Symmetry in Design

Day and Night by M. C Escher

As we discuss more about speculative designs, icons and abstract art, we find ourselves exploring new and interesting concepts in design. One aspect that I gravitate towards when trying to create abstract designs is symmetry. It gives me a sense of balance which I find comforting. A Dutch graphic artist named M. C. Escher explored this idea of symmetry using mathematics in a way that easily captures an audience. One of this famous work “Day and Night” uses symmetry, positive and negative space with repetitive structures to beautifully depict a passage in time.

But a much simpler yet effective composition of symmetry is seem in logo and icon designs which gravitates the viewer. Harvard Business Review performed a study on how symmetric and asymmetric logos can effect the customer’s perspective on the brand. The result showed that brands that advertise themselves as sophisticated and sincere may benefit from symmetrical logos as they boost customer attitude. Whereas, brands that market themselves as trendy and youthful may benefit from asymmetric logos (eg. Redbull, Mountain Dew, Nike).

Check out the Harvard Business Review article here. For more of M.C. Escher’s work, click here.

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