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Understanding golden ratio in design: a designer’s guide 

 March 21, 2022

The debate regarding whether a design is good or not has been going on ever since humans started creating art. There are thousands of forums, social platform threads, and individual conversations regarding what good design means, and everyone has their perspectives and opinions regarding the same. Even though there is no single perfect design approach, there is an accurate math-based approach that can facilitate creating distinctive designs every time – The Golden Ratio. It is believed that the concept has been implemented in art and design since ancient times. According to Forbes, the Golden Ratio is even used to assess beauty. This article will talk about what Golden Ratio is, the tools that can help us use it, and how we can implement it in our designs.

 

What is the Golden Ratio?

 

Synonymous with the Fibonacci Sequence (a naturally-occurring number sequence found almost everywhere), the Golden Ratio defines the accurate symmetrical relationship of two given proportions. The Golden Ratio is known by many names, including Golden Section, Divine Proportion, and Golden Mean. It is also represented by the Greek letter Phi. The question that arises is – How is it related to design? Well, one can find the Golden ratio when they divide a straight line into two portions. The longer part (x), when divided by the smaller part (y), will equal the sum of (x) + (y) divided by (x) – both of which equals 1.618. This formula significantly helps in designing shapes and patterns, logos, layouts, etc.

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How Can You Measure the Golden Ratio?

 

First of all, you do not need to take out a pencil and a sheet of paper to calculate the golden ratio. There are several applications available in the market that will easily do the job for you. For instance, if you want to maintain golden ratio in your visuals to make them look more appealing, you can use the Goldie App. Creatives who own a Mac can use the application to measure up and visualize the golden ratio in their designs. It is a simple and sophisticated tool that facilitates users to create perfect designs effortlessly.

 

How Can You Implement Golden Ratio in Design?

 

Now that you have an acute idea of what Golden Ratio is, let’s take a look at some of the ways in which you can use the concept in design:

 

  • To Improve Typography & Define Hierarchy

 

You can use The Golden Ratio to know what font size you should use for writing the header and copy text on a website, its landing pages, blog posts, and print campaigns. To make the concept even more transparent, let’s consider an example. Suppose the size of the copy-text is 12 px. If you multiply it with 1.618, you will get 19.416 as the answer. This means that the header’s font size should be 19 or 20px to satisfy the Golden Ratio and balance out the copy text’s size. Similarly, if you want to determine the correct size of the body text, you can do the opposite., i.e., divide the size of the header text by 1.618.

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  • To Crop and Resize Images

 

When it comes to cropping an image, the easy part is identifying the white space present that you can cut out of the picture. However, the challenging part is knowing whether the image is balanced after the resizing has been done. This can be simplified by using the Golden Spiral as a reference for the picture’s composition. For instance, placing the Golden Spiral on the image lets you ensure that its focal point is placed in the middle spiral’s center.

 

  • To Manage the Layout

 

Using the Golden Ratio principle, you can design a beautiful and appealing user interface that manages to draw a user’s attention towards the essential elements. For example, a web page featuring a wide and broad section of content on the left side followed by a narrower section on the right side can take the help of the Golden Ratio to help you determine where you can place the critical content.

 

  • To Develop Logos

 

While designing a new logo, it is normal to feel stuck sometimes because of specific details. If you are designing a logo, you can use the Golden Ratio principle to sketch out suitable proportions & shapes. Several multinational companies, including the likes of Twitter and Apple, have followed the Golden Ratio to design their logos.

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Nature also provides us with some excellent examples of the Golden Ratio. Be it flowers, pineapples, honeycombs, or even seashells, all exhibit the principle of the Golden Ratio. As a designer, you can use the number to create appealing designs that people subconsciously react positively to. Even the minutest of tweaks while resizing an image can drastically improve how your design is perceived.

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