, communicating messages and evoking emotion. Once you understand the importance of these shapes and how and why they are important to apply to not only your work but your lifestyle, you will see a clear different to your work and life.
It’s important to build your own relationship with shapes, understand how they make you feel, how you can use these shapes to improve your work. I use my art to represent why and how these shapes are so important to me. I combine the use of colour (which is also very important), and shapes to create bold and precise emotion.
Take a look around you now, I’m sure you will notice the use of a square within or as an object.
A square. It’s amazing how if it stands on its side it’s static and stiff, but turn it on its edge and it’s a lot more dynamic, or expand the height or width and create a rectangle. Being such a rigid shape, yet being so free at the same time, sounds like a description of me. Taking all of this in to consideration its very clear why squares are the most used shape in design. Both Squares and rectangles (as they are one) are a default shape for most projects.
I mention all of this to say how important it is to understand the characteristics of the shape you’re using and how or if you should build and on this.
A square is a comfort shape it’s familiarity and equal sides makes me feel a sense of trust and stableness. That’s not necessary a good thing, I went through a point in my life which I like to call the ‘The Square’. I realised that ‘stability’ is a lot more boring than I expected, the idea of being a square actually started to scare me, the highs and lows in life feed me. In order to understand yourself it’s important to start life as a ‘The Square’, take it as a building block towards other elements.
I’m an Apple lover, although I don’t like to admit it. I recently bought a new iPhone and I started to wonder, if my iPhone would still be as appealing as a rectangular shape without its rounded corners. I personally feel the combination of the ‘standard’ rectangular shape with the smooth softness of a curve, is one of the simplest but most effective designs I’ve seen.
A square will never let you down, he works 9-5, graduated from university and did his masters. Wakes up every day at 6:00am and follows the same route to work every day, he has never called in sick.
1.Draw a square. 2.Divide the square into four smaller squares using a pencil and a ruler. 3. Draw round lines in one smaller square. (with the rounded edge sitting against the edge of the large outer square). 4.Repeat for each square until one large circle has been created. 5.Erase the square lines.
An ancient text says that God is a circle whose center is everywhere but whose circumference is nowhere.
A circle. A starting moment, the point at which potential comes into being.
I leant how to draw a circle in art class, I had to draw circles on top of each other really fast, over and over till it starts to look like there’s an actual circle somewhere in there; and I have been applying this method to life ever since. To me, circles represent femininity, infinity and harmony – a place you get to once you stripe away the ego and limitations in the material world.
A circle is easy to find in nature, for example trees grow following a concentric circular pattern. A clear example of someone who effective used the beauty and wholeness of a circle is Frank Lloyd Wright. He was an American architect, interior designer, writer and educator, who design more than 1,000 structures. One of my favorite architectural pieces was produced by him, The Solomon R. Guggenheim museum in New York which I finally got to visit in person is a piece of art. This building is a clear example of the importance a circle can create by having such a soft and innovative building to contrast against the urban New York fabric, Wright described the shape as an ‘inverted ziggurat’.
I look at a circle as a mother. It’s whole, they protect, they contain – by confining what’s within it whilst simultaneously keep things out.
Triangles are also the polygons with the least number of sides, so they are easy to use when building generalizations about larger objects.
When we talk about triangles, it’s a lot broader than the other shapes as they are right-angled triangle, isosceles triangles and acute triangles which all have different meanings to them. The equilateral triangle is one of the three basic forms mentioned, it can be found inside a circle by measuring its radius six times around the circumference and joining its three equilateral points by three lines. The equilateral is the most stable and effectively used triangle in design and lifestyle.
The equilateral Triangle can have two quite opposite meanings. One of conflict and nervousness and maybe slight unstableness, and the other of unity, completion and balance. The triangle is a motion shape with a masculine energy, our eyes are drawn to the shape from the bottom to the top.
When we talk about the triangle, I can’t help but mention the musical triangle. Although it has a marmite effect for its simplistic look, it produces something with such a rich shimmery sound. Some of the most simple but effective designs involve the use of triangles and circles, a great example is the Mercedes logo deigned by Gottlieb Daimler.
I have this love, hate relationship with tringles, at points in my life I feel a great connection to the shape and at other times I feel like a divorced bitter wife. It’s like loving art but hating your art teacher in school. Or like me being dyslexic but not being able to spell dyslexia (thanks spell checker), you see where I’m going with this?
Current relationship status on Facebook: It’s complicated
LAYOUT DESGIN IDEAS
With the layout of my article I wanted to play around with front size, I wanted to convert against layout norms and create a overly big and bold front. I also felt like it was a way to make such a large amount of text look less boring and breaks it up to make it easier to read.